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help:Sc-verb sequencing

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help:Sc-verb sequencing [#permalink] New post 14 Apr 2013, 04:24
In central Pennsylvania, where men garbled in 1860 uniforms were reenacting the battle of Gretyysburg,the weather was perfect- searing heat rose in shimmering waves off the bright green hills,just as it was a century and a quarter earlier.

In this sentence, if I were to replace "just as it was a century and a quarter earlier" with past perfect i.e "just as it had been a century and a quarter earlier", would the new sentence still be corect?
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Re: help:Sc-verb sequencing [#permalink] New post 14 Apr 2013, 04:44
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12bhang wrote:
In central Pennsylvania, where men garbled in 1860 uniforms were reenacting the battle of Gretyysburg,the weather was perfect- searing heat rose in shimmering waves off the bright green hills,just as it was a century and a quarter earlier.

In this sentence, if I were to replace "just as it was a century and a quarter earlier" with past perfect i.e "just as it had been a century and a quarter earlier", would the new sentence still be corect?


IMO no. I am no expert but I can give you my opinion.
The Past Perfect describes an action in the past that happened before another action in the past.
In your sentence there is no "other action" that heppened after.
Moreover "the weather was perfect" is not parallel to your " it(the weather) had been a century and a quarter earlier".

My 2 cents.

You can check gmat-verbs-the-perfect-tense-136462.html
And take a look here: for-at-least-two-decades-or-more-previous-to-when-the-veneti-150813.html#p1211526
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Re: help:Sc-verb sequencing [#permalink] New post 14 Apr 2013, 05:30
To answer to the question: Here the time periods are defined and so you do not need "had been". [If no time period is defined, to indicate order of two events of the past, earlier event needs to be associated with "had been" and later event needs to be associated with simple past.]

Off from the topical question, as I find, the original sentence itself is incorrect.

1. There is no subject for "were reenacting".
2. If the sentence didn't have the part "were reenacting the battle of Gretyysburg", presence of "the weather was perfect" would have been meaningful. But the sentence here is a collection of fragments.
3. There is no clear referent for "it".

Is the first sentence from any GMAT forum and is this sentence treated as correct anywhere (though I doubt so)? If not, IMHO, it is better not to brainstorm on this.
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Re: help:Sc-verb sequencing [#permalink] New post 14 Apr 2013, 05:47
Past Perfect by definition - demarcates 2 time frames of action, one that happened in the past, and other that happened prior to this past action.
In this particular sentence, no such time reference is evident. Thus use of past perfect will be inappropriate.
Past perfect is best use, when 2 events of past are explaining 2 different time frames, but to note here, these 2 events must be related events.
To explain:
"By the time I reached, my friend had left my house." (my reaching home and my friend' leaving have related consequences, may be i was supposed to meet my friend)
In your sentence, the earlier weather has no bearing on the current scenario, thus a simple past is appropriate and not past perfect

Hope this helps
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Re: help:Sc-verb sequencing   [#permalink] 14 Apr 2013, 05:47
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