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Scientists have recently discovered what could be the

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Scientists have recently discovered what could be the [#permalink] New post 03 Jun 2003, 15:29
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Scientists have recently discovered what could be the largest and oldest living organism on Earth, a giant fungus that is an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles spawned by a single fertilized spore some 10,000 years ago and extending for more than 30 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest.

(A) extending
(B) extends
(C) extended
(D) it extended
(E) is extending
[Reveal] Spoiler:
Why is extending and spawned parallel participial phrases?
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
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 [#permalink] New post 05 Nov 2004, 21:07
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A is the correct answer. This question is about the use of present vs past participle.
present participle is used to denote a present condition that still prevails
past participle is used to denote a completed action, usually in a passive mood

The sentence is definitely talking about the filigree:

filigree [of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles] spawned by a single fertilized spore some 10,000 years ago and extending for more than 30 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest

What is b/w brackets is a prepositional phrase and remove it to make the sentence less cumbersome:

filigree spawned by a single fertilized spore some 10,000 years ago and extending for more than 30 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest

As you can see, the filigree spawned by X some 10,000 years ago. This warrants the use of past participle. Also, "spawned by" denotes passive voice which justifies the use of past participle.
As for the "extending", it is still prevailing today in the Michigan forest so you cannot use past participle "extended".

The present and past participles are used to describe the "filigree", they act as adjectives.
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Re: SC-Largest Living organism [#permalink] New post 04 May 2012, 12:27
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balajinaik wrote:
My answer is B.



I have always had an issue with this type of question. What i have found in GMAt questions is that in most cases like the one here, the question talks about many properties of a single item. In the process they mix the verb tense thereby confusing the subject.



This Q is a classic example of that. The scientists discovered the Fungi, the next 2 are properties of the fungi. hence extends is correct and not extending



Balaji


Hi,

Scientists have recently discovered what could be the largest and oldest living organism on Earth, a giant fungus that is an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles spawned by a single fertilized spore some 10,000 years ago and extending for more than 30 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest.

Image

It is imperative to understand the meaning of the sentence in order to get the correct answer. So let’s do that first. Scientists have recently discovered something that could be the largest and oldest organism on Earth. So what have they discovered? They have a discovered a giant fungus which has qualities that make the scientists believe that this fungus could be the largest and oldest living organism. What are these qualities? This giant fungus is an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles. This fungus has been spawned by a single fertilized spore some 10,000 years ago. So this is why the scientists think that this fungus is the oldest living organism. The other quality that the fungus has is that it extends for more than 30 acres. This is the reason why the scientists think this fungus to be the largest living organism

Image

After we have understood the meaning, let us evaluate the errors in the sentence. Now notice “spawned” is not verb here. It is verb-ed modifier that is presenting the quality of the giant fungus. In the very same way, “extending” is a verb-ing modifier that is also presenting another quality of the fungus. Hence, verb-ed modifier “spawned” and the verb-ing modifier “extending” are parallel to each other. Hence this sentence is correct as it is.

POE:

Choice A: extending: Correct.

Choice B: extends: Incorrect. This is a verb and a verb cannot be parallel to a modifier.

Choice C: extended: Incorrect. We again have a verb in the past tense that cannot be parallel to a modifier. Also the fungus is still extending. It is still there. So use of past tense is wrong anyway.

Choice D: it extended: Incorrect. Same error as in Choice D.

Choice E: is extending: Incorrect. This is a verb and a verb cannot be parallel to a modifier.

Hope this helps to understand why choice A is the correct answer.
Thanks.
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 [#permalink] New post 05 Nov 2004, 16:23
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Could it be that "intervowen", "spawned" and "extending" are all adjectives of the giant fungus? In other words all these are traits of the giant fungus .
My first instinct was to pick A , but I got confused after looking at the answer choices and picked C instead. Guess it takes a little more confidence to pick A :)
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Re: SC from OG11 [#permalink] New post 13 Nov 2008, 23:18
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That's an interesting question about the "present" and "past" participles. Three of the wrong answers are very obviously not parallel; neither the present tense (B), the past tense (D), nor the present progressive (E) can be parallel with a participle. Native English speakers can feel this easily, even if they don't know these grammatical names.

So why is the correct answer A, the "present" participle, instead of C, the "past" participle? As you have probably guessed from the quotation marks, I'm going to suggest that those are bad names. Participles are verb forms being used as adjectives, and they don't really have tense. For example, I can say: "NASA plans to fly men to Mars using a spaceship built in orbit." Both the flight and the construction of the spaceship are clearly in the future, yet the sentence uses the "past" participle "built".

It is more useful and more accurate to call the "-ing" participle the SUBJECTIVE participle, and the "-ed" participle the OBJECTIVE participle. This is because we use "-ing" when the noun that it is modifying would have been the SUBJECT of the verb, and we use "-ed" when the noun that it is modifying would have been the OBJECT of the verb. In the spaceship example, for instance, "spaceship" is the object of the original verb "build".

When we look at the fungus sentence this way, the choice between "extending" and "extended" depends on the meaning: Does the fungus extend, or was it extended BY something? It is fairly clear that we mean the first, not the second, and so we should use the subjective (-ing) participle.
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Re: Brutal OG question [#permalink] New post 11 Jun 2009, 14:41
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I will give it a try...

The answer is A

Scientists have recently discovered what could be the largest and oldest living organism on Earth, a giant fungus that is an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles spawned by a single fertilized spore some 10,300 years ago and extending for more than 33 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest

For the second half of the sentence if you ignore the modifier 'that...tentacles' it will read
'a giant fungus spawned ... and extending.... '

Here spawned (past participle) and extending (present participle) are adjectives describing the fungus. They are also parallel. Two participles can be parallel. Also the reason we have extending and not extended because extending signifies that it still happens today. We know this because it's still the oldest living organism from the first part of the sentence.
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Re: Scientists have recently discovered what could be the [#permalink] New post 19 Sep 2013, 11:55
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Bumping for review and further discussion*.
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VTay25 wrote:
Scientists have recently discovered what could be the largest and oldest living organism on Earth, a giant fungus that is an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles spawned by a single fertilized spore some 10,000 years ago and extending for more than 30 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest.

(A) extending
(B) extends
(C) extended
(D) it extended
(E) is extending
[Reveal] Spoiler:
Why is extending and spawned parallel participial phrases?


Scientists have discovered a giant fungus which is an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles. There are two characteristics of the fungus 1) It has been spawned by a single fertilized spore some 10,000 years ago. 2) It extends for more than 30 acres in the soil of Michigan.

These two characteristics have been shown in the original sentence in the form of Adjectival clauses spawned by...........ago AND extending for more............forest. The first clause is Verb-ed Modifier and the second one is Verb-ing Modifier

Since the first characteristic of Giant fungus has been described by a Adjectival Clause, The second characteristic also need to be shown in the form of a Adjectival clause, which is done in the original sentence. Hence the sentence is correct as written. Choice A is Correct

B) Extends acts as verb and can not parallel to Modifier spawned.

C) Extended also acts as verb and can not parallel to Modifier spawned. Also simple past tense extended indicates that the process of extending has been stopped, which is wrong. The fungus is still there and extending.

D) It extended is independent clause which can not be parallel to Modifier.

E) Incorrect for the same reason cited in Choice B.

Hope that helps!
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 [#permalink] New post 16 Apr 2007, 08:25
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msingh wrote:
what is past participle in the above sentene. All the verbs that i see are in simple past tense.
The word "recently" does not mean that that it is an on going activity & continuing in the present.

i would go with choice B - extends.



OK. Let's substitute EXTENDS in the original sentence and see what happens -

I am just breaking the whole sentence into 'logical chunks'

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Scientists have recently discovered

what could be the largest and oldest living organism on Earth,

a giant fungus that is

an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles

spawned by a single fertilized spore some 10,000 years ago

and

extends for more than 30 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest.


In other words in the phrase - an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles SPAWNED by blah blah AND EXTENDS for more than blah blah, the SPAWNED part is describing the interwoven filigree HENCE the connecting AND part must (in order to maintain parallelism) have another adjectival phrase to describe the same interwoven filigree - something which the extending participial provides.
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Re: Brutal OG question [#permalink] New post 05 May 2011, 01:17
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cano wrote:
Subject + verb + direct object
Scientists discovered the organism.
Most of the sentence describes this organism: largest, oldest, LIVING, etc. Many of you made the parallelism between "is" and "extends". But if we make "living" parallel with "extending"? Think about it. For me, what helped the most was the structure of the sentence. If you think of verbs inside the big modifier, then you get lost and confused with "is", "spawned", "extending", etc.


No. While the name is 'present' participle, they really have no tense (Present/Past/Future) of their own. Present participles 'derive' their tense from the 'main verb'.

He is running Vs He was running

Present Participle 'running' used in both sentences, but deriving the 'tense' (present and Past respectively) from the linking verb 'is/was'.

That aside, in the question under consideration, 'extends', as used in B cannot be used because 'extends' is a 'verb' and a 'verb' cannot be parallel with a 'participle' ('spawned'). Past Participle ('spawned') and Present Participle ('extending') can be perfectly parallel. Few examples are:

Tired but beaming, the athlete displayed the gold medal. (Tired- Past participle; beaming - Present participle)
The old lady's face, wrinkled but glowing, shone in the sun. (wrinkled - Past participle; glowing - Present participle).

The tougher part to see in this sentence is that 'extended', as used in C, would act as a proper verb (and hence would not be parallel with the Past participle 'spawned').

Lastly, the question is interesting, but that is only one clause in this sentence:

Scientists have recently discovered what could be the largest and oldest living organism on Earth

Rest all is an appositive modifier:

a giant fungus that is an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles spawned by a single fertilized spore some 10,300 years ago and extending for more than 33 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest.
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Re: Scientists have recently discovered what... [#permalink] New post 26 Sep 2012, 11:16
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Parallelism is not the only issue.
Even when a verb functions as a modifier, it conveys tense.
In C and D, extended implies past action. Although the filigree was spawned 10,000 years ago (in the past), it is still extending for more than 30 acres (in the present). Eliminate C and D.

In B, spawned (adjective) and extends (verb) are not parallel. Eliminate B.
In E, spawned (adjective) and is extending (verb) are not parallel. Eliminate E.

The correct answer is A.
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SC - Mushrooms [#permalink] New post 05 Nov 2004, 15:10
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Scientists have recently discovered what could be the largest and oldest living organism on Earth, a giant fungus that is an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles spawned by a single fertilized spore some 10,000 years ago and extending for more than 30 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest.

(A) extending

(B) extends

(C) extended

(D) it extended

(E) is extending
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 [#permalink] New post 05 Nov 2004, 15:31
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A is the answer.
This one is from OG and I too wondered why A was the answer for this.
The OG says that it is a question that tests parallelism.

Shouldn't spawned -extended/extends as the logical choice.
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 [#permalink] New post 22 Mar 2005, 00:43
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Scientists have recently discovered what could be the largest and oldest living organism on Earth, a giant fungus that is a interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles spawned by a single fertilized spore some 1000 years ago and extending for more than 30 acres in the soill of a michigan forest.

The key to solving this is to identify the right modifier.

There is a giant fungus. What is it like? It is characterized by an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles and is extending for more than 30 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest.
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 [#permalink] New post 04 Nov 2006, 19:29
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Scientists recently discovered what could be the largest and oldest living organism on Earth, a giant fungus that is an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles spawned by a singles fertilized spore some 10,000 years ago and extending for more than 30 acres in the soil of a michigan forest.

Both the texts pieces in RED are adjective clauses 'cos they are modifying the subject gaint fungus.

spawned is past paticiple and since it is still existing it should have a parallel fragment in present participle as extending.

is is not necessary before extending 'cos that is is understood.

A should be it
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Re: Brutal SC # 19 [#permalink] New post 29 Jul 2007, 20:55
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empty_spaces wrote:
19. Scientists have recently discovered what could be the largest and oldest living organism on Earth, a giant fungus that is an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles spawned by a single fertilized spore some 10,300 years ago and extending for more than 33 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest.

(A) extending
(B) extends
(C) extended
(D) it extended
(E) is extending


please explain your answers.

thanks.


The trick is to back track to 'that is' and ignore the first part, then consider what is after the and:

(A) that is extending
(B) that is extends
(C) that is extended
(D) that is it extended
(E) that is is extending


B, D, E are obviously wrong.

C doesn't sound right.... I'm not quite sure why. Anyone?

But A is correct.
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Re: SC-Scientists [#permalink] New post 30 Jan 2009, 10:10
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malar wrote:
Scientists have recently discovered what could be the largest and oldest living organism on Earth, a giant fungus that is an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles sprawned by a single fertilized spore some 10000 years ago and extending for more than 30 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest.

A. extending
B. extends
C. extended
D. it extended
E. is extending



A Wins. Because the tense is present and continuous. Still extending... may be extending in future also.
E - has parellism issue
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Re: SC-Scientists [#permalink] New post 30 Jan 2009, 16:41
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ugimba wrote:
IMO C.


A
and I completly agree with previous explanation.
he did it before (Past tence) and is doing it right now, so clearly "expanding"..
Can you explain why C?
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SC:scientists [#permalink] New post 01 Mar 2009, 00:28
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Scientists have recently discovered what could be the largest and oldest living organism on Earth, a giant fungus that is an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles spawned by a single fertilized spore some 10,300 years ago and extending for more than 33 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest.

(A) extending
(B) extends
(C) extended
(D) it extended
(E) is extending
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Re: Olding Living Organism [#permalink] New post 11 Oct 2009, 07:47
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Breaking the last part down,
the tentacles, spawned by x and extending more than 30 acres .." correctly implies that the tentacles extend 30 acres.
[C]. [D]. and [E] have the wrong verb tense.
[B] to me suggests that the giant unfus extends more than 30 acres instead of the tentacles.

What does the OG say?
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Re: Olding Living Organism [#permalink] New post 31 Dec 2009, 14:50
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I would go with A here. Think of it like this:

Remove 'a giant unfus that is an interwoven filigree of mushrooms and rootlike tentacles spawned by a signle fertilized spore some 10,000 years ago and'

and you are left with 'Scientists have recently discovered what could be the largest and oldest living organism on Earth, extending for more than 30 acres in the soil of a Michigan forest.'

Try replace 'extending' with 'extended'. Tenses don't match.

Hope this helps.
Re: Olding Living Organism   [#permalink] 31 Dec 2009, 14:50
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