Please be careful while posting the question. Make sure the correct words are underlined and the answer choices do not miss out any word/words that might be crucial for selection or elimination. The French general Henri Petain, a highly-decorated World War I military leader
, had his reputation ruined because of his collaboration with Nazis during the German Occupation in World War II.
Since the meaning of this sentence is pretty clear, let me start with error analysis. There are two things that I would say here:
1. Notice that comma is not in the non-underlined portion of the sentence. So we must remember always that we have a comma before the verb “had”.
2. “had” in this sentence is not a past perfect tense. It is a simple past tense verb for “have/has”. “Has/have/had” only become past perfect tense when they are followed by another verb.
Notice that “ruined” here is a verb-ed modifier that modifies the preceding noun “reputation”.
Also, it does not make sense for the sentence to use past perfect tense because this sentence is giving us general information about Henry Petain. Hence, the sentence is correctly written in simple past tense.
Again, there is just one verb in this sentence. Past perfect is used to establish time sequencing between two past events.
This sentence has no error because the subject “The French general Henri Petain” has been correctly modified by “a highly-decorated World War I military leader”.POE:
A. The French general Henry Petain, a highly-decorated World War I military leader: Correct
for reasons stated above.
B. Henry Petain, a French general who was a highly-decorated World War I military leader: Incorrect.
The relative pronoun clause “who… leader” makes this information non-essential for the sentence. The sentence now seems to say that Henry Petain was a French general who had his reputation ruined for this reason. By the way, he was a highly decorated World War I military leader. This is not the intended meaning. Petain’s being a highly decorated WW I leader sets the contrast. Once a celebrated leader, Petain lost his reputation later.
C. Highly-decorated World War I military leader, the French general Henry Petain: Incorrect.
Remember we have still have the comma before the verb “had”. In this choice, the subject and the verb are separated with a comma. This is not a grammatical construction. The opening verb-ed modifier is correctly modifying the subject.
D. The French general Henry Petain, who was a highly-decorated military leader for World War I: Incorrect.
1. Repeats the same “who” error of choice B.
2. Use of preposition “for” is incorrect.
E. The highly-decorated French general Henri Petain, a military leader for World War I: Incorrect.
1. Modifier “the highly decorated” is now placed before “the French general Henri Petain”. The choice now says that Retain was a highly decorated French general and was just a leader in World War I. It does not say that he was a highly-decorated leader in WW I. This again reduces the contrast that he lost his reputation in WW II.
2. Repeats the preposition error of Choice D.
Hope this helps.
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