The plantation owners are a worried lot because the rains : GMAT Sentence Correction (SC)
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# The plantation owners are a worried lot because the rains

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The plantation owners are a worried lot because the rains [#permalink]

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31 Dec 2012, 21:08
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Difficulty:

65% (hard)

Question Stats:

45% (01:55) correct 55% (01:03) wrong based on 231 sessions

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The plantation owners are a worried lot because the rains are just around the corner and neither the topsoil has arrived nor have the plants.
A) neither the topsoil has arrived nor have the plants
B) neither the topsoil has arrived nor the plants
C) neither the topsoil nor the plants has arrived
D) neither of the topsoil or plants has arrived
E) neither has the topsoil nor the plants have arrived

Source: Aristotle SC
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
If you have any questions
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Re: SC - Parallelism question [#permalink]

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31 Dec 2012, 21:26
taurean wrote:
The plantation owners are a worried lot because the rains are just around the corner and neither the topsoil has arrived nor have the plants.
A) neither the topsoil has arrived nor have the plants
B) neither the topsoil has arrived nor the plants
C) neither the topsoil nor the plants has arrived
D) neither of the topsoil or plants has arrived
E) neither has the topsoil nor the plants have arrived

Source: Aristotle SC

If you break underlined portion into two parts, then things will become very clear to you.
i) the topsoil has not arrived
ii) the plants have not arrived.
Since plants is plural entity, therefore we use "have" instead of "has".
Also keep in mind that in the "neither......nor" construction, the verb will depend on the proximity with "nor". If the noun closest to "nor" is plural, then the verb will be plural and vice versa.

Only A follows these rules and hence the answer.
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Re: SC - Parallelism question [#permalink]

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31 Dec 2012, 21:36
I am confused with the position of the verbs in neither-nor construction....

neither the topsoil has arrived nor have the plants

has is placed after the topsoil whereas have is placed before the plants....

I expected neither has the topsoil nor have the plants arrived (or) neither the topsoil has nor the plants have arrived
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Re: SC - Parallelism question [#permalink]

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31 Dec 2012, 21:48
Yeah! I can understand, but on GMAT you are not supposed to choose the ideal answer but rather the best among the choices.
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Re: SC - Parallelism question [#permalink]

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31 Dec 2012, 21:53
I thought E is close....in fact, it is the mirror image of A....Can you explain why A is better than E?
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Re: SC - Parallelism question [#permalink]

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07 Aug 2013, 01:35
taurean wrote:
I thought E is close....in fact, it is the mirror image of A....Can you explain why A is better than E?

Arrived is a past participle verb here, when there are two placements of same verb to be safe place it in the beginning since there will be less ambiguity, when arrived came after topsoil we know it is to be used for plants but when arrived came with plants it may or may not be used for topsoil. There is something missing.

Hope it helps

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Re: The plantation owners are a worried lot because the rains [#permalink]

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19 Nov 2013, 06:42
Experts please help. I was able to eliminate two wrong option but don't know how to choose among rest of not so good options?
here is my reasoning:
According to Manhattan SC, For neither nor and either or construction in a sentence : find the noun nearest to the verb, and make sure that the verb agrees in number with this noun.

The plantation owners are a worried lot because the rains are just around the corner and neither the topsoil has arrived nor have the plants.
the correct form of underlined portion could be :
1.Neither the topsoil nor the plants have arrived.
2.Neither the plants nor the topsoil has arrived

lets see the options:
A) neither the topsoil has arrived nor have the plants - wordy but hold.
B) neither the topsoil has arrived nor the plants - placement of words is awkward but hold
C) neither the topsoil nor the plants has arrived - usage of has is wrong..it should be have..wrong
D) neither of the topsoil or plants has arrived - Neither of is wordy and wrong
E) neither has the topsoil nor the plants have arrived -Correct use of verb but issue is its placement.

Now whats wrong in B or E? how to eliminate them ?
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Re: The plantation owners are a worried lot because the rains [#permalink]

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10 Nov 2014, 10:29
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Expert's post
taurean wrote:
The plantation owners are a worried lot because the rains are just around the corner and neither the topsoil has arrived nor have the plants.
A) neither the topsoil has arrived nor have the plants
B) neither the topsoil has arrived nor the plants
C) neither the topsoil nor the plants has arrived
D) neither of the topsoil or plants has arrived
E) neither has the topsoil nor the plants have arrived

WaterFlowsUp wrote:
Hi mike,
Could you please tell me the diffference between option A and E. Why is parallelism correct in E and not in A.
Also the missing ellipse part.
Regards,
Subho

Dear Subho,
I'm happy to respond to your p.m.

This SC question is simply atrocious. It is embarrassing. The phrases "are a worried lot" and "just around the corner" are casual colloquialisms that have absolutely no place in GMAT Sentence Correction. It sounds as if a teenager wrote this question. This question reflects absolutely nothing of the formalism and rigor that the GMAT always maintains.

I don't think it's worth spending any time analyzing the logic of this question. Choice (E) is perfectly correct. Arguably, choice (A) is acceptable as well. The person who wrote the question might have his or her own reason why (A) is wrong, but frankly, given the overall quality of the question, I am simply not interested in that explanation. Exploring the logic of low quality SC questions absolutely will not prepare you for the GMAT.

I recommend sticking to high quality questions. Here's a high quality GMAT SC practice question:
http://gmat.magoosh.com/questions/3597

Does all this make sense?
Mike
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Re: The plantation owners are a worried lot because the rains [#permalink]

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13 Nov 2014, 01:10
Thanks Mike
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Regards,

S

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Re: The plantation owners are a worried lot because the rains [#permalink]

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25 Jul 2016, 14:58
Agree, A and E seem very convincing and can be argued either way.
Re: The plantation owners are a worried lot because the rains   [#permalink] 25 Jul 2016, 14:58
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