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Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the

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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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New post 14 Sep 2015, 01:29
pqhai wrote:
Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the behavior of interstellar dust, particles that comprise the atoms and molecules created in the progenitive explosion and persisting in even the emptiest regions of space.

This is modifier problem. A is correct.

The structure is:"Astronomers.................., particles that comprise the atom and molecules created in.......and persisting in.............."
"created" and "persisting" modify "the atom and molecules".

"The atom and molecules" should be created in.....==> Verb-ed modifier
"The atom and molecules" persisting in............... ==> Verb-ing modifier

A similar question:
scientists-have-recently-discovered-what-could-be-the-9394.html

Hope it helps.


Can you explain why the subject here is 'atoms and molecules' and not 'particles'.
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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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New post 14 Sep 2015, 05:00
It is not clear to me why the answer is A as opposed to B. However, it is clear that both are the only acceptable answers.

Saying:
"Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs X, Y and Z and persists in even the emptiest regions of space" seems grammatically correct. Is it the usage of "governs and persists in..." that makes this answer incorrect?

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Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang [#permalink]

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Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the behavior of interstellar dust, particles that comprise the atoms and molecules created in the progenitive explosion and persisting in even the emptiest regions of space.

A. persisting
B. persists
C. persisted
D. they persist
E. are persisting

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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang [#permalink]

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New post 17 Oct 2015, 02:07
Excellent question
Repeated post
astronomers-have-theorized-that-the-big-bang-governs-the-127198.html?fl=similar
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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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New post 11 Dec 2015, 23:46
Hi Mike,
I request you to kindly explain why (C) - persisted is incorrect ?

Regards

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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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New post 14 Dec 2015, 11:29
tilkesh wrote:
Hi Mike,
I request you to kindly explain why (C) - persisted is incorrect ?

Regards

Dear tilkesh,

I'm happy to respond. :-) Before I can answer your question effectively, I need to understand how you are thinking about this sentence. Tell me your understanding of what you think, or suspect, that (C) is correct. Explain exactly what you understand about the sentence and exactly what you don't understand, and I will be happy to help you.

Mike :-)
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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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New post 24 Dec 2015, 08:44
mikemcgarry wrote:
tilkesh wrote:
Hi Mike,
I request you to kindly explain why (C) - persisted is incorrect ?

Regards

Dear tilkesh,

I'm happy to respond. :-) Before I can answer your question effectively, I need to understand how you are thinking about this sentence. Tell me your understanding of what you think, or suspect, that (C) is correct. Explain exactly what you understand about the sentence and exactly what you don't understand, and I will be happy to help you.

Mike :-)


Tilkesh has not responded but I will take this opportunity to respond because I also have same doubt :)

Please help me understand what am I missing here.

1. I think it is purely meaning that whether it should be persisted or persisting (means still persist), I do not see anything wrong grammatically with persisted.
2. While trying to make it parallel, it sounds better with Created And Persisted.

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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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neeraj609 wrote:
Tilkesh has not responded but I will take this opportunity to respond because I also have same doubt :)

Please help me understand what am I missing here.

1. I think it is purely meaning that whether it should be persisted or persisting (means still persist), I do not see anything wrong grammatically with persisted.
2. While trying to make it parallel, it sounds better with Created And Persisted.

Dear neeraj609,
I'm happy to respond. :-)

There are a few subtle ideas here. One is the idea of transitive vs. iintransitive verb. A transitive verb is one that takes a direct object:
we buy something
we say something
we borrow something
we use something

Those are all verbs that demand a direct object. If someone said "I buy" or "I borrow," that would be very confusing: the natural question would be "You buy what?" "You borrow what?"
Intransitive verbs are those that never take a direct object, that can't take a direct object.
we live
we sleep
we ail
we are

With these, it would sound unnatural to add a direct object: it would be awkward to say "I live something."

This distinction is confusing because many verbs can be used in both a transitive and intransitive sense:
intransitive: "I eat."--- transitive: "I eat a muffin."
intransitive: "I walk."--- transitive: "I walk the dog."
intransitive: "I play."--- transitive: "I play Monopoly."
These verbs can be used either on an intransitive sense (on their own, without a direct object) or in a transitive sense (with a direct object).

This distinction is important because any verb that is 100% intransitive can't be used in the passive sense. In the passive construction, the direct object becomes the subject, and if the verb never takes a direct object, nothing could ever be the subject of its passive formed. This is the consequence with full verbs.

It gets even more complicated with participles. The present participle (the "ing" participle) is an active participle. Every verb on the planet has a present participle. The past participle (the "ed" form for regular verbs) is a passive participle. Therefore, we cannot construct the passive participle of an intransitive verb and use it as a modifier.

Now, with all this terminology, we can discuss this particular sentence and your question.
The verb "to create" is a transitive verb.
I can create a sense of expectation about something.
God created the Heaven & Earth.

The verb takes direct objects. This means that we can use it both active and passive forms as a full verb, and it also means we can construct both participles:
creating = the present active participle
created = the past passive participle

By contrast, the verb "to persist" is an intransitive verb. We can say "I persist," but we can't say "I persist something." This verb exists only in the active sense, never in the passive sense. Furthermore, it only has on participle
persisting = the present active participle
persisted --> the past participle cannot be used as a modifier.

In this sentence, "created" is use correctly as a modifier. We need to put another modifier in parallel with it. The word "persisted" could be a past tense full verb (e.g. "The kingdom persisted for many centuries."), but we absolutely cannot use "persisted" as a participle, as a noun modifier. If we want a participle modifier in parallel, our only option is "persisting," the only participle the verb "to persist" has.

Does all this make sense?
Mike :-)
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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang [#permalink]

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New post 24 May 2016, 08:47
The answer has to be option A. This is a case of imperfect parallelism , where both "created" and "persisting" modify the same entity (atoms & molecules). The first is a verb-ed modifier and the second verb-ing modifier.
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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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New post 30 Aug 2016, 21:42
Great explanations mikemcgarry. Many Kudos!!

One clarification question - "particles are persisting" is awkward because particles are not doing anything is what you mentioned above in one of your posts. Does this mean "are verb-ing" structure can be used only with animate objects such as people or animals and not with inanimate objects such as things etc.?

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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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New post 30 Aug 2016, 22:32
mikemcgarry wrote:
Hi, there. I'm happy to help with this.

Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the behavior of interstellar dust, particles that comprise the atoms and molecules created in the progenitive explosion and persisting in even the emptiest regions of space.

First of all, the word "and" does not connect coordinating or subordinate clauses --- those require both a noun and verb. The word "and" connects two participial phrases (= participle form of a verb + object).

The compound noun, "atoms and molecules" is modified by the two participial phrases. Which "atoms and molecules"? The "atoms and molecules" that were "created" and are "persisting".

If you think about it, the phrase "the atoms and molecules created in the progenitive explosion" is not a clause because it can't stand alone as a complete sentence. That's because instead of a full verb, you merely have the participle "created."

This is why the proper parallel element is another participle --- "persisting" (in the present tense, because that's still happening, whereas the "created" happened in the past --- in fact, way back at the Big Bang!)

So, the crucial "and" connects
(a) the atoms and molecules created in the progenitive explosion,
with
(b) [the atoms and molecules] persisting in even the emptiest regions of space.

These are the two parallel participial phrases. As is often the case, the subject "the atoms and molecules" is implied and so it would be redundant to repeat it in the second phrases.

Does all of this make sense?

Only somewhat related, here's a free video lesson on GMAT SC that you may find helpful.

http://gmat.magoosh.com/lessons/599-int ... correction

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate in asking me.

Mike :)









Hi Mike,

Thank you for the explanation. I chose A because i thought we are talking about particles - and due to parallelism we need to choose persists e.g. particles that create ------- and persists. It does miss that to complete the parallelism but I thought we are referring back to particles.


How do i avoid such misses in future?

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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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New post 31 Aug 2016, 15:14
manhasnoname wrote:
Great explanations mikemcgarry. Many Kudos!!

One clarification question - "particles are persisting" is awkward because particles are not doing anything is what you mentioned above in one of your posts. Does this mean "are verb-ing" structure can be used only with animate objects such as people or animals and not with inanimate objects such as things etc.?

Dear manhasnoname

I'm happy to respond. :-)

First of all, my friend, I am going to give you some advice. Learn the proper names of grammatical forms so that you can ask precise questions. Precise speech leads to precise understanding. Confused speech leads to confusion. Don't use the term "verb -ing"---an extremely sloppy term. The form of the verb that ends with "-ing" can have three different roles:
1) present participle
2) gerund
3) part of a present progressive verb
Those three are profoundly different and have completely different roles in sentences. Learn those terms and understand them. If you refer to them all as "verb -ing," then you inadvertently have set the conditions for a massive amount of confusion. Better to avoid that sloppy term entirely.

The present progressive tense is designed to show actions that are in progress, that are in the process of occurring. The distinction you suggested, about animate vs. inanimate subjects, is not helpful: either could be used with a verb in the present progressive. What matters, instead, is the type of verb.

Many verbs are what I would call action verb, doing verbs: to walk, to talk, to buy, to sell, to eat, to think, etc. When we put a subject in front of one of these verbs, we are saying that this subject is performing some activity.

A few verbs are what I would call being verb, verbs that describe not an activity but a state of being. Examples are: to be, to seem, to appear, to persist, etc.

The present progressive makes perfect sense with an action verb: she is walking, he is talking, she is buying, he is selling, she is thinking, etc.

With at least some being verbs, the verb already denotes an ongoing activity, so use of the present progressive is redundant and awkward: is being, is seeming, is persisting, etc. Those are always awkward and wrong.

We have to be careful, because this is not a sharp black & white distinction. Some verb (live, die, continue, survive, etc.) are being verbs but there are conditions in which the use of the present progressive would make sense: she is living, he is dying, she is continuing to do X, he is surviving by doing Y, etc.

How does one learn which being verbs are permissible in the present progressive and which are not? By reading. There is no shortcut for a thorough and consistent habit of reading. See:
How to Improve Your GMAT Verbal Score

Does all this make sense?
warriorguy wrote:
Hi Mike,

Thank you for the explanation. I chose A because i thought we are talking about particles - and due to parallelism we need to choose persists e.g. particles that create ------- and persists. It does miss that to complete the parallelism but I thought we are referring back to particles.

How do i avoid such misses in future?

Dear warriorguy

I'm happy to respond. :-) What you are asking is an excellent question.

Ultimately, your question is about meaning. The GMAT SC is not simply a grammar test---the GMAT SC investigates how three important strands, grammar, logic, and rhetoric---all come together to produce meaning. There are no "tricks" for meaning: we always have to penetrate to what the author is trying to say.

This is a particularly tricky question, because the available answer choices limit the grammatical possibilities. Here's the question again.
Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the behavior of interstellar dust, particles that comprise the atoms and molecules created in the progenitive explosion and persisting in even the emptiest regions of space.
a) persisting
b) persists
c) persisted
d) they persisted
e) are persisting


When I first looked at this sentence, I thought that the underlined verb would be in parallel with the verb "comprise"---- the parallelism would be "particles that comprise ... and persist ...." Notice, though, that "persist" is not an answer choice.

You chose "persists." That's a singular verb, so it would not agree with the plural subject "participles." That's a straightforward SVA error.

The only legitimate plural verb is (E), "are persisting," which is very awkward, as I just explained to manhasnoname.

In fact, among the given answer choices, the only legitimate parallelism is that between participles, "created ... and persisting." This is a past passive participle in parallel with a present active participle, which is fine: tense does not matter for parallelism. This is the OA, answer choice (A).

Does all this make sense?
Mike :-)
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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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New post 31 Aug 2016, 19:03
mikemcgarry wrote:
manhasnoname wrote:
Great explanations mikemcgarry. Many Kudos!!

One clarification question - "particles are persisting" is awkward because particles are not doing anything is what you mentioned above in one of your posts. Does this mean "are verb-ing" structure can be used only with animate objects such as people or animals and not with inanimate objects such as things etc.?

Dear manhasnoname

I'm happy to respond. :-)

First of all, my friend, I am going to give you some advice. Learn the proper names of grammatical forms so that you can ask precise questions. Precise speech leads to precise understanding. Confused speech leads to confusion. Don't use the term "verb -ing"---an extremely sloppy term. The form of the verb that ends with "-ing" can have three different roles:
1) present participle
2) gerund
3) part of a present progressive verb
Those three are profoundly different and have completely different roles in sentences. Learn those terms and understand them. If you refer to them all as "verb -ing," then you inadvertently have set the conditions for a massive amount of confusion. Better to avoid that sloppy term entirely.

The present progressive tense is designed to show actions that are in progress, that are in the process of occurring. The distinction you suggested, about animate vs. inanimate subjects, is not helpful: either could be used with a verb in the present progressive. What matters, instead, is the type of verb.

Many verbs are what I would call action verb, doing verbs: to walk, to talk, to buy, to sell, to eat, to think, etc. When we put a subject in front of one of these verbs, we are saying that this subject is performing some activity.

A few verbs are what I would call being verb, verbs that describe not an activity but a state of being. Examples are: to be, to seem, to appear, to persist, etc.

The present progressive makes perfect sense with an action verb: she is walking, he is talking, she is buying, he is selling, she is thinking, etc.

With at least some being verbs, the verb already denotes an ongoing activity, so use of the present progressive is redundant and awkward: is being, is seeming, is persisting, etc. Those are always awkward and wrong.

We have to be careful, because this is not a sharp black & white distinction. Some verb (live, die, continue, survive, etc.) are being verbs but there are conditions in which the use of the present progressive would make sense: she is living, he is dying, she is continuing to do X, he is surviving by doing Y, etc.

How does one learn which being verbs are permissible in the present progressive and which are not? By reading. There is no shortcut for a thorough and consistent habit of reading. See:
How to Improve Your GMAT Verbal Score

Does this all make sense
Mike :-)



Thank you once again, Mike. Your reply makes perfect sense.

The reason I used "verb-ing" is that I read it somewhere, some GMAT prep material (it is not my own creation). But now I totally see how confusing it is.

Also, reading my comment again, I do not know why I used "objects" instead of "subjects". How confusing... (I must have been half asleep when I posted). Very sorry for putting you through the confusion.

I read your article and it is exactly what I have been looking for. Everyone says "read" and "reading is the only way". Now I know what are the good sources.

I probably will read your article every day to motivate myself :-)

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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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Hello from the GMAT Club VerbalBot!

Thanks to another GMAT Club member, I have just discovered this valuable topic, yet it had no discussion for over a year. I am now bumping it up - doing my job. I think you may find it valuable (esp those replies with Kudos).

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Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2017, 06:34
vivek123 wrote:
Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the behavior of interstellar dust, particles that comprise the atoms and molecules created in the progenitive explosion and persisting in even the emptiest regions of space

A. persisting
B. persists
C. persisted
D. they persist
E. are persisting


Hi,

Would anyone please explain the exact reason why A is correct? I notice many ppl opting other choices as well here. I marked B(but later realized that particles is plural and it should be persist not persists) . I need the exact terms getting compared for parallelism in the above question :(

Thanks a lot in advance!

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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2017, 07:27
coudl someone clarify if the qualifier fragment:
"created in the progenitive explosion and persisting in even the emptiest regions of space"

modifies "particles" or "atoms and molecules"?

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Re: Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2017, 10:48
umabharatigudipalli wrote:
vivek123 wrote:
Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the behavior of interstellar dust, particles that comprise the atoms and molecules created in the progenitive explosion and persisting in even the emptiest regions of space

A. persisting
B. persists
C. persisted
D. they persist
E. are persisting


Hi,

Would anyone please explain the exact reason why A is correct? I notice many ppl opting other choices as well here. I marked B(but later realized that particles is plural and it should be persist not persists) . I need the exact terms getting compared for parallelism in the above question :(

Thanks a lot in advance!


Here's what I think

If you want to look at it in terms of parallelism, then we need to make persist parallel with created.
'created' is a modifier in this clause, so we need another modifier, and only 'persisting' is a modifier in the answer choices.

The atoms and molecules
1) created.... explosion
2) persisting....space

Hope this helps.
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Sentence Correction - Difficulty above 700 [#permalink]

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New post 22 Sep 2017, 22:26
Astronomers have theorized that the Big Bang governs the behavior of interstellar dust, particles that comprise the atoms and molecules created in the progenitive explosion and persisting in even the emptiest regions of space.

persisting

persists

persisted

they persist

are persisting

Last edited by broall on 23 Sep 2017, 01:20, edited 1 time in total.
Merged post. Please search before posting question!

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Sentence Correction - Difficulty above 700   [#permalink] 22 Sep 2017, 22:26

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