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Director
Status: Impossible is not a fact. It's an opinion. It's a dare. Impossible is nothing.
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06 Jun 2010, 08:15
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Hi Guys

I am reopening this question- since I am am still not able to zero on the answer.

The growth of the railroads led to the abolition of local times, which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing from city to city, and to the establishment of regional times.

(A) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
(B) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and which differed
(C) which were determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
(D) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differed
(E) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing

C / E which one and why ?

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28 Jun 2010, 06:48
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Hey nusmavrik, I found some real good explanation on other forum. Will post it here for everyone's benefit.

Quote:
It's a bit tricky to answer these questions sometimes, but the main idea behind whether to choose the -ing form or the -ed form this:

When we reduce a verb to its -ing or -ed form, we must look at one and only one thing: whether the noun that it will modify is the subject or object of that verb.

The -ing form is used for DOING the action, which means SUBJECT, which means ACTIVE voice.

The -ed form is used for RECEIVING the action, which means OBJECT, which means PASSIVE voice.

Before I go further, let me offer two examples that will make things clearer as we go along:

speaking person (the -ing form)
spoken words (the -ed form)

In this type of question, we always have two elements:

a particple, which is either in the -ing or -ed form
a noun that is modified by this participle

So, using the previous examples, speaking modifies person and spoken modifies words.

The next step is to realize that these participles all come from verbs--speaking and spoken both come from the verb speak.

Now, using these examples, and applying them to the rules I mentioned at the beginning, we will notice that if we made a sentence, person would be the subject of the verb speak and words would be the object of the verb speak. Using this procedure, we can figure out whether should use the -ing or -ed form of a participle that modifies a noun.

Of course, this is easy when the vocabulary is easy, and we often get confused when we are using difficult vocabulary because we sometimes don't know whether something is the subject or the object of the verb, but this procedure that I have explained is the only sure way to get the right answer.

In our sentence here, "which" replaces "times", and "times" is the object of "determined", but it is the subject of "differed".

In other words, we have something like this:

...somebody determined times...

but

times differing [not differed...]

I know some of you have learned that we should only use the -ing form only for actions that are ongoing/in progress in the present, but that's simply not true. We do occasionally use them correctly for past actions that were ongoing/in progress.

Finally, everybody gets confused simply because the -ed form appears in the second one, making people think the -ed form should appear again when it's reduced. We need to realize that there is truly no connection between the two; it's pure coincidence that each has the -ed form in it

If you stick to the rules that I just wrote, you'll be okay.
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22 Aug 2012, 08:12
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Hi guys,
The growth of the railroads led to the abolition of local times, which was determined by when the sun reached the observer's meridian and differing from city to city, and to the establishment of regional times.

• The growth of the railroads led to
o the abolition of local times, and
o the establishment of regional times.
• Two characteristics of local times have been mentioned in the sentence:
o they were determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian, and
they differed from city to city.

1. Singular verb “was” does not agree in number with plural subject “local times”. SV must agree in number error.

2. Also “was” seem to be the verb for “abolition of local times”, meaning abolition was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian. This is certainly not the intended logical meaning of the sentence. Meaning error.

3. The two characteristics of “local times” must be parallel to each other. Here, “which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian” (a clause) is not parallel to “differing from city to city” ( a verb-ed modifier phrase). Parallelism error.

POE:

(A) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer's meridian and differing: Incorrect. Errors discussed above.

(B) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer's meridian and which differed: Incorrect. Same SV number agreement and meaning errors as in A.

(C) which were determined by when the sun reached the observer's meridian and differing: Incorrect. Same parallelism error as in A.

(D) determined by when the sun reached the observer's meridian and differed: Incorrect. “determined by when the sun reached the observer's meridian” (a verb-ed modifier) is not parallel to “differed from city to city” (a verb phrase). Notice here that “determined” is not a verb here. It is a verb-ed modifier that is modifying “local times”. If it were a verb, ther would be no comma before it and the subject and the verb would be connected properly.

(E) determined by when the sun reached the observer's meridian and differing: Correct. “determined by when the sun reached the observer's meridian” (a verb-ed modifier phrase) is parallel to “differing from city to city” (a verb-ing modifier phrase). Both the modifiers are correctly presenting the characteristics of “local times”. Refer to OG 12#42 to see how verb-ing and verb-ed modifiers can be parallel to each other.

1. SV pair must always agree in number.
2. SV pair must always make sense together.
3. In a list of parallelism, all the entities must be grammatically as well as logically parallel.

The concepts tested in this sentence have been covered in e-gmat concepts:
1. Level 1 - SV - Agree in Number (This concept features in Level 1 Preview Concepts that are available for free. Just register and learn.)
2. Level 2 - SV - Make Sense
3. Level 1 - Parallelism - Identify and Correct
4. Level 1 - Parallelism - Helpful Tips

You can also review our article on this topic by clicking on the following link:
verb-ed-verb-ing-can-be-parallel-126923.html

Hope this helps.
Thanks.
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06 Jun 2010, 11:05
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nusmavrik wrote:
Hi Guys

I am reopening this question- since I am am still not able to zero on the answer.

The growth of the railroads led to the abolition of local times, which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing from city to city, and to the establishment of regional times.

(A) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
(B) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and which differed
(C) which were determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
(D) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differed
(E) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing

C / E which one and why ?

C is not parallel

local times,
which were determined
AND
differing

local times,
determined by when the sun reached..
differing from city to city
differed from city to city [incorrect]

secondly,
you need to see that local times are being determined
it's passive voice .. so the use of determined [past participle] is correct here

local times, differing from city to city
here local times is subject and that is why the use of present participle is correct

IMO E

i want to see more explanations though

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06 Apr 2012, 20:04
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Most of the problems with this text arise because of the difficulties posed by the nature of the participial modifiers both the past and the present. It must be noted that these participles do not carry a sense of tense per se. They are tenseless and can be used universally. To repeat, a past participle such as ‘determined’ can be used in present and future tense situations and the present participle ‘differing’ can be used in past, present, and future similarly.

Ex:written to satirize the eccentricities of the olden earldom of the English and read by millions over the world, Wodehouse’s books are a great hit— part participles used in present tense sentence

Working for just a couple of weeks, Joe dreamt that he could easily cross 750 in his GMAT. --Present participle in past tense context.

In this context, the participle ‘determined by’ and ‘differing’ are plain descriptives of a universal happening namely the local times. Therefore, it is acceptable to use a past participle and a present participle in the same sentence and still be parallel. There are more examples of this phenomenon in GMAT.

The problem with D is that, the word ‘differed’ (local times differed) becomes a past tense verb and thus breaks the parallelism by using a participle and a verb, when two participles should have been used. The past verb means that the local times differed only in the past and not these days. That is the reason E scores over D. In C the unnecessary intrusion of the past tense phrase ‘which were’ restricts the universality only to past

A real hair puller. Kudos to poster
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06 Jun 2010, 13:44
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Experts

Hi dimitri92,
yes I agree that C is not parallel. I want to know if there is "which parallelism" like "that parallellism"

C is OUT since I need a second which to make it parallel to the first one.

Local times, which were determined by
Local times, which differed from city to city

In the absence of second which

local times, determined by
local times, differing from city to city

Hi ykaiim,
I dissent here. I think the use of were is correct since local times is modified by the phrases.

local times, modifier1 and modifier2
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08 Jun 2010, 10:30
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izaidi wrote:
nusmavrik wrote:
OA is E

Hey nusmavrik,

Why is E the correct answer. I think both E and D are parallel, and I find it hard to decide between the them. Is there an official answer for this question?

Thanks

Hey izaidi
Lets try.

There are 2 ways to make this sentence parallel.
1.
Local times, which were determined by
Local times, which differed from city to city

2. Now I see that gmat doesnt gave me first option since second which is missing in the answer choices. B has SV error. was should be were since local times are plural.

So I compress the modifiers -
modifer1 becomes = local times, determined by blah blah (which OUT)
modifier2 becomes = local times, differed from city to city (that doesn't sound good). Because it isn't.

So I go with choice E.
modifer2 = local times, differing from city to city (and determined by the time when the sun reached the observer's meridian)

differing is a verb
determined is a verb (past participle to be exact)

noun, verb + and + verb

produces parallelism.

Hope that helps!
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07 Sep 2011, 10:09
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Quote:
The growth of the railroads led to the abolition of local times, which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing from city to city, and to the establishment of regional times.

(A) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
(B) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and which differed
(C) which were determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
(D) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differed
(E) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing

[Reveal] Spoiler:
E

Strike one: subject-verb agreement - it should be "local times...were" --> eliminate A and B

Strike two: parallelism - when using 'which', it should be "which were determined...which differed" --> eliminate C

Strike three: Parallelism -
'Local times [highlight]determined[/highlight] by...' and '[local times] [highlight]differed[/highlight] from city to city' --> incorrect.
As a quick check, we move the modifying verb to form...'differing times' vs 'differed times'. 'differed times' don't make sense!
'Local times [highlight]determined[/highlight] by...' and '[local times] [highlight]differing[/highlight] from city to city' --> correct as both highlighted are verbs
Eliminate D

Thanks, nusmavrik and seekmba for below notes/explanations!

Quote:
There are 2 ways to make this sentence parallel.
1.
Local times, which were determined by
Local times, which differed from city to city

2. Now I see that gmat doesnt gave me first option since second which is missing in the answer choices. B has SV error. was should be were since local times are plural.

So I compress the modifiers -
modifer1 becomes = local times, determined by blah blah (which OUT)
modifier2 becomes = local times, differed from city to city (that doesn't sound good). Because it isn't.

So I go with choice E.
modifer2 = local times, differing from city to city (and determined by the time when the sun reached the observer's meridian)

differing is a verb
determined is a verb (past participle to be exact)

Quote:
the main idea behind whether to choose the -ing form or the -ed form this:

When we reduce a verb to its -ing or -ed form, we must look at one and only one thing: whether the noun that it will modify is the subject or object of that verb.

The -ing form is used for DOING the action, which means SUBJECT, which means ACTIVE voice.

The -ed form is used for RECEIVING the action, which means OBJECT, which means PASSIVE voice.

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06 Apr 2012, 08:25
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isn't differing wrong here as we are talking about past
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12 Jun 2012, 09:13
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daagh wrote:
Most of the problems with this text arise because of the difficulties posed by the nature of the participial modifiers both the past and the present. It must be noted that these participles do not carry a sense of tense per se. They are tenseless and can be used universally. To repeat, a past participle such as ‘determined’ can be used in present and future tense situations and the present participle ‘differing’ can be used in past, present, and future similarly.

Ex:written to satirize the eccentricities of the olden earldom of the English and read by millions over the world, Warehouse’s books are a great hit— part participles used in present tense sentence

Working for just a couple of weeks, Joe dreamt that he could easily cross 750 in his GMAT. --Present participle in past tense context.

In this context, the participle ‘determined by’ and ‘differing’ are plain descriptives of a universal happening namely the local times. Therefore, it is acceptable to use a past participle and a present participle in the same sentence and still be parallel. There are more examples of this phenomenon in GMAT.

The problem with D is that, the word ‘differed’ (local times differed) becomes a past tense verb and thus breaks the parallelism by using a participle and a verb, when two participles should have been used. The past verb means that the local times differed only in the past and not these days. That is the reason E scores over D. In C the unnecessary intrusion of the past tense phrase ‘which were’ restricts the universality only to past

A real hair puller. Kudos to poster

Amazing explanation... Thanks a tonn.. Kudos to poster as well for such a question....
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06 Jun 2010, 11:25
The introductory part is in past tense. So, we need rest of the format in past tense.
1. determined - It is a past participle paralle with led. Moreover it is preferred, IMO, to which were determined

(C) which were determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
The abolition of local times is singular adjectival phrase. So, which were is incorrect.

(E) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing

So, E is correct, though best of the all worst.

nusmavrik wrote:
Hi Guys

I am reopening this question- since I am am still not able to zero-in on the answer.

The growth of the railroads led to the abolition of local times, which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing from city to city, and to the establishment of regional times.

(A) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
(B) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and which differed
(C) which were determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
(D) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differed
(E) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing

C / E which one and why ?

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06 Jun 2010, 21:22
Please can we have more discussions on this one?

I will like to see more explanations.

Thanks
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07 Jun 2010, 23:03
The growth of the railroads led to the abolition of local times, which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing from city to city, and to the establishment of regional times.

This question tests parallel modifiers.

(A) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
Not parallel: Relative Pronoun and Present Participle

(B) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and which differed
Parrallel but not as concise as D

(C) which were determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
Not parallel: Relative Pronoun and Present Participle

(D) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differed
Correct

(E) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
Parrallel but not as paralell as D

CAN you please post the OA !

Thanks
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07 Jun 2010, 23:19
OA is E
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08 Jun 2010, 00:01
How can it be D?

....the sun reached.....and differed....
The Sun is not supposed to differ from city to city.

izaidi wrote:
The growth of the railroads led to the abolition of local times, which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing from city to city, and to the establishment of regional times.

This question tests parallel modifiers.

(A) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
Not parallel: Relative Pronoun and Present Participle

(B) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and which differed
Parrallel but not as concise as D

(C) which were determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
Not parallel: Relative Pronoun and Present Participle

(D) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differed
Correct

(E) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
Parrallel but not as paralell as D

CAN you please post the OA !

Thanks

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08 Jun 2010, 09:49
ykaiim wrote:
How can it be D?

....the sun reached.....and differed....
The Sun is not supposed to differ from city to city.

izaidi wrote:
The growth of the railroads led to the abolition of local times, which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing from city to city, and to the establishment of regional times.

This question tests parallel modifiers.

(A) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
Not parallel: Relative Pronoun and Present Participle

(B) which was determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and which differed
Parrallel but not as concise as D

(C) which were determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
Not parallel: Relative Pronoun and Present Participle

(D) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differed
Correct

(E) determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differing
Parrallel but not as paralell as D

CAN you please post the OA !

Thanks

IMO: This is how i see it.

(d) The growth of the railroads led to the abolition of local times, determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian and differed from city to city, and to the establishment of regional times.

"determined by when the sun reached the observer’s meridian" and "differed from city to city" are parallel modifiers that both modify local times.
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08 Jun 2010, 09:51
nusmavrik wrote:
OA is E

Hey nusmavrik,

Why is E the correct answer. I think both E and D are parallel, and I find it hard to decide between the them. Is there an official answer for this question?

Thanks
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14 Jun 2010, 23:56
Hi nusmavrik, Your explanation seems to be right. Even though at the first glance, in order to attain parallelism option D seems to be right. But, in fact the verb "differing" gives more sense to the sentence as a whole.
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16 Jun 2010, 14:06
Hi there,
In option C, the word which refers local times rather than the whole sentence that precedes it.
Also, local times usage is plural, thus "which were" is also correct.
Can you please let me know how "which" refers to the whole sentence as said in one of the replies?
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28 Jun 2010, 09:42
very good rule above. (i'm going to add that to my notes).

I also jsut want to add that you can maintain parallelism by comparing an -ing form (present participle) vs an -ed form (past participle)... so don't always FORCE an -ing with -ing (or -ed with -ed) construction.

i got this one wrong and picked D because of the following rationale:

local times, determined by...
local times, differed from city to city.

two things modifying local times. but i fail to see the subtleties in using the -ing form for "subjects" and -ed form for "objects"
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# Challenging Question

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