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Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of

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Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 26 Sep 2018, 22:00
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Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of the Benin culture of West Africa. Some scholars, noting that the oldest surviving plaques date to the 1400s, hypothesize that brass-casting techniques were introduced by the Portuguese, who came to Benin in 1485 A.D. But Portuguese records of that expedition mention cast-brass jewelry sent to Benin’s king from neighboring Ife. So it is unlikely that Benin’s knowledge of brass casting derived from the Portuguese.

Which of the following, if true, most strengthens the argument?


(A) The Portuguese records do not indicate whether their expedition of 1485 included metalworkers.

(B) The Portuguese had no contact with Ife until the 1500s.

(C) In the 1400s the Portuguese did not use cast brass for commemorative plaques.

(D) As early as 1500 A.D., Benin artists were making brass plaques incorporating depictions of Europeans.

(E) Copper, which is required for making brass, can be found throughout Benin territory.


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Originally posted by AbdurRakib on 10 Jul 2016, 02:58.
Last edited by Bunuel on 26 Sep 2018, 22:00, edited 2 times in total.
Renamed the topic and edited the question.
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Re: Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Nov 2016, 17:18
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rakaisraka wrote:
sayantanc2k wrote:
megha_2709 wrote:

Hi,

Thank you for such a good explanation , however can you please elaborate more why A is incorrect. Are we not strengthening the argument by sayin that Portuguese did not even had metal workers when they came to Benin and isn't B little out of scope? Please help

Regards
Megha


If A were as follows, then it would be strengthening:
"The Portuguese records indicate that their expedition of 1485 did not include metalworkers.".
The current construction of A is neither strengthening nor weakening as the option A does not indicate whether there were (or there were no) metalworkers in the expedition team.

Option B:
It could be the case that Ife got the brass jewelry from the Portuguese and then in turn sent to the Benins. But if the Portuguese did not have contact with the Ife (as mentioned in option B), then it cannot be the case that the Benins got the jewelry from the Portuguese (even indirectly).


Hi Sayantan , Can you please explain why C is wrong? i ws confused b/w B and C? C states that they did not use cast brass for commemorative plaques, which is required. So isnt it strenghthen that it cam from neighbour.?


This is one important concept frequently used to trap candidates.
Premise; X
Conclusion: Y
Argument: X hence Y ( X---> Y)
The strengthening (or weakening) statement of this ARGUMENT (i.e. X---> Y) must strengthen (or weaken) the LINK between this argument, not the conclusion (Y) separately.

In the above example
X = Portuguese records of that expedition mention cast-brass jewelry sent to Benin’s king from neighboring Ife
Y = So it is unlikely that Benin’s knowledge of brass casting derived from the Portuguese.

Please observe that option C strengthens Y in isolation. It has nothing to do with the argument X---> Y. Hence C is not correct.

(rakaisraka , if you have a query that you would like to address specifically to me, please send a link to your post in a PM so that I do not miss it.)
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QOTD:Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a  [#permalink]

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New post 09 May 2018, 22:49
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The author concludes that "it is unlikely that Benin’s knowledge of brass casting derived from the Portuguese." Since we need to strengthen the argument, let's make sure we understand the author's logic:

  • "Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of the Benin culture of West Africa." - This background information tells us that cast-brass plaques are a typical form of art in Benin culture.
  • "The oldest surviving plaques date to the 1400s." - These plaques have been a part of Benin culture since at least the 1400s (maybe earlier).
  • "Some scholars hypothesize that brass-casting techniques were introduced by the Portuguese, who came to Benin in 1485 A.D." - How did the people of Benin learn brass-casting techniques? Perhaps from the Portuguese. This hypothesis is consistent with the date evidence (the earliest known plaques date to the 1400s, and the Portuguese came to Benin in the 1400s).
  • However, "Portuguese records of that expedition mention cast-brass jewelry sent to Benin’s king from neighboring Ife." - When the Portuguese first showed up, Benin already had cast-brass jewelry from Ife. This means that Benin had already been introduced to cast-brass prior to the arrival of the Portugal. This evidence seems to hurt the hypothesis of some scholars. The author thus concludes that Benin's knowledge of brass casting probably did not derive from (or "originate from") the Portuguese.

We need something that strengthens the author's argument (not the scholar's hypothesis):

Quote:
(A) The Portuguese records do not indicate whether their expedition of 1485 included metalworkers.

Notice that (A) does NOT say, "Portuguese records indicate that the expedition did not include metalworkers." (A) says that the records don't indicate either way. So perhaps the expedition included metalworkers and perhaps it did not. Although this leaves open the possibility that the expedition did not include metalworkers, the evidence in (A) is not very strong. Let's look for something better.

Quote:
(B) The Portuguese had no contact with Ife until the 1500s.

The evidence tells us that Benin had cast-brass objects from Ife before they encountered the Portuguese. This suggests that the people of Benin may have learned about cast-brass from Ife, not from the Portuguese.

But what if the people of Ife learned about brass casting from the Portuguese? In that case, any knowledge about brass casting transferred from Ife to Benin actually originated (or derived) from the Portuguese. In other words, if the Portuguese taught the people of Ife about brass casting and then the people of Ife taught the people of Benin about brass casting, then Benin's knowledge of brass casting derived from the Portuguese (even though it was not transferred directly from the Portuguese to Benin).

This would obviously hurt the argument. Choice (B) eliminates this possibility and thus strengthens the argument. Hang on to (B).

Quote:
(C) In the 1400s the Portuguese did not use cast brass for commemorative plaques.

All that matters is that the Portuguese knew how to cast brass. We don't care how the Portuguese used cast brass. Even if the Portuguese did not make cast brass commemorative plaques, they still could have taught the people of Benin how to cast brass. Thus, (C) does not strengthen the argument and can be eliminated.

Quote:
(D) As early as 1500 A.D., Benin artists were making brass plaques incorporating depictions of Europeans.

This statement doesn't tell us anything about the origin of the artists' knowledge of brass casting. This statement could be true whether their knowledge derived from the Portuguese or from the people of Ife. Thus, (D) can be eliminated.

Quote:
(E) Copper, which is required for making brass, can be found throughout Benin territory.

This simply tells us that Benin had one of the materials needed to make brass. As with (D), this doesn't tell us anything about the origin of the artists' knowledge of brass casting. Eliminate (E).

(B) is the best answer.
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Re: Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Jul 2016, 03:24
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Premise:
1. Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of the Benin culture of West Africa.
2. Some scholars, noting that the oldest surviving plaques date to the 1400s, hypothesize that brass-casting techniques were introduced by the Portuguese, who came to Benin in 1485 A.D.
3. But Portuguese records of that expedition mention cast-brass jewelry sent to Benin’s king from neighboring Ife.

Conclusion: So it is unlikely that Benin’s knowledge of brass casting derived from the Portuguese.

Question Type :
Strengthens, New information can be added.
Prephase: Benin’s knowledge of brass casting was not derived from the Portuguese. So look for answer choice that keep the Portuguese at bay with respect to Brass-casting

A. The Portuguese records do not indicate whether their expedition of 1485 included metalworkers. - A neutral ans. Does not strengthen -will keep if none other match.
B. The Portuguese had no contact with Ife until the 1500s. - Plaques date to the 1400s, Portuguese records of that expedition mention cast-brass jewelry sent to Benin’s king from neighboring Ife. but portuguese had no contact with Ife untill 1500s, hence Ife had their own set of skills of casting plaques.
C. In the 1400s the Portuguese did not use cast brass for commemorative plaques. - A good contender - But Protuguese did not use cast brass plaques does not mean they could not have shared the knowledge - Incorrect
D. As early as 1500 A.D., Benin artists were making brass plaques incorporating depictions of Europeans. - Benin artists may have used the knowledge acquired from portuguese to make the plaques.
E. Copper, which is required for making brass, can be found throughout Benin territory. - Not relevant to the subject.
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Re: Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Jul 2016, 23:36
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I took more that 4 min to get to the answer.
I dont know what is Commemorative plaques so i consider it as some kind of design
P1:- SO Design, which is part of brass-casting techniques, was part of Benin culture
P2 :- oldest design available is of 1400's means atmax 1400 year old.
P3:- Portuguese came in 1485 ,
P4 :- but records shows cast-brass jewelry sent to Benin’s king from neighboring

conclusion is Portuguese does not introduce brass-casting techniques
What if Portuguese does have an contact with neighbours and Portuguese tought neighbours this tech.
so assumption is ortuguese does not have an contact
B is the aaswer
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Re: Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Oct 2016, 10:42
Nightfury14 wrote:
Premise:
1. Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of the Benin culture of West Africa.
2. Some scholars, noting that the oldest surviving plaques date to the 1400s, hypothesize that brass-casting techniques were introduced by the Portuguese, who came to Benin in 1485 A.D.
3. But Portuguese records of that expedition mention cast-brass jewelry sent to Benin’s king from neighboring Ife.

Conclusion: So it is unlikely that Benin’s knowledge of brass casting derived from the Portuguese.

Question Type :
Strengthens, New information can be added.
Prephase: Benin’s knowledge of brass casting was not derived from the Portuguese. So look for answer choice that keep the Portuguese at bay with respect to Brass-casting

A. The Portuguese records do not indicate whether their expedition of 1485 included metalworkers. - A neutral ans. Does not strengthen -will keep if none other match.
B. The Portuguese had no contact with Ife until the 1500s. - Plaques date to the 1400s, Portuguese records of that expedition mention cast-brass jewelry sent to Benin’s king from neighboring Ife. but portuguese had no contact with Ife untill 1500s, hence Ife had their own set of skills of casting plaques.
C. In the 1400s the Portuguese did not use cast brass for commemorative plaques. - A good contender - But Protuguese did not use cast brass plaques does not mean they could not have shared the knowledge - Incorrect
D. As early as 1500 A.D., Benin artists were making brass plaques incorporating depictions of Europeans. - Benin artists may have used the knowledge acquired from portuguese to make the plaques.
E. Copper, which is required for making brass, can be found throughout Benin territory. - Not relevant to the subject.



Hi,

Thank you for such a good explanation , however can you please elaborate more why A is incorrect. Are we not strengthening the argument by sayin that Portuguese did not even had metal workers when they came to Benin and isn't B little out of scope? Please help

Regards
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Re: Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Oct 2016, 11:12
megha_2709 wrote:
Nightfury14 wrote:
Premise:
1. Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of the Benin culture of West Africa.
2. Some scholars, noting that the oldest surviving plaques date to the 1400s, hypothesize that brass-casting techniques were introduced by the Portuguese, who came to Benin in 1485 A.D.
3. But Portuguese records of that expedition mention cast-brass jewelry sent to Benin’s king from neighboring Ife.

Conclusion: So it is unlikely that Benin’s knowledge of brass casting derived from the Portuguese.

Question Type :
Strengthens, New information can be added.
Prephase: Benin’s knowledge of brass casting was not derived from the Portuguese. So look for answer choice that keep the Portuguese at bay with respect to Brass-casting

A. The Portuguese records do not indicate whether their expedition of 1485 included metalworkers. - A neutral ans. Does not strengthen -will keep if none other match.
B. The Portuguese had no contact with Ife until the 1500s. - Plaques date to the 1400s, Portuguese records of that expedition mention cast-brass jewelry sent to Benin’s king from neighboring Ife. but portuguese had no contact with Ife untill 1500s, hence Ife had their own set of skills of casting plaques.
C. In the 1400s the Portuguese did not use cast brass for commemorative plaques. - A good contender - But Protuguese did not use cast brass plaques does not mean they could not have shared the knowledge - Incorrect
D. As early as 1500 A.D., Benin artists were making brass plaques incorporating depictions of Europeans. - Benin artists may have used the knowledge acquired from portuguese to make the plaques.
E. Copper, which is required for making brass, can be found throughout Benin territory. - Not relevant to the subject.



Hi,

Thank you for such a good explanation , however can you please elaborate more why A is incorrect. Are we not strengthening the argument by sayin that Portuguese did not even had metal workers when they came to Benin and isn't B little out of scope? Please help

Regards
Megha


If A were as follows, then it would be strengthening:
"The Portuguese records indicate that their expedition of 1485 did not include metalworkers.".
The current construction of A is neither strengthening nor weakening as the option A does not indicate whether there were (or there were no) metalworkers in the expedition team.

Option B:
It could be the case that Ife got the brass jewelry from the Portuguese and then in turn sent to the Benins. But if the Portuguese did not have contact with the Ife (as mentioned in option B), then it cannot be the case that the Benins got the jewelry from the Portuguese (even indirectly).
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Re: Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Nov 2016, 13:07
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sayantanc2k wrote:
megha_2709 wrote:
Nightfury14 wrote:
Premise:
1. Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of the Benin culture of West Africa.
2. Some scholars, noting that the oldest surviving plaques date to the 1400s, hypothesize that brass-casting techniques were introduced by the Portuguese, who came to Benin in 1485 A.D.
3. But Portuguese records of that expedition mention cast-brass jewelry sent to Benin’s king from neighboring Ife.

Conclusion: So it is unlikely that Benin’s knowledge of brass casting derived from the Portuguese.

Question Type :
Strengthens, New information can be added.
Prephase: Benin’s knowledge of brass casting was not derived from the Portuguese. So look for answer choice that keep the Portuguese at bay with respect to Brass-casting

A. The Portuguese records do not indicate whether their expedition of 1485 included metalworkers. - A neutral ans. Does not strengthen -will keep if none other match.
B. The Portuguese had no contact with Ife until the 1500s. - Plaques date to the 1400s, Portuguese records of that expedition mention cast-brass jewelry sent to Benin’s king from neighboring Ife. but portuguese had no contact with Ife untill 1500s, hence Ife had their own set of skills of casting plaques.
C. In the 1400s the Portuguese did not use cast brass for commemorative plaques. - A good contender - But Protuguese did not use cast brass plaques does not mean they could not have shared the knowledge - Incorrect
D. As early as 1500 A.D., Benin artists were making brass plaques incorporating depictions of Europeans. - Benin artists may have used the knowledge acquired from portuguese to make the plaques.
E. Copper, which is required for making brass, can be found throughout Benin territory. - Not relevant to the subject.



Hi,

Thank you for such a good explanation , however can you please elaborate more why A is incorrect. Are we not strengthening the argument by sayin that Portuguese did not even had metal workers when they came to Benin and isn't B little out of scope? Please help

Regards
Megha


If A were as follows, then it would be strengthening:
"The Portuguese records indicate that their expedition of 1485 did not include metalworkers.".
The current construction of A is neither strengthening nor weakening as the option A does not indicate whether there were (or there were no) metalworkers in the expedition team.

Option B:
It could be the case that Ife got the brass jewelry from the Portuguese and then in turn sent to the Benins. But if the Portuguese did not have contact with the Ife (as mentioned in option B), then it cannot be the case that the Benins got the jewelry from the Portuguese (even indirectly).


Hi Sayantan , Can you please explain why C is wrong? i ws confused b/w B and C? C states that they did not use cast brass for commemorative plaques, which is required. So isnt it strenghthen that it cam from neighbour.?
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Re: Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Feb 2017, 04:52
Conclusion : So it is unlikely that Benin’s knowledge of brass casting derived from the Portugese.
Premise for the above conclusion is Portuguese records of that expedition mentions cast brass jewelry sent to Benin’s king from neighbouring Ife

A. The Portuguese records do not indicate whether their expedition of 1485 included metalworkers.( Wrong Answer : The very fact that portuguese records of that expedition do not indicate the presence of metalworkers in the expedition is not reason enough to believe that portugese did not brought the knowledge of brass casting along with them to Benin in the expedition.
B. The Portuguese had no contact with Ife until the 1500s.( Right Answer : This option negates the possibility that people of Ife would have learnt about brass casting from Portuguese in the 1400s.)
C. In the 1400s the Portuguese did not use cast brass for commemorative plaques.( Wrong Answer : This does not negate the possibility that the people of Benin after having learnt about brass casting from Portuguese in the 1400s manufactured them indigeniously)
D. As early as 1500 A.D., Benin artists were making brass plaques incorporating depictions of Europeans.( Wrong Answer : This options does not throw any light upon when the people of Benin would have learnt the process of Brass casting)
E. Copper, which is required for making brass, can be found throughout Benin territory.(Wrong Answer : This option does not throw any light upon when the people of Benin would have learnt the process of Brass Casting.)
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Re: QOTD:Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a  [#permalink]

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New post 10 May 2018, 03:36
The answer is B

Let's break it down logically: the claim is that since bronze casting came to Benin from the Ife, it did not derive from the Portuguese. This is true, if we assume that the Ice did not themselves get it from the Portuguese. Thus, the argument is great strengthened if it is true that (B) The Portuguese had no contact with Ife until the 1500s.


Another way to solve is by process of elimination:

(A) The Portuguese records do not indicate whether their expedition of 1485 included metalworkers. if they indicated that there were no metalworkers, this would indeed strengthen - but just not indicating doesn't help much


(C) In the 1400s the Portuguese did not use cast brass for commemorative plaques.if we knew they didn't cast brass at all this would strengthen, but merely that they didn't use it for this purpose doesn't mean that people in Benin didn't;t adopt it for this reason

(D) As early as 1500 A.D., Benin artists were making brass plaques incorporating depictions of Europeans. this weakens the argument somewhat, as it suggests a connection between brass plates and the Eurpoeans for people in Benin

(E) Copper, which is required for making brass, can be found throughout Benin territory. irrelevant - the question is where they learned the technique
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Re: Commemorative plaques cast from brass are a characteristic art form of  [#permalink]

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New post 08 Oct 2018, 09:10
(A) The Portuguese records do not indicate whether their expedition of 1485 included metalworkers.
not necessarily metal workers only can do it.
even if above is true, not mentioning abt metal workers opens the floor to debate

(B) The Portuguese had no contact with Ife until the 1500s.
there is no way, ife taught port!!. hence there is no way, port had know

(C) In the 1400s the Portuguese did not use cast brass for commemorative plaques.
use of plaques is irrelevant

(D) As early as 1500 A.D., Benin artists were making brass plaques incorporating depictions of Europeans.
again same as above

(E) Copper, which is required for making brass, can be found throughout Benin territory.
even if found, casting knowledge are different topics.
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