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# Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions

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Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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Updated on: 31 Jul 2018, 01:01
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Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions—the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter—were major innovations, paving the way for many of the technologies used in the modern age.

(A) Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions—the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter—were major innovations,

(B) The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter—each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions—were major innovations,

(C) Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions—the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter—were major innovations,

(D) Major innovations—the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter each a well-known invention of Thomas Edison, was

(E) Major innovations—the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter every one of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions were

Although I answered this one correctly, my instinct tells me that the sentence must read as below

Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations, that paved the way for many of the technologies used in the modern age.

Correct me if the change I propose is wrong.

Originally posted by haree87 on 13 Oct 2015, 07:57.
Last edited by hazelnut on 31 Jul 2018, 01:01, edited 3 times in total.
Reformatted question
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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2015, 08:50
I would rather deem that one should limit to the underlined part in GMAT SC and not lean beyond it. One reason why 'the comma plus paving' might be better is that while the expression ‘ that paved' although is more focused, limits the reference only to past technologies, while a non – tense expression such as 'paving' would extend it to all tenses. That they were such major inventions that are helping modern technology even as of today and that they will do so in future too, is the gist of the sentence
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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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04 Apr 2017, 21:51
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haree87 wrote:
Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations, paving the way for many of the technologies used in the modern age.

A. Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations,
B. The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations,
C. Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations,
D. Major innovations--- the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter each a well-known invention of Thomas Edison, was
E. Major innovations--- the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter every one of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions were

OFFICIAL EXPLANATION

The subject and verb of the main clause in this sentence must agree. Answers (A) "each...were" and (D) "innovations...was" can be eliminated for containing Agreement errors. Answers (D) and (E) can be eliminated, as they contain rudimentary sentence errors: the phrase "major innovations" is not grammatically connected to the "each..." or "every..." phrase it is modifying. Answer (B) employs a different Agreement error; "each" is singular, so the phrase inside the hyphens is wrong: "each...inventions'. Only answer (C) keeps the original intent of the sentence in a grammatical way.
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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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05 Apr 2017, 03:56
Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations, paving the way for many of the technologies used in the modern age.

Each of the inventions (subject)....................were (verb)

When 'each' acts as a subject in a sentence, it takes a singular verb form no matter what follows it. 'Each' is singular e.g. Each of the pens in the box is important for my project.

EACH is important i.e. every single pen is important. Thus singular.

Option C eliminates 'each' and now the subject is inventions and thus will take the plural verb form.
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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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14 May 2017, 19:21
B.The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations,
C.Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations,

here i am confused between B and C. Below is my explanation for the same.

rule -1. any thing in between - - can be removed and rest part should also make sense .
2. if each is coming after a list then each have no effect on list and the list will be plural.

cause of these two rules, i have come to conclusion as B. something went wrong in between. can someone please guide me in right direction.
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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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15 May 2017, 09:08
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Top Contributor
Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations, paving the way for many of the technologies used in the modern age.

This is a copybook case of SV agreement. If we are clear what exactly the subject is, and the impact of the words such as each, every etc, then the answer may easily pop-up.

A. Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations, ---- The subject is each and therefore the verb 'were' is a mismatch

B. The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations, --- The subject is each and therefore 'were' is a mismatch

C. Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter were major innovations, -- 'inventions' is the subject and therefore, 'were' is the correct verb -- correct choice.

D. Major innovations--- the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter each a well-known invention of Thomas Edison, was ---- innovations is the subject and therefore 'was' is a mismatch. In this, 'each a well-known invention of Thomas Edison', is a dispensable modifier.

E. Major innovations--- the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter every one of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions were -- The structural construction is rather faulty. A parenthetical modifier is started with a phonograph and so on but the parenthesis does not seem to be ended with another dash or comma. Actually, the subject is 'everyone' and therefore the verb should be 'was'.
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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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19 Aug 2017, 12:24
haree87 wrote:
Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations, paving the way for many of the technologies used in the modern age.

A.Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations,
B.The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations,
C.Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations,
D.Major innovations--- the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter each a well-known invention of Thomas Edison, was
E.Major innovations--- the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter every one of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions were

Although I answered this one correctly, my instinct tells me that the sentence must read as below

Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations, that paved the way for many of the technologies used in the modern age.

Correct me if the change I propose is wrong.

The issue with the original sentence is "each...were" - each is always singular so there should always be a singular verb - "was." However, C is also another grammatically correct way to write the sentence.

C
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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2017, 06:56
daagh wrote:
Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations, paving the way for many of the technologies used in the modern age.

This is a copybook case of SV agreement. If we are clear what exactly the subject is, and the impact of the words such as each, every etc, then the answer may easily pop-up.

A. Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations, ---- The subject is each and therefore the verb 'were' is a mismatch

B. The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations, --- The subject is each and therefore 'were' is a mismatch
C. Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter were major innovations, -- 'inventions' is the subject and therefore, 'were' is the correct verb -- correct choice.

D. Major innovations--- the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter each a well-known invention of Thomas Edison, was ---- innovations is the subject and therefore 'was' is a mismatch. In this, 'each a well-known invention of Thomas Edison', is a dispensable modifier.

E. Major innovations--- the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter every one of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions were -- The structural construction is rather faulty. A parenthetical modifier is started with a phonograph and so on but the parenthesis does not seem to be ended with another dash or comma. Actually, the subject is 'everyone' and therefore the verb should be 'was'.

Hello daagh
In option B isn't i did as following:
Subject - The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter
Modifer - we can remove it - each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions
Verb - were (in accordance with the subject!!!)
Why is "each" present in modifier the subject?
Thanks

NOTE - mikemcgarry, Abhishek009, msk0657, carcass, broall, yezz, souvik101990, GMATNinjaTwo, ydmuley, chetan2u, GMATNinja, Gnpth, hazelnut, sallysea, Narenn, Mahmud6
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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2017, 08:45
1
Top Contributor
manishtank1988 wrote:

Hello daagh
In option B isn't i did as following:
Subject - The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter
Modifer - we can remove it - each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions
Verb - were (in accordance with the subject!!!)
Why is "each" present in modifier the subject?
Thanks

NOTE - mikemcgarry, Abhishek009, msk0657, carcass, broall, yezz, souvik101990, GMATNinjaTwo, ydmuley, chetan2u, GMATNinja, Gnpth, hazelnut, sallysea, Narenn, Mahmud6

Oh Man!! That's a long list of CC.
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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2017, 09:00
Gnpth wrote:
manishtank1988 wrote:

Hello daagh
In option B isn't i did as following:
Subject - The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter
Modifer - we can remove it - each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions
Verb - were (in accordance with the subject!!!)
Why is "each" present in modifier the subject?
Thanks

NOTE - mikemcgarry, Abhishek009, msk0657, carcass, broall, yezz, souvik101990, GMATNinjaTwo, ydmuley, chetan2u, GMATNinja, Gnpth, hazelnut, sallysea, Narenn, Mahmud6

Oh Man!! That's a long list of CC.

I hope i didn't offend anyone Gnpth - i just do this so that someone/anyone can respond - otherwise in some cases i never hear back!!!
Once again i don't mean to offend anyone
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Posts: 4485
Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2017, 09:30
1
manishtank1988 wrote:
Hello daagh
In option B isn't i did as following:
Subject - The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter
Modifer - we can remove it - each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions
Verb - were (in accordance with the subject!!!)
Why is "each" present in modifier the subject?
Thanks

Dear manishtank1988,

I'm happy to respond.

I will say that I find your mega-list of cc's problematic. You are treating experts like a list of impersonal resources given for your personal use. Experts are human beings. This is an excellent opportunity to practice the skills that will be beneficial throughout your career--establish relationships; demonstrate integrity; ask for help with courtesy and caring; express sincere gratitude when you are helped, etc. Of course, like me, many experts have busy professional lives, and we will not always be able to respond quickly to your requests--as in the business world, you will not always immediately get the help that you need, but if you are patient and resourceful, you can find it.

Also, remember: education is not something that the experts do to you. Education is very much a process you do to yourself, by yourself, and for yourself. Experts can help only as much as any student assumes deep responsibility for her own learning.

In this question, in (B), SVA is fine but the big problem is in the modifier. Think about that modifier, which attempts to us an appositive construction:
each of them (singular) Thomas Edison's well-known inventions (plural)
An appositive has to match the noun it modifies in every way. This singular/plural mismatch is quite jarring to the ear of a native speaker.

Does all this make sense?
Mike
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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2017, 09:46
1
mikemcgarry wrote:
manishtank1988 wrote:
Hello daagh
In option B isn't i did as following:
Subject - The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter
Modifer - we can remove it - each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions
Verb - were (in accordance with the subject!!!)
Why is "each" present in modifier the subject?
Thanks

Dear manishtank1988,

I'm happy to respond.

I will say that I find your mega-list of cc's problematic. You are treating experts like a list of impersonal resources given for your personal use. Experts are human beings. This is an excellent opportunity to practice the skills that will be beneficial throughout your career--establish relationships; demonstrate integrity; ask for help with courtesy and caring; express sincere gratitude when you are helped, etc. Of course, like me, many experts have busy professional lives, and we will not always be able to respond quickly to your requests--as in the business world, you will not always immediately get the help that you need, but if you are patient and resourceful, you can find it.

Also, remember: education is not something that the experts do to you. Education is very much a process you do to yourself, by yourself, and for yourself. Experts can help only as much as any student assumes deep responsibility for her own learning.

In this question, in (B), SVA is fine but the big problem is in the modifier. Think about that modifier, which attempts to us an appositive construction:
each of them (singular) Thomas Edison's well-known inventions (plural)
An appositive has to match the noun it modifies in every way. This singular/plural mismatch is quite jarring to the ear of a native speaker.

Does all this make sense?
Mike

mikemcgarry - I completely understand your point Sir and i am deeply apologetic for this gesture of mine. I thank you for properly guiding me not only for my query but also for general netiquettes.
Once again - please forgive me for this improper behavior.
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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2017, 09:54
mikemcgarry wrote:
manishtank1988 wrote:
Hello daagh
In option B isn't i did as following:
Subject - The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter
Modifer - we can remove it - each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions
Verb - were (in accordance with the subject!!!)
Why is "each" present in modifier the subject?
Thanks

Dear manishtank1988,

I'm happy to respond.

I will say that I find your mega-list of cc's problematic. You are treating experts like a list of impersonal resources given for your personal use. Experts are human beings. This is an excellent opportunity to practice the skills that will be beneficial throughout your career--establish relationships; demonstrate integrity; ask for help with courtesy and caring; express sincere gratitude when you are helped, etc. Of course, like me, many experts have busy professional lives, and we will not always be able to respond quickly to your requests--as in the business world, you will not always immediately get the help that you need, but if you are patient and resourceful, you can find it.

Also, remember: education is not something that the experts do to you. Education is very much a process you do to yourself, by yourself, and for yourself. Experts can help only as much as any student assumes deep responsibility for her own learning.

In this question, in (B), SVA is fine but the big problem is in the modifier. Think about that modifier, which attempts to us an appositive construction:
each of them (singular) Thomas Edison's well-known inventions (plural)
An appositive has to match the noun it modifies in every way. This singular/plural mismatch is quite jarring to the ear of a native speaker.

Does all this make sense?
Mike

mikemcgarry - Does this make the option B correct?
B. The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations, ----------WRONG
B. The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of IT Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations, ----------RIGHT

I am not able to see as why option B is wrong - in my understanding modifier between 2 commas, and 2 hyphens can just be removed while checking for SVA.
I am not able to see as why you are saying the big problem is in the modifier. I did read about the appositive which should modify the previous noun and that is my "them" should make sense as we have something as ["A, B, and C" --- each of THEM...].
What is wrong here or what am i missing?
Thanks
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Joined: 28 Dec 2011
Posts: 4485
Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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13 Oct 2017, 13:02
3
manishtank1988 wrote:
mikemcgarry - Does this make the option B correct?
B. The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations, ----------WRONG
B. The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of IT Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations, ----------RIGHT

I am not able to see as why option B is wrong - in my understanding modifier between 2 commas, and 2 hyphens can just be removed while checking for SVA.
I am not able to see as why you are saying the big problem is in the modifier. I did read about the appositive which should modify the previous noun and that is my "them" should make sense as we have something as ["A, B, and C" --- each of THEM...].
What is wrong here or what am i missing?
Thanks

Dear manishtank1988,

I'm happy to respond.

My friend, I am sorry to say this, but you have a lot to learn about the "feel" of the English language. It's clear that you have studied many rules. Non-native students often labor under the misconception that they could arrive at SC mastery if they learned some mythical "complete list" of grammar rules. In fact, the rule-based approach to GMAT SC is quite limited, and at a certain level of difficulty, the official SC questions are more apt to punish such an approach rather than reward it. I recommend this blog article:
How to Improve Your GMAT Verbal Score
A habit of reading, practiced diligently and assiduously, will build intuition for well-spoken English, intuition that no list of rules could ever give you.

Here's what I'll say:
(1) "each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions" = a subtle mistake, but clearly wrong; quite typical of a GMAT SC wrong answer

(2) "each of IT Thomas Edison's well-known inventions" = fingernails-on-blackboard wrong; no native speaker would ever dream of saying this and any native speaker instantly would recognize this as laughable; far too wrong to be a wrong answer on the GMAT SC

The word "each" is always singular. In the construction "each of X," the X must be plural, and the entire construction is always singular.

In (1) above, "each of them" is singular, but it's in an appositive phrase equated with a plural, "Thomas Edison's well-known inventions." Again, this is a mismatch that is jarring to the ears of native speakers. It would have been 100% grammatically correct to say
(3) each of them one of Thomas Edison's well-known inventions
(4) each of them a well-known invention by Thomas Edison
Both of those are 100% grammatically correct, although rhetorically they are far from ideal.

As for (B) overall, I will try an analogy. Suppose I am in a car accident: suppose I break my leg and bang my head. The first priority is to figure out whether I have a serious head injury. The brain specialist who examines me will ignore my broken leg for the sake of his examination. If this brain specialist comes to find that I have sustained no major head injury, that's very good, but it doesn't mean I am in perfect health. I still have a broken leg! In order for a body to be healthy, every part must be healthy.

In order for a SC answer choice to be correct, every part of it must be 100% correct. It's perfectly true that, when we are trying to figure out the SVA, we can completely ignore this modifier, just as the brain specialist is allowed to ignore my broken leg as he examines my brain. As it happens, (B) has flawless SVA, no problem at all. When we were ignoring the modifier, we found no problem, but of course, for the entire sentence to be correct, the modifier itself also has to be correct. I said that the problem was in the modifier itself because (1) above is wrong. The modifier itself contains an error, and one that really "feels" wrong. This error doesn't impact any other part of the sentence, but it is still an error. As with the broken leg, we get to ignore it for a certain phase of the analysis, but we don't get to ignore it forever. If any part of the answer choice is wrong in any way at all, then the entire answer choice is wrong. There's a mistake inside the modifier, so the entirety of choice (B) is wrong.

My friend, does all this make sense?
Mike
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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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14 Oct 2017, 13:29
mikemcgarry wrote:
manishtank1988 wrote:
mikemcgarry - Does this make the option B correct?
B. The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations, ----------WRONG
B. The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of IT Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations, ----------RIGHT

I am not able to see as why option B is wrong - in my understanding modifier between 2 commas, and 2 hyphens can just be removed while checking for SVA.
I am not able to see as why you are saying the big problem is in the modifier. I did read about the appositive which should modify the previous noun and that is my "them" should make sense as we have something as ["A, B, and C" --- each of THEM...].
What is wrong here or what am i missing?
Thanks

Dear manishtank1988,

I'm happy to respond.

My friend, I am sorry to say this, but you have a lot to learn about the "feel" of the English language. It's clear that you have studied many rules. Non-native students often labor under the misconception that they could arrive at SC mastery if they learned some mythical "complete list" of grammar rules. In fact, the rule-based approach to GMAT SC is quite limited, and at a certain level of difficulty, the official SC questions are more apt to punish such an approach rather than reward it. I recommend this blog article:
How to Improve Your GMAT Verbal Score
A habit of reading, practiced diligently and assiduously, will build intuition for well-spoken English, intuition that no list of rules could ever give you.

Here's what I'll say:
(1) "each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions" = a subtle mistake, but clearly wrong; quite typical of a GMAT SC wrong answer

(2) "each of IT Thomas Edison's well-known inventions" = fingernails-on-blackboard wrong; no native speaker would ever dream of saying this and any native speaker instantly would recognize this as laughable; far too wrong to be a wrong answer on the GMAT SC

The word "each" is always singular. In the construction "each of X," the X must be plural, and the entire construction is always singular.

In (1) above, "each of them" is singular, but it's in an appositive phrase equated with a plural, "Thomas Edison's well-known inventions." Again, this is a mismatch that is jarring to the ears of native speakers. It would have been 100% grammatically correct to say
(3) each of them one of Thomas Edison's well-known inventions
(4) each of them a well-known invention by Thomas Edison
Both of those are 100% grammatically correct, although rhetorically they are far from ideal.

As for (B) overall, I will try an analogy. Suppose I am in a car accident: suppose I break my leg and bang my head. The first priority is to figure out whether I have a serious head injury. The brain specialist who examines me will ignore my broken leg for the sake of his examination. If this brain specialist comes to find that I have sustained no major head injury, that's very good, but it doesn't mean I am in perfect health. I still have a broken leg! In order for a body to be healthy, every part must be healthy.

In order for a SC answer choice to be correct, every part of it must be 100% correct. It's perfectly true that, when we are trying to figure out the SVA, we can completely ignore this modifier, just as the brain specialist is allowed to ignore my broken leg as he examines my brain. As it happens, (B) has flawless SVA, no problem at all. When we were ignoring the modifier, we found no problem, but of course, for the entire sentence to be correct, the modifier itself also has to be correct. I said that the problem was in the modifier itself because (1) above is wrong. The modifier itself contains an error, and one that really "feels" wrong. This error doesn't impact any other part of the sentence, but it is still an error. As with the broken leg, we get to ignore it for a certain phase of the analysis, but we don't get to ignore it forever. If any part of the answer choice is wrong in any way at all, then the entire answer choice is wrong. There's a mistake inside the modifier, so the entirety of choice (B) is wrong.

My friend, does all this make sense?
Mike

mikemcgarry - Absolutely it makes sense
Thanks a lot for this clarification.
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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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29 Oct 2017, 07:15
mikemcgarry wrote:
manishtank1988 wrote:
Hello daagh
In option B isn't i did as following:
Subject - The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter
Modifer - we can remove it - each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions
Verb - were (in accordance with the subject!!!)
Why is "each" present in modifier the subject?
Thanks

Dear manishtank1988,

I'm happy to respond.

I will say that I find your mega-list of cc's problematic. You are treating experts like a list of impersonal resources given for your personal use. Experts are human beings. This is an excellent opportunity to practice the skills that will be beneficial throughout your career--establish relationships; demonstrate integrity; ask for help with courtesy and caring; express sincere gratitude when you are helped, etc. Of course, like me, many experts have busy professional lives, and we will not always be able to respond quickly to your requests--as in the business world, you will not always immediately get the help that you need, but if you are patient and resourceful, you can find it.

Also, remember: education is not something that the experts do to you. Education is very much a process you do to yourself, by yourself, and for yourself. Experts can help only as much as any student assumes deep responsibility for her own learning.

In this question, in (B), SVA is fine but the big problem is in the modifier. Think about that modifier, which attempts to us an appositive construction:
each of them (singular) Thomas Edison's well-known inventions (plural)
An appositive has to match the noun it modifies in every way. This singular/plural mismatch is quite jarring to the ear of a native speaker.

Does all this make sense?
Mike

Hi Mike,

I adore you for who you are. I have been following your SC explanations for a week and you are the GOD of SC to me. You explanations are vivid, precise and clear. I am learning a lot from your explanations. Keep them coming.
_________________

Please give Kudos if you found this useful!

Note: You learn by teaching and knowledge increases by giving.

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Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions  [#permalink]

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02 Dec 2017, 18:20
mikemcgarry wrote:
manishtank1988 wrote:
mikemcgarry - Does this make the option B correct?
B. The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations, ----------WRONG
B. The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of IT Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations, ----------RIGHT

I am not able to see as why option B is wrong - in my understanding modifier between 2 commas, and 2 hyphens can just be removed while checking for SVA.
I am not able to see as why you are saying the big problem is in the modifier. I did read about the appositive which should modify the previous noun and that is my "them" should make sense as we have something as ["A, B, and C" --- each of THEM...].
What is wrong here or what am i missing?
Thanks

Dear manishtank1988,

I'm happy to respond.

My friend, I am sorry to say this, but you have a lot to learn about the "feel" of the English language. It's clear that you have studied many rules. Non-native students often labor under the misconception that they could arrive at SC mastery if they learned some mythical "complete list" of grammar rules. In fact, the rule-based approach to GMAT SC is quite limited, and at a certain level of difficulty, the official SC questions are more apt to punish such an approach rather than reward it. I recommend this blog article:
How to Improve Your GMAT Verbal Score
A habit of reading, practiced diligently and assiduously, will build intuition for well-spoken English, intuition that no list of rules could ever give you.

Here's what I'll say:
(1) "each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions" = a subtle mistake, but clearly wrong; quite typical of a GMAT SC wrong answer

(2) "each of IT Thomas Edison's well-known inventions" = fingernails-on-blackboard wrong; no native speaker would ever dream of saying this and any native speaker instantly would recognize this as laughable; far too wrong to be a wrong answer on the GMAT SC

The word "each" is always singular. In the construction "each of X," the X must be plural, and the entire construction is always singular.

In (1) above, "each of them" is singular, but it's in an appositive phrase equated with a plural, "Thomas Edison's well-known inventions." Again, this is a mismatch that is jarring to the ears of native speakers. It would have been 100% grammatically correct to say
(3) each of them one of Thomas Edison's well-known inventions
(4) each of them a well-known invention by Thomas Edison
Both of those are 100% grammatically correct, although rhetorically they are far from ideal.

As for (B) overall, I will try an analogy. Suppose I am in a car accident: suppose I break my leg and bang my head. The first priority is to figure out whether I have a serious head injury. The brain specialist who examines me will ignore my broken leg for the sake of his examination. If this brain specialist comes to find that I have sustained no major head injury, that's very good, but it doesn't mean I am in perfect health. I still have a broken leg! In order for a body to be healthy, every part must be healthy.

In order for a SC answer choice to be correct, every part of it must be 100% correct. It's perfectly true that, when we are trying to figure out the SVA, we can completely ignore this modifier, just as the brain specialist is allowed to ignore my broken leg as he examines my brain. As it happens, (B) has flawless SVA, no problem at all. When we were ignoring the modifier, we found no problem, but of course, for the entire sentence to be correct, the modifier itself also has to be correct. I said that the problem was in the modifier itself because (1) above is wrong. The modifier itself contains an error, and one that really "feels" wrong. This error doesn't impact any other part of the sentence, but it is still an error. As with the broken leg, we get to ignore it for a certain phase of the analysis, but we don't get to ignore it forever. If any part of the answer choice is wrong in any way at all, then the entire answer choice is wrong. There's a mistake inside the modifier, so the entirety of choice (B) is wrong.

My friend, does all this make sense?
Mike

Great explanation. You are brilliant.

I rejected B due to Subtle meaning error. As per original sentence, the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter - These are most well-known inventions, not just well-known inventions.

Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions---the phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---were major innovations, paving the way for many of the technologies used in the modern age.

B.The phonograph, the practical light bulb, and the telephone transmitter---each of them Thomas Edison's well-known inventions---were major innovations,
Re: Each of Thomas Edison's most well-known inventions &nbs [#permalink] 02 Dec 2017, 18:20
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