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Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written

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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Jul 2016, 11:42
1
Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering her letters to anyone else.

(A) Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering
The sentence say that the purpose of writing the letters was to outnumber her letters to anyone else.
(B) Dickinson were written over a period that begins a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ended shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber

(C) Dickinson, written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and that ends shortly before Emily’s death in 1886 and outnumbering

(D) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother, ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, and outnumbering

(E) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber - Correct
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Oct 2016, 22:51
Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering her letters to anyone else.

(A) Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering

(B) Dickinson were written over a period that begins a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ended shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber

(C) Dickinson, written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and that ends shortly before Emily’s death in 1886 and outnumbering

(D) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother, ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, and outnumbering

(E) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber



In A, Emily Dickinson's ............were written......., Outnumbering.......(we have sub + Verb , verbing....which demands cause and effect. No cause and effect) Out
In B, period than begins.....(period is over, so wrong tense)
In C, D and E

Subject is followed be a comma, So another comma is required and after second comma verb must be present(Emily Dickinson's....Dickinson,........)

In C, second comma is missing, so verb is missing. Out
in D, after second comma 'and outnumbering' is present, No verb. Out

Therefore E.
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Nov 2016, 18:09
As the answer is option E, the correct sentence turns out to be :

Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber her letters to anyone else.

My question is :

In the phrase 'outnumber her letters to anyone else', what does the pronoun 'her' refer to ?

As per the meaning, 'her' seems to refer to Emily Dickinson. Can it refer to Emily Dickinson even though this name has not been specified as a proper noun ?

I thought every pronoun should have a clear antecedent and can not refer to a possessive form ?

Please help me with the above query.
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Nov 2016, 23:30
AK700 wrote:
As the answer is option E, the correct sentence turns out to be :

Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber her letters to anyone else.

My question is :

In the phrase 'outnumber her letters to anyone else', what does the pronoun 'her' refer to ?

As per the meaning, 'her' seems to refer to Emily Dickinson. Can it refer to Emily Dickinson even though this name has not been specified as a proper noun ?

I thought every pronoun should have a clear antecedent and can not refer to a possessive form ?

Hi AK700, while in this case, the possessive pronoun her is very aptly referring to possessive Noun (Emily Dickinson’s), GMAT is actually very flexible with this.

So, an object pronoun can refer to a subject noun, Object pronoun can refer to possessive noun, Subject pronoun can refer to possessive noun, and Possessive Pronoun can refer to non-possessive noun.

Basically, don't fret too much about this aspect of pronouns.
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Apr 2017, 19:52
Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering her letters to anyone else.

(A) Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering
--> not the intended meaning.

(B) Dickinson were written over a period that begins a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ended shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber

(C) Dickinson, written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and that ends shortly before Emily’s death in 1886 and outnumbering

(D) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother, ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, and outnumbering

(E) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber
--> correct.
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Oct 2017, 01:58
Hello
Too many replies. I have just one issue with the question and all the options. Because all the options have a common theme - Emily Dickinson's letters. 's.
Let's study the option E.
E. Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber her letters to anyone else.

In E, and so in every sentence, there seems to be a fatal flaw. First, the subject is Emily Dickinson's letters, and not Emily Dickinson. This leaves the her in the final clause outnumber her letters to anyone else with no antecedent. Second, even if you say that Emily Dickinson is the antecedent, it is actually Emily Dickinson's.

Now, to bolster my view, refer Manhattan's SC Guide.

Wrong statement: The board is investigating several executives' compensation packages in order to determine how much may have been improperly awarded to THEM.
Correct statement: The board is investigating the compensation packages of several executives in order to determine how much THEY may have been improperly awarded

Explanation: In this sentence, the pronoun them refers better to packages than to executives'.


So, can anyone explain how is any choice correct?
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Oct 2017, 04:25
talismaaniac wrote:
Hello
Too many replies. I have just one issue with the question and all the options. Because all the options have a common theme - Emily Dickinson's letters. 's.
Let's study the option E.
E. Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber her letters to anyone else.

In E, and so in every sentence, there seems to be a fatal flaw. First, the subject is Emily Dickinson's letters, and not Emily Dickinson. This leaves the her in the final clause outnumber her letters to anyone else with no antecedent. Second, even if you say that Emily Dickinson is the antecedent, it is actually Emily Dickinson's.

Now, to bolster my view, refer Manhattan's SC Guide.

Wrong statement: The board is investigating several executives' compensation packages in order to determine how much may have been improperly awarded to THEM.
Correct statement: The board is investigating the compensation packages of several executives in order to determine how much THEY may have been improperly awarded

Explanation: In this sentence, the pronoun them refers better to packages than to executives'.


So, can anyone explain how is any choice correct?




Hello talismaaniac,


I will be glad to help you out with this one. :-)


The way we have possessive nouns, similarly we have possessive pronouns too.

Possessive pronouns refer to possessive nouns as well as non-possessive nouns.

For example:

Ria's mother gifted Ria a beautiful dress on her birthday.

In the above-mentioned sentence, the possessive pronoun her refers to the possessive noun Ria's.


Just replace the pronoun her with its antecedent Ria's, and the sentence will continue to convey the same logical meaning.

Ria's mother gifted Ria a beautiful dress on Ria's birthday.


The official sentence at hand has the same usage of her in the original sentence as well as all the answer choices.


Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber her letters to anyone else.

The possessive pronoun her correctly refers to the possessive noun Emily Dickinson’s in the above-mentioned correct version of this official sentence.

Again, just replace her with Emily Dickinson’s, and the sentence will still stand correct and logical.


Hope this helps. :-)
Thanks.
Shraddha
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Dec 2017, 21:12
Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering her letters to anyone else.

(A) Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering

(B) Dickinson were written over a period that begins a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ended shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber

(C) Dickinson, written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and that ends shortly before Emily’s death in 1886 and outnumbering

(D) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother, ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, and outnumbering

(E) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber

-----

Core: Letters were written, outnumbering

A: Hold
B: that begins and ended -> not parallel. Eliminate
C: beginning and that ends -> not parallel. Eliminate
D: were written, ending, and outnumbering -> not parallel. Eliminate
E: Hold

A vs E
(A) Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering
- what's the core? Letters were written, outnumbering
- comma ING can't refer to a noun

(E) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber
- what's the core? Letters outnumber

My selection: Choice E
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Mar 2018, 09:23
egmat wrote:
karanthakurani wrote:
Hi Egmat,

Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering her letters to anyone else.

(A) Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering
(B) Dickinson were written over a period that begins a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ended shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber
(C) Dickinson, written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and that ends shortly before Emily’s death in 1886 and outnumbering
(D) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother, ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, and outnumbering
(E) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber

here in choice A 'outnumbering her letters to anyone else' is acting as verbing modifier and modifying the previous clause 'Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written....' still the choice A is wrong.
Also outnumbering makes sense with letters.
OG says it is unclear what outnumbering refers to. Please highlight on this.

Thanks,
Karan


Hi Karan,

Thank you for posting your query here.

Choice A is incorrect because of modifier error. Let us see the reason behind it.

Note that "outnumbering her letters to anyone else" should modify the letters but its placement is such that it appears to modify the preceding clause.

Notice that comma + verb-ing modify the preceding clause. And this modification does not make sense here. This is because it was not because the letters were written in the specified period that these letters outnumbered the other set of letters.

In fact these two actions - were written and outnumber are really two different characteristics of the letters.

Hope this helps :)

Regards,
Krishna


Hi Shraddha
I always see you applying this technique(as highlighted above) to find whether the cause and effect relationship is correctly intended by COMMA+verb-ing phrase.
Is this a valid way to check it ? If yes, I would love to put it in use.

Regards
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Apr 2018, 18:40
Outnumbering her letter is wrong because it is modifying "Emily Dickinson's letters".
How can letters fit the pronoun her?

Only viable options are the two with "outnumber".

(B) fails at proper tenses. ex. begins ... ended. Should be began and ended so both indicate past.

(E) is the answer.
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 09 May 2018, 03:33
Could anyone please explain the following sentence taken from GMAT Guide -

In the passive voice, the subject of the sentence has an action performed on it by
someone or something else.

In that case all those options which have "were written" should be wrong because they do not have any performer ?

One more doubt -
"which" modifies a noun/subject just preceding it. In the given problem doesn't "which" modifies "Dickinson" ??

Please help..
Thanks :)
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 10 May 2018, 17:57
somey wrote:
Could anyone please explain the following sentence taken from GMAT Guide -

In the passive voice, the subject of the sentence has an action performed on it by
someone or something else.

In that case all those options which have "were written" should be wrong because they do not have any performer ?

One more doubt -
"which" modifies a noun/subject just preceding it. In the given problem doesn't "which" modifies "Dickinson" ??

Please help..
Thanks :)
1. The passive is not wrong. Some people think that its usage should be minimized, in favor of more "active" sentences.

2. A which may or may not refer to the noun just before it.
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Jun 2018, 22:41
mikemcgarry

(E) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber

doesn't which refer to Dickinson here?

Is it an absolute rule that X, which : which always refers to the X?
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Jun 2018, 22:59
gmatbusters wrote:
Is it an absolute rule that X, which : which always refers to the X?
No. There are many situations in which a which is not (or cannot be) placed right next to the noun that it is supposed to refer to. More generally, don't immediately remove an option if you feel that a that or a which is referring to a noun that is not right next to it. Try to find more reliable approaches into the question before moving on to ambiguity.
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Sep 2018, 05:42
Had the option B been:

B. Dickinson were written over a period that begins began a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ended shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber

was it correct?
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 25 Oct 2018, 14:51
Hello Everyone!

This looks like a complicated question that mainly deals with modifiers, so let's dive in! First, let's take a close look at the original question, and highlight any major differences between the options in orange:

Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering her letters to anyone else.

(A) Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering
(B) Dickinson were written over a period that begins a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ended shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber
(C) Dickinson, written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and that ends shortly before Emily’s death in 1886 and outnumbering
(D) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother, ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, and outnumbering
(E) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber

After a quick glance over the options, a few things jumped out that we can focus on:

1. were written / ,written / ,which were written
2. beginning / that begins
3. ,outnumbering / ,outnumber / and outnumbering / ,and outnumbering


One thing we can easily see in options C, D, and E is the use of a non-essential clause. Non-essential clauses are placed between commas, and they provide extra details that are "non-essential" to the overall meaning of the sentence. To make sure non-essential clauses are used properly, you can do this quick test:

1. Cross out/remove the non-essential clause
2. Read what's left over. If the leftover part can still work as a complete sentence, it's a good use of a non-essential phrase. If the leftover part isn't a complete sentence, the non-essential phrase doesn't work.

Example:
My brother, who loves to spend his weekends at farmer's markets, prefers organic vegetables.
My brother, who loves to spend his weekends at farmer's markets, prefers organic vegetables.
My brother prefers organic vegetables. --> GOOD

Halloween, which is my favorite holiday, more than Christmas or Easter.
Halloween, which is my favorite holiday, more than Christmas or Easter.
Halloween more than Christmas or Easter. --> BAD

So let's take a closer look at the options to make sure their non-essential clauses work. To make this easier, I've added the entire sentence to each option:

(A) Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering her letters to anyone else. --> No non-essential clause (save for later)

(B) Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written over a period that begins a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ended shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber her letters to anyone else. --> No non-essential clause (save for later)

(C) Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson, written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and that ends shortly before Emily’s death in 1886 and outnumbering her letters to anyone else.

This is INCORRECT because if we cross out the non-essential phrase / modifier, what's left over cannot stand alone. Connecting the non-essential phrase to the modifier left us with no verb!

(D) Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother, ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, and outnumbering her letters to anyone else.

This is INCORRECT because if we cross out the non-essential phrase, what's left over doesn't make sense on its own. This tells us the non-essential phrase isn't being used properly here. In fact, this option is also missing a verb thanks to a bad non-essential clause!

(E) Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886,outnumber her letters to anyone else.

This is OKAY for now! If we remove the non-essential phrase, what's left over still works as a complete sentence!

We can rule out options C & D because they are missing a verb, thanks to incorrect use of non-essential phrases!

Now that we only have 3 options left, let's take a closer look at them to find any other problems:

(A) Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering her letters to anyone else.

This option is INCORRECT because the modifier "outnumbering her letters to anyone else" is so far away from what it's modifying (Emily Dickinson's letters). The GMAT prefers that modifiers are directly before or after what they're modifying, so they are less confusing for readers.

(B) Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written over a period that begins a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ended shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber her letters to anyone else.

This is INCORRECT because we have two competing verbs here! The phrase "outnumber her letters to anyone else" doesn't work here because it's supposed to be a modifier, but it was rewritten to be a verb phrase?? This doesn't work, so let's rule it out too.

(E) Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber her letters to anyone else.

This is CORRECT! The modifier (highlighted here in green) is clearly directly after what it's modifying (Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickens). It's also punctuated properly to indicate that the modifier is "non-essential," and could be removed without changing the original meaning.

There you have it - option E is the correct choice! This was a tricky question, but if you know how to check modifiers and non-essential clauses for correct wording and punctuation, it's a lot easier to spot problems!


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Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Nov 2018, 10:11
egmat wrote:
Choice A is incorrect because of modifier error.
"outnumbering her letters to anyone else" should modify the letters but its placement is such that it appears to modify the preceding clause.

Notice that comma + verb-ing modify the preceding clause. And this modification does not make sense here. This is because it was not because the letters were written in the specified period that these letters outnumbered the other set of letters. In fact these two actions - were written and outnumber are really two different characteristics of the letters.

Lets consider an example sentence:
The film was shot in a small town of Guthernberg, exceeding expectations of the producers.
This sentence is incorrect since the verb-ing modifier appears to modify preceding clause and in this sentence this modification does not make sense. The fact that the film was shot in a small town did not really lead to exceeding the expectations of the producers.

The correct sentence is:
The film, shot in a small town of Guthernberg, exceeded the expectations of the producers.



The sentence simply states a fact that this film exceeded the expectations. It does not provide any reasoning for the same.

The film received significant critical acclaim, exceeding the expectations of the producers.
This sentence is correct. In this sentence, the verb-ing modifier makes complete sense with the preceding clause. The expectations of the producers were exceeded by virtue of the film receiving significant critical acclaim.

Hope this helps :)




[color=#000000]I have one question, as per my understanding"which" can modify [color=#ff0000]"letters" "to Susan Huntington Dickinson"[/color]can be placed any where else in the sentence and still make sense. In my opinion "to Susan Huntington" can be placed after "were written" and still make sense any comments?[/color]
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Nov 2018, 10:21
As per my understanding which can refer to "Emily Dickinson???s letters" if "to Susan Huntington Dickinson" can be used any where else in the sentence and the sentence still makes logical sense. In this case can't we place "to Susan Huntington Dickinson" after "were written" and the sentence will still make sense.
For eg
Emily Dickinson???s letters were written to Susan Huntington Dickinson over a period beginning....
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Nov 2018, 19:25
razakay wrote:
As per my understanding which can refer to "Emily Dickinson???s letters" if "to Susan Huntington Dickinson" can be used any where else in the sentence and the sentence still makes logical sense. In this case can't we place "to Susan Huntington Dickinson" after "were written" and the sentence will still make sense.
For eg
Emily Dickinson???s letters were written to Susan Huntington Dickinson over a period beginning....
No, we can't do that here.

Emily Dickinson's letters were written to Susan Huntington Dickinson over a period beginning...

Your sentence means that all of ED's letters were written (to SHD). What we need is a reference to only those letters that were written to SHD.
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jan 2019, 03:44
egmat wrote:
aadit1984 wrote:
Hi Deepak,

I totally get that there is a meaning error in A - the verb-ing, separated by comma, in no way presents result or in any way describes the preceding clause. However, what I am trying to figure is how the main clause in question becomes the modifier (which is usually an fyi thingy) in the correct answer E, while the modifier becomes the main clause?

I think meghna mentioned, in the link that you redirected to, that the idea 'SD's letters to ED outnumbered her letters to anyone else' is the main idea and the time frame during which she wrote the letters is just an additional info. However, the construction of the original question says otherwise.

Can you please help me understand why the time frame during which the letter were written is not the main idea of the sentence? For example, if the sentence were in a history text book and time frame was critical to make sense then it would be totally justified as the main clause, and the fact that those letters outnumbered any other be a modifier or a subordinate clause.

Is there anything wrong with my reasoning? Please help!

Thanks,
Adi



Hi Adi,
Thank you for posting your query here. :)

In the given sentence we have a concrete grammatical error in option A as you have already understood. So, we can reject choice A based on this error only. Also, if we consider the two pieces of information conveyed by the sentence:

1. ED wrote letters to SHD over a period beginning a few years before SHD's marriage to ED's brother and ending shortly before ED's death in 1886.
2. The letters written by ED to SHD outnumber her letters to anyone else.

So, the subject of the discussion here is ED's letters to SHD. Since the action of writing these letters is not a historical event we know that the main point of the sentence is the second one. Also as stated in OG, choice A overemphasizes on the period in which these letters were written. Note that, when there is an option available that conveys the intended meaning of the sentence better than the original sentence, then we can select the option even if there seems to be a change in meaning.


Hope this helps! :)
Regards,
Deepak


the pronoun "her" in both the original sentence and the correct answer choice should refer to Emily. Emily Dickinson hasn't been mentioned anywhere, even in the correct answer choice. could you help me understand this?
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Re: Emily Dickinson's letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written &nbs [#permalink] 17 Jan 2019, 03:44

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