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# Even though his predilection for initiating

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Verbal Expert
Joined: 14 Dec 2013
Posts: 3225
Location: Germany
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GMAT 1: 780 Q50 V47
WE: Corporate Finance (Pharmaceuticals and Biotech)
Re: Even though his predilection for initiating [#permalink]

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05 Dec 2017, 08:26
chesstitans wrote:
AjiteshArun wrote:
Even though his predilection for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors was common knowledge and unlikely to upset his supporters, the politician decided to press charges against his opponent.

(A) Even though his predilection for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors was common knowledge and unlikely to upset his supporters

(B) Notwithstanding his commonly known predilection for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors, which was unlikely to upset his supporters

(C) His predilection for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors common knowledge and unlikely to upset his supporters

(D) Despite his commonly known predilection, which was unlikely to upset his supporters, for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors

(E) Because his predilection for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors that was common knowledge was unlikely to upset his supporters

This question wants to test the absolute phrase.
Do you think this question is a gmat-like in an actual exam? It is because the source if self-made.

Yes, in my view this is a very good question - determining between A and C may be quite challenging for some since A is a gramatically correct sentence.
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Re: Even though his predilection for initiating [#permalink]

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05 Dec 2017, 08:52
sayantanc2k wrote:

Yes, in my view this is a very good question - determining between A and C may be quite challenging for some since A is a gramatically correct sentence.

Hi ,

Would you please explain C in detail? I am having trouble with the highlighted part, though I have understood about the application of absolute phrase in the first part-"his predilection ...."
(C) His predilection for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors common knowledge and unlikely to upset his supporters
Thanks!
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Re: Even though his predilection for initiating [#permalink]

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05 Dec 2017, 09:32
mikemcgarry, sayantanc2k,

Also can someone explain the difference between detractors was common knowledge (in A) and detractors common knowledge (in B)

In C, what I am failing to understand is

His predilection (linking) for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors common knowledge. Doesn't this mean he will initiate legal proceeding against his critics common knowledge rather than against his detractors ?
Magoosh GMAT Instructor
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Re: Even though his predilection for initiating [#permalink]

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05 Dec 2017, 18:14
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Turkish wrote:
mikemcgarry, sayantanc2k,

Also can someone explain the difference between detractors was common knowledge (in A) and detractors common knowledge (in B)

In C, what I am failing to understand is

His predilection (linking) for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors common knowledge. Doesn't this mean he will initiate legal proceeding against his critics common knowledge rather than against his detractors ?

Dear Turkish,

I'm happy to respond.

My friend, you can't take 3-4 words out of context and ask about their meaning. The context of the whole sentence is always important. From context, we get meaning, and meaning is the very point of all language and communication.

(A)
Even though = subordinate conjunction
his predilection = subject of clause
for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors = noun-modifying phrase, modifying the subject
was = main verb of the clause
//common knowledge = description of subject, first branch of parallelism
and
//unlikely to upset his supporters = description of subject, second branch of parallelism
This is 100% grammatically correct, but logically flawed.

Choice (B) has a completely different grammatically structure
(B)
Notwithstanding = preposition
his commonly known predilection = object of preposition
for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors, = noun-modifying phrase, modifies "predilection"
which was unlikely to upset his supporters= noun-modifying clause, attempting to modify the gerund "initiating"
The modification of the "which" clause is iffy, not clearly wrong, but this choice is logically wrong.

Choice (C) has yet another grammatical structure. The wide grammatical variation is one of the features I like about this question. In (C), the entire underlined portion is replaced by an absolute phrase. This sophisticated grammatical structure is 100% correct and it typically is quite befuddling for non-native speakers.
an absolute phrase = [noun] + [noun modifier]
In (C)
[noun] = "His predilection for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors"
Here, the noun comes attached to a series of modifying phrases--logically, these function as a unit.
This is a very complex absolute phrase, in that it has two noun modifiers in parallel for the second half:
//common knowledge
and
//unlikely to upset his supporters

Choice (C) is a brilliantly elegant version of the question, the clear OA.

Read that linked blog about absolute phrases, and let me know if you still have questions after that.

Mike
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Verbal Expert
Joined: 14 Dec 2013
Posts: 3225
Location: Germany
Schools: HHL Leipzig
GMAT 1: 780 Q50 V47
WE: Corporate Finance (Pharmaceuticals and Biotech)
Even though his predilection for initiating [#permalink]

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12 Dec 2017, 06:15
TaN1213 wrote:
sayantanc2k wrote:

Yes, in my view this is a very good question - determining between A and C may be quite challenging for some since A is a gramatically correct sentence.

Hi ,

Would you please explain C in detail? I am having trouble with the highlighted part, though I have understood about the application of absolute phrase in the first part-"his predilection ...."
(C) His predilection for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors common knowledge and unlikely to upset his supporters
Thanks!

Structure of an absolute phrase is as follows:
Noun (phrase) + Noun modifier(s)

Here,
Noun phrase = His predilection for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors
Noun modifiers = common knowledge and unlikely to upset his supporters
(Note that two modifiers, "common knowledge" and "unlikely to upset his supporters", are joined by a conjunction.)
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Re: Even though his predilection for initiating [#permalink]

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17 Jan 2018, 20:51
AjiteshArun wrote:
daagh wrote:
Grammatically, one doubt about the correct choice C is whether it displays correct parallelism around the conjunction ' and' with a noun on one side and another infinitive phrase on the other.

Logically, the irony of his own supporters being unlikely to be upset about his penchant for the legal action raises doubts whether they are his supporters at all.

Structurally, is there anything amiss in the introductory modifier in C? There is a noun 'predilection' in the main modifier and another noun 'common knowledge' standing aloof and nested with it.
The elements joined by the and may not appear parallel, but they are. It may be that we are not applying parallelism the same way. For example, would you consider the following not parallel?

... the fight, each of the last three rounds five minutes long and requiring more energy than either fighter appeared to have.

Hi AjiteshArun,
Kindly help on the below
His predilection for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors- noun phrase
(was) common knowledge and (was) unlikely to upset his supporters- noun modifier. Was is omitted

Now, in the OA, option C, we have the structure - noun phrase + noun modifier, clause. Now, is the omitted verb was maintaining parallelism?
You have mentioned once that- Remember not to mark an option that leaves the was for the noun in the absolute. It will never be correct. Can you kindly explain this with an example?
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Even though his predilection for initiating [#permalink]

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18 Jan 2018, 03:17
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sunny91 wrote:
Hi AjiteshArun,
Kindly help on the below
His predilection for initiating legal proceedings against his detractors- noun phrase
(was) common knowledge and (was) unlikely to upset his supporters- noun modifier. Was is omitted

Now, in the OA, option C, we have the structure - noun phrase + noun modifier, clause. Now, is the omitted verb was maintaining parallelism?
You have mentioned once that- Remember not to mark an option that leaves the was for the noun in the absolute. It will never be correct. Can you kindly explain this with an example?
Sure. One example of the [absolute, clause] structure is:

His voice a sharp instrument, Mr. O'Connor is Gauguin.

The part before the comma is the absolute, and the part after the comma is the clause. Now, keep two things in mind:

1. There must be at least one independent clause in the sentence.
2. If the sentence has more than one clause, those clauses must be joined to each other somehow (for example, we could use a conjunction or a semicolon).

If we put a verb in what would otherwise have been an absolute phrase, we will end up with something like:

His voice is a sharp instrument, Mr. O'Connor is Gauguin.

Here we have two clauses, joined by only a comma. A comma is, on its own, not capable of joining clauses. We'll end up with something called a comma splice. Because a comma splice can never be correct on the GMAT, we will not pick this option as the correct answer.
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Even though his predilection for initiating   [#permalink] 18 Jan 2018, 03:17

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# Even though his predilection for initiating

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