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# Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only

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Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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Updated on: 26 Oct 2018, 02:59
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Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only look less appetizing than their round and red supermarket cousins, often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but are more flavorful.

(A) cousins, often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but are

(B) cousins, often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises, although

(C) cousins, often green and striped, or they have plenty of bumps and bruises, although they are

(D) cousins; they are often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises, although

(E) cousins; they are often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but they are

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Verbal Question of The Day: Day 103: Sentence Correction

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Originally posted by icandy on 18 Feb 2009, 15:40.
Last edited by Bunuel on 26 Oct 2018, 02:59, edited 1 time in total.
Renamed the topic and edited the question.
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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13 Sep 2017, 12:25
58
37
Full disclosure: I missed this one the first time I saw it, mostly because I was too mechanical about “pronoun ambiguity.” But as you might have noticed in our YouTube webinar on pronouns, pronoun ambiguity isn’t an absolute rule.

Plus, there’s a nuance to this particular situation: in (D) and (E), the subject of the second independent clause is a pronoun, and I’m pretty sure that the subject of the second clause can refer unambiguously to the subject of the first clause – even if there are a ton of other potential referents in between those two subjects. More on that in the YouTube webinar, too.

Quote:
(A) cousins, often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but are

This isn’t technically a run-on sentence, but it feels like one. It’s oddly tricky to pin down the exact errors, even though it’s clearly a mess. I guess I’d start with the parallelism: “or” is a parallelism trigger, so the verb phrase “have plenty of bumps and bruises” must be parallel to some other verb phrase. But the only other verb phrase is “look less appetizing”: “Heirloom tomatoes… only look less appetizing than their supermarket cousins… or have plenty of bumps and bruises.”

That doesn’t make sense. Why are we using an “or” there? Those two verb phrases support each other, and both are true.

Plus, the placement of “often green and striped” could be better. It looks like the “supermarket cousins” are “green and striped” – but that’s not right. The heirlooms are green and striped. So we have plenty of reasons to ditch (A).

Quote:
(B) cousins, often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises, although

This is an even hotter mess than (A). I can’t figure out what to do with the “or with plenty of bumps and bruises” here, either – nothing is reasonably parallel to the prepositional phrase “with plenty of bumps and bruises”, since there really aren’t any prepositional phrases earlier in the sentence that could possibly work.

Plus, that last bit is weird: “Heirloom tomatoes… only look less appetizing than their (supermarket cousins)…, although more flavorful.” I could go for “although they are more flavorful”, but the sentence doesn’t make sense the way it’s written. “Although” requires a clause in this situation, not just a random adjective.

Oh yeah – and the “often green and striped” is still in a weird location. (B) is out.

Quote:
(C) cousins, often green and striped, or they have plenty of bumps and bruises, although they are

This is getting better, but the “often green and striped” is still arguably misplaces, and we still have a parallelism issue with the “or.” “Heirloom tomatoes… only look less appetizing than their (supermarket cousins)…, or they have plenty of bumps and bruises.” Again, the two phrases on either side of the “or” just don’t make sense: both are true, and the two phrases actually support each other. Eliminate (C).

Quote:
(D) cousins; they are often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises, although

If you’re being too mechanical, you might conclude that “they” is ambiguous, because it could refer to “cousins”, “seeds”, or “tomatoes.” But we’re OK here: “they” is the subject of the second clause, and I don’t think there’s any ambiguity in GMAT-land if the subject of the second clause (“they”) refers back to the subject of the first clause (“heirloom tomatoes”).

And both the “or” and the “green and striped” finally make sense! Trouble is, we have that little problem with “although more flavorful” at the end of the sentence. In this situation, we’d need a clause following “although”, not just a random adjective. (D) is better than (A), (B), and (C), but it’s still flawed.

Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only look less appetizing than their round and red supermarket cousins, often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but are more flavorful.

Quote:
(E) cousins; they are often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but they are

Great. The pronouns are all nice and clear, according to GMAT rules: the subject of the second (“they are often green and striped”) and third clauses (“they are more flavorful”) refer back to the subject of the first clause (“heirloom tomatoes”). The verb phrase “have plenty of bumps and bruises” is appropriately parallel to “are often green and striped” – and the “or” makes sense.

(E) is our winner, and now I really want a gigantic salad.
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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27 Jul 2009, 10:18
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(A) "often green and striped" is a modifier that is right after cousins. Since the cousins are red, this modifier is in the wrong place.
(B) "often green and striped" is a modifier that is right after cousins. Since the cousins are red, this modifier is in the wrong place.
(C) "often green and striped" is a modifier that is right after cousins. Since the cousins are red, this modifier is in the wrong place.
(D) Since there is a ";" "they" in the new clause is referring to the tomatoes. However they are not "with". "They have" is better.
(E) CORRECT - Both "they" refer to tomatoes.
##### General Discussion
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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19 Feb 2009, 10:51
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2
A, B and C clearly are wrong, because they take the information about heirloom tomatoes and put it into a grammatical structure which makes it a postmodifier of the SUPERMARKET tomatoes. (The grammatical structure used, if anyone cares, is a non-restrictive postmodifying adjective phrase. Actually, it is a sequence of two such phrases.)

The difference between D and E is also fairly obvious. In D, the two postmodifying phrases are not parallel in structure (clause with verb and prepositional phrase), while in E, they are both clauses with verbs. So only E can be correct.

The problem, as icandy says, is that "they" in E is still grammatically ambiguous. Maybe this indicates that the question is not an official GMAC question. But from what I have seen, even the GMAC itself is not perfectly consistent about pronoun ambiguity. I think (not quite sure) that sometimes they accept a pronoun ambiguity such as this one in one question, while treating the same thing as wrong in another question.
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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27 Jul 2009, 10:31
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"Although" cannot be used to introduce phrases. It should be followed with a subordinate clause, which has a subject and verb. (Ref OG 11, explanation for SC 9).

So B and D are out.
C out for using "they have plenty", where I feel "they" is ambiguously used and sentence structure is illogocal.

Out of A and E, E sounds logical, though in this option as well I find "they" used ambiguously.

IMO E
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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22 Mar 2009, 21:10
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Sanjay I think you mean subject of the first sentence.

I think Heirloom tomatoes in the first half of the sentence is the subject.

I think the they/it refers to the subject of the first part of the sentence.

And am I correct in thinking that:

D. cousins; they are often green and striped (verb clause), or with plenty of bumps and bruises (prepositional phrase) although ---Hence NOT CORRECT
E. cousins; they are often green and striped (verb clause), or have plenty of bumps and bruises (verb clause), but they are ----Hence CORRECT

So it doesnt have anything to do with the usage of Although? D is not wrong coz of although?
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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29 Aug 2012, 09:24
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vivekdixit07 wrote:
Above question has already been discussed in this forum.

But I need more explanation in reference to the usage of although in D.

Someone wrote in the previous three that Although don't have a subject in D, hence option D is wrong.

Please explain the above concept in detail.

The word "although" kicks of a dependent CLAUSE and needs a cleear subject.

Examples:

Although they had no umbrellas, the excited children ran outside to enjoy the summer rainstorm. -- Logical and Correct.
Although had no umbrellas, the excited children ran outside to enjoy the summer rainstorm - Illogical without the subject "they".

In option D [although are more flavorful], "although" does not have an explicit (or even clearly implied) subject, therefore it is incorrect.

KW
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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14 Sep 2017, 05:33
3
Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only look less appetizing than their round and red supermarket cousins, often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but are more flavorful.

(A) cousins, often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but are :green and stripped must modify H tomatoes and must be placed next to H tomatoes
(B) cousins, often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises, although :green and stripped must modify H tomatoes and must be placed next to H tomatoes
(C) cousins, often green and striped, or they have plenty of bumps and bruises, although they are :green and stripped must modify H tomatoes and must be placed next to H tomatoes
(D) cousins; they are often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises, although :parallelism error ,verb are so or must be followed by verb and not preposition
(E) cousins; they are often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but they are
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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30 Dec 2013, 11:26
2
smashingpumpkins wrote:
Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only look less appetizing than their round and red supermarket cousins, often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but are more flavorful.

(A) cousins, often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but are

(B) cousins, often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises, although

(C) cousins, often green and striped, or they have plenty of bumps and bruises, although they are

(D) cousins; they are often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises, although

(E) cousins; they are often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but they are

This is a meaning/modifier/parallelism SC so I would rate it at the 650 level

First three are incorrect answer choices. The clause often green and striped is meant to refer to Heirloom tomatoes not their cousins. Next, semi-colon is appropiate to separate both ideas.
Now between D and E, 'E' might look a little longer but its fine! It expresses the idea clearly in the last part after the comma showing //ism too (they are....but they are)

Looking good

E is our best choice

Hope it helps!
Cheers
J
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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30 Dec 2013, 20:31
2
jlgdr wrote:

First three are incorrect answer choices. The clause often green and striped is meant to refer to Heirloom tomatoes not their cousins. Next, semi-colon is appropiate to separate both ideas.
Now between D and E, 'E' might look a little longer but its fine! It expresses the idea clearly in the last part after the comma showing //ism too (they are....but they are)

Looking good

E is our best choice

Hope it helps!
Cheers
J

Between D & E,
Although should always be followed by a bonafide noun-verb. In D, there is no noun after although. So the usage is wrong.
In E, comma + but is the co-ordinating conjunction which is properly connecting the independent clauses.
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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12 Jun 2014, 09:46
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4
icandy wrote:
Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only look less appetizing than their round and red supermarket cousins, often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but are more flavorful.

(A) cousins, often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but are
(B) cousins, often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises, although
(C) cousins, often green and striped, or they have plenty of bumps and bruises, although they are
(D) cousins; they are often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises, although
(E) cousins; they are often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but they are.

kinjiGC wrote:
Hi Mike,
I would like to have your inputs on the question. I prefer option E) to A) but I am not sure. Can you please explain once.
Thanks, Kinjal

Dear Kinjal,
I am happy to respond. This questions is quite curious, because it's almost identical in topic to OG13, SC #132, and uses many of the same phrases, though in a different order. I would think that GMAC might be a position to sue a company for having a question so blatantly similar to its own. That does give me a bit of concern about the question and its authors.

In (A) - (C), among other problems, there's modifier ambiguity. We know logically that "often green and striped" should apply to heirloom tomatoes, but it touches "their round and red supermarket cousins." That's less than ideal.

Also, in (A), if we remove the modifying detail, the logic is wonky: "Heirloom tomatoes ... only look less appetizing ... or have plenty of bumps and bruises" ??? Why is that a choice, to "look less appetizing" vs. "to have bumps and bruises"? Joining these two verbs with "or" makes no sense. That's why (A) is definitively wrong.

The semicolon divide is a very clean, clear way to delineate the logic of the sentence. The parallelism removes any ambiguity about the pronoun: the pronoun "they" is subject of the second clause, so it is obviously in parallel to the subject of the first clause, and that first subject, "Heirloom tomatoes," is the antecedent. This is why (E) is the best answer.

Does all this make sense?
Mike
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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20 Oct 2017, 01:53
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Hi All,

As already pointed out by GMATNinja, for option D, Trouble is, we have that little problem with “although more flavorful” at the end of the sentence. In this situation, we’d need a clause following “although”, not just a random adjective.

I always miss on that part, whether although should be followed by a complete clause or only a modifier. So, I just wanted to share an excellent explanation by RON Purewal on the correct usage of the same. Please follow this url.

https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/forums/although-subordinate-clause-must-have-a-subject-and-verb-t31750.html

Hope this will help to several others as it had helped me.

Thanks.
-Varun
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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05 Jan 2017, 10:54
1
oldest wrote:
Hi Mike,
In the first clause of this sentence, "their" was used to refer to "Heirloom tomatoes". is that the reason why "they" in the latter clause ambiguity-free?

Dear oldest,
I'm happy to respond.

My friend, many factors contribute to establishing the relationship of a pronoun to its antecedent. Here's the OA, version (E):
Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only look less appetizing than their round and red supermarket cousins; they are often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but they are more flavorful.
What contributes to our understanding that the highlighted pronoun "they" refers back to "heirloom tomatoes"?
1) As you suggest, just a single pronoun is used, with consistent antecedent, throughout the sentence
2) Parallelism. When we have two independent clauses in parallel, and a pronoun is the subject of the second, the parallelism strongly suggests that the subject of the first should be the antecedent.
3) Rhetoric. Think about it: what is the subject and focus of the entire sentence? Of course, "heirloom tomatoes." The fact that the entire sentence focuses on this single topic strongly suggests that any pronoun would be referring back to this focus.
In this well-crafted sentence, all three of these elements work in concert to reinforce one another. This makes 100% clear the antecedent of the pronoun.

Do not take the pronoun-antecedent relationship for granted. There are always many different elements of the sentence, at many different levels, contributing this relationship.

Does all this make sense?
Mike
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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12 Jan 2017, 10:20
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2
sleepynut wrote:
Hi expert,
In my 2 cents,option D could be a good contender of this question.
Option A,B,and C are gone as "often green and stripe" wrongly modifies cousins.
"they" in option E is not ambiguous;"they",as the subject" all refer to Heirloom tomatoes.
However,I find it difficult to eliminate option D.

Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only look less appetizing than their round and red supermarket cousins; they are often green and striped, or (they are)with plenty of bumps and bruises, although more flavorful.
or it is only acceptable only the 2nd independent clause reads ", although more flavorful,they are often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises.

Please shed some light on this
Thanks

"Although" ideally introduces a clause. However there are official questions, in which the phrase "Although+ adjective" is constructed to be used as a modifier - in such case the modifier should touch the noun it modifies. Here "although more flavorful" should touch "they".
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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12 Jan 2017, 10:32
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sleepynut wrote:
Hi expert,
In my 2 cents,option D could be a good contender of this question.
Option A,B,and C are gone as "often green and stripe" wrongly modifies cousins.
"they" in option E is not ambiguous;"they",as the subject" all refer to Heirloom tomatoes.
However,I find it difficult to eliminate option D.

Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only look less appetizing than their round and red supermarket cousins; they are often green and striped, or (they are)with plenty of bumps and bruises, although more flavorful.
or it is only acceptable only the 2nd independent clause reads ", although more flavorful,they are often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises.

Please shed some light on this
Thanks

Dear sleepynut,

I'm happy to respond.

Here's (D):
Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only look less appetizing than their round and red supermarket cousins; they are often green and striped, or (they are) with plenty of bumps and bruises, although (they are) more flavorful.
A few things to notice about (D).
1) It demands the implied subject-verb "they are" twice, two clauses in a row. Not grammatically wrong, but not exactly the most elegant and compelling structure.
2) Think about the phrasing: "they are with plenty of bumps and bruises." That's 100% grammatically correct, but extremely awkward. The natural thing to say would be "they [color=#00a651]have plenty of bumps and bruises[/color]." That is what a native speaker would say. Consider similar examples:
My friend is with a new car. = awkward
My friend has a new car. = natural
Company X is with 5000 employees. = awkward
Company X has 5000 employees. = natural
Again, the "with" examples here are 100% grammatically correct, but they are terribly "off" in a way that would sound jarring to a native ear. By contrast, the "has" construction sounds direct and clear: despite the simplicity, it has a kind of no-nonsense power that the "with" version dismally lacks.

Notice that (E) gets both of these things correct: (E) looks stellar where (D) falls in the mud. (E) is the best answer.

Mike
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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25 Nov 2017, 04:51
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Top Contributor
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Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only look less appetizing than their round and red supermarket cousins, often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but are more flavorful.

(A) cousins, often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but are
(B) cousins, often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises, although
(C) cousins, often green and striped, or they have plenty of bumps and bruises, although they are
(D) cousins; they are often green and striped, or with plenty of bumps and bruises, although
(E) cousins; they are often green and striped or have plenty of bumps and bruises, but they are

A, B and C are plain wrong because of their using the past participle modifier green and striped, which can only refer to the noun front but not the distant subject noun Heirlooms.
Between D and E, the thumb rule is that, when although is used at the end of a sentence, it should be used only in a verbed clause and not in a modifier phrase. Therefore, E is the eventual choice.

However, here is a more interesting and twisted version of the same topic appearing in several official editions.
https://gmatclub.com/forum/although-app ... 32487.html

OG16 SC118
OG17 SC784

Although appearing less appetizing than most of their round and red supermarket cousins, heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved during the previous year—they are often green and striped, or have plenty of bumps and bruises—heirlooms are more flavorful and thus in increasing demand.

(A) Although appearing less appetizing than most of their round and red supermarket cousins, heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved during the previous year
(B) Although heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved during the previous year, appear less appetizing than most of their round and red supermarket cousins
(C) Although they appear less appetizing than most of their round and red supermarket cousins, heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved during the previous year
(D) Grown from seeds saved during the previous year, heirloom tomatoes appear less appetizing than most of their round and red supermarket cousins
(E) Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved during the previous year, although they appear less appetizing than most of their round and red supermarket cousins

One might follow the discussions thereof and learn concepts that are more complicated.
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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24 Jul 2019, 02:59
1
On the explanation of GmatNinja for answer D, I wonder whether that the "or with..." phrase is problematic since there is no prep phrase before that? In other words, if the prep phrase need to be parallel with another prep phrase?

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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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28 Feb 2020, 07:30
1
1
firsttimenoob wrote:
GMATNinja

I picked D as my answer. Can you help clarify two 2 points:

1) Are 'have plenty of bumps and bruises' and 'are often green and striped' parallel because they're both verb phrases? (I eliminated this because I didn't think they were parallel but I guess now I do since they're both verb phrases.
2) Is there a rule as to why we need a clause following "although"? Is that just idiomatic?

Thanks!

Yes, “have plenty of bumps and bruises” and “are often green and striped” are parallel verb phrases.

And, no, there are no concrete rules when it comes to what should follow "although". Unfortunately you just have to line up the options side by side and think about the clarity of the meaning. I certainly wouldn't immediately eliminate something just because of the presence/absence of a clause after "although".

I hope that helps!
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Joined: 02 Nov 2011
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Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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28 Feb 2020, 10:42
1
1
firsttimenoob wrote:
2) Is there a rule as to why we need a clause following "although"? Is that just idiomatic?

Thanks!

Hello firsttimenoob,

Although your question is not addressed to me, here is a little usage nuance on although.

It is a general belief that the connector although must be followed by a clause. But that is not the case always. The word although may not be followed by a clause if the SV pair in the clause following although and the SV pair in the main clause are the same. For example,

Although (the room is) small, the room looks spacious.

Takeaway: Do not reject an answer choice because there is no clause after the word although.

Hope this helps.
Thanks.
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GMAT Date: 11-02-2012
Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only  [#permalink]

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13 Sep 2011, 19:57
Above question has already been discussed in this forum.

But I need more explanation in reference to the usage of although in D.

Someone wrote in the previous three that Although don't have a subject in D, hence option D is wrong.

Please explain the above concept in detail.
Re: Heirloom tomatoes, grown from seeds saved from the previous year, only   [#permalink] 13 Sep 2011, 19:57

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