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His studies of ice-polished rocks in his Alpine home land, far outside

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Re: His studies of ice-polished rocks in his Alpine home land, far outside  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Jun 2014, 08:19
gennia wrote:
His studies of ice-polished rocks in his Alpine
homeland, far outside the range of present-day
glaciers, led Louis Agassiz in 1837 to propose the
concept of an age in which great ice sheets had
existed in now currently temperate areas.
(A) in which great ice sheets had existed in now
currently temperate areas
(B) in which great ice sheets existed in what are now
temperate areas
(C) when great ice sheets existed where there were
areas now temperate
(D) when great ice sheets had existed in current
temperate areas
(E) when great ice sheets existed in areas now that
are temperate

In above question, the 'great ice sheets existed' EVEN BEFORE Louis Agassiz studies 'led' him to propose the concept. So, why answer B is correct when correct verb tense showing sequence of events is 'had existed'.


Hi there,

Thanks for posting your doubt here. :-)

The reason why usage of past perfect tense "had existed" is incorrect in Choice A is that the two events that are mentioned n the sentence, i. e. "led" and "had existed", are not related to each or has no bearing on each other.

Even if Agassiz did not propose his theory, the fact remains that the ice sheets still existed. If in place of Agassiz, somebody else would have proposed the theory at some other point in time, still the fact that the ice sheets existed would remain unchanged. So you see, there is no relationship between these two events that needs to be expressed by using past perfect tense.

We use past perfect tense only for those two past events that have some effect on the occurrence of each other. For example:

My friend had left the theater by the time I reached.

Here use of past perfect tense is needed because the two events are related. Because of my reaching late, I could not meet my friend because the friend had already left. But this is not the case with the official sentence. The ice sheets existed irrespective of anyone proposing any theory.

hope this helps. :-)
Thanks.
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Re: His studies of ice-polished rocks in his Alpine home land, far outside  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Sep 2014, 01:07
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His studies of ice-polished rocks in his Alpine home land, far outside the range of present-day glaciers, led Louis Agassiz in 1837 to propose the concept of an age in which great ice sheets had existed in now currently temperate areas.

(A) in which great ice sheets had existed in now currently temperate areas
(B) in which great ice sheets existed in what are now temperate areas
(C) when great ice sheets existed where there were areas now temperate
(D) when great ice sheets had existed in current temperate areas - currently should be used
(E) when great ice sheets existed in areas now that are temperate - now is not modifying are temprate

To refer to time long back (ages , centuries , decades) we prefer to use inwhich instead of where. However, both can be used.
Now and currently cant be used together in a single sentence. Both are redundant.
had cant be used because there is no past event before which ice sheet existed. Led to propose is not relevant to ice sheet.


Hence B is the answer
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Re: His studies of ice-polished rocks in his Alpine homeland, far outside  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Jul 2015, 01:19
1
2
aakashbaweja wrote:
"When and in which" both are used to modify a time period but here the period is already defined by the word "age".

"age in which" is correct and not "age when"

this gives us 3-2 split.

past perfect is only used when we want to sequence 2 events. Since only 1 event is described here, so no need of past perfect.

we are left with only B.



WHEN CLAUSE can work as adverb: I learn gmat when you come
WHEN CLAUSE can work as an adjective, the age when you came is good.

"the age when" is correct
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Re: His studies of ice-polished rocks in his Alpine homeland, far outside  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jan 2016, 04:54
4
Isn't that existence of great ice sheets occurred prior to his proposal of concept?, Do I need to consider them as two different events occurred in different time scale or is it a single event? I'm bit confused here.. Pls let me know where my logic goes wrong..
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Re: His studies of ice-polished rocks in his Alpine homeland, far outside  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Jan 2016, 04:34
6
snorkeler wrote:
Isn't that existence of great ice sheets occurred prior to his proposal of concept?, Do I need to consider them as two different events occurred in different time scale or is it a single event? I'm bit confused here.. Pls let me know where my logic goes wrong..


yeah you are correct that proposal of a concept and existence of great ice sheets were at two different times..

But the moment you say he proposed the concept of an age after going through some studies of..., it clearly shows that the age was naturally before he proposed about it existing..
There is no ambiguity in the chronological order..

And when there is no ambiguity, we can avoid the past perfect..

some more example,
The scientist proposed in 1976 that the dinosaurs became extinct during ice age..
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Re: His studies of ice-polished rocks in his Alpine homeland, far outside  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Sep 2016, 00:09
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Here the 'in which' refers to the word 'age'. And the subject of the 'in which' is 'great ice sheets'.

In general, when you encounter a 'preposition + which' construction, the subject can be found in the clause that follows 'which'.
But, in a 'which' construction, the subject occurs before the 'which'.

For example - 1. the box of toffees, which is on the table, is expensive. Note that the subject of the which clause occurs before the which clause. Also, 'which' modifies that subject (the box).
(the subject is 'the box'; also note that since 'which' is followed by a singular verb, it cannot refer to 'toffees').

2. the box, in which toffees are kept, is made of aluminum. Here, the subject of the 'in which' clause is 'toffees'. But the 'in which' clause modifies 'the box'.

Hope this helps
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Re: His studies of ice-polished rocks in his Alpine homeland, far outside  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Oct 2017, 21:07
4
kiranjith wrote:
The Official Guide for GMAT Review, 2015

Practice Question
Question No.: SC 72
Page: 685

His studies of ice-polished rocks in his Alpine homeland, far outside the range of present-day glaciers, led Louis Agassiz in 1837 to propose the concept of an age in which great ice sheets had existed in now currently temperate areas.

(A) in which great ice sheets had existed in now currently temperate areas
(B) in which great ice sheets existed in what are now temperate areas
(C) when great ice sheets existed where there were areas now temperate
(D) when great ice sheets had existed in current temperate areas
(E) when great ice sheets existed in areas now that are temperate


First Glance

The underline starts with in which. Glance at the answers to notice that other choices offer when instead. The sentence might contain a Modifier issue.

Issues

(1) Verb: had existed

The original sentence uses the past perfect: Ice sheets had existed. Other answers use the simple past existed. Which is correct?

Past perfect is used to denote the longer-ago of two past actions. In this case, the had existed action is paired with a comment about the climate in those same areas now. It's acceptable, then, to use simple past existed; don't use a more complex tense when a simple tense is acceptable. Eliminate answers (A) and (D).

(2) Meaning

In answer (A), now currently is redundant—both words mean the same thing. Eliminate answer (A), and examine the meaning in the other answers:

(B) existed in what are now temperate areas
(C) existed where there were areas now temperate
(D) existed in current temperate areas
(E) existed in areas now that are temperate

Answer (D) drops now and switches from currently to current. That word is modifying the adjective temperate, so it needs to be in the adverb form (currently). The adjective form current can only be used to modify nouns. Eliminate answer (D).

The other answers drop currently and use only now. Answers (B) and (C) are okay, but answer (E) has a meaning problem. The word now must be tied to a particular action or event: Something happened now. In answer (E), the word now is actually tied to existed: Sheets existed now that are temperate. Something can't be simultaneously in the past (existed) and happening now. Eliminate answer (E).

Answer (C) also mixes two time frames: were and now. They were [not] temperate before; they are temperate now. Eliminate answer (C).

The Correct Answer

Correct answer (B) fixes the initial verb error by switching to the simple past existed. The construction in what are now temperate areas properly indicates that the climate has changed in these areas. they used to be cold; they are now temperate.

Miscellaneous

Note: The in which versus when split turned out be a red herring! Both versions are acceptable.
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Re: His studies of ice-polished rocks in his Alpine home land, far outside  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Oct 2018, 19:19
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Re: His studies of ice-polished rocks in his Alpine home land, far outside &nbs [#permalink] 30 Oct 2018, 19:19

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