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# In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out

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Intern
Joined: 14 Jul 2016
Posts: 27
Re: In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out [#permalink]

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05 Dec 2016, 10:43
Keats wrote:
sayantanc2k wrote:

Please note the difference between the two different verbs:

lay: to put down and set in position ( I lay the babies in the cot)
lie: to be in horizontal resting position( The babies lie in the cot)

The declination (simple present, simple past, past participle) of the above verbs are as follows:
1. lay---- laid ------ laid
2. lie------ lay ------ lain

Now, in option C the usage is wrong: "cemeteries laid (simple past of the first verb above)..." implies the cemeteries put down someone or something else outside the city (as I put down the babies in the cot). The verb here is to lay... wrong

However if the sentence were "cemeteries lay (simple past of the second verb above)...", the usage would be correct, since then the sentence would imply that the cemeteries did lie outside the city (as the babies lie in the cot). The verb here is to lie.. correct

Nonetheless the correct option A uses the verb lay correctly my constructing the sentence in passive voice: " cemeteries were laid out (past participle of the second verb)..." - the usage is correct since the sentence implies that the cemeteries were laid out by someone (could be the city municipality) out side the city ( as the babies are laid by me in the cot). The verb here is again to lay... correct.

sayantanc2k

I don't think that option C is even a sentence. What do you opine?

Can someone please explain why D is wrong?
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Re: In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out [#permalink]

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25 Aug 2017, 07:11
sayantanc2k wrote:
Michael KC Chen wrote:
In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out beyond the city as places for a transcendental contemplation of nature, death and duty.

The country America has several facets of which the author wishes to highlight the aspect "steeped in romanticism" particularly.

I think this is non-obvious. Couldn't it be that "steeped in romanticism" is a facet of cemeteries in America? To me that seemed more plausible than the entire America being steeped in romanticism. I therefore chose answer choice D.

Can anyone please explain why D is impossible? (i.e. why can't "steeped in romanticism" be a facet of cemeteries in America - or are there other reasons why D doesn't work???)

Thanks!
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Re: In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out [#permalink]

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25 Aug 2017, 14:20
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burnrohan wrote:

Can someone please explain why D is wrong?

Hello burnrohan,

The original sentence says that the America was steeped in or influenced by romanticism. This implies that people in America were steeped in or influenced by romanticism. This statement makes sense because romanticism was a movement in arts and literature that can very well influence people.

But Choice D seems to suggest that the cemeteries in America were steeped in or influenced by romanticism. Is that meaning even possible? Can cemeteries follow a movement?

Most certainly not. So Choice D has meaning issue.

Also, in the context of this sentence, the correct expression will be cemeteries were laid out. The verb phrase lay out together means to spread something out. Since cemeteries are pretty expansive in nature, the correct verb form here will be laid out, and not just laid as stated in Choice D.

Hope this helps.
Thanks.
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Re: In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out [#permalink]

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25 Aug 2017, 14:22
Limara1 wrote:
sayantanc2k wrote:
Michael KC Chen wrote:
In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out beyond the city as places for a transcendental contemplation of nature, death and duty.

The country America has several facets of which the author wishes to highlight the aspect "steeped in romanticism" particularly.

I think this is non-obvious. Couldn't it be that "steeped in romanticism" is a facet of cemeteries in America? To me that seemed more plausible than the entire America being steeped in romanticism. I therefore chose answer choice D.

Can anyone please explain why D is impossible? (i.e. why can't "steeped in romanticism" be a facet of cemeteries in America - or are there other reasons why D doesn't work???)

Thanks!

Hello Limara1,

Kindly look at my response to burnrohan 's query right above this post. I have answered his query that is similar to your query.

Hope this helps.
Thanks.
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Re: In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out [#permalink]

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25 Aug 2017, 14:38
egmat wrote:
Limara1 wrote:
sayantanc2k wrote:

I think this is non-obvious. Couldn't it be that "steeped in romanticism" is a facet of cemeteries in America? To me that seemed more plausible than the entire America being steeped in romanticism. I therefore chose answer choice D.

Can anyone please explain why D is impossible? (i.e. why can't "steeped in romanticism" be a facet of cemeteries in America - or are there other reasons why D doesn't work???)

Thanks!

Hello Limara1,

Kindly look at my response to burnrohan 's query right above this post. I have answered his query that is similar to your query.

Hope this helps.
Thanks.

Maybe my vocabulary is weak, but can't an inanimate object (such as a cemetery) be "steeped in romanticism"? Compare to e.g. "this is a town steeped in history".
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Re: In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out [#permalink]

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25 Aug 2017, 23:55
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In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out beyond the city as places for a transcendental contemplation of nature, death and duty.

A. In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out - nothing wrong - 'In an America' --> indicates an era or type of America (ex: 'In an India steeped in independence turmoils')
B. In America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out - Wrong construction : America as a nation cannot be steeped --> certain nouns don't allow it,country names is one of them
C. In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries laid changes meaning --> its trying to link cemeteries to a certain era
D. Cemeteries, in America steeped in romanticism, were laid Oh no, cemeteries steeped in romanticism would be uncomfortable
E Cemeteries in an America steeped in romanticism laid All the wrong punctuation and meaning - cemeteries steeped in romanticism laying out something would be even more uncomfortable
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Re: In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out [#permalink]

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26 Aug 2017, 23:23
the questions tests the specific usage of indefintie article..
america, in general is not referrred,,,but a specific type of america is referred..

understanding the meaning of the sentence is very crucial to get this right
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Re: In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out [#permalink]

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27 Aug 2017, 04:26
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In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out beyond the city as places for a transcendental contemplation of nature, death and duty.

A. In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out
B. In America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out
C. In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries laid
D. Cemeteries, in America steeped in romanticism, were laid
E Cemeteries in an America steeped in romanticism laid

While excessively delving upon the semantic difference between the words - lay, lie, laid and so on--- the real import of the idiom 'laid out' has been largely ignored. It may be noted that the bare infinitive 'lay' or its past tense 'laid' are transitive verbs and therefore do take an object after them
Just 'lay or laid' will involve the physical process of birds laying eggs or some action like laying the baby on the cradle or on the bed etc. Therefore, it will be absurd to say the cemeteries laid something or the municipalities or cities laid cemeteries.
On the contrary ' lay out or its past tense 'laid out' refers to a blue print of a proposed plan of action. It is logical to think therefore that the cities laid out a plan in their town planning for cemeteries to be placed in the uptowns or out of towns beyond the downtowns or the midtowns.
That is the reason choices C, D, and E are out of the reckoning, and one has to choose between A and B.

'In an America' is a well-accepted idiomatic saying to denote a status.

Quote:
I believe in an America that is officially neither Catholic, Protestant nor Jewish --- J.F.Kennedy

A is the best answer choice.
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Re: In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out [#permalink]

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02 Sep 2017, 10:12
sayantanc2k wrote:
Trainwithnolov3 wrote:

In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out beyond the city as places for a transcendental contemplation of nature, death and duty.

A. In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out
B. In America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out
C. In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries laid
D. Cemeteries, in America steeped in romanticism, were laid
E Cemeteries in an America steeped in romanticism laid

As for answer choice C, can you please explain by "cemeteries laid" does not work? Is it an idiom problem that cemeteries must be laid out by someone? Thank you so much in advance for explaining

Please note the difference between the two different verbs:

lay: to put down and set in position ( I lay the babies in the cot)
lie: to be in horizontal resting position( The babies lie in the cot)

The declination (simple present, simple past, past participle) of the above verbs are as follows:
1. lay---- laid ------ laid
2. lie------ lay ------ lain

Now, in option C the usage is wrong: "cemeteries laid (simple past of the first verb above)..." implies the cemeteries put down someone or something else outside the city (as I put down the babies in the cot). The verb here is to lay... wrong

However if the sentence were "cemeteries lay (simple past of the second verb above)...", the usage would be correct, since then the sentence would imply that the cemeteries did lie outside the city (as the babies lie in the cot). The verb here is to lie.. correct

Nonetheless the correct option A uses the verb lay correctly my constructing the sentence in passive voice: " cemeteries were laid out (past participle of the second verb)..." - the usage is correct since the sentence implies that the cemeteries were laid out by someone (could be the city municipality) out side the city ( as the babies are laid by me in the cot). The verb here is again to lay... correct.

Your explanation is very useful, thank you so much!!
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Re: In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out [#permalink]

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14 Apr 2018, 23:43
Michael KC Chen wrote:
In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out beyond the city as places for a transcendental contemplation of nature, death and duty.

A. In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out
B. In America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out
C. In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries laid
D. Cemeteries, in America steeped in romanticism, were laid
E Cemeteries in an America steeped in romanticism laid

In this case, using the indefinite article "an America" is really an idiomatic way of saying "the way that the country was at this particular time." It's like there are multiple versions of America, and this is specifying which one. Think of A as saying:
In [this country that at the time was] steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out...

The other thing that you could look at is MODIFIER usage. When we use a past participle such as "steeped," we can think about substituting the modifying dependent clause "that was steeped."

It makes sense to use this kind of modifying clause with an indefinite article:
"In an America that was steeped..."
Here, we're qualifying what kind of America.

It doesn't make much sense to use it without an article. No article = proper noun, i.e. there's only one, so we don't need to qualify which one.
"In America that was steeped..." doesn't work. We don't use essential modifiers for proper nouns in this way. (We could use the non-essential "which," but that would be a different construction).
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In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out [#permalink]

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12 May 2018, 12:12
Dear mikemcgarry,
Hello...
Hope you are well.
Can you please explain this question?
Thank you.
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In an America steeped in romanticism, cemeteries were laid out   [#permalink] 12 May 2018, 12:12

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