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In the minds of many people living in England, before Australia was Au

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In the minds of many people living in England, before Australia was Au  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Feb 2020, 00:34
Dear AnthonyRitz IanStewart GMATGuruNY AjiteshArun VeritasPrepBrian MartyTargetTestPrep egmat,

I still do not understand why choice B. is wrong.

According to the correct choice A. "it" refers to "Australia"
(A) before Australia was Australia, it was the antipodes

Why can't "it" in choice B. also refers to "Australia" as well?
(B) before there was Australia, it was the antipodes
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Re: In the minds of many people living in England, before Australia was Au  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Feb 2020, 06:24
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varotkorn wrote:
Why can't "it" in choice B. also refers to "Australia" as well?
(B) before there was Australia, it was the antipodes


It's the two words before "was" that are the parallel terms:

before there was Australia, it was the antipodes

This is wrong, as Ajitesh has already perfectly explained above, so you can refer to his post for more detail. The other tutor reply at the top of the thread seems to miss the point though -- that reply claims B is wrong because it says Australia did not exist at some point in time. But that's true -- the country, the national identity of 'Australia', did not exist in, say, the year 1300. There's no meaning problem if you say that. Even the correct answer says that (the second 'Australia' in the phrase "before Australia was Australia" is referring to the national identity 'Australia', not the land mass of 'Australia').
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In the minds of many people living in England, before Australia was Au  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Feb 2020, 06:42
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Dear AnthonyRitz IanStewart GMATGuruNY MartyTargetTestPrep VeritasPrepBrian egmat AjiteshArun ccooley DmitryFarber GMATNinja egmat,

I have 2 questions on the correct choice A.

In the minds of many people living in England, before Australia was Australia, it was the antipodes, the opposite pole to civilization, an obscure and unimaginable place that was considered the end of the world.

Q1. Do both red and blue part modify the antipodes?
I have rarely seen a construction like this one.

Q2. Does "it" refer to the land mass of 'Australia'? "it" does NOT refer to the national identity 'Australia', right?
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Re: In the minds of many people living in England, before Australia was Au  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Feb 2020, 23:06
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varotkorn

Yes on both counts. This is a bit more fanciful a sentence than we typically see, but yes, you can stack one noun modifier on top of another as long as the meaning is clear enough. I can say "Dmitry's advice is pure wisdom, a breath of fresh air, a bane in these troubled times." You might prefer to make that into a list by putting "and" before the final item, but it can be read as a series of modifiers without our losing track of the meaning, so it can stay. And any time you want to say that kind of thing about me, feel free. ;)
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Re: In the minds of many people living in England, before Australia was Au  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Jun 2020, 09:02
Hi SaraiGMAT your explanations are the best!

SaraiGMAT wrote:
You've done a good job working out the intended meaning! Now, let's get comfortable with the grammatical issues in play:


In the minds of many people living in England, before Australia was Australia, it was the antipodes, the opposite pole to civilization, an obscure and unimaginable place that was considered the end of the world.
(A) before Australia was Australia, it was the antipodes
(B) before there was Australia, it was the antipodes
(C) it was the antipodes that was Australia
(D) Australia was what was the antipodes
(E) Australia was what had been known as the antipodes

A. "before Australia was Australia," means, "before the land mass was a country." "it was the antipodes" means, "Australia was the antipodes."

B. "before there was Australia" means that, at one time, there was no such place. But the place has always existed; it has just been considered something different, namely, the end of the world.

C. There are no grammatical issues here-- only the meaning is incorrect. "It was the antipodes that was Australia" is a structure that creates emphasis. For example, "It polluters, not consumers, that are the problem." "It is price levels, rather than supply and demand, that reflect consumer attitudes." But this sentence did not intend to emphasize that it was the antipodes (as opposed to something else) that was Australia.


D. Again, just he meaning is wrong. "Australia was what was the antipodes" means that Australia was something that the antipodes once was as well. (Sound like gibberish? That's because it is gibberish!)

E. "Australia was what had been known as the antipodes" indicates that Australia is no longer the thing that had previously been thought to be the antipodes. The past simple ('was') indicates that the action is over. But Australia still is the land that once was thought to be the antipodes.

Certainly one of the more challenging questions!

-Sarai

If this helped, kindly give Kudos! :wink:
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Re: In the minds of many people living in England, before Australia was Au  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Jul 2020, 01:46
aalekhoza wrote:
AsadAbu wrote:
kaushik04 wrote:
In the minds of many people living in England, before Australia was Australia, it was the antipodes, the opposite pole to civilization, an obscure and unimaginable place that was considered the end of the world.

(A) before Australia was Australia, it was the antipodes
(B) before there was Australia, it was the antipodes
(C) it was the antipodes that was Australia
(D) Australia was what was the antipodes
(E) Australia was what had been known as the antipodes

So, which one is "obscure and unimaginable place" here?
is it:
1/ Australia,
2/ Antipodes,
3/ The opposite pole
Thanks__


AsadAbu
I think "obscure and unimaginable place" refers to "the opposite pole", which in turn is "Antipodes" and which in turn was once "Australia" in the minds of people living in England.

BTW, I also wanted to thank you for all the efforts that you have put on the forum. Much appreciated!


is the last sentence starting from "an obscure" is an absolute phrase. and if yes then it shall modify the civilization. I find it non-sensical. Also, in a there are two modifiers.
May you please explain a bit in more details.

Thanks
Gaurav
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Re: In the minds of many people living in England, before Australia was Au   [#permalink] 10 Jul 2020, 01:46

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