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# Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th

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Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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25 Feb 2015, 19:31
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Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow the precepts of Taoism.

A. Like their ancestors before them
B. Like their ancestors did before them
C. As their ancestors did before them
D. As their ancestors did
E. Like their ancestors did

Could someone tell me how they arrived at the right answer?
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Re: Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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25 Feb 2015, 19:44
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BassanioGratiano wrote:
Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow the precepts of Taoism.

A. Like their ancestors before them
B. Like their ancestors did before them
C. As their ancestors did before them
D. As their ancestors did
E. Like their ancestors did

Could someone tell me how they arrived at the right answer?

I felt that "before them" was redundant. By definition, the ancestors would have had to do something prior to the people currently. I eliminated ABC quickly off this.

Between D and E, we are comparing actions, not nouns, so "like" is incorrect. D is left.
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Re: Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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26 Feb 2015, 12:25
Before them is redundant. Ancestors explains everything.
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Re: Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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26 Feb 2015, 21:57
BassanioGratiano wrote:
Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow the precepts of Taoism.

A. Like their ancestors before them
B. Like their ancestors did before them
C. As their ancestors did before them
D. As their ancestors did
E. Like their ancestors did

Could someone tell me how they arrived at the right answer?

Like acts as a preposition, and prepositions are followed by nouns and noun phrases.
So options B, and E are out.

Option A is wordy and unclear.
Option C is wordy.

Option D is precise and correct.

Correct me if I am wrong.
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Re: Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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27 Feb 2015, 14:54
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The main issue here is "like" vs. "as." "Like" compares nouns, whereas "as" can modify an action or clause.

Like my father, I am a policeman.
(My father and I are the same kind of person.)

As my father did, I captured a major criminal.
(My father's action and my action are similar.)

"As" can also mean "in the role of":

As a policeman, I am responsible for enforcing the law.
(In my role as a policeman, I have this responsibility.)

So what are we modifying/comparing in this sentence? We don't want to compare Chinese people to their ancestors, because we aren't necessarily saying that modern Chinese people and their ancestors are similar. Rather, we are saying that their religious practices are similar. For this reason, we use "As." Note that it would be alright to make a noun comparison here if the phrasing were different:

Like their ancestors, many modern Chinese people are Taoists.
(We're talking about what the people are now rather than what they do.)

Left with a choice between C and D, we can do without the extra verbiage in C. I should mention, however, that this is a fairly common idiom in the real world: "Like his father before him, he attended Stanford." However, it's rather dated. In fact, it's so old that I don't think I've ever seen the female version: "Like her mother before her."
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Re: Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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28 Feb 2015, 07:21
BassanioGratiano wrote:
Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow the precepts of Taoism.

A. Like their ancestors before them
B. Like their ancestors did before them
C. As their ancestors did before them
D. As their ancestors did
E. Like their ancestors did

Could someone tell me how they arrived at the right answer?

Ancestors means people before us. So no need of using "before" again.
Hence option A, B and C are rejected.

There's a very famous saying that goes "As is father so the son".
Hence we need to use "As" here when we're comparing.
Hence option D.

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Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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08 Mar 2015, 13:54
I am not quite convinced that the "before" is redundant. This is not saying that the ancestors existed before them (which would be altogether redundant), but that the ancestors were doing the same thing before the new generation started.
This usage is commonly used to emphasize the passage of a tradition/task/title etc:
Star Wars: "I am a Jedi, like my father before me."
The same phrase can be seen in "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down" by The Band, or in this quote from the bible: "Like his father before him, he sinned against the Lord..." (GNT, 1 Kings 15:26)

Trying to dissect the logic of such usage, I suspect it implies that the new generation takes over the task/tradition/title from the previous generation with the implication of a distinct transfer / bequest. The two may not share a period of common ownership.
I would therefore not hesitate to say "Like his father before him, he ruled the kingdom well." (because he would have begun ruling only after the father stepped down).
But the usage would be different here: "Like his father, he is lean and tall." (unless the father died before the son grew to be lean and tall).

In the question we are given, the category is not so clear to me as the above two cases. There isn't a 'transfer' of Shinto tradition from father to son, so it probably fits the second case.
I suspect we're really splitting hairs here.
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Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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31 May 2015, 06:10
Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow the precepts of Taoism.

A. Like their ancestors before them

B. Like their ancestors did before them

C. As their ancestors did before them

D. As their ancestors did

E. Like their ancestors did
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Re: Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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31 May 2015, 09:55
As need to follow by clause. But the their ancestors befit them seems like a noun ..
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Re: Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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31 May 2015, 10:15
We are talking about actual examples so "as" is better than "like" and not merely making reference to similar objects.

Only C and D Remain.

Ancestors were there before us so "before them" is redundant.

Only D remains.
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Re: Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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06 Jul 2017, 06:00
Merged topics. Please, search before posting questions!
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Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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Updated on: 06 Jul 2017, 10:13
Imo D
Like is used to compare nouns .
As is correct here
The comparison is between the action of ancestors and the action of present Chinese people.
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Originally posted by arvind910619 on 06 Jul 2017, 09:42.
Last edited by arvind910619 on 06 Jul 2017, 10:13, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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06 Jul 2017, 10:00
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One must be careful with the use of the word 'before'.
Before can be used as an adverb of time indicating a timeline, or as a preposition before a noun or as a subordinate conjunction followed by a clause.
Like the ancestors who lived before-- an adverb of time
'Before as a preposition may mean 'physically in front of" -- The police handcuffed the political demonstrators before the public (in front of the public). -- a preposition
I reached the station before the train arrived. -- a subordinate conjunction

D sensibly avoids this sly pitfall by dropping the phrase altogether
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Re: Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th  [#permalink]

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06 Oct 2018, 12:27
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Re: Like their ancestors before them, many modern Chinese people follow th   [#permalink] 06 Oct 2018, 12:27
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