modifier?? : GMAT Sentence Correction (SC)
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# modifier??

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Director
Joined: 25 Oct 2008
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17 Sep 2009, 19:39
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50% (01:59) correct 50% (01:08) wrong based on 2 sessions

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Hey guys can somebody explain what the concept of comma before "aND" means?I was unable to do two questions in a row and both had a similar concept:

Neanderthals had a vocal tract that resembled those of the apes and so were probably without language, a shortcoming that may explain why they were supplanted by our own species.

(A) Neanderthals had a vocal tract that resembled those of the apes
(B) Neanderthals had a vocal tract resembling an ape's
(C) The vocal tracts of Neanderthals resembled an ape's
(D) The Neanderthal's vocal tracts resembled the apes’
(E) The vocal tracts of the Neanderthals resembled those of the apes

look at the sentence later part.
AND so were without a language.
were : plural subject.
no comma before AND.
subject of first clause before end is the subject of clause after and.
so straight option C,D and E are out.

............

Nuclear fusion is the force that powers the Sun, the stars, and hydrogen bombs, merging the nuclei of atoms and not splitting them apart, as in nuclear reactors.

(A) merging the nuclei of atoms and not splitting them apart, as in nuclear reactors
(B) merging the nuclei of atoms instead of splitting them apart, like nuclear reactors
(C) merging the nuclei of atoms rather than splitting them apart, as nuclear reactors do
(D) and merges the nuclei of atoms but does not split them apart, as is done in nclear reactors
(E) and merges the nuclei of atoms, unlike atomic reactors that split them apart

the comma after 'bombs' strongly suggests the coming of an adverbial modifier (as in choice c).

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17 Sep 2009, 20:45
Neanderthals had a vocal tract that resembled those of the apes and so were probably without language, a shortcoming that may explain why they were supplanted by our own species.

we are comparing vocal tract of Neanderthals with that of the apes

(A) Neanderthals had a vocal tract that resembled those of the apes ( those improper pronoun)
(B) Neanderthals had a vocal tract resembling an ape's ( What of the Apes)
(C) The vocal tracts of Neanderthals resembled an ape's ( same error)
(D) The Neanderthal's vocal tracts resembled the apes’ ( same error)
(E) The vocal tracts of the Neanderthals resembled those of the apes ( i go with E)

Nuclear fusion is the force that powers the Sun, the stars, and hydrogen bombs, merging the nuclei of atoms and not splitting them apart, as in nuclear reactors.

(A) merging the nuclei of atoms and not splitting them apart, as in nuclear reactors
(B) merging the nuclei of atoms instead of splitting them apart, like nuclear reactors
(C) merging the nuclei of atoms rather than splitting them apart, as nuclear reactors do
(D) and merges the nuclei of atoms but does not split them apart, as is done in nclear reactors
(E) and merges the nuclei of atoms, unlike atomic reactors that split them apart

Will go for C.
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18 Sep 2009, 13:30
IMO the answer for the second question should be E.
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19 Sep 2009, 23:48
Neanderthals had a vocal tract that resembled those of the apes and so were probably without language, a shortcoming that may explain why they were supplanted by our own species.

(A) Neanderthals had a vocal tract that resembled those of the apes
REFERRANT issue..who had language problems NEANDERTHALS or APES
(B) Neanderthals had a vocal tract resembling an ape's
Clearly tells us that NEADERTHALS were without language since APES' VOCAL TRACTS
cannot be without language.
(C) The vocal tracts of Neanderthals resembled an ape's
makes it seem as if the VOCAL TRACTS didnot have a language
(D) The Neanderthal's vocal tracts resembled the apes’
NO REFERRANT
(E) The vocal tracts of the Neanderthals resembled those of the apes
NO REFERRANT
Senior Manager
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20 Sep 2009, 08:57
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I'm not sure if I understand your question

In the first one you don´t have comma before and therefore you don't repeat the subject.

Peter ate an apple and drank water
Peter ate an apple, and he drank water

These two sentences are correct. If you put comma you repeat the subject

In the second, you have an enumeration x, y, and z

As the explanation says the comma suggests the coming of the participle because,IMO, if you want to join the clauses using "and" you remove the comma and don't repeat the subject or put the comma and repeat the subject.

Nuclear fusion is the force that powers the Sun, the stars, and hydrogen bombs and ...
Nuclear fusion is the force that powers the Sun, the stars, and hydrogen bombs, and it ....

Let me know if this was what you were asking for.
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20 Sep 2009, 16:29
mikeCoolBoy wrote:
I'm not sure if I understand your question

In the first one you don´t have comma before and therefore you don't repeat the subject.

Peter ate an apple and drank water
Peter ate an apple, and he drank water

These two sentences are correct. If you put comma you repeat the subject

In the second, you have an enumeration x, y, and z

As the explanation says the comma suggests the coming of the participle because,IMO, if you want to join the clauses using "and" you remove the comma and don't repeat the subject or put the comma and repeat the subject.

Nuclear fusion is the force that powers the Sun, the stars, and hydrogen bombs and ...
Nuclear fusion is the force that powers the Sun, the stars, and hydrogen bombs, and it ....

Let me know if this was what you were asking for.

Excellent explanation. +1 from me.
Re: modifier??   [#permalink] 20 Sep 2009, 16:29
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