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Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the

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Re: Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the [#permalink]

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New post 09 Feb 2017, 08:28
Hi, I could narrow down between Options A and C. Then I selected C because I thought the use of HAVE in the underlined part is wrong in option A.

A. and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried to count typically have found

C. and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried counting it typically find

According to me the second part should be : HAVE tried to count typically find

Have connects past and present. Thus something happened in past (the process of counting) and the result (find it) is in present.

Please suggest where am I wrong?

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Re: Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the [#permalink]

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New post 13 Feb 2017, 10:05
Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the world, partly because of the difficulty (of? ) distinguishing between a language and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried to count typically have found about five thousand.

A. and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried to count typically have found

B. and the sub-languages or dialects within them, with those who have tried counting typically finding

C. and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried counting it typically find

D. or the sub-languages or dialects within them, but those who tried to count them typically found

E. or the sub-languages or dialects within them, with those who have tried to count typically finding


first do 2-3 split with A,B and C having 'and' and D and E having 'or' not 'between......and' is correct not 'between or'
so we eliminate D and E and are left with A,b and C

In option B there is subject verb disagreement as language is singular and them is plural so eliminate B ,in option C the triend counting is improper usage,so eliminate

left with A which is correct

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Re: Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the [#permalink]

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New post 28 Mar 2017, 21:01
sunainaluthra wrote:
Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the world, partly because of the difficulty of distinguishing between a language and the sub languages or dialects within it. but those who have tried to count typically have found about five thousand

A) and the sublanguages or dialects within it, but those who have tried to count typically have found
B) and the sublanguages or dialects within them, with those who have tried counting typically finding
C) and the sublanguages or dialects within it, but those who have tried counting it typically find
D) or the sublanguages or dialects within them, but those who tried to count them typically found
E) or the sublanguages or dialects within them, with those who have tried to count typically finding


I selected correct answer choice A. But my doubt is if one of the answer choice was:


and the sub languages or dialects within it. but those who tried to count found


would this be correct in the context of the question? I feel am overlooking a very simple concept but just not able to get my head around this. Any help is much appreciated.


your question is good.

the difference between simple past and present perfect is basic and is explained a lot in grammar book. this is a textbook case.
to fully understand this point, I recommend you read the book "advanced grammar in used".

present perfect can be used to say: a past action without a point of time, a past action relating to present, and a past action which happened recently. present perfect can be used to say about an action which continue to present.

So, we have 4 cases of uses of present perfect. if we read a grammar book, we can know these 4 cases. But to remember these 4 cases, we have to practice realizing each case whenever you read text. in short, you have to see grammar points in the text. this is the only way to master grammar.

because we can not master the difference between have done and did, we are confused when facing them. but this is basic point.

whenever I see a tense in the text I read, I try to realize the grammatical role of it. it refers to a past action or an action continuing to present. this way help me master the tense easily. consult the grammar books when reading the text is normal.
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Re: Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the [#permalink]

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New post 05 Apr 2017, 10:06
Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the world, partly because of the difficulty (of? ) distinguishing between a language and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried to count typically have found about five thousand.

Got confused as to what 'it' refers to.

So started understanding the second half of the sentence.

The structure would be somewhat like this:
Nobody knows................but those who have tried to count typically have found about five thousand.

Subject verb is fine.
Nobody (subject).........knows (verb)
those (subject)............have tried(verb)
those who have tried to count (subject)...............have found (verb)

A is the right choice.

Is this understanding correct.
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Re: Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the [#permalink]

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New post 05 Apr 2017, 19:24
Merged topics. Please, search before posting questions!
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Re: Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the [#permalink]

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New post 05 Apr 2017, 19:57
nightwing79 wrote:
Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the world, partly because of the difficulty of distinguishing between a language and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried to count typically have found about five thousand.

A. and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried to count typically have found

B. and the sub-languages or dialects within them, with those who have tried counting typically finding

C. and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried counting it typically find

D. or the sub-languages or dialects within them, but those who tried to count them typically found

E. or the sub-languages or dialects within them, with those who have tried to count typically finding


What is "those" pronoun refer to? Does it ("those") refer to the languages being counted?
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Re: Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the [#permalink]

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New post 05 Apr 2017, 23:38
ziyuen wrote:
nightwing79 wrote:
Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the world, partly because of the difficulty of distinguishing between a language and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried to count typically have found about five thousand.

A. and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried to count typically have found

B. and the sub-languages or dialects within them, with those who have tried counting typically finding

C. and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried counting it typically find

D. or the sub-languages or dialects within them, but those who tried to count them typically found

E. or the sub-languages or dialects within them, with those who have tried to count typically finding


What is "those" pronoun refer to? Does it ("those") refer to the languages being counted?


Good question!!
This confusion is there because there is not a clear noun that this pronoun refers to.
But according to what I understood, 'Nobody' is its antecedent.

Nobody can be a subject and the meaning of the sentence is that nobody knows exactly how many languages are there in the world BUT those who have tried to count........

I hope this understanding is correct.

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Re: Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the [#permalink]

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New post 09 Apr 2017, 10:53
ziyuen wrote:
nightwing79 wrote:
Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the world, partly because of the difficulty of distinguishing between a language and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried to count typically have found about five thousand.

A. and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried to count typically have found

B. and the sub-languages or dialects within them, with those who have tried counting typically finding

C. and the sub-languages or dialects within it, but those who have tried counting it typically find

D. or the sub-languages or dialects within them, but those who tried to count them typically found

E. or the sub-languages or dialects within them, with those who have tried to count typically finding


What is "those" pronoun refer to? Does it ("those") refer to the languages being counted?


No, it refers to people who tried to count the number of languages/ dialects. Those people have found about five thousand dialects/languages.

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Re: Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the [#permalink]

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New post 03 Jul 2017, 05:12
Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the world, partly because of the difficulty of
distinguishing between a language and the sublanguages or dialects within it, but those who have tried to
count typically have found about five thousand.

A. and the sublanguages or dialects within it, but those who have tried to count typically have found
Correct as it is ..

B. and the sublanguages or dialects within them, with those who have tried counting typically finding
“them” – plural pronoun does NOT match the singular antecedent “language”
“with those who have …” is not making any sense … “with..” construction is ungrammatical … “who have tried ..” does NOT have any verb at all …

C. and the sublanguages or dialects within it, but those who have tried counting it typically find
“it” after “counting” should refer to “languages” – plural as they have tried counting “languages”…so “it” should be “them”
Also the present tense “find” is incorrect …it should be present perfect “have found”

D. or the sublanguages or dialects within them, but those who tried to count them typically found
“them” – plural pronoun does NOT match the singular antecedent “language”
“or” is incorrect …distinguish between X and Y is the correct idiom
Simple Past Tense “found” is incorrect

E. or the sublanguages or dialects within them, with those who have tried to count typically finding
“them” – plural pronoun does NOT match the singular antecedent “language”
“or” is incorrect …distinguish between X and Y is the correct idiom
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Re: Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the [#permalink]

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New post 30 Aug 2017, 08:19
I would like to ask which noun those refers to?

Many thanks for your help v:
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Re: Nobody knows exactly how many languages there are in the   [#permalink] 30 Aug 2017, 08:19

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