GMAT Question of the Day - Daily to your Mailbox; hard ones only

 It is currently 22 Jun 2018, 07:51

### GMAT Club Daily Prep

#### Thank you for using the timer - this advanced tool can estimate your performance and suggest more practice questions. We have subscribed you to Daily Prep Questions via email.

Customized
for You

we will pick new questions that match your level based on your Timer History

Track

every week, we’ll send you an estimated GMAT score based on your performance

Practice
Pays

we will pick new questions that match your level based on your Timer History

# Events & Promotions

###### Events & Promotions in June
Open Detailed Calendar

# Phlogiston

Author Message
TAGS:

### Hide Tags

Senior Manager
Joined: 31 Aug 2009
Posts: 401
Location: Sydney, Australia

### Show Tags

Updated on: 10 Apr 2014, 13:16
4
00:00

Difficulty:

45% (medium)

Question Stats:

61% (01:07) correct 39% (01:14) wrong based on 392 sessions

### HideShow timer Statistics

Until Antoine Lavoisier proved otherwise in the eighteenth century, many scientists had believed that combustion released phlogiston, an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood.a) many scientists had believed that combustion released phlogiston, an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood
b) many scientists believed that phlogiston was an imaginary substance released by combustion and its properties were not fully understood
c) phlogiston was an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood and which many scientists had believed was released by combustion
d) phlogiston, an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood, was believed by scientists to be released by combustion
e) many scientists had believed that phlogiston was released by combustion and was an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood

Will post OA after some discussion.

Originally posted by yangsta8 on 15 Nov 2009, 06:24.
Last edited by ankurgupta03 on 10 Apr 2014, 13:16, edited 1 time in total.
SVP
Joined: 07 Nov 2007
Posts: 1738
Location: New York

### Show Tags

15 Nov 2009, 07:57
1
yangsta8 wrote:
Until Antoine Lavoisier proved otherwise in the eighteenth century, many scientists had believed that combustion released phlogiston, an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood.a) many scientists had believed that combustion released phlogiston, an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood
b) many scientists believed that phlogiston was an imaginary substance released by combustion and its properties were not fully understood
c) phlogiston was an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood and which many scientists had believed was released by combustion
d) phlogiston, an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood, was believed by scientists to be released by combustion
e) many scientists had believed that phlogiston was released by combustion and was an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood
Will post OA after some discussion.

we are talking about two actions that happened int he past.
we need past perfect..
B, D --> out ( used simple past)
C -> akward.

Between A and E
A looks good.

S had believed that combustion released phlogiston, Imaginary substance..(Appositive which modifies Ph)

E --> S had believed that Ph was released by combustion and ph was imaginary substance.

This is wrong. these two statements are contradicting each other. If they belive " Ph" relased... that means that they exists right.. they are not "imaginary substances any more".. so E is out.
_________________

Smiling wins more friends than frowning

Manager
Joined: 28 Jul 2009
Posts: 130

### Show Tags

20 Nov 2009, 03:04
I was between A and E.
But wasn't able to choose the right. Suresh gave a nice explanation.
I wonder is something wrong with E except for context contradiction? Cause for me (as non-native) it was dificult to catch this contradiction.
SVP
Affiliations: HEC
Joined: 28 Sep 2009
Posts: 1614
Concentration: Economics, Finance
GMAT 1: 730 Q48 V44

### Show Tags

27 Nov 2009, 09:32
A is best. Since the faulty belief about phlogiston was before Lavoisier's refutation, we need "had believed" to counter the later verb "proved." The phrase "an imaginary substance . . ." properly modifies phlogiston.
_________________
Manager
Joined: 19 Nov 2007
Posts: 206

### Show Tags

27 Nov 2009, 11:20
The sentence requires past perfect tense because the act of “believing” happened before the act of “proving”. So Choice B and D are out

It cannot happen that “phlogiston is released” and can be “an imaginary substance”. So Choice E is out

As for choice C, the events are reversed. It should be first “Scientist believing” followed by “properties not understood”, moreover the choice is passively constructed. So Choice C is out.

Hence the answer should be A
Manager
Joined: 24 Sep 2009
Posts: 87

### Show Tags

27 Nov 2009, 20:47
Between A and E. I go with A, it's correct and concise.
_________________

http://www.online-stopwatch.com/
http://gmatsentencecorrection.blogspot.com/

Manager
Joined: 05 Jun 2012
Posts: 89
Schools: IIMA
Re: Until Antoine Lavoisier proved otherwise in the eighteenth [#permalink]

### Show Tags

09 Apr 2014, 11:58

if you scan unlike is used at very beginning means parallel unlike Antoine Lavoisier, so word after comma will be scientist not phlogiston so c,d out.

E-->passive form
between A and , two action here proved and beleived so prefer had
_________________

If you are not over prepared then you are under prepared !!!

Manager
Joined: 17 Aug 2015
Posts: 102

### Show Tags

06 Nov 2016, 11:10
Let us take up A and E.
In E it goes like this -- Scientists believed that ph did this and ph was an imaginary substance whose properties...
This is saying that Scientists had two beliefs. This really is not the meaning of sentence. Scientists believed that combustion released ph.. that is it.
Senior Manager
Status: Countdown Begins...
Joined: 03 Jul 2016
Posts: 312
Location: India
Concentration: Technology, Strategy
Schools: IIMB
GMAT 1: 580 Q48 V22
GPA: 3.7
WE: Information Technology (Consulting)

### Show Tags

21 Mar 2017, 08:23
Expert - As this sentence uses "until" in opening clause, Do we really need past perfect tense to specify the action sequence??

Until AV proved otherwise, many scientists believed xyz.
Until AV proved otherwise, many scientists had believed xyz.

are these two same??
Verbal Expert
Joined: 14 Dec 2013
Posts: 3201
Location: Germany
Schools: HHL Leipzig
GMAT 1: 780 Q50 V47
WE: Corporate Finance (Pharmaceuticals and Biotech)

### Show Tags

24 Mar 2017, 06:34
RMD007 wrote:
Expert - As this sentence uses "until" in opening clause, Do we really need past perfect tense to specify the action sequence??

Until AV proved otherwise, many scientists believed xyz.
Until AV proved otherwise, many scientists had believed xyz.

are these two same??

I do not see any difference in meaning - simple past seems to be the better choice because of the reason you mentioned.
Manager
Joined: 10 Apr 2015
Posts: 197
GPA: 3.31

### Show Tags

25 Mar 2017, 10:42
Until Antoine Lavoisier proved otherwise in the eighteenth century, many scientists had believed that combustion released phlogiston, an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood

.a) many scientists had believed that combustion released phlogiston, an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood
straight forward A. correct.

b) many scientists believed that phlogiston was an imaginary substance released by combustion and its properties were not fully understood
passive.
c) phlogiston was an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood and which many scientists had believed was released by combustion
too much wordy.

d) phlogiston, an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood, was believed by scientists to be released by combustion
passive

e) many scientists had believed that phlogiston was released by combustion and was an imaginary substance whose properties were not fully understood
passive. not precise.
_________________

In case you find my posts helpful, give me Kudos. Thank you.

Director
Joined: 26 Oct 2016
Posts: 666
Location: United States
Schools: HBS '19
GMAT 1: 770 Q51 V44
GPA: 4
WE: Education (Education)

### Show Tags

18 Sep 2017, 08:13
OE :

The past perfect "had believed" is correct because it is the earlier of two past actions (the later
action is "proved," which is in the simple past tense). The main clause is correctly written in active
voice. The clause "an imaginary substance whose..." correctly modifies "phlogiston."

(A) CORRECT. This choice is correct as it repeats the original sentence.

(B) The simple past "believed" is incorrect because it is the earlier of two past actions and
should be in the past perfect tense instead: "had believed." Moreover, "was an imaginary
substance released by combustion" is unnecessarily in passive voice.
Finally, the construction "and its properties were not fully understood" is incorrectly
parallel with "phlogiston was released by combustion" rather than subordinate to it, as
in the original sentence; this also creates ambiguity around the pronoun "its" which
could refer to either combustion or phlogiston.
Here parallelism is not needed.

(C) The placement of "phlogiston" immediately after the opening clause incorrectly implies that
phlogiston had been imaginary until Lavoisier proved otherwise. Moreover, the sentence is
unnecessarily in the passive voice.

(D) This sentence is unnecessarily in the passive voice. Moreover, "was believed" is incorrectly
in the simple past tense. It should instead be in the past perfect tense ("had been believed"),
because it is the earlier of two past actions.

(E) This sentence correctly uses the past perfect "had believed" but its construction incorrectly
implies that scientists had believed that phlogiston was imaginary.
_________________

Thanks & Regards,
Anaira Mitch

Re: Phlogiston   [#permalink] 18 Sep 2017, 08:13
Display posts from previous: Sort by