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QOTD: Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes

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QOTD: Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes [#permalink]

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Verbal Question of The Day: Day 260: Sentence Correction


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Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes—regions of space in which matter is so concentrated and the pull of gravity so powerful that nothing, not even light, can emerge from them—probably exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to its host galaxy.

(A) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to

(B) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of

(C) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies, and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to

(D) exists at the core of nearly all galaxies, and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of

(E) exists at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of

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QOTD: Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes [#permalink]

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New post 09 Apr 2018, 05:57
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(A) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to


(A) doesn’t seem all that bad. It certainly sounds fine, but there’s a problem with the parallelism and meaning.

Before we get into that, consider the following:

  • I believe that Santa Claus is real and that the Knicks will win the 2018 NBA title. → We have two parallel phrases (subordinate clauses, if you like jargon) that begin with “that.” And that’s great: it’s super-clear that these are two things that I believe.
  • I believe that Santa Claus is real and the Knicks will win the 2018 NBA title. → Now the parallelism is different. Without “that”, we just have two parallel, independent clauses: “I believe that Santa Claus is real” and “the Knicks will win the NBA title.” That changes the meaning: now, the sentence doesn’t connect “I believe” with “the Knicks will win the NBA title.” And it seems that the latter clause is a fact, rather than something I BELIEVE is true.

We have a similar situation in (A). On both sides of the “and”, we have full, independent clauses:

  • “Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes exist at the core of nearly all galaxies…”
  • ”…the mass of each black hole is proportional to its host galaxy.”

Here’s the problem: the second independent clause is just a completely separate statement. The second clause (“the mass of each black hole is proportional…”) seems to be a separate fact; without “that” in front of that clause, it’s not clear that scientists have found evidence to support the statement. The statement is just a separate thing.

There’s also a comparison problem with (A). We have “the mass of each black hole is proportional to its host galaxy”, which is illogical: the mass of each black hole might be proportional to the mass of its host galaxy, but it’s weird to suggest that the mass is somehow proportional to the galaxy itself.

So we have a couple of (admittedly somewhat subtle) reasons to eliminate (A).

Quote:
(B) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of

Now the parallelism is better: “Scientists have found evidence that black holes… probably exist… and that the mass of each black hole is proportional…” Cool: now it’s clear that scientists have found evidence for these two things.

The other thing that should jump out at you is the phrase “that of.” “That” is a singular pronoun in this situation (more on “that” in this article), and it clearly refers back to “mass” in (B). And that’s great: “…the mass of each black hole is proportional to the mass of its host galaxy.”

So we can keep (B).

Quote:
(C) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies, and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to

(C) is identical to (B), except that the phrase “that of” is missing. And as we mentioned in the explanation for (A), that’s a problem: literally, (C) says that “the mass of each black hole is proportional to its host galaxy”, and that’s not quite right: the mass of the black hole is proportional to the mass of the host galaxy – not to the galaxy itself.

So (C) is out.

Quote:
(D) exists at the core of nearly all galaxies, and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of

(D) is identical to (B), except for one little problem: “Scientists have found evidence that black holes… exists…” That’s a wonderfully clear subject-verb error, and we can eliminate (D).

Quote:
(E) exists at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of

(E) has exactly the same subject-verb error as (D): “Scientists have found evidence that black holes… exists…” Plus, the parallelism is a problem, because “and” isn’t followed with “that” – see the explanation for (A) for more on this issue.

So (E) is out, and (B) is our answer.
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Re: QOTD: Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes [#permalink]

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New post 09 Apr 2018, 06:29
Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes—regions of space in which matter is so concentrated and the pull of gravity so powerful that nothing, not even light, can emerge from them—probably exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to its host galaxy.

(A) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to --Incorrect comparison between mass and galaxy

(B) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of --Correct

(C) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies, and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to --Same error as in A

(D) exists at the core of nearly all galaxies, and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of --SV disagreement

(E) exists at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of --Same error as in A and D
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QOTD: Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes [#permalink]

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Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes—regions of space in which matter is so concentrated and the pull of gravity so powerful that nothing, not even light, can emerge from them—probably exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to its host galaxy.

(A) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to

(B) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of

(C) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies, and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to

(D) exists at the core of nearly all galaxies, and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of

(E) exists at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of

Split #1: The first verb in our choice refers to the plural noun "black holes". Hence, the verb has to be in plural form as well, which is "exist". Consequently, we can eliminate all answers that start with the singular form "exists" - answers D) and E).

Split #2: The comparison. We compare the mass of each blackhole with that of its host galaxy by saying that there is a proportional relationship between the two. To build a proper comparison we need to use "that of" at the end of the answer choice. By doing that we get "[...] that the mass of each black holo is proportional to that of its host galaxy". This is a correct comparison. As answers A) and C) lack this proper comparison, we can preclude them.

This leaves us with B) as the correct answer. It can also be noted that A) and E) don't maintain parallelism because they lack a "that".

Hope that helps :-)

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Originally posted by Masterscorp on 09 Apr 2018, 06:32.
Last edited by Masterscorp on 09 Apr 2018, 07:42, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: QOTD: Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes [#permalink]

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New post 09 Apr 2018, 06:39
Masterscorp wrote:
It can also be noted that A) and E) don't maintain parallelism because they lack a "that".[/color]


Hi,

I strongly disagree with this point. There is no problem in parallelism in option A. Although, second usage of "that" is preferable but I won't count out the option as wrong just on that basis of lack of "that".

Any comments?

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Re: QOTD: Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes [#permalink]

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New post 09 Apr 2018, 06:57
souvik101990 wrote:

Verbal Question of The Day: Day 260: Sentence Correction


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Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes—regions of space in which matter is so concentrated and the pull of gravity so powerful that nothing, not even light, can emerge from them—probably exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to its host galaxy.

(A) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to

(B) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of

(C) exist at the core of nearly all galaxies, and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to

(D) exists at the core of nearly all galaxies, and that the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of

(E) exists at the core of nearly all galaxies and the mass of each black hole is proportional to that of

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will go with B
D E are out (Exists is singular)
A is not parllel
C wrong comparison between mass of black holes and galaxy
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Re: QOTD: Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes [#permalink]

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New post 09 Apr 2018, 07:48
gmatexam439 wrote:
Masterscorp wrote:
It can also be noted that A) and E) don't maintain parallelism because they lack a "that".[/color]


Hi,

I strongly disagree with this point. There is no problem in parallelism in option A. Although, second usage of "that" is preferable but I won't count out the option as wrong just on that basis of lack of "that".

Any comments?

Regards

Hi,

wouldn't a lack of "that" suggest that "Scientists have recently found evidence" and "the mass of each black hole is proportional" are the two main things that happened?
By the use of "that" it becomes clear that scientists found that X and that Y.

I understand your concern but I think that a lack of "that" changes the meaning. However, I'm not 100% sure.

daagh, could you shed some light on this question please?
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Re: QOTD: Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes [#permalink]

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The basic concept of using that in two-part sentences.
If Something does two things, those things must be presented parallelly in structure and meaning joined by the introducing connector 'that.' For example. we may say that
<John reported his wife's that he got 800 in GMAT and that it all happened because of his wife's help. >
We need the connector that because of the two equally important things.
Rule No 2. If you are reporting only one thing and if the second part is n independent event not related to the first, then the golden rule is that there must be a comma before the word 'and' to forewarn that a new clause is about to begin
In my example, we might re-write the whole thing if we drop the that.
John reported his wife's that he got 800 in GMAT,
and it all happened because of his wife's help. But still one can see the disconnect in that legitimately grammatical clause
In other words, when we write compound sentences with two independent terms, then there must necessarily be a comma before the fanboys conjunction

I fully agree with Masterscorp
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Re: QOTD: Scientists have recently found evidence that black holes   [#permalink] 09 Apr 2018, 08:52
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