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# Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes

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Senior Manager
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Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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Updated on: 21 Sep 2019, 06:35
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95% (hard)

Question Stats:

37% (01:22) correct 63% (01:29) wrong based on 3657 sessions

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Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes with frictionless wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly that the air passing over them would not become turbulent.

(A) wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly

(B) wings, wings so smooth and so perfectly shaped

(C) wings that are shaped so smooth and perfect

(D) wings, shaped in such a smooth and perfect manner

(E) wings, wings having been shaped smoothly and perfectly so

SC58461.01

https://www.nytimes.com/1990/09/11/science/new-plan-wing-design-greatly-cuts-drag-to-save-fuel.html

Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes with laminar-flow wings, wings so smooth and perfectly shaped that the air passing over them would not become turbulent. The World War II B-24 Liberator bomber and P-51 Mustang fighter had wings designed to maintain laminar flow, but manufacturing imperfections, dents and other inevitable flaws always spoiled laminar flow.

Originally posted by batliwala on 18 Apr 2004, 23:52.
Last edited by Bunuel on 21 Sep 2019, 06:35, edited 4 times in total.
Renamed the topic and edited the question.
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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19 Apr 2013, 10:56
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Hi rrkan, tricky question, duped me too.

C is out cos - shaped so smooth and perfect (here smooth and perfect are supposed to modify shaped - ed verb - thus we need adverb and an adjective, but if you see we have both as adjectives)

Choice B it is, since "...so smooth....so perfectly shaped" i notice how adverb perfectly is modifying shaped and adjective smooth is modifying adverb perfectly and also parallelism of so x so y is maintained
Hope this helps
##### General Discussion
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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09 Oct 2008, 04:53
13
the clue lies in reading the full question

when we read the full question, we see the word "them". Now if we see them on an underlined portion we are immediately alerted and we look for the antecedent. Here the problem is reversed. We have them in the non-underlined part, so it is our job to make them point to the correct antecedent.

them can refer to any of the following -- aircraft, aircraft manufacturer's and wings.

Clearly them has to point to wings, so we add the extra wing as in B.
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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25 Apr 2004, 18:40
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Anandnk, you are twisting my arm!

A) "shaped so smoothly..." is a dependent clause with no subject
B) correctly introduces the dependent clause with the subject "wings"
C) "smooth and perfect" are adjectives. We need adverbs "smoothly and perfectly" in order to modify verb "shaped"
D) again, the dependent clause is introduced with no subject or pronoun (ie which or that) which refers to the subject of the independent clause
E) to convey the idea of magnitude, "so" should have been placed before the adverbs which intend to modify the verb "shaped". Also, use of present perfect is unappropriate
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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09 Oct 2008, 04:37
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2
amitdgr wrote:
Since the 1930’s aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes with frictionless wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly that the air passing over them would not become turbulent.

(A) wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly
(B) wings, wings so smooth and so perfectly shaped
(C) wings that are shaped so smooth and perfect
(D) wings, shaped in such a smooth and perfect manner
(E) wings, wings having been shaped smoothly and perfectly so

This is a complex question which has been discussed earlier also. You can search it on the forum.

We need to repeat the word WINGS to clarify that it was the wings that the manufacturers were trying to smoothen and give a perfect shape to.

In A, shaped so smoothly and perfectly ends up modifying Aircraft manufacturers creating an absurd meaning.

In C, we need SMOOTHLY and PERFECTLY (Adverbs) rather than SMOOTH and PERFECT (adjectives) to modify the verb SHAPED

D has a problem similar to A

E repeats the word WINGS but is idiomatically wrong - the correct idiom is SO X THAT Y
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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29 Mar 2011, 09:03
9
2
whichscore wrote:
Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes with frictionless
wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly that the air passing over them would not
become turbulent.
(A) wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly
(B) wings, wings so smooth and so perfectly shaped
(C) wings that are shaped so smooth and perfect
(D) wings, shaped in such a smooth and perfect manner
(E) wings, wings having been shaped smoothly and perfectly so

could anyone tell me if this question could appear on the real GMAT ? I doubt wether this sentence is accurate.

Got it wrong in first go!

only B & C are compelling options!
this question is checking concept of "resumptive modifiers", which demands repartition of word "wings"
Also, option C could have been right provided we had perfectly; only adverbs can modify verb (verb = shaped). perfect is adjective. Further, "shaped smoothly" would have been wrong. you can shape perfectly, but not smoothly. In B this is corrected; wings so smooth (adjective) and perfectly (adverb) shaped
. . so answer is B

Now, What are RESUMPTIVE MODIFIERS;read below

By adding modifying phrases to the end of a sentence, a writer can take the reader in new, sometimes unexpected directions. A resumptive modifier picks up a word or phrase from a sentence that seems to be finished and then adds information and takes the reader into new territory of thought. Because resumptive modifiers are, by nature, repetitive, they tend also to add a sense of rhythm to a sentence.

Example: The Swiss watchmakers' failure to capitalize on the invention of the digital timepiece was both astonishing and alarmingastonishing in that the Swiss had, since the beginnings of the industrial revolution in Europe, been among the first to capitalize on technical innovations, alarming in that a tremendous industrial potential had been lost to their chief competitors, the watchmakers of Japan.

for TWO MORE EXAMPLES of this type of question, search following questions in forum
"Yellow jackets number among the 900 or so species . . . "
"In a crowded, acquisitive world, the disapperance of lifestyles such as those once . . ."

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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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15 Sep 2013, 10:48
9
4
Hi akshaychaturvedi007

This question is quite tough. I just want to elaborate more. Hope it helps you.

Some theories:
(1) So X that Y --> correct idiom
(2) HAVING BEEN + P2 ==> perfect gerund
--> denotes a state or condition that no longer subsists at the time of speaking

Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes with frictionless wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly that the air passing over them would not become turbulent.

(A) wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly
Wrong. Verb-ed + comma ==> modifies preceding noun "wings" correctly. BUT A is wrong because "them" refers to airplanes or wings? very ambiguous.
The structure of A is: "airplanes with frictionless wings, shaped so X that Y passing over them......" ==> "them" is not clear.

(B) wings, wings so smooth and so perfectly shaped
Correct. The blue part is absolute phrase modifier --> "them" only refers to the closest noun "wings" --> correct.

(C) wings that are shaped so smooth and perfect
Wrong. "smooth" and "perfect" are ADJECTIVES, but we need adverbs after verb "shaped" --> "smoothly" and "perfectly" are correct, NOT "smooth and perfect".

(D) wings, shaped in such a smooth and perfect manner
Wrong. Same error as in A. "them" in non-underlined part refers to what? airplanes or wings?

(E) wings, wings having been shaped smoothly and perfectly so
Wrong. HAVING BEEN + shaped --> perfect gerund --> denotes a state or condition that no longer subsists at the time of speaking ==> Clearly changes meaning --> wrong.

Hope it helps.
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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20 Apr 2013, 04:26
8
skamal7 wrote:
hi lostthepie,
Can you please explain why ed modifer can't modify the near by noun wings and only which can perform that?

My 2 cents....

verb ed can modify nouns for sure. but if you notice carefully, here noun is "airplanes" "with....wings" is a prepositional phrase modifying "airplanes". Thus it creates an ambiguity as to what exactly verb ed is modifying

use of "that" will make the modifier an essential one, thus it will carefully modify the entire noun phrase "airplane .... wings" and not just airplanes or wings

hope this helps
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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20 Apr 2013, 03:24
7
nt2010 wrote:
Not sure why A is wrong. Unless comma has a different meaning..

Per my analysis shaped is a verb playing the modifier role and -ed modifier always modifies the closest noun - which is wings.

Smoothly and Perfectly are adverbs intended for shaped and also the idiom so and that are considered.

Any help from experts?

A is wrong because there is a dangling modifier which does not clearly state whether the aircraft is smooth and perfectly shaped or the wings.

if you want to modify the noun 'wings' , you will need to place a 'which' (non essential modifiers) after the comma.
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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22 Aug 2013, 23:42
7
blueseas wrote:
Ankit04041987 wrote:
651. Since the 1930’s aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes with frictionless wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly that the air passing over them would not become turbulent.
(A) wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly
(B) wings, wings so smooth and so perfectly shaped
(C) wings that are shaped so smooth and perfect
(D) wings, shaped in such a smooth and perfect manner
(E) wings, wings having been shaped smoothly and perfectly so

anyone having a good explanation for this??

This question solely carries its weight on meaning issue which then correlates to how we use the modifiers after grasping the meaning...The sentence tries to convey that the wings are smooth ( we know that in an airplane the wings should be smooth so that the friction is zero and the air thus can give the lift to make the plane airborne Bernoullie's principle ) and the wings are shaped perfectly. Thus the two modifiers here should act independently SMOOTH AS AN ADJECTIVE FOR WINGS and PERFECTLY AS AN ADVERB FOR SHAPED... so i think if u can reach to this subtle conclusion through analysis of the meaning u can easily eliminate all the options but B which keeps the meaning of the sentence perfectly intact ...

Hope it helps..
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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26 Apr 2004, 05:11
6
4
batliwala wrote:
7. Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to
build airplanes with frictionless wings, shaped so
smoothly and perfectly
that the air passing over
them would not become turbulent.

(A) wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly
(B) wings, wings so smooth and so perfectly shaped
(C) wings that are shaped so smooth and perfect
(D) wings, shaped in such a smooth and perfect manner
(E) wings, wings having been shaped smoothly and
perfectly so

Dharmin,Anand

you are correct. but lets set a trend ourselves. When i was taking my GMAT, i used to attempt to explain most ,if not all, of my answers, right or wrong. let us try to promote this culture. Anand does a great job, but we want others to explain their answers too.

Here the absolute phrase starting with "shaped" needs to clearly identify what is shaped...wings are shaped OR airplanes are shaped.

Only B and E fit that criteria. It wouldnt be hard to eliminate E.

B is so much better and concise.

regards
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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01 Mar 2005, 17:48
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3
Such a silly question .

In (B), "smooth" and "shaped" (adjectives) are modifying Noun (wings). So it is right.
In (C), "smooth" and "perfect" (adjectives) are modifying Verb (shaped) but we know that only Adverbs can modify Verb. So it is wrong.
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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10 Jun 2012, 12:09
6
2
Since the 1930’s aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes with frictionless wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly that the air passing over them would not become turbulent.

(A) wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly
(B) wings, wings so smooth and so perfectly shaped
(C) wings that are shaped so smooth and perfect
(D) wings, shaped in such a smooth and perfect manner
(E) wings, wings having been shaped smoothly and perfectly so

Hm. C is an easy elimination (shaped so smooth). I also think we can eliminate anything that describes its shaping as "smoothly". So we'll get rid of A and E. Now we're down to B and D. B has better structure. B it is.
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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17 Feb 2005, 21:38
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6
I looked into this one again and I believe the reason why A is not as good as B is simply because the relative pronoun "them" at the end of the sentence does not have any clear referrent. Does it refer to "airplanes" or "wings"? The same goes for A's participial phrase form which could refer to either one of those 2 preceding nouns.

For example, you have these 2 participial phrase structures:
eg The airplane kit model in the closet, built with such perfection that it amazed the whole family, was part of his collection.

As you can see above, there is an ambiguity as to what was built with such perfection. Is it the subject of the prepositional phrase in red or is it the "airplane kit model"? Because of this ambiguity, relative pronoun "it" also have an ambiguous referrent. If the author meant that it was the closet which was built with..., then he should repeat the word closet to clear such ambiguity. By the same token, "it" should then have a clear referrent.

eg The airplane kit model in the closet, a closet built with such perfection that it amazed the whole family, was part of his collection.

You can apply this same concept to the original question
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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11 Jun 2012, 06:59
3
I think we can eliminate A and D for the reason that it's not clear whether the ...shaped refers to the airplane or the wings
That should refer to something singular, so C is out.
E sounds verbose.
B it is.

Since the 1930’s aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes with frictionless wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly that the air passing over them would not become turbulent.

(A) wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly
(B) wings, wings so smooth and so perfectly shaped
(C) wings that are shaped so smooth and perfect
(D) wings, shaped in such a smooth and perfect manner
(E) wings, wings having been shaped smoothly and perfectly so

Hm. C is an easy elimination (shaped so smooth). I also think we can eliminate anything that describes its shaping as "smoothly". So we'll get rid of A and E. Now we're down to B and D. B has better structure. B it is.
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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19 Apr 2013, 11:41
2
Not sure why A is wrong. Unless comma has a different meaning..

Per my analysis shaped is a verb playing the modifier role and -ed modifier always modifies the closest noun - which is wings.

Smoothly and Perfectly are adverbs intended for shaped and also the idiom so and that are considered.

Any help from experts?
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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20 Apr 2013, 05:03
2
1
skamal7 wrote:
So use of that and which is correct if we want to modify a noun with prepostional phrases and ver-ed modifier doesnt have this flexiblity ?am i right?

That is correct.

Follow the links below, very helpful in clearing the doubts in discussion here. It is better to understand the concept clearly than simply remember grammar rules

usage-of-that-doubt-150338.html

noun-modifiers-can-modify-slightly-far-away-noun-135868.html

verb-ed-modifiers-vs-verb-ing-modifiers-125611.html

Hope I was of help

Cheers
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01 May 2020, 05:56
2
lnm87 wrote:

Quote:
Since the 1930’s aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes with frictionless wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly that the air passing over them would not become turbulent.

(A) wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly
(B) wings, wings so smooth and so perfectly shaped
(C) wings that are shaped so smooth and perfect
(D) wings, shaped in such a smooth and perfect manner
(E) wings, wings having been shaped smoothly and perfectly so

So, in B 'wings so smooth' is one thing and 'so perfectly shaped' another.?? I see it wrong though. 'Wings so smooth' is aright since smooth is adjective modifying noun.
Would 'so smoothly shaped and so perfectly shaped' OR 'so smoothly and so perfectly shaped' be wrong. ?? where smoothly modifies shaped.

Hello, lnm87. I have addressed your concern above, here. In short, smoothly shaped cannot go together. The adjective smooth is a tactile description, as is its adverbial form; the adjective shaped is a visual description. You can look at something and judge that it may be smooth, but you cannot describe an object as being smoothly shaped. No answer choice but (B) separates the two types of descriptions, a feature that makes (B) the correct answer by default.

I hope that helps. If you have further questions, feel free to ask.

- Andrew
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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11 Dec 2010, 20:05
1
1
ajit257 wrote:
Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to
build airplanes with frictionless wings, shaped so
smoothly and perfectly
that the air passing over
them would not become turbulent.

(A) wings, shaped so smoothly and perfectly
(B) wings, wings so smooth and so perfectly shaped
(C) wings that are shaped so smooth and perfect
(D) wings, shaped in such a smooth and perfect manner
(E) wings, wings having been shaped smoothly and
perfectly so

I could never infer the ans. Can some explain the reason behind the ans. Thanks

Ajit, you have this q floating around already in this forum. Try to search it and will provide you deeper insights

You see them in the part of the sentence that is not underlined right, this introduces ambiguity, what does them refer to manufacturers or wings, now B and E solves this by using a resumptive modifier.

Resumptive modifier is nothing but a modifier that is restated such that it avoids any ambiguities. No btwn B and E, perfect use of Idiom So that makes B stand alone
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Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes  [#permalink]

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20 Apr 2013, 10:43
1
1
skamal7 wrote:
+1 kudos mate for sharing the link.

But if you see those posts we see that verb-ed modifier is also a noun modifier for sure.SO all noun modifiers can modify the far away noun.So verb-ed modifiers can also modify far away noun i guess..please correct me if am wrong

Thats correct mate....Noun modifiers can modify any entity in a sentence
Verb ed modifier can modify far away nouns

Hope this helps

Re: Since the 1930's aircraft manufacturers have tried to build airplanes   [#permalink] 20 Apr 2013, 10:43

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