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# The below is a classic example of distinguishing the

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The below is a classic example of distinguishing the [#permalink]

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29 Apr 2011, 02:56
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Question Stats:

88% (00:54) correct 13% (00:50) wrong based on 8 sessions

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The below is a classic example of distinguishing the difference between the usage of “to” with “and” and “or”
Q.
The most conservative Amish groups are not permitted to own cars, use electricity, or power tools.
(A) The most conservative Amish groups are not permitted to own cars, use electricity, or power tools. (B) The most conservative Amish groups are not permitted the ownership of cars, the use of electricity, or of power tools.
(C) The most conservative Amish groups are not permitted to own cars, use electricity, or operate power tools.
(D) Owning cars, using electricity or power tools is not permitted to the most conservative Amish groups.
(E) Owning cars, electrical use, or operating power tools is not permissible among the most conservative Amish groups.

A. is wrong.
Reason it says- to own…,use…, or …..
If it would have been- to own…, use…., or operate…… then correct. Because we have “or” in the sentence the parallelism is what I’ve explained right now. Suppose, there were “and” in place of “or”.
The most conservative Amish groups are not permitted to own cars, use electricity, and power tools

This is wrong parallelism because it is …..to own…., ….use…,and …..

Rather it should have been … to own…, to use… and to operate…

B. is wrong because its not parallel… the ownership…, the use…of, or …..
C. is correct. To own…, ..use…, or ….operate… (as explained above)
D. awkward construction wrong.
E. awkward construction/no parallelism…wrong.

This is my understanding....If you have anything else do let me know.
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: Usage of Infinitive "to" with "and" and "or" [#permalink]

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02 May 2011, 15:53
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Caveat: my language is way off the technical way to describe English usage, so I'm trying my best to describe as I go. Feel free to correct or clarify.

While "to", "and", and "or" are what you're asking about, I think verb usage consistency is the issue here -- there simply has to be a verb in front of each subject for the sentence to make sense. That's because each part of the 3-part "structure" -- the cars, electricity, and power tools -- could not be "separated with commas" without each "being assigned a verb to qualify them". It just doesn't work if you can't do that.

So C is the only answer that's even possible. IMHO, If there's any hole in my reasoning, I welcome comments. As I can benefit from it too
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Re: Usage of Infinitive "to" with "and" and "or" [#permalink]

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02 May 2011, 19:07
abhattac5 wrote:
Caveat: my language is way off the technical way to describe English usage, so I'm trying my best to describe as I go. Feel free to correct or clarify.

While "to", "and", and "or" are what you're asking about, I think verb usage consistency is the issue here -- there simply has to be a verb in front of each subject for the sentence to make sense. That's because each part of the 3-part "structure" -- the cars, electricity, and power tools -- could not be "separated with commas" without each "being assigned a verb to qualify them". It just doesn't work if you can't do that.

So C is the only answer that's even possible. IMHO, If there's any hole in my reasoning, I welcome comments. As I can benefit from it too

Its a very good point you mentioned, and I agree with you. Each part needs a verb to qualify. Thanks a lot for pointing this out
Yet, I would want you to consider my explanation in a generalized way for handling the Infinitive "to" with "and" and "or". So, what do you think about it keeping aside what you said?

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Re: Usage of Infinitive "to" with "and" and "or" [#permalink]

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02 May 2011, 19:22
Aaaaah, okay, I see where you were going with it. So is the use of "or" and "and" with "to" mutually exclusive? (Trust me, I know that sounded dumb, but I'm really trying to understand.)

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Re: Usage of Infinitive "to" with "and" and "or" [#permalink]

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02 May 2011, 21:57
MeinKampf wrote:
The below is a classic example of distinguishing the difference between the usage of “to” with “and” and “or”
Q.
The most conservative Amish groups are not permitted to own cars, use electricity, or power tools.
(A) The most conservative Amish groups are not permitted to own cars, use electricity, or power tools. (B) The most conservative Amish groups are not permitted the ownership of cars, the use of electricity, or of power tools.
(C) The most conservative Amish groups are not permitted to own cars, use electricity, or operate power tools.
(D) Owning cars, using electricity or power tools is not permitted to the most conservative Amish groups.
(E) Owning cars, electrical use, or operating power tools is not permissible among the most conservative Amish groups.

A. is wrong.
Reason it says- to own…,use…, or …..
If it would have been- to own…, use…., or operate…… then correct. Because we have “or” in the sentence the parallelism is what I’ve explained right now. Suppose, there were “and” in place of “or”.
The most conservative Amish groups are not permitted to own cars, use electricity, and power tools

This is wrong parallelism because it is …..to own…., ….use…,and …..

Rather it should have been … to own…, to use… and to operate…

B. is wrong because its not parallel… the ownership…, the use…of, or …..
C. is correct. To own…, ..use…, or ….operate… (as explained above)
D. awkward construction wrong.
E. awkward construction/no parallelism…wrong.

This is my understanding....If you have anything else do let me know.

The XYZ group are not permitted to own cars, [to] use electricity, or [to]operate power tools. So C is correct.
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Re: Usage of Infinitive "to" with "and" and "or" [#permalink]

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02 May 2011, 22:06
i think the main word that makes the difference b/w right and wrong is "operate" in choice C. the original is too ambiguous when it gets to the "or" parallelism and "operate" fixes both issues

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Re: Usage of Infinitive "to" with "and" and "or" [#permalink]

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03 May 2011, 04:56
abhattac5 wrote:
Caveat: my language is way off the technical way to describe English usage, so I'm trying my best to describe as I go. Feel free to correct or clarify.

While "to", "and", and "or" are what you're asking about, I think verb usage consistency is the issue here -- there simply has to be a verb in front of each subject for the sentence to make sense. That's because each part of the 3-part "structure" -- the cars, electricity, and power tools -- could not be "separated with commas" without each "being assigned a verb to qualify them". It just doesn't work if you can't do that.

So C is the only answer that's even possible. IMHO, If there's any hole in my reasoning, I welcome comments. As I can benefit from it too

Hi, wht did u mean by
Quote:
there simply has to be a verb in front of each subject for the sentence to make sense
.
"are" is the auxiliary here, its in passive voice, permitted is the verb and then to use is the infinitive and i think that not using "to" before electricity and power tools is an example of ellipsis.
cars, electricity and power tools are the direct objects here.

pls do correct me if i am wrong. was just wondering about all the possible solutions to this and this one came to me.

thanks
john

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Re: Usage of Infinitive "to" with "and" and "or" [#permalink]

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03 May 2011, 10:37
In none of the answer choices other than C was the correct verb form used:

EG "...to (verb) cars, (verb) electricity, or (verb) power tools."

Even E might seem correct at first glance, but "electrical use" is not "using electricity", so it falls apart. In B, the verbs are turned into concepts -- to own > the ownership of etc -- but even then a verb for power tools is left out.

john2roll2 wrote:
abhattac5 wrote:
Caveat: my language is way off the technical way to describe English usage, so I'm trying my best to describe as I go. Feel free to correct or clarify.

While "to", "and", and "or" are what you're asking about, I think verb usage consistency is the issue here -- there simply has to be a verb in front of each subject for the sentence to make sense. That's because each part of the 3-part "structure" -- the cars, electricity, and power tools -- could not be "separated with commas" without each "being assigned a verb to qualify them". It just doesn't work if you can't do that.

So C is the only answer that's even possible. IMHO, If there's any hole in my reasoning, I welcome comments. As I can benefit from it too

Hi, wht did u mean by
Quote:
there simply has to be a verb in front of each subject for the sentence to make sense
.
"are" is the auxiliary here, its in passive voice, permitted is the verb and then to use is the infinitive and i think that not using "to" before electricity and power tools is an example of ellipsis.
cars, electricity and power tools are the direct objects here.

pls do correct me if i am wrong. was just wondering about all the possible solutions to this and this one came to me.

thanks
john

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Re: Usage of Infinitive "to" with "and" and "or"   [#permalink] 03 May 2011, 10:37
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# The below is a classic example of distinguishing the

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