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The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H.

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The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H.  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 03 Jun 2012, 12:26
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A
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C
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E

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  55% (hard)

Question Stats:

56% (01:17) correct 44% (01:20) wrong based on 429 sessions

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The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H. Bristow born in 1832 and served in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry.

(A) born in 1832 and served in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry

(B) was born in 1832 and had served in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25'h Kentucky Infantry

(C) born in 1832 and appointee in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1875. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry

(D) was born in 1832 and served in the Grand administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry

(E) was born in 1832 and served in the Grand administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky fanny

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Originally posted by solarzj on 03 Jun 2012, 03:16.
Last edited by solarzj on 03 Jun 2012, 12:26, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H. Brist  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Jun 2012, 12:13
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solarzj wrote:
The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H. Bristow born in 1832 and served in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry.

(A) born in 1832 and served in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry

(B) was born in 1832 and had served in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25'h Kentucky Infantry

(C) born in 1832 and appointee in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1875. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry

(D) was born in 1832 and served in the Grand administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry

(E) as born in 1832 and served in the Grand administration from 1874 to 1876. Tarlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky fanny


I think the last option should read

(E) was born in 1832 and served in the Grand administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky fanny[/quote]

Then option E is the right answer. Assuming option E has the changes above,

We would use the past perfect tense if we need to clearly establish a sequence of events which otherwise would be unclear/non obvious in the sentence.

ex: I had left the party when the murder happened.

This indicates that the action -- leaving the party happened before the murder. The "had left" past perfect tense is critical in establishing this sequence.


In the given sentence since timelines are explicitly stated, the sequence of events are very obvious. There is no need to use the past perfect tense. The preference would be to use simple past.

Looking at the options:

We can quickly eliminate A,B and D as they use "had served" in one format or the other. We are left with C and E.

Sentence C can be a run on without the "was" after the comma. So we can eliminate C as well. It also uses the "appointee" instead of "served".

Right answer is E.
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Re: The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H. Brist  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Jun 2012, 12:27
gomennassai wrote:
I think the last option should read

(E) was born in 1832 and served in the Grand administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky fanny

Then option E is the right answer. Assuming option E has the changes above,

We would use the past perfect tense if we need to clearly establish a sequence of events which otherwise would be unclear/non obvious in the sentence.

ex: I had left the party when the murder happened.

This indicates that the action -- leaving the party happened before the murder. The "had left" past perfect tense is critical in establishing this sequence.


In the given sentence since timelines are explicitly stated, the sequence of events are very obvious. There is no need to use the past perfect tense. The preference would be to use simple past.

Looking at the options:

We can quickly eliminate A,B and D as they use "had served" in one format or the other. We are left with C and E.

Sentence C can be a run on without the "was" after the comma. So we can eliminate C as well. It also uses the "appointee" instead of "served".

Right answer is E.


Absolutely right. I corrected answer choice E.
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Re: The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H.  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Jul 2012, 21:31
Strike 1: Verb tense - had is not required as timelines are Already said.
Strike 2: appointee changes meaning

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Re: The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H.  [#permalink]

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New post 25 Feb 2014, 06:36
solarzj wrote:
The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H. Bristow born in 1832 and served in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry.

(A) born in 1832 and served in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry

(B) was born in 1832 and had served in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25'h Kentucky Infantry

(C) born in 1832 and appointee in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1875. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry

(D) was born in 1832 and served in the Grand administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry

(E) was born in 1832 and served in the Grand administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky fanny

I have a query. Why is D wrong here? Why we wont be using "Had served" ? is it because its already mentioned "Earlier in his life"? Case of redundancy?
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Re: The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H.  [#permalink]

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New post 25 Feb 2014, 22:12
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akankshasoneja wrote:
solarzj wrote:
The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H. Bristow born in 1832 and served in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry.

(A) born in 1832 and served in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry

(B) was born in 1832 and had served in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25'h Kentucky Infantry

(C) born in 1832 and appointee in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1875. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry

(D) was born in 1832 and served in the Grand administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry

(E) was born in 1832 and served in the Grand administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky fanny

I have a query. Why is D wrong here? Why we wont be using "Had served" ? is it because its already mentioned "Earlier in his life"? Case of redundancy?


Hi,

D is wrong here, because it uses "had" which is not required here as the time lines are clearly stated in the sentence. Hence simple past tense should be used.

Hope that clears your doubt.
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Re: The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H.  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Mar 2016, 04:38
Had served makes the sentence look like he served as ......before was born.Clearly illogical.
Hence D will be wrong.
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Re: The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H.  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Mar 2016, 10:02
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To say that the past perfect 'had served' is not required is different from saying from 'had served' is wrong. At best, one has the option not to use the past perfect but using the past perfect is not such a blatant error as to render it unfit; There are so many instances in official examples, where the past perfect is considered good enough, in spite of a clearly demarcated timeline. I would feel the difference between the choices is not water-tight'.
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Re: The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H.  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Mar 2016, 19:11
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I agree that the use of past perfect in D is not definitively wrong. Since "Earlier in his life" clearly tells us we are talking about the period before his service in the Grant (not Grand!) administration, the past perfect is justified, even if it isn't really needed.

However, a real SC would never be two sentences. Also, you should change the last word of E, which seems to be referring to private parts(!) rather than the military.
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The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H.  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Jul 2017, 03:34
The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H. Bristow born in 1832 and served in the Grant administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry.

(D) was born in 1832 and served in the Grand administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow had served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry
--> There is only one clause in the second sentence "Earlier in his life, Bristow..." ---> The use of PAST PERFECT is MEANINGLESS.

(E) was born in 1832 and served in the Grand administration from 1874 to 1876. Earlier in his life, Bristow served as a lieutenant colonel in the 25th Kentucky Infantry
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Re: The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H.  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Jan 2019, 09:57
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DmitryFarber wrote:
I agree that the use of past perfect in D is not definitively wrong. Since "Earlier in his life" clearly tells us we are talking about the period before his service in the Grant (not Grand!) administration, the past perfect is justified, even if it isn't really needed.

However, a real SC would never be two sentences. Also, you should change the last word of E, which seems to be referring to private parts(!) rather than the military.


I completely agree with you; the past perfect is not necessary, but it is not wrong. I have not found in any dictionary the word fanny as a synonym of infantry. We must remember that sentences in the GMAT are formal, so, even if the word fanny were some kind of jargon, it would still be wrong.
I would say that the best choice is D .
I would like to comment that this problem has two sentences -it uses a full stop- so it is not a GMAT problem.
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Re: The first United States Solicitor General, Benjamin H.   [#permalink] 01 Jan 2019, 09:57
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