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# The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of

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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
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The focus is a comparison between the insect eye and the vertebrate eye. Otherwise, we may wrongly lead to the weighing of a structure with some other eye
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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
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hi experts,

1) here i feel it is ambiguously referring to both intricate structure and compound eye,
please throw some light on how u all are assuming that it refers to compound eye ?

thanks

Originally posted by Cheryn on 30 Aug 2018, 21:13.
Last edited by Cheryn on 30 Aug 2018, 22:05, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
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Cheryn wrote:
hi experts,

here i feel it is ambiguously referring to both intricate structure and compound eye,
please throw some light on how u all are assuming that it refers to compound eye ?

thanks

Hi Cheryn
I'm not an expert, but if my 2 cents could be of some help here.
The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of miniature eyes called ommatidia, help explain why scientists have assumed that it evolved independently of the vertebrate eye.

"having hundreds of miniature eyes called ommatidia" modifies the entire preceding clause "The intricate structure of the compound insect eye"

The subject here in the sentence is "The intricate structure of the compound insect eye" which is singular.

IT basically refers back to the whole main subject i.e. a noun phrase here.
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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
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thanks himanshu, (though i am not convinced with your reply , i am sorry) .i think, here it is actually referring to the compound eye .

btw, experts,

one more doubt is how with along with called xxxx referring to compound eye but not intricate structure... ( i have gone through earlier posts also nowhere it is mentioned "with" can refer to the noun in the prepositional phrase. even in the eg quoted

Visitors to the park have often looked up into the leafy canopy and seen monkeys sleeping on the branches, with arms and legs hanging like socks on a clothesline.

here, with is not referring to the branches it can modify either noun or preceding clause)

thanks
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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
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Cheryn wrote:
thanks himanshu, (though i am not convinced with your reply , i am sorry) .i think, here it is actually referring to the compound eye .

btw, experts,

one more doubt is how with along with called xxxx referring to compound eye but not intricate structure... ( i have gone through earlier posts also nowhere it is mentioned "with" can refer to the noun in the prepositional phrase. even in the eg quoted

Visitors to the park have often looked up into the leafy canopy and seen monkeys sleeping on the branches, with arms and legs hanging like socks on a clothesline.

here, with is not referring to the branches it can modify either noun or preceding clause)

thanks

Hi Cheryn and HimanshuW11,
Well Many have discussed this question from getting to right answer, i wanted a different approach on this question , as to what all is wrong in the original sentence, and what is role played by each segment of sentence

First
Most replies that i have read above regarding role played by "helping" are stating that "helping blah blah blah " is modifying preceding clause. But what precedes 'helping" is not a clause its a noun phrase.
Second
there is another role played by verb+ing it can also modify preceding noun
Eg " Probus , wearing a black suite, enthralled everyone at the meeting. Clearly we see that verb-ing here is giving more information about the preceding noun.

In the original statement also , it plays the role of giving more information about noun ( i am not expert but logically this should be the role played by the verb -ing modifier)
The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of miniature eyes called ommatidia,

Now if we ask ourselves what is having hundreds of eyes ?
Structure is having something
Compound insect eye is having something .
So in my opinion we do have a modifier error ( ambiguity)
i was then clear that this modifier must logically refer to compound insect eye . Which means the complete eye is made up of / or is having number of small eyes. )

The intricate structure of the compound insect eye,

with its hundreds of miniature eyes called ommatidia, { Modifier }

helps explain

why scientists have assumed ( this part modifies explain , giving more information about explain what )

that it evolved independently of the vertebrate eye { " that"dependent clause modifying “assumed }

Now " with " can either modify entire preceding clause or noun . Again notice what precedes "with" is not a clause , but a noun phrase. So definitely its modifying a noun . But which noun from the noun phrase does it modify.

Lets see.

It makes no sense to say
the complex structure (, with 100 of miniature eyes. blah blah ,) of compound insect eye .

the complex structure of compound insect eye , ( with 100 of miniature eyes. blah blah ). Yes this does make sense.

I don't know if this helps, but should you see any flaw please do point them so that i could learn too.

Comming to question you posted

Visitors to the park
have often looked up into the leafy canopy
and seen monkeys sleeping on the branches,
with arms and legs hanging like socks on a clothesline.

Now logically 'with arms and legs hanging like socks on a clothesline' is modifying the preceding clause

Visitors have seen monkeys sleeping on the branches

Monkeys' arms and legs are hung like socks on a clothesline.

The way monkeys are sleeping on branches ( WITH ITS ARMS AND LEGS HANGING FROM BRANCHES ) its comparable to (SOCKS ON A CLOTHE LINE )

So arms and legs are imagined as socks and branches as cloth line

So " 'with arms and legs hanging like socks on a clothesline" is modifying the preceding clause and the subject of that is monkey's

Again any flaws in above reasoning , let me know will learn and correct that.

Thanks
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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
blueseas wrote:
gmatter0913 wrote:
Could somebody please clarify me how "with" is different from "having" here.

How is it that "having" is modifying "structure", while "with" is modifying "compound insect eye". Kindly help me understand the usage of with here.

Thanks a lot GmatClub.

hi

having = have + ing = verb + ing.
verb-ing modifiers are very versatile modifiers.
there are two case

if verb-ing modifiers appear after a clause and is preceeded by comma ,then it modifies the entire preceeding clause.It
b) result of the preceeding clause.

if verb-ing modifiers appears without a comma==>it modifies the immediate noun.

now in our question:

The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of miniature eyes called ommatidia, help explain why scientists have assumed that it evolved independently of the vertebrate eye.

so according to rule HAVING is modifying the entire preceeding clause....
so in this sentence ...meanig coming out: intricate structure are having hundreds of miniature eyes==> this is illogical as structure cant have eyes...
hence we can eliminate all the option using HAVING

https://gmatclub.com/forum/usage-of-verb ... 35220.html

hope it makes sense now.

Hi,

why is the following clause illogical?? intricate structure are having hundreds of miniature eyes

at many sources it is given that this is illogical, But I am not able to comprehend this.

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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
kanthaliya wrote:
blueseas wrote:
gmatter0913 wrote:
Could somebody please clarify me how "with" is different from "having" here.

How is it that "having" is modifying "structure", while "with" is modifying "compound insect eye". Kindly help me understand the usage of with here.

Thanks a lot GmatClub.

hi

having = have + ing = verb + ing.
verb-ing modifiers are very versatile modifiers.
there are two case

if verb-ing modifiers appear after a clause and is preceeded by comma ,then it modifies the entire preceeding clause.It
b) result of the preceeding clause.

if verb-ing modifiers appears without a comma==>it modifies the immediate noun.

now in our question:

The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of miniature eyes called ommatidia, help explain why scientists have assumed that it evolved independently of the vertebrate eye.

so according to rule HAVING is modifying the entire preceeding clause....
so in this sentence ...meanig coming out: intricate structure are having hundreds of miniature eyes==> this is illogical as structure cant have eyes...
hence we can eliminate all the option using HAVING

https://gmatclub.com/forum/usage-of-verb ... 35220.html

hope it makes sense now.

Hi,

why is the following clause illogical?? intricate structure are having hundreds of miniature eyes

at many sources it is given that this is illogical, But I am not able to comprehend this.

Hi kanthaliya

Hi well the verbing modifier here is certainly used in the role to modify preceding noun, but we have two noun's in preceding noun phrase 'the intricate structure' and Compound insect eye. Well i don't know if structure can have miniature eyes or compound insect eye can have miniature of eyes. Both seem logical to me . ( but i did research on the insect eye, having miniature of eyes should refer to compound insect eye)

intricate structure are having hundreds of miniature eyes We have SV does not agree in number error here.
Say we had the below clause

(A)intricate structure is having hundreds of miniature eyes

(B)compound insect eye is having hundreds of miniature eyes

Can we say A is right and B is wrong,or B is right or A is wrong.

(C)Structure of Insect eyes , in which insect eye is having blah blah blah, helps explain blah blah

(D)Structure of Insect eyes , in which structure is having blah blah blah, helps explain blah blah
Logically if you see C make more sense than D.

Now, since we have this ambiguity we can get rid of this with a better choice.

I am sure you must have spotted other errors with this option

Note both Options A and B are wrong for several other reasons too .
Option A: Apart from Modifier ambiguity , the singular subject “structure” doesn’t agree with the plural verb “help”.

Option B : Apart from modifier ambiguity we have "they” refers to “miniature eyes”, which is not the logical referent .we need a singular pronoun to refer to compound insect eye.
Also note "that are called ommatida" is unnecessary as it makes the choice too wordy. the original sentence did convey the same information in precise manner.

Hope this helps

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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
Hi daagh egmat
In the correct choice E, I thought "why" shouldn't be used as a pronoun because it's a question form.
I think many of the choices in other SC questions were rejected because "why" was used as a pronoun.
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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
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1. It is not clear whether 'why' is ever used as a pronoun. At least I don't remember an example off-hand. If it were a pronoun, one should be logically able to explain what that pronoun stands for. We can't find a suitable noun in this given context. We can see it as an adverb of reason at best.
2. Declarative statement form: I don't know when he will appear for the test
Question form: When will he appear for the test?

One may also note that if it were a question, then the sentence should end with a question mark.
.
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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
daagh wrote:
A case of SV mismatch and pronoun ambiguity and reference. The subject is the singular structure and the verb therefore should be helps, which is three in B, C and E. In B. the plural pronoun, they refer to anything plural but what is in issue is the singular insect eye that is compared with vertebrate eye. C also has the same pronoun mis - reference as in B. E remains with the use of the singular verb helps and singular pronoun it

hi daagh

I have a question about pronoun errors. Would appreciate if you could have a look:

I am modifying the sentence to ask my query. If the sentence were as follows: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of miniature eyes that are called ommatidia, helps explain why the scientist has assumed that it evolved independently of the vertebrate eye.
Here "it" logically ONLY refers back to the compound insect eye but it COULD (without logic) also refer to the singular "scientist". Now, would I eliminate this answer choice because "it" COULD have two antecedents (one logical, the other illogical) or keep it cus "it" actually has only one LOGICAL antecedent?
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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
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Kristi

1. The scientist cannot be a true noun since the word 'the scientist' is not available per se.
2. Even if anyone choice has the singular ‘Scientist’, you know it is illogical, and hence is not in contention. You can ignore the illogical reference and be confirmed that the pronoun has only one eligible contender.
3. But the real problem lies in that there are two singular structures already in the sentence. 1. the intricate structure.( the subject of the sentence) 2. The compound eye. (an object of the preposition) . As per protocol, the subject has the first right of reference for the pronoun. But this is not 100 percent true. In the given case, a true comparison is between the compound eye and the vertebrate eye. None of the choices even indicate anything more about the way the vertebrate eye developed. Therefor logical meaning trumps the technical grammar.
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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
Dear DmitryFarber GMATGuruNY,

I have some questions on the pronoun reference.

Quote:
The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, with ITS hundreds of miniature eyes called ommatidia, helps explain why scientists have assumed that IT evolved independently of the vertebrate eye.

When a pronoun is repeated within a single clause, the referent must be the same in each case.
Here, ITS and IT must have the same referent.

However, MGMAT 6th edition says the opposite that:
Quote:
some correct GMAT sentences do use different pronouns of the same class to refer to different nouns

I've attached the picture for your reference.

Have you ever seen such case that MGMAT mentions?
(I note, however, that MGMAT stance has flipped their stance from 5th edition. So, I think there should be official precedent for them to change their mind.)
Attachments

pronoun ambiguity.jpg [ 217.87 KiB | Viewed 4481 times ]

Originally posted by kornn on 30 May 2020, 01:35.
Last edited by bb on 12 Apr 2021, 13:10, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
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varotkorn This is definitely a preference, not a rule, and it's all about clarity of meaning. If I say "She told her" or "it ate it" or "they loved them," and it's 100% clear what each of those pronouns refers to, then there's no problem at all. For instance, "I bought cookies for my nephews and nieces and they loved them." Do you have any doubt that this means that both my nephews and nieces loved the cookies? If I meant anything else, such as that only my nieces loved them, or that the cookies loved the people(!), I'd need to rephrase to make my meaning more clear.

What the GMAT will do, however, is repeat a pronoun in such a way that we'd EXPECT it to refer to one thing, when the meaning requires it to refer to something else. That's where we tend to get into trouble. For instance, in the question linked below, the structure leads in B and C leads us to expect that "their" refers to the same thing (prices) as "they" does.
https://gmatclub.com/forum/while-depres ... l#p2530836

On the other hand, in this next question, it's perfectly clear that "their" and "they" refer to different things in the OA, so yes, there's our official confirmation that this can fly on the GMAT.
https://gmatclub.com/forum/especially-i ... l#p1697230
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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
Dear DmitryFarber,

Thank you for your explanation and example sir!

If there are multiple instances of "IT" in a sentence, is it a RULE that those "IT"s refer to the same noun?
In other words, is it possible that first IT refers to X and second IT refers to Y?

If possible, could you give an example of Official questions for the same.

BTW, I've attached a picture from MGMAT SC 6th edition for your reference.
Attachments

Pronoun.jpg [ 452.5 KiB | Viewed 3407 times ]

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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
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I can't supply an official question that switches "it" in this way--the one I sent is the only case I saw in the current OG--but what I said before holds just the same for "it" as for any other pronoun. We have to use context and meaning, and of course we have to work with the available choices. We can't simply cut anything that switches the antecedent.

As for the quote from our guide, we appear to have softened the language in our latest All the Verbal guide (we turned must into should and took out the "unacceptable" part). But even for the edition you're looking at, context is important. Note that this excerpt is under the heading "Some Ambiguity Is Acceptable" and begins with "in theory"! This is definitely not a rule. Honestly, absolute rules are much rarer in English usage than most people would like to think!
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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
What is 'it' and 'its' referring back to- Structure or compound eye? If its eye then clearly a pronoun (it) is not referring back to the subject of the previous clause (Structure).
Also is ' having hundreds.....ommatidia' modifier correct and what is it modifying? And what is 'with..ommatidia' modifying?
Kindly explain the scenario here.
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Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
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milanshivhare007 wrote:
What is 'it' and 'its' referring back to- Structure or compound eye? If its eye then clearly a pronoun (it) is not referring back to the subject of the previous clause (Structure).

Good questions!

You could make an argument for either "structure of the eye" or "eye" as the referent for "it." Either captures the idea that a larger eye is comprised of lots of smaller eyes. No need to waste any time or brain cells puzzling over which is better. It's not a clear error, so we should move on to other issues.

Also, there's no rule that a pronoun has to refer to the subject of a clause. You might be thinking of the case when the pronoun is itself the subject of an independent clause. In that instance, sure, the subject of the previous clause is the most logical place to look for the referent. But that's not an ironclad rule. And more importantly, in answer choice (E), both pronouns are parts of modifiers rather than subjects of independent clauses, so we're dealing with a different type of construction.

Quote:
Also is ' having hundreds.....ommatidia' modifier correct and what is it modifying? And what is 'with..ommatidia' modifying?

I don't love "having" here, as it kind of makes it sound as though the larger eye possesses the smaller eyes, the way, say, a person might have an old Buick. But I wouldn't say it's wrong and wouldn't be comfortable eliminating (A) and (B) for this reason. Both options have a more concrete error:

In (A), we have subject-verb disagreement: "the intricate structure... help."

And in (B), the phrase, "helps explain why scientists have assumed that they evolved independently of the vertebrate eye," gives the impression that the scientists have evolved independently of the vertebrate eye. While it is undoubtedly true that the evolutionary path for scientists is not identical to the one for the vertebrate eye, it makes far more sense to compare the evolution of the insect eye to the evolution of the vertebrate eye, and that's the comparison we get in (E).

I hope that helps!
Re: The intricate structure of the compound insect eye, having hundreds of [#permalink]
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