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# The period when the great painted caves at Lascaux and

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The period when the great painted caves at Lascaux and [#permalink]

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05 Nov 2010, 00:20
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84% (01:40) correct 16% (00:46) wrong based on 93 sessions

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The period when the great painted caves at Lascaux and Altamira were occupied by Upper Paleolithic people has been established by carbon-14 dating, but what is much more difficult to determine are the reason for their decoration, the use to which primitive people put the caves, and the meaning of the magnificently depicted animals.

(A) has been established by carbon-14 dating, but what is much more difficult to determine are
(B) has been established by carbon-14 dating, but what is much more difficult to determine is
(C) have been established by carbon-14 dating, but what is much more difficult to determine is
(D) have been established by carbon-14 dating, but what is much more difficult to determine are
(E) are established by carbon-14 dating, but that which is much more difficult to determine is
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Last edited by scheol79 on 05 Nov 2010, 09:03, edited 1 time in total.
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05 Nov 2010, 01:44
Essentially this passage has two clauses and two subjects 1. [highlight]The period[/highlight]and 2 [highlight]the reason.[/highlight] Both are singluar. Hence the period entails the singular - [highlight]has[/highlight]– and the reason entails – [highlight]is[/highlight]- . B is the only choice that befits this norm.
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05 Nov 2010, 02:01
daagh wrote:
Essentially this passage has two clauses and two subjects 1. [highlight]The period[/highlight]and 2 [highlight]the reason.[/highlight] Both are singluar. Hence the period entails the singular - [highlight]has[/highlight]– and the reason entails – [highlight]is[/highlight]- . B is the only choice that befits this norm.

Why do you think the reason alone is the subject for the second clause?

If you think that the part after is or are is the subject, wouldn't the subject be the reason, the use, and the meaning?

A, B, and C: collective nouns which are plural.
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05 Nov 2010, 08:04
In that case, it will not be - what is much more difficult to determine - but -what are much more difficult to determine - There is no choice that says what are much more difficult to determine-Hence the question of a compound plural subject for the second part is ruled out.
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05 Nov 2010, 09:13
daagh wrote:
In that case, it will not be - what is much more difficult to determine - but -what are much more difficult to determine - There is no choice that says what are much more difficult to determine-Hence the question of a compound plural subject for the second part is ruled out.

But I'm afraid that your reasoning is flawed.

Second clause requires 'is' simply because subject phrase 'what is ~' is considered singular.

ex) Whatever they want to do is fine with me. MGMAT pg42.

I wasn't firm on the the concept, but after reading Ron's post on MGMAT forum I'm convinced that the object part has nothing to do with the verb form.

I don't want to quote Ron word by word, so here's the link. Let me know if you think otherwise.

http://www.manhattangmat.com/forums/pai ... 94-15.html
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05 Nov 2010, 14:46
S-V agreement..
S: The period is singular.......verb "has" and "is" need to be used.
hence B
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05 Nov 2010, 19:52
Two subjects here
1) Period
2) What is much more difficult to determine

Ans is B
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Re: The period when the great painted caves at Lascaux and [#permalink]

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12 Sep 2014, 21:22
Hello from the GMAT Club VerbalBot!

Thanks to another GMAT Club member, I have just discovered this valuable topic, yet it had no discussion for over a year. I am now bumping it up - doing my job. I think you may find it valuable (esp those replies with Kudos).

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Re: The period when the great painted caves at Lascaux and   [#permalink] 12 Sep 2014, 21:22
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