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Re: Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and [#permalink]
My answer is (E).

Note that we can simplify the sentence by removing the long appositive phrase.
The subject is "Triceratops".

(A) "thought to have had two horns on its forehead and one on the bridge of its nose" itself is past participle phrase. There is no main verb.

(B) No main verb.

(C) Two subjects. It is unacceptable to write "Triceratops it had ..."

(E) See above.
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Re: Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and [#permalink]
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Kudos
The sentence between the two commas is describing triceratops and isn't important to the meaning of the passage. The author is telling us about their horns. we can read the passage by eliminating the unnecessary details and focus on making a meaningful sentence with the subject triceratops.

Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and thus one of the latest species to appear before the estimated extinction event of dinosaurs occurring 65 million years ago, thought to have had two horns on its forehead and one on the bridge of its nose.


A. thought to have had.

B. thought to have.

C. it had

D. is thought to have had.completes the sentence and makes sense.

E. it was thought to have had

Correct answer is D IMO!
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Re: Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and [#permalink]
1
Kudos
A sentence must have a verb.
The actual sentence is
Triceratops , <its modifier phrase>, thought to have had two horns on its forehead and one on the bridge of its nose.

Triceratops thought to have ....?
Did the Triceratops thought something?
- No, the dinosaur was /is thought to have/be something.

Only choice D gives us a verb.

IMO D
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Re: Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and [#permalink]
Clearly D as we need a helping verb. All other cases have missing verb for T
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Re: Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and [#permalink]
1
Kudos
Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and thus one of the latest species to appear before the estimated extinction event of dinosaurs occurring 65 million years ago, thought to have had two horns on its forehead and one on the bridge of its nose.


A. thought to have had - Conjugate verb is missing. Incorrect

B. thought to have - Same error as A. Incorrect

C. it had - Meaningless sentence. Missing verb. Incorrect

D. is thought to have had - Correct. Adds an additional conjugate verb 'is' and provides the accurate meaning of the sentence.

E. it was thought to have had - Incorrect. Meaningless sentence.

IMO D
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Re: Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and [#permalink]
1
Kudos
Correct Option D.

The only flaw, which is corrected
in option D is SV agreement.

Triceratops - Singular
Verb "is"- Singular, present tense ( taught today)

(It have two horns on its forehead and
one on the bridge of its nose) and
had to relate it to past tense - action completed


Triceratops -

{a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and
thus one of the latest species to appear before the estimated extinction event of dinosaurs occurring 65 million years ago}

- Is thought to have had
two horns on its forehead and
one on the bridge of its nose.


Option E, pronoun "it" creates ambiguity with wrong verb "was" refer past tense.

Posted from my mobile device
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Re: Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and [#permalink]
1
Kudos
Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and thus one of the latest species to appear before the estimated extinction event of dinosaurs occurring 65 million years ago, thought to have had two horns on its forehead and one on the bridge of its nose.

IMO D

The strike out portion is a modifier, and thus need a verb in the independent clause before "and"

A. thought to have had
Fragment without main verb
B. thought to have
Fragment without main verb
C. it had
Run on sentence without any conjunction before it
D. is thought to have had
[Correct]
E. it was thought to have had
Run on sentence without any conjunction before it
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Re: Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and [#permalink]
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Kudos
Slash & burn:
(Remove the modifier but understood that triceratops are a past subject and is no more)

Triceratops thought to have had two horns on its forehead and one on the bridge of its nose.
Clearly linking verb is missing.


A. thought to have had
Linking verb is missing. Eliminate

B. thought to have
Because the linking verb is missing, the meaning changed and made the sentence silly( now the triceratops is thinking to have 2 horns????). Eliminate

C. it had
There is subject followed by it makes sentence fragmentation. It is redundant here. Eliminate

D. is thought to have had
'is' (linking verb) fixes the subject verb agreement and is clearly the correct option. Keep

E. it was thought to have had
it breaks the subject and verb agreement & causes fragmentation. Also, 'it' usage is redundant here. Eliminate

So D is the best answer choice.
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Re: Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and [#permalink]
1
Kudos
Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and thus one of the latest species to appear before the estimated extinction event of dinosaurs occurring 65 million years ago, thought to have had two horns on its forehead and one on the bridge of its nose.


A. thought to have had - Triceratops thought to have had? wrong

B. thought to have - Triceratops thought to have had? wrong

C. it had - Triceratops it had? wrong

D. is thought to have had - Triceratops is thought to have had. correct

E. it was thought to have had - Triceratops it was thought to have had? wrong
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Re: Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and [#permalink]
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Re: Triceratops, a dinosaur existing around 68 to 65 million years ago and [#permalink]
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