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V12-05

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V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 13 Oct 2016, 08:54
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Difficulty:

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Question Stats:

41% (01:24) correct 59% (01:32) wrong based on 101 sessions

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Shortly after sunset there were juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there had been nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral but a thin patchwork of moonlit cloud.

A. were juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there had been nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral but
B. has been juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there is nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral but
C. had been juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there is nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral but
D. is juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there was nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral but only
E. have been juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there is nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral except
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
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Re V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 13 Oct 2016, 08:54
Official Solution:

Shortly after sunset there were juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there had been nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral but a thin patchwork of moonlit cloud.

A. were juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there had been nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral but
B. has been juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there is nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral but
C. had been juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there is nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral but
D. is juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there was nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral but only
E. have been juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there is nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral except

For using past perfect the later past event does not need to be expressed with a Simple Past tense verb. One could just use a date or another time reference. Using this construction, this sentence is set up, in which the first clause expresses an early action in Simple Past. Then, a second clause expresses a later action in Past Perfect to indicate continued effect (by a still later past time).

Answer: A
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Re: V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 13 Oct 2016, 21:51
shouldn't the earlier event have past perfect and the event that occurs afterwards have past tense??
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Re: V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 15 Oct 2016, 07:55
saichandm wrote:
shouldn't the earlier event have past perfect and the event that occurs afterwards have past tense??


This is one of the most confusing traps in tense section - it is suggested that be consciously aware of this trap. The explanation already clarifies why the tenses are so. Following is another example (from Manhattan SC guide) - compare this with option A - the concept would then probably be clearer:

The band U2 WAS just one of many new groups on the rock music scene in the early 1980's, but less than ten years later, U2 HAD fully ECLIPSED its early rivals in the pantheon of popular music.
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Re: V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 15 Oct 2016, 20:42
Thanks. Got it!! Have one more doubt. Should we use were instead of was as we are referring to green stabs.

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Re: V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 16 Oct 2016, 07:45
saichandm wrote:
Thanks. Got it!! Have one more doubt. Should we use were instead of was as we are referring to green stabs.

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Yes, thank you for pointing out - corrected.
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Re: V12-05 [#permalink]

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I am not sure whether the subject here is singular or plural. What is the subject here 'juddering green stabs of lightning to the south'? I chose Option D because I thought the subject may be 'Lightning'. But, because the correct choice has 'were', so I assume the subject is 'stabs'. I am really confused. Please help.
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Re: V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 06 Nov 2016, 10:28
arunavamunshi1988 wrote:
I am not sure whether the subject here is singular or plural. What is the subject here 'juddering green stabs of lightning to the south'? I chose Option D because I thought the subject may be 'Lightning'. But, because the correct choice has 'were', so I assume the subject is 'stabs'. I am really confused. Please help.


A subject cannot be within a prepositional phrase. "Lightning" is an object of the prepositional phrase "of lightning" - hence it cannot be the subject.
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Re V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jan 2017, 01:58
I think this the explanation isn't clear enough, please elaborate.
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Re: V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jan 2017, 08:27
Abira wrote:
I think this the explanation isn't clear enough, please elaborate.


Please elaborate your query specifically, so that we may address the same properly.
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Re: V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 12 Mar 2017, 12:48
Hi sayantanc2k

I am trying to understand the sequencing of the verbs in this sentence.

Sequence: Sunset --> Juddering green stabs of lightning --> warm, wet July --> quarter to one..

Is this sequence correct? Questions:

I understand that in the first clause since "after" is used, the sequence of the verb is clear so past perfect is optional and simple past usage is correct. But in the second clause, since a time frame is mentioned (by quarter to one), use of past perfect is mandatory.

I've never seen this type of usage where the prior event is in simple tense while the later event is in past perfect. I understand that the sequencing is clear for all the events when considered individually but because of the following verb tense usage, I marked choice A incorrect:

Sunset --> event in past tense --> event in past perfect --> quarter to one...

Can you please explain what I am missing here? Thanks for your help!

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Re: V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 22 Mar 2017, 12:28
I've just checked this problem on an article published by The Economist, and the answer should be letter C. The name of the article is TECHNOLOGY QUARTERLY: A SUDDEN LIGHT


Shortly, after sunset there had been juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there is nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral but a thin patchwork of moonlit cloud.


Sorry, but I can't post urls yet.
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Re: V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 22 Mar 2017, 23:05
The post above me is correct - I checked that article too. Should someone amend the correct answer?
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New post 02 Apr 2017, 08:20
oalmonacid wrote:
I've just checked this problem on an article published by The Economist, and the answer should be letter C. The name of the article is TECHNOLOGY QUARTERLY: A SUDDEN LIGHT


Shortly, after sunset there had been juddering green stabs of lightning to the south, but by a quarter to one in the morning there is nothing in the warm, wet July air over Cape Canaveral but a thin patchwork of moonlit cloud.


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Atbr1602 wrote:
The post above me is correct - I checked that article too. Should someone amend the correct answer?


The sentence you mentioned is absolutely wrong ( even though it may have appeared in the Economist). Option A is grammatically correct, and there is no need to change the OA. The reasons have already been explained in this thread.

(Note: when you justify a correct option or refute a wrong option, you need to provide reasons why you consider so - That the sentence appeared in some authentic source is not really a reason a sentence is right or wrong).
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For those of you who are still trying to understand why option A is correct, below is the explanation.
The reason past perfect verb "had been" correct here is because of the phrase "by a quarter to one in the morning".

By the time, the clock was quarter to one in the morning, there "had been" a thin patchwork of moonlit cloud.
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Re: V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jul 2017, 13:46
Hi venkateshksep24

So what you mean is that the latter event is the time ("quarter to one") and the previous event (and therefore in past perfect) is "the patchwork of moonlit cloud". Have I understood right?
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New post 18 Aug 2017, 02:59
Pinik1788 wrote:
Hi venkateshksep24

So what you mean is that the latter event is the time ("quarter to one") and the previous event (and therefore in past perfect) is "the patchwork of moonlit cloud". Have I understood right?


Yes. This is an exception to the past perfect tense rule where we need one another related event in past tense to use past perfect tense verb.
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V12-05 [#permalink]

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New post 07 Dec 2017, 12:08
sayantanc2k wrote:
saichandm wrote:
shouldn't the earlier event have past perfect and the event that occurs afterwards have past tense??


This is one of the most confusing traps in tense section - it is suggested that be consciously aware of this trap. The explanation already clarifies why the tenses are so. Following is another example (from Manhattan SC guide) - compare this with option A - the concept would then probably be clearer:

The band U2 WAS just one of many new groups on the rock music scene in the early 1980's, but less than ten years later, U2 HAD fully ECLIPSED its early rivals in the pantheon of popular music.


Sayantanc2k,

I understood the explanation, and also recall the reference to MGMAT that you have given. However I have a confusion!

In the 1st clause, "after sunset" is the prior event, so no need of past perfect. The 2nd event is using simple past "were" as expected. All good here.
In the 2nd clause however, "by quarter to one" is the later event. The use of "by" indicates that "moonlit cloud" is the prior event. So the sequence of events is also clear here. So why do we need past perfect to indicate the prior event?

Take the case of V04-38:
"Before the subprime crisis weakened the housing market, America, with its state of the art infrastructure and with multiple job opportunities for expats, _______ one of the most popular destinations for foreign investment."
(A) had been
(B) has been
(C) had been being
(D) was being
(E) was

The correct answer is E -"was"... because the time indicator "before" is clearly identifying the sequence of events. So both events are in simple past here (weakened, and was)
V12-05   [#permalink] 07 Dec 2017, 12:08
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