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# Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac before

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Magoosh GMAT Instructor
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Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac before [#permalink]

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03 Dec 2012, 12:20
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Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac before Ulysses S. Grant were so singularly unsuccessful against Robert E Lee are debated about in no less than five hundred historically oriented journals.
(A) are debated about in no less than
(B) are debated in no less than
(C) is debated about in no fewer than
(D) is debated in no fewer than
(E) is debated in no less than

See a full discussion of the grammar involved at:
http://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/substantiv ... -the-gmat/
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac [#permalink]

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03 Dec 2012, 12:59
Clearly fewer refers to journals that are countable

C is ackward and not fluent

D it is

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Last edited by carcass on 05 Dec 2012, 09:57, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac [#permalink]

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03 Dec 2012, 14:25
mikemcgarry wrote:
Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac before Ulysses S. Grant were so singularly unsuccessful against Robert E Lee are debated about in no less than five hundred historically oriented journals.
(A) are debated about in no less than
(B) are debated in no less than
(C) is debated about in no fewer than
(D) is debated in no fewer than
(E) is debated in no less than

See a full discussion of the grammar involved at:
http://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/substantiv ... -the-gmat/

Why X were so singularly successful against Y IS blah blah. Therefore "are" is incorrect and hence A & B are out.

C - "Is debated about" is unidiomatic, wordy and just plain awkward

E - "is debated in no less than" is incorrect since we are using numbers (five hundred) so "fewer" is preferred.

D is the only remaining choice that fixes all the errors.
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Re: Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac [#permalink]

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03 Dec 2012, 14:27
Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac before Ulysses S. Grant were so singularly unsuccessful against Robert E Lee are debated about in no less than five hundred historically oriented journals.
(A) are debated about in no less than should be singular is instead of are
(B) are debated in no less than should be singular is instead of are
(C) is debated about in no fewer than debated about is unidiomatic. should be debated
(D) is debated in no fewer than Correct!!!
(E) is debated in no less thanless should not be used with countable quantity

IMO, answer is D.
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Re: Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac [#permalink]

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04 Dec 2012, 08:53
Subject Verb error :
is/are -- "is" is correct as the subject is Singular. This cancels option A and B
less/ fewer -- "fewer" is to be used in case of countable quantity. This cancels option E
We are now left with C and D.

Debated about could be unidiomatic or awkward construction. Hence the incorrect choice.
The choice D conveys the correct meaning.
Hence D is correct
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Re: Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac [#permalink]

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28 Nov 2013, 09:53
aim730 wrote:
Subject Verb error :
is/are -- "is" is correct as the subject is Singular. This cancels option A and B
less/ fewer -- "fewer" is to be used in case of countable quantity. This cancels option E
We are now left with C and D.

Debated about could be unidiomatic or awkward construction. Hence the incorrect choice.
The choice D conveys the correct meaning.
Hence D is correct

I had the right answer by eliminating the less/ fewer option, but what is the subject of this sentence? Can't spot it.
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Re: Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac [#permalink]

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29 Nov 2013, 12:31
I had the right answer by eliminating the less/ fewer option, but what is the subject of this sentence? Can't spot it.

I'm happy to respond.

The subject is hard to spot because the main subject of the sentence is not an individual noun, but an entire clause. This is called a "substantive clause" --- sometimes also called a "noun clause" or a "relative nominal clause". This is a kind of clause that can act in the role of a noun and hence be the subject of the sentence.

See this blog for a full explanation:
http://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/substantiv ... -the-gmat/

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Re: Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac before [#permalink]

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29 Nov 2013, 22:09
'Is' brings me down to C, D, and E. 'Fewer' brings me down to C and D. Never heard of 'debated about', so D it is!
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Re: Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac before [#permalink]

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31 Mar 2015, 04:07
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Re: Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac before   [#permalink] 31 Mar 2015, 04:07
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# Why the various Generals of the Army of the Potomac before

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