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Ambiguous Pronouns

 
 
ACTPREP
 
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 09:09 am
As late as the 1901, there had been proposals for an innovative carriage, but that took centuries to resolve.

What should "took" be replaced with?

A) (Leave it.)
B) it
C) those
D) (Remove it.)

Why is that so?
 
View best answer, chosen by ACTPREP
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 09:20 am
@ACTPREP,
TOOK is not a pronoun. The entire sentence is kind of idiotic, for everyone knows that, since "the 1901", barely 1.10 century has passed
MontereyJack
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 09:21 am
"took" is a verb. You want to replace it with a pronoun. Can't. Did you mean "that"? It's okay as it stands, except the rest of the sentence is ungrammatical.
ACTPREP
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 09:30 am
@farmerman,
Yeah I know it doesnt make sense logically, but I tried to take the sentence from an ACT booklet without trying to plagiarize the words. And yes, I mis-underlined. The correct underlined word should be "that."
0 Replies
 
MontereyJack
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 09:30 am
Quote:
As late as the 1901, there had been proposals for an innovative carriage, but that took centuries to resolve.



Are you talking about the evolution of the automobile? If so, your timeline is off.

"Well before 1900, there had been proposals for an innovative carriage, but it took almost a century and a half for a practical self-propelled carriage to be developed."
(Nicholas Cugnot's steam artillery wagon of 1769 to Ford's Model T 1908)(and I think Leonardo DaVinci drew a crank-operated impractical human-powered horseless carriage. If you want to consider that, I suppose you can use "centuries", but Cugnot built the first one that actually worked--sort of).

ACTPREP
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 09:31 am
@MontereyJack,
I'm not here for facts, lol. I came here for grammar errors. I will change the underline word.
0 Replies
 
ACTPREP
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 09:32 am
@ACTPREP,
As late as the 1901, there had been proposals for an innovative carriage, but that took centuries to resolve.

What should "that" be replaced with?

A) (Leave it.)
B) it
C) those
D) (Remove it.)

Why is that so?
0 Replies
 
MontereyJack
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 09:34 am
OK. What's ACT? First clause would make more sense if it were "as late as 1901"
ACTPREP
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 09:35 am
@MontereyJack,
http://www.act.org/products/k-12-act-test/
0 Replies
 
ACTPREP
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 09:37 am
@MontereyJack,
I chose "C" yet the correct answer (based similar to ACT) is "B) it ". Why is this so?
0 Replies
 
MontereyJack
 
  3  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 09:42 am
Whatever the ACT is, there's no great difference between "that" and "it", and the sentence is badly written altogether. they should fire their test writers. First clause is ungrammatical. You don't in general "resolve" a proposal. And there's really nothing in the sentence that "it" or "that" refers directly to. You have to infer a subject for it to refer to.
ACTPREP
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 09:45 am
@MontereyJack,
Would you like to see the actual sentence? How would I post it without plagiarizing the authors?
ACTPREP
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 09:59 am
@ACTPREP,
http://imgur.com/NNGDTLb ( taken from preparing for the 2012-2013 ACT free booklet. )
0 Replies
 
MontereyJack
  Selected Answer
 
  3  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 10:16 am
The original question would in fact take "it". "that" would refer to somethingn earlier in the sentence", which it doesn't, , but "it" is a sort of a conventional way to refer to an entire situation without spelling it out explicitly. Here it would refer to the development and consturction of a subway, which was only possible after numeroud difficulties were resolved (you resolve a difficulty, you don't resolve a proposal or an innovative carriage).
ACTPREP
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 10:24 am
@MontereyJack,
Thank you. Just one more question. Why is C not a viable option?
0 Replies
 
MontereyJack
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 11:03 am
"those " is plural of "that", and if it were used would probably be taken to refer to "proposals" (also, obviously, plural), but it doesn't.
0 Replies
 
MontereyJack
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 11:29 am
hurrah, I get a red ribbon!
0 Replies
 
mark noble
 
  -2  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 12:50 pm
@ACTPREP,
How did it take 'centuries' to resolve?
Only 'ONE' has passed!
Twat!


You a yank?
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 04:07 pm
@farmerman,
Quote:
The entire sentence is kind of idiotic,


Indicative of why idiots like you, Farmer, should not be replying to questions on language issues, especially when it involves ESLs.
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jul, 2013 04:18 pm
@ACTPREP,
Quote:
Would you like to see the actual sentence? How would I post it without plagiarizing the authors?


ACTPREP, plagiarizing doesn't mean that you can't post the thoughts/ the writing of others. It simply means that you can't post/use them and pass those writings/ideas off as your own.

Academics quote many other academics both with direct quotations and by describing and discussing their ideas all the time. What they do is make it clear either with footnotes or some other method that these ideas, writings are not their own.

All you have to do is post the actual sentence and provide a link to where you got it. You can even just describe that it comes from another source, that it is not your original creation.
 

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