SC: Modifier Issue

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SC: Modifier Issue

by gauravgundal » Mon May 16, 2011 8:25 am
In 1813, the Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire in the Battle of Leipzig, the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars.
A. In 1813, the Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire in the Battle of Leipzig, the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars
B. The Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire in 1813, which was called the Battle of Leipzig and which became the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars
C. In the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars, in 1813, the Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire in the Battle of Leipzig
D. 1813 saw the Battle of Leipzig, the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars, in which the Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire
E. The Battle of Leipzig, the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars, was a conflict between the Sixth Coalition and the First French Empire in 1813

[spoiler]OA: A[/spoiler]
I selected C as answer choice.
I am confused why C is wrong. Can't we say something as said in answer choice C?
In the largest battle .... , The Netherland defeated the Americans in the battle of Redmond.

Is answer choice C wrong because the modifier "In the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars" the part "Sixth coalition".

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by DominateTheGMAT » Mon May 16, 2011 8:35 am
Hi Gaurav,

The key with modifiers is to make sure that they appear as close as possible to the word(s) they modify. The problem I see in answer choice C is a common modifier error tested on the GMAT. Answer choice C starts with a lead-in clause, "In the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars,...." When you see that pattern on the GMAT, you want to check to make sure that the very next word(s) after the comma is whatever that lead-in clause is modifying. In other words, we would expect to see whatever is that "largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars" appear immediately after the comma. In answer choice C, that's not the case.

It is clear from the original sentence that the Battle of Leipzig is the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars. That clarity gets muddled in answer choice C, since those two clauses are separated so far in the sentence.

I hope this helps. Let me know if you have further questions.
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by aspirant2011 » Mon May 16, 2011 8:36 am
In 1813, the Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire in the Battle of Leipzig, the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars.

A. In 1813, the Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire in the Battle of Leipzig, the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars ---------> proper modifier being used i.e "the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars" is modifying "battle of Leipzig"
B. The Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire in 1813, which was called the Battle of Leipzig and which became the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars
C. In the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars, in 1813, the Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire in the Battle of Leipzig ----------> modfier should have been near to "battle of Leipzig"
D. 1813 saw the Battle of Leipzig, the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars, in which the Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire
E. The Battle of Leipzig, the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars, was a conflict between the Sixth Coalition and the First French Empire in 1813 -------> in 1813 should not have been in the end....

whats the OA?????

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by sameerballani » Mon May 16, 2011 9:41 am
gauravgundal wrote:In 1813, the Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire in the Battle of Leipzig, the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars.
A. In 1813, the Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire in the Battle of Leipzig, the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars
B. The Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire in 1813, which was called the Battle of Leipzig and which became the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars
C. In the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars, in 1813, the Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire in the Battle of Leipzig
D. 1813 saw the Battle of Leipzig, the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars, in which the Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire
E. The Battle of Leipzig, the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars, was a conflict between the Sixth Coalition and the First French Empire in 1813

[spoiler]OA: A[/spoiler]
I selected C as answer choice.
I am confused why C is wrong. Can't we say something as said in answer choice C?
In the largest battle .... , The Netherland defeated the Americans in the battle of Redmond.

Is answer choice C wrong because the modifier "In the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars" the part "Sixth coalition".
I feel the answer is A
in option b, which modifies 1813. that is wrong. so eliminated
option C the opening modifier modifies the sixth coalition instead of the battle... this is wrong. Eliminated
option E,loss the essence of attack. change in meaning. eliminated
option D. Tempting, but 1813 saw... seems awkward.

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by lunarpower » Wed May 18, 2011 1:05 am
Dominate
DominateTheGMAT wrote:Hi Gaurav,

The key with modifiers is to make sure that they appear as close as possible to the word(s) they modify. The problem I see in answer choice C is a common modifier error tested on the GMAT. Answer choice C starts with a lead-in clause, "In the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars,...." When you see that pattern on the GMAT, you want to check to make sure that the very next word(s) after the comma is whatever that lead-in clause is modifying.
wrong for two reasons.

#1, the thing you've called a "lead-in clause" is not a clause; it's just a prepositional phrase.

#2, prepositional phrases are among the initial modifiers that *do not* have to obey this rule. see, among many other examples, OG12 #87 (In an effort to reduce their inventories, Italian vintners have cut prices...)
when you have a leading prepositional phrase, it should modify the following clause, not the following noun.

here's a list of initial modifiers that *do* have to obey this rule:
https://www.manhattangmat.com/forums/pos ... tml#p49102
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by lunarpower » Wed May 18, 2011 1:08 am
the actual problem with (c) is that its meaning is incorrect:
In the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars, in 1813, the Sixth Coalition attacked Napoleon and the First French Empire in the Battle of Leipzig

this wording makes it seem that the battle of leipzig was not actually "the largest conflict in the Napoleonic Wars", but, rather, something else that happened as a sub-component of that conflict.

here's an analogy:

in my high school play, the opening scene showed Melissa flipping through scenes in Shakespeare's Macbeth.
--> note that it's clear here that Macbeth was *not* the actual high school play; the play shows a scene in which a girl is flipping through a copy of Macbeth.

if Macbeth was actually the high school play itself, then i would need a modifier that makes that fact clear. an appositive modifier, such as the one in the correct answer to this problem, does that job well.
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