Assorted Grammatical Problems Exercise (687)

For each pair of sentences, choose the one that doesn't contain a grammatical error.

    1.
    Completed in 1985, designers used vintage materials whenever possible in the house’s construction.
    Designers used vintage materials whenever possible in construction of the house, which was completed in 1985.

    2.
    But the daughter-in-law of the scrapyard’s owner recognized the figure and learned the statue was stolen after doing an Internet search.
    But the daughter-in-law of the scrapyard’s owner recognized the figure and, after doing an Internet search, learned the statue was stolen.

    3.
    I am sure if you scour the Internet, you will find that someone has written these very words.
    I am sure if you scour the Internet, someone will have written these very words.

    4.
    Morning showers fell in parts of the scorched landscape, which will continue into the evening, forecasters said.
    Morning showers, which will continue into the evening, fell in parts of the scorched landscape, forecasters said.

    5.
    I am glad that not all people are as bigoted as Smith is.
    I am glad that all people are not as bigoted as Smith is.

Answers and Explanations

1. Designers used vintage materials whenever possible in construction of the house, which was completed in 1985.
The incorrect sentence erroneously identifies designers of the house, rather than the house, as being completed in 1985.

2. But the daughter-in-law of the scrapyard’s owner recognized the figure and, after doing an Internet search, learned the statue was stolen.
The incorrect sentence implies that the statue was stolen after someone searched online for information about it. The revision clarifies that the woman searched online about the statue to find out about its origin and learned that it was stolen.

3. I am sure if you scour the Internet, you will find that someone has written these very words.
The false-conditional incorrect sentence implies that the words will have been written before only if the reader searches for them online. The intended meaning is clarified in the revision.

4. Morning showers, which will continue into the evening, fell in parts of the scorched landscape, forecasters said.
The incorrect sentence reads that the scorched landscape, rather than morning showers, will continue into the evening. The error is rectified by inserting the parenthetical phrase "which will continue into the evening" earlier in the sentence.

5. I am glad that not all people are as bigoted as Smith is.
The incorrect sentence reads that no one is as bigoted as Smith, but the point is that many people are not as bigoted as he is, so the phrase "all people are not" must be revised to "not all people are."

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