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SC72561.01- Remembered almost as an epic… | GMAT SC OG Solution

In this article, we’ll look at the solution to the 700-level GMAT Official Guide Sentence Correction question. “SC72561.01- Remembered almost as an epic…”.

Here is some general information about this OG question – Remembered almost as an epic among America’s 12,000 Bosnian Muslims is the digging of Chicago’s subway tunnels in the early 1900s, one of the proudest of family legends.

  • PQID: SC72561.01
  • Difficulty Level: Hard
  • Most Common Incorrect option choice: Choice A and Choice D
  • Question Type: Modifiers and Meaning

Take a look at the video solution for this Official Guide question below:

1. OG Question – SC72561.01- Remembered almost as an epic…

SC72561.01- Remembered almost as an epic among America’s 12,000 Bosnian Muslims is the digging of Chicago’s subway tunnels in the early 1900s, one of the proudest of family legends.

[Refer to the Official Guide for options]

2. Video Solution – SC72561.01- Remembered almost as an epic…

3. OG Solution – SC72561.01- Remembered almost as an epic…

We have all heard the old saying — “Life is like a box of chocolates; you never know what you’re going to get.” Well, GMAT SC can be a little that way too. I always appreciate receiving boxes of chocolates as a gift, but I always seem to receive those with no map or guide. So, there I stand, peering into the beautiful box of delicious chocolates, clueless as to which one is my favorite chocolate-covered caramel. If you are like me and have ever found yourself in this situation (of course, all the chocolates look delicious), you know you will eat one. However, you feel uncomfortable because you know they are filled with something, and you cannot tell what is what!

GMAT OG question - Remembered almost as an epic among America's 12,000 Bosnian Muslims...

That same feeling came over me after I read this sentence — I knew the author was trying to communicate something, but I was unsure what was being stated. Of course, I would solve it, but I felt like I do when I get an assorted box of chocolates. I read it and felt uneasy initially, having no idea what I was about to bite into.

Fortunately, over the years, I have learned that there are ways to tell what type of chocolate each piece is in the box. And no, it is not by poking holes in the bottoms of the chocolates to get to the core to see what the filling is- like I did when I was younger! The decorations on the top of the chocolates are the clues!  Similarly, we can extract the logical intended meaning of a confusing GMAT sentence by using the author’s clues in the original sentence.

4. Communication is at the Core

Communication is at the core of all SC questions. Some authors have a more difficult time expressing the intended communication. However, just like our box of chocolates, all the clues are there; we must piece them together. When I am faced with a question that completely confuses me and does not seem to make any logical sense, I immediately go to my inquisitive childhood nature and start asking a bunch of questions — “who? what? where? why?” well, you get the point. We call these probing questions, and these types of probing questions will help you sort out the core intended meaning. Let’s give it a try.

GMAT OG solution - Remembered almost as an epic among America's 12,000 Bosnian Muslims...

Remembered almost as an epic among America’s 12,000 Bosnian Muslims is the digging of Chicago’s subway tunnels in the early 1900s, one of the proudest of family legends.

The first thing that stands out here is the use of the phrase “as an epic.” The sentence seems to be saying that “digging of Chicago’s subway tunnels is remembered as an epic.” Now the question that comes to mind here is, “Can digging be an epic?” I would have to argue NO. The nature of an epic is that it is a story or legend about a heroic figure or piece of history.  Thus, the act of “digging Chicago’s subway tunnels” cannot be “an epic.” This meaning is illogical.

So, what clues do I have to help me infer this meaning? What can be “an epic?” I see the word “family legends,” and I know an epic can be a “legend” or even an oral history or tradition that has been passed down from the past.  So, what is “one of the proudest of family legends?” It would make sense that this legend is the digging of the tunnels. That is an extraordinary feat.  So, If I piece the clues together, I can infer the following:

  1. One of the proudest family legends is digging Chicago’s subway tunnels in the early 1900s.
  2. This family legend is remembered as almost an epic.
  3. This “epic” is remembered among America’s 12,000 Bosnian Muslims.

All the clues are sprinkled in the original sentence. We just had to look around and decipher them to understand what the author intended to communicate.

Now that we understand the intended meaning, is our map to the correct choice clear? Can we reshuffle the modifiers and arrange the sentence to properly communicate the logical intended meaning? Possibly.  However, if some of you are thrown off by the structure of the sentence, you may find extracting the meaning a bit more confusing.

4.1 The One with Nuts- AKA The Sentence with Inverted Structure

A sentence with an inverted structure is similar to that unexpected piece of candy with nuts.  You may not expect it, which causes additional confusion at first, but it is not all that bad. However, using an inverted structure is not in and of itself incorrect.

An inverted structure means that the author has placed the verb before the subject.  This structure often emphasizes the sentence’s action over the subject.  Sometimes, the inverted form is just happenstance, like picking up the wrong piece of chocolate.  In our original sentence, the verb is presented before our subject —

GMAT OG question - Remembered almost as an epic...

If we are confused by the structure, we can simply flip it to view it in the more traditional structure- “one of the proudest of family legends is the digging.” 

5. The Beauty of the Completely Underlined Sentence

Just like the beauty of looking at a box of chocolates and having the freedom to choose which one you want, having a completely underlined sentence allows us freedom of choice.  We can rearrange everything here and focus on a small, underlined piece.

We know what needs to be described and that allows us to look for an answer choice that places the modifiers in the right place. We need the noun modifiers next to or as close as possible to the noun the modifier is describing. As we deduced, “the proudest family legend” is the digging of the tunnels. So, we know we can eliminate B and D; they are not sweet choices.

An Epic - GMAT OG Solution - Completely underlined sentences

B. Almost an epic among America’s 12,000 Bosnian Muslims is the digging in the early 1900s of Chicago’s subway tunnels, one of the proudest of family legends.

D. America’s 12,000 Bosnian Muslims remember almost as an epic the digging of Chicago’s subway tunnels in the early 1900s, one of the proudest of family legends.

Option D is a popular incorrect choice. However, if we look closely, we can see this option repeats the same error we see in option A. Choice D still illogically associates the “digging” as being “almost an epic” and not “the family legend.” So, D should leave the same bad taste in your mouth as option A does.

6. How Sweet, Option E!

E. One of the proudest of family legends, remembered almost as an epic among America’s 12,000 Bosnian Muslims, is the digging of Chicago’s subway tunnels in the early 1900s.

This option arranges everything clearly and communicates the intended meaning!  This option places “one of the proudest of family legends” directly before “as an epic,” which is what it is indeed modifying. 

GMAT OG question - Remembered almost as an epic among America's 12,000 Bosnian Muslims...

Then we have the description of the epic placed just before the information about “digging,” which is what it refers to!  Everything points in the right direction and describes precisely what it needs to.  No confusion! The modifiers provide a clear map of the meaning.

How sweet it is! 

Cheers!

Stacey

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