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Table of Contents
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Introduction
How important are idioms?
What are idioms?
What this ebook covers
1
3
3
Section 1: Idioms & Prepositions
Introduction
Prepositions & Idioms: “From”
Prepositions & Idioms: “To”
Prepositions & Idioms: “With
Prepositions & Idioms: ”Of”
Prepositions & Idioms: “For”
Prepositions & Idioms: “Against”
Prepositions & Idioms: “On”
Prepositions & Idioms: “In” & “By”
A Potpourri (4 more prepositions)
Compound prepositions
“Because” vs. “Because of”
Idioms involving “as”
Do you know your prepositions?
5
8
12
16
22
27
30
34
38
41
46
48
50
Section 2: Clauses & Organizations of a Sentence
Verbs that take the infinitive
Verbs + “that” clauses
Idioms involving “so”
Idioms of cause & consequence
Idioms of comparison
“The”: A quirky comparions idiom
Comparisons: “More” vs. “Greater”, “Less” vs. “Fewer”
“Act like” vs. “Act as”
Idioms of whole and parts
“Means of” vs. “Means to”
“Idea” words: Idioms of beliefs & ideas
“Consider” this idiom
Correlative Conjunctions
“If” vs. “Whether”
Idioms involving “Whether”
52
55
59
62
66
71
73
76
78
81
84
86
88
92
95
Practice Questions
Easy
Medium
Very Hard
96
97
98
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how important
are idioms for the GMAT sentence correction?
Idioms appear just as frequently
as parallelism so... VERY IMPORTANT!
logical predication
agreement
diction
grammatical
construction
idioms
parallelism
rhetorical
construction
verb form
1
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? ? ? ? ? ? ?
? ? ? ? ? ? ?
based on the OG, of the 13-14 Sentence Correction
questions you see on the GMAT Verbal Section...
about 3-4 of them should test idioms
The chance that, of the 14 sentence correction questions
on the real GMAT, you do not see an idiom question is about
1 in 100.
2
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Ability to do X
Prevent from doing X
Scarcer than hen’s teeth
Raining cats and dogs
kinds of idioms on the GMAT
WHAT THIS EBOOK COVERS
The articles in this ebook cover idioms as well as a bit about diction
and a bit about rhetorical construction. Idioms are about unique com-
binations of words, which words always “belong together”. Diction
concerns the meaning of individual words, and whether this single
word is used properly in a sentence. Rhetorical construction concerns
the overall flow of a sentence, how a sentence is put together for the
most clarity and power, but no ambiguity. Discussion of idioms neces-
sarily reaches into these other two areas, so topics in diction and
rhetorical construction will appear throughout the ebook.
3
IDIOMS INVOLVING
PREPOSITIONS
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IDIOMS INVOLVING
PREPOSITIONS
G
M
A
T
G
M
A
T
G
M
A
T
G
M
A
T
4
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|e word "fron" is a preposition. T|is neans, it nust oe followed oy a noun = or oy sone
t|ing playing t|e role of a noun. T|is latter category includes gerunds and suostantive claus
es.
1) T|e SEC pro|ioits folks wit| inside infornation aoout a conpany fron trading t|at con
pany's stocks and options.
2) T|e state senator strove to distinguis| |is party's nuanced position on innigration fron
w|at t|e controversial fringe group advocates.
¦n sentence #1, t|e oo|ect of "fron" is a gerund p|rase, and in sentence #2, t|e oo|ect is a
suostantive clause. ¦ncidentally, oot| of t|ese are exenplary of idions involving t|e word
"fron."
Sone veros require t|e word "fron." Sone of t|ese veros involve sone kind of spatial
separation, at least in t|eir literal sense.
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For ot|er veros, t|e separation is not literal and spatial, out conceptual
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the preposition “from”
verbs + “from”
5
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"# %&'() *+&, -.( */'&0, -'# 1)#( /&' -22'&-3" -.( '#3#(4.56 /'&0 7 +& 86 9&+" :4+#'-::; -.(
fguratively.
4) Ceneral S|ernan narc|ed fron ltlanta to Savanna|, destroying everyt|ing along t|e way.
<= >"#'#-) - 0&(#'. 70#'43-. /#-)+ 4) )-4( +& 5& */'&0 )&12 +& .1+),6 -. -.34#.+ ?&0-.
oanquet went ao ovo usque ad pono ("fron t|e egg to t|e apple").
C) Sviatoslav Pic|ter's repertoire ranged fron works oy eig|teent| century Baroque conpos@
ers, suc| as Bac| and Handel, to contenporary conpositions, oy Soviet conposers suc| as
S|ostakovic| and Prokofev, sone of w|ose works Pic|ter preniered.
A&+43#6 4. +"-+ :-)+ )#.+#.3# +"# 4(4&0 *+& '-.5# /'&0 7 +& 8*, a way of talking aoout t|e literal
or fgurative extent of sonet|ing.
For oot| "prevent" and "pro|ioit", t|e oo|ect of "fron" is alnost always a gerund = "to
prevent soneone fron talking", "to pro|ioit citizens of one state fron suing a anot|er state."
lnot|er unusual "fron" idion involves t|e vero "to c|oose". W|en a person c|ooses an
action, we say t|at person "c|ooses to do X" = t|e action is expressed as an infnitive.
W|en we are discussing t|e various options availaole to t|e person c|oosing, we use t|e
4(4&0B
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Here, t|e oo|ect of "fron" is t|e set or list of availaole options.
3) Congress oalked w|en President Peagan c|ose Pooert Bork fron all availaole federal
|udges.
Here, t|e p|rase "all availaole federal |udges" gives t|e array of options fron w|ic| t|e
c|oice was nade.
verbs + “from”
spacial relationships
6
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
“difference”
loove, ¦ cited a vero idion involving t|e preposition "fron". !" $%&&'( &(")
T|e ad|ective forn "different" also follows t|is forn. $%&&'('*! &(")
7) Few can say w|et|er a c|aconne is truly different fron a passacaglia.
Sonetines a root word retains t|e sane idion as it c|anges fron one grannatical forn to
anot|er.
lnot|er idion t|e vero differ follows is !" $%&&'( %*+ Here, we are not descrioing t|e two
parties w|o differ, out rat|er t|e feld or discipline in w|ic| t|ey differ
8) Pepresentative Hostettler and Pepresentative Frank differ in t|eir position on gay nar
riage.
T|e noun forn "difference" s|ares t|is latter idion wit| t|e vero and follows its own idions.
$%&&'('*,' %*- $%&&'('*,' .'!/''*- 0*$ $%&&'('*,' /%!1 ('23',! !"+
9) T|e president and prine ninister |ave no difference in standing on t|e proposed trade
oill.
10) Et|icists ordinarily underscore t|e difference oetween "w|ite lies', designed to protect
t|e feelings of ot|ers, and lies of nalice notivated oy venal selfinterest.
11) Since t|e Senator's reelection, political connentators |ave renarked on suotle differ
ences wit| respect to |is portrayal of t|e tax reforn.
T|e "oetween" idion indicates t|e parties t|at differ, w|ile t|e "in" or "wit| respect to"
descrioe t|e suo|ect or feld of t|e difference. eit|er one of t|ese latter can oe conoined wit|
t|e "oetween" idion.
12) T|e difference in |itting tec|nique oetween Baoe Put| and Ted Willians is t|e suo|ect of
endless deoate.
13) Between t|e original 1937 novie and t|e current renake, critics |ave noted differences
wit| respect to t|e nurderer's notivations.
7
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
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T|e preposition "to" also oegins infnitive. ln infnitive is sonet|ing very different fron a
/'#/&-,*,&0.7 /"'.-#1 !",- 57&: .'*,;7# ,- (,-;4--,0: /'#/&-,*,&0 /"'.-#- ,0<&7<,0: )*&+3
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ot|er post on veros t|at idionatically require infnitives, anot|er topic necessarily for
perforning well on CMlT Sentence Correction.
!"# /'#/&-,*,&0 )*&+ :#0#'.778 ;&00&*# 2&*,&0 *&%.'( -&2#*",0:3 .0( 2.08 &6 ,*- 4-#- '#*.,0
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the preposition “to”
lgain, |ust to oe perfectly clear. t|is section is aoout veros t|at require a prepositional p|rase
oeginning wit| "to" = see pp. 4344 for veros t|at require infnitives. T|e following two
veros require a prepositional p|rase oeginning wit| "to".
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verbs + “to”
8
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
W|en we attrioute sonet|ing (l) to soneone (B), we are saying t|at we t|ink person B |as
t|e quality or skill or talent of l, t|at sonet|ing, l, can also oe a realworld ac|ievenent or
acconplis|nent. T|e "credit" for t|e talented or ac|ievenent, as it were, "travels" to t|e
person to w|on t|e attrioution was nade. t|is is w|y t|e preposition "to" is used.
3) Despite initial controversies, nat|enaticians now universally attrioute t|e proof of
Fernat's Last T|eoren to lndrew Wiles.
W|en we contrioute sonet|ing (l) to soneone (B), we are giving (l) a gift or donation to B.
¦n nost contexts including t|e CMlT, w|en t|e oo|ect contriouted is ot|erwise unspecifed, it
is assuned to oe noney. T|e gift or w|atever is contriouted "noves toward" t|e one w|o
receives it.
4) Warren Buffet contrioutes suostantially to p|ilant|ropic and c|aritaole organizations.
5) ¦n one of t|e renarkaole collaoorations of nusic |istory, Paul McCartney would contrioute
nore conplex and interesting |arnonies to Jo|n Lennon's songs, and in turn, Lennon would
contrioute nindoending p|rases to McCartney's lyrics.
T|e idion involving t|e vero "conforn" is a little nore unusual. W|en ¦ say ¦ conforn l to B,
t|en l is usually sonet|ing under ny control (ny oe|avior, ny |aoits, etc.), and B is sone
kind of nore universal standard or set of rules. T|e connotation is t|at B is oased in sone
sort of aut|ority, and l is sonet|ing w|ic| s|ould oe governed oy t|is aut|ority.
C) Professor Higgins argued t|at status of t|e various races, wit| respect to t|e lnerican
legal systen, still does not conforn to t|e Fourteent| lnendnent's lofty idea of "equal
protection under t|e law."
7) T|e CFC estinated t|at Fonal|aut Corporation would |ave to spend nore t|an S7 nillion
in order to conforn conpletely to t|e full panoply of EPl regulations.
verbs + “to”
9
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
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comparisons with “to”
10
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
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adjectives + “to”
11
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|e word "wit|" is a preposition. T|is neans, it nust oe followed oy a noun = or oy sone
t|ing playing t|e role of a noun. T|is latter category includes gerunds and suostantive
clauses.
1) Despite an earlier attenpt oy C|ancourois, |istorians of science general credit Dnitri
Mendeleev wit| fornulating t|e Periodic Taole of t|e Elenents.
2) T|e Federal Judge argued t|at |is recent controversial ruling was consistent wit| w|at
t|e franers of t|e US Constitution t|oug|t aoout a rig|t to privacy.
¦n sentence #1, t|e oo|ect of "wit|" is a gerund p|rase, and in sentence #2, t|e oo|ect is a
suostantive clause. ¦ncidentally, oot| of t|ese are exenplary of idions involving t|e word
"wit|." T|e proposition "wit|", as an ordinary preposition, can carry a variety of connotations.
3) ¦ fxed t|e taole wit| |anner and nails. (indicates neans)
4) ¦ fxed t|e taole wit| |aste. (indicates nanner)
5) ¦ fxed t|e taole wit| ny friend C|ris. (indicates acconpaninent)
T|e idions oelow reflect t|is diversity of usages.
Sone veros require t|e word "wit|." Here's a list of t|e nost connon veros t|at require
"wit|".
!"#$$ &'()* +,--!.,#!($ &'()* +,/0-1 &'()* +#$2'( 3 &'() 4* $5!/,#$2 &'()* 0#,6'2$ &'()*
71/0!()'8$ &'()
T|e idions involving "agree", "collaoorate", and "synpat|ize" are nost like t|e acconpani
nent use of "wit|", in #5 aoove. in all t|ree of t|ese, t|e oo|ect of "wit|" is a person wit|
w|on sone |as sone kind of affliation or affnity, or t|at person's view.
C) T|e Hunan Pesources Director does not agree wit| t|e CFC's plans for redesigning t|e
enployee retirenent options.
the preposition “with”
verbs + “with”
12
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
7) Bra|ns collaoorated wit| t|e fanous violinist Josep| Joac|in in conposing |is Violin
Concerto.
8) Despite a lifetine of opposition, t|e nun synpat|ized wit| |er gravely ill opponent.
Sinilar to t|ese is t|e idion involving "enanored." To oe "enanored wit|" soneone or
sonet|ing is to really like it. it |as a connotation of sonet|ing like ronantic infatuation or
passionate ent|usiasn.
9) For nany years, Yeats was enanored wit| Maud Conne, w|o re|ected Yeats' narriage
proposals on four different occasions.
10) llt|oug| Jefferson was enanored wit| t|e idea of lioerty and equal rig|ts for all, t|e
Sout|ern delegates to t|e Continental Congress were successful in denanding t|at p|rases
condenning slavery oe renoved fron t|e Declaration of ¦ndependence.
T|e idion involving "provide" is nost like t|e neans exanple, #3 aoove.
Here, t|e oo|ect of t|e proposition "wit|" is a p|ysical or netap|orical support given to
soneone.
11) T|e resupply station provided t|e |ungry soldiers wit| nuc|needed food.
12) l young Peagan secretly provided t|e HUlC wit| danning infornation aoout |is fellow
actors.
13) lquinas' !"##$ &'()*)+,-$ provided Dante wit| a vast p|ilosop|ical systen wit|in
w|ic| to frane |is fanous drana.
T|e idion involving oot| "credit" and "conply" is sonew|at analogous to t|e nanner exan
ple, #4 aoove, only insofar as t|e oo|ect of "wit|" is necessarily sonet|ing aostract.
verbs + “with”
13
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!" $%& '(')* +$) ,-&('$ . /'$% 0+1 . '2 $%& 3&-2)" /%) -&,&'4&2 $%& ,-&('$1 5"( 0 '2 $%& 6758'$9
)- 5,,)*38'2%*&"$ 5$$-':7$&( $) $%& 3&-2)";
<=> ?4&" %'2 3)8'$',58 @)&2 ,-&('$ $%& 3-'*& *'"'2$&- /'$% &A,&3$')"58 '"$&B-'$9;
15) llt|oug| Cregor Mendel en|oyed scant scientifc recognition, current oiologists univerC
25889 ,-&('$ %'* /'$% $%& ('2,)4&-9 )@ B&"&$',2;
!" $%& '(')* $) +,)*389 /'$% D+1 $%& D '2 5 85/1 5 -78&1 )- 2)*& )$%&- 5:2$-5,$ 57$%)-'$5$'4&
3-'",'38&;
15) T|e CEC fred t|e vice president for repeatedly failing to conply wit| conpany policy.
verbs + “with”
comparisons
E&-& 5-& $%-&& '(')*2 $%5$1 '" )"& /59 )- 5")$%&-1 5-& 72&( '" %)/ /& /)78( ,)*35-& )-
-&85$& $/) $%'"B2;
!"#$%&' ) *+,- .
!"/,&%0, ) *+,- .
!"/0+0,'/, *+,-
F"& )@ $%& *5"9 /592 $) ,)"2$-7,$ 5 B-5**5$',5889 ,)--&,$ ,)*35-'2)" '2 $) 72& $%& 4&-:
+,)*35-&G /'$% $%& 3-&3)2'$')" /'$%;
<H> ?5-89 '" %'2 ,5-&&-1 I5--98 J$-5/:&--9K2 2/'"B /52 ,)*35-&( /'$% L&( M'88'5*K2;
<N> O)*35-&( /'$% *)2$ F8( M)-8( /'"&21 O58'@)-"'5 /'"&2 5-& 2'*38&- 5"( *)-& @-7'$ ()*'C
"5"$;
L%'2 85$$&- @)-*1 72'"B $%& 35-$','38& +,)*35-&(G P +/'$%G1 '2 ,)**)" )" $%& QR.L J&"$&",&
O)--&,$')" S +O)*35-&( /'$% .1 0 TG S 5"( )@ ,)7-2&1 . 5"( 0 *72$ :& '" 35-588&8; U)- $%&
/)-( +,)"$-52$G1 /& "&&( $) :& ,5-&@78;
14
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
comparisons
!" $% &'% &()*+%,- .*/(0//*12 & 3%'/41 $54 */ 3%'"4'6*12 )5% (41)'&/)7 )5%1 $% (&1 /&- )5*/
3%'/41 8(41)'&/)/ 9 $*)5 :;<
=>? !1 )5% 14+%, !"##$%&'(# *+,-.%7 @&'A B$&*1 (41)'&/)/ )5% 0))%' 3'*+*,%2% %1C4-%. D- )5%
&'*/)4('&(- *1 )5% &1)%D%,,06 E40)5 $*)5 &'D*)'&'- &1. .*/6&, "&)% 4" /,&+%/;
@&1- )*6%/7 %/3%(*&,,- 41 F@9B E%1)%1(% G4''%()*417 )5% /%1)%1(% "4'6/ & (41)'&/) &1.
$54 */ .4*12 )5% (41)'&/) */ 14) *634')&1); :- *.*46 &1. 01,*A% $*)5 8(463&'%<7 $% .4 14)
0/% )5% 3&')*(*3,% "4'6 4" )5% +%'D
!"#$%&'$() +,$- ./ 0 1
B5&) $*,, &,$&-/ D% $'412; B5% (4''%() *.*46 */ 8!1 (41)'&/) $*)5 97 : H<
=I? !1 (41)'&/) $*)5 )5% /*12,%JD44A /('*3)0'%/ 4" %&(5 4" )5% )5'%% 2'%&) K%/)%'1 L%,*2*41/7
)5% M&,* G&1417 )5% /)&1.&'. (4,,%()*41 4" )5% /('*3)0'%/ 4" B5%'&+&.& :0..5*/67 %&/*,- $40,.
fll a large oookcase, alt|oug| ironically, Budd|isn is nuc| less textoased t|an are its
K%/)%'1 (401)%'3&')/;
B5% *.*46 *1+4,+*12 )5% &.C%()*+% 8(41/*/)%1)< */ /*6*,&'7 &,)54025 .*/(0//*41 4" (41/*/)%1(-
.*""%'/ "'46 (463&'*/41/ 3%' /%; K5%1 $% /&- 9 */ (41/*/)%1) $*)5 :7 $% 2%1%'&,,- 6%&1
t|at B is sone larger systen or set of rules, and l is sonet|ing t|at "fts into" t|is larger
/-/)%6;
NO? !1 /0.1% 2-3 4&' /.(0# .5 6#"7(4+.%7 )5% E03'%6% G40') "401. )5&) ,%2&,,- %1"4'(%.
/%2'%2&)*41 $&/ 14) (41/*/)%1) $*)5 )5% PQ0&, M'4)%()*41 G,&0/% 4" )5% R40')%%1 96%1.J
6%1);
21) Euclid's fft| postulate, t|e notorious Parallel Postulate, is consistent wit| t|e ot|er four
34/)0,&)%/7 &,)54025 *) (&114) D% .%.0(%. *1.%3%1.%1),- "'46 )5%6;
15
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|e word "of" is a preposition. T|is neans, it nust oe followed oy a noun = or oy sonet|ing
playing t|e role of a noun. T|is latter category includes gerunds and suostantive clauses.
1) No anount of talking aoout issues facing t|e |oneless will satisfy t|eir nost oasic needs
in t|e s|ort tern.
2) We are now aosoroing t|e unfortunate consequences of w|at last year's county adninis
tration t|oug|t would oeneft us all.
¦n sentence #1, t|e oo|ect of t|e preposition "of" is a gerund p|rase, and in sentence #2, t|e
oo|ect is a suostantive clause. ¦ncidentally, oot| of t|ese are exenplary of idions involving
t|e word "of."
T|ere are t|ree very different vero idions involving "of".
!"#$%$& "(
)!!*$+ , "( -
&.%#/ "( , )$ -
¦n t|e idion "l consists of B", l is t|e conplete oo|ect or t|e fnis|ed product, and B is t|e
naterial of w|ic| t|is product is conposed. ¦t can oe used literally, for t|e actual p|ysical
naterial naking up an oo|ect, or it can oe used netap|orically for t|e content of sonet|ing.
3) ltonic T|eory states t|at all naterial oo|ects consist of atons and t|at t|e nacroscopic
properties of oo|ects depend on t|e nicroscopic interactions of t|ese atons.
4) T|e candidate argued t|at |is opponent's "New Horizons" progran consisted of no nore
t|an a revision of t|e forner governor's discredited ideas.
Notice t|at, idionatically, we would use t|e present participle for t|is vero, "consisting of",
out t|e past participle for two veros wit| t|e sane neaning. "nade of" and "conposed of."
the preposition “of”
verbs requiring “of”
16
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"#$ & '"'&(() *+,,-.-/' +*+"01 23-/ 4"0-"/- &5564-4 7 ", 8$ 7 +4 '3- 9-.4"/ &5564-*$ &/* 8
+4 '3- 5.+0- ". +/,.&5'+"/1
:; <&=-.' &5564-* >&(?-&/ ", =&.+"64 5.+0-41
C) T|e ¦nquisition never fornally accused Calileo of |eresy, only fnding |in "ve|enently
4649-5' ", 3-.-4)1@
T|e fnal idion is particularly diffcult. t|ink of l as B. Here, l is t|e person or t|ing under
consideration, and B is a role or a rank or a netap|or for l.
7) ¦ t|ink of ny friend C|ris as a walking dictionary and t|esaurus.
8) Many C|inese t|ink of Li Bai as t|e single greatest poet in t|eir t|reet|ousand year old
5+=+(+A&'+"/1
9) Sone feninists t|ink of c|ivalry as an outnoded set of oe|aviors and values t|at, despite
t|eir patina of gentility, pronote danaging gender inequities.
10) Fundanentalist C|ristians in t|e US t|ink of Evolution as nerely an opinion |eld oy sone
scientists, w|ereas nost scientists writing in peerreviewed |ournals t|ink of it as estaolis|ed
trut| oeyond any douot.
T|e diversity of idions involving "of" is nindooggling. Cne collection |as to do wit| t|e
conposition or constituency of t|ings.
!"#$%$&%#' ")
*+,- ")
!"*."$-, ")
+ !"//-!&%"# ")
+ #0*1-2 ")
+# +*"0#& ")
verbs requiring “of”
potpourri “of” idioms
17
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|e frst t|ree were discussed in t|e previous section. Most ot|er collective nouns (organi!
zation, association, crowd, tean, |erd, flock, etc.) follow t|is pattern. T|e oo|ect of t|e prepo!
sition "of" are t|e people or itens or naterial t|at conpose t|e group or t|e w|ole. Penen!
oer to use "nunoer" for t|ings you can count, and "anount" for uncountaole oulk.
11) l large nunoer of coal niners develop pneunoconiosis.
12) T|e anount of revenue t|at t|e United States governnent collects fron payroll taxes in
t|e US is approxinately equal to t|e anount of revenue fron personal incone taxes.
lnot|er closely related idion.
!"#$!% '(
)*'+#+,-,./ '(
W|en we speak of a "c|ance of l" or a "prooaoility of l", l is t|e event w|ose prooaoility we
are discussing. T|is event l nay oe an ordinary noun, or even a gerund or gerund p|rase,
out t|e CMlT does not like t|e construction
|preposition||noun||participial p|rase|
¦f you want to talk aoout t|at nuc| action, you need a full "t|at" clause wit| a |noun| ÷ |vero|.
Don't try to wedge a full action into a preposition p|rase using a noun & a participial p|rase.
c|ance t|at or prooaoility t|at
13) Cn a fve card draw fron a full deck, t|e c|ance of drawing a "royal flus|" is C49,740 to 1.
14) T|e prooaoility t|at a player will |it four |oneruns in a single oaseoall gane is very low.
t|is feat |as |appened only sixteen tines in t|e |istory of Ma|or League Baseoall.
¦f t|is last sentence |ad oeen p|rased "T|e prooaoility of a player |itting .", t|at would oe
t|e forn to w|ic| t|e CMlT oo|ects.
Cne idion netap|orically related to t|e "constituency" idion aoove is.
!#)#+-% '(
potpourri “of” idioms
18
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"#$ &'(&)*+,+)#* -)#*+*, ). )#/$ )#( 0)'12 34, +# " .(0 +#*,"#-(*2 ,0) 0)'1* ,)5(,6('
.4#-,+)# "* " *+#5/( &'(&)*+,+)#7 8)4' ). ,6(*( +#9)/9( :).;<
!"#$%&" ()
*+&,"$- ()
$& ()
(%, ()
=('(2 06(# 0( *"$ > +* -"&"3/( ). ?2 > +* ,6( &('*)# "#1 ? +* "# "-,+)#7 !(,"&6)'+-"//$2 >
:-)#,"+#*; )' :+* @"1( ).; ,6( -"&"-+,$ ,) 1) ?7 A.,(#2 ,6+* &/"+# *,",(@(#,2 :> +* -"&"3/( ).
?;2 -"# 3( '(&6'"*(1 @)'( -)#-+*(/$ 4*+#5 :-"#7; B(9(',6(/(**2 ,6+* ./(C+3/( +1+)@ -"# "&&("'
+# " #4@3(' ). ),6(' 54+*(*<
DEF G6( 1(,(-,+9( -)#*+1('(1 ,6( -4/&'+, -"&"3/( ). -)/1H3/))1(1 @4'1('7
DIF G6( *0"#2 -"&"3/( ). ./$+#5 /)#5 1+*,"#-(*2 +* @4-6 @)'( .'(J4(#,/$ 1(&+-,(1 )# 0",('
,6"# +# ,6( "+'7
G0) 0)'1* .)//)0 " 9('$ 1+..('(#, +1+)@ 0+,6 :).;
."&%/, ()
#(+&"0%"+#" ()
K6(,6(' 0( *"$ > +* " '(*4/, ). ? )' > +* " -)#*(J4(#-( ). ?2 0( "'( *"$+#5 ? +* ,6( -"4*(
"#1 > +* ,6( (..(-,7
DLF MN+# -"#-(' +* ).,(# ,6( '(*4/, ). @"#$ $("'* ). *4#3",6+#57
DOF P#(@&/)$@(#, +* ).,(# "# 4#+#,(#1(1 -)#*(J4(#-( ). '"+*+#5 +#,('(*, '",(*7
Cnce again, it's fne to |ave a gerund or gerund p|rase, out if t|e case involves oot| a noun
"#1 " 9('32 0( -)4/1 #) /)#5(' 4*( ,6( &'(&)*+,+)# :).; Q 0( 0)4/1 6"9( ,) -6"#5( "')4#1
,6( (#,+'( *(#,(#-(7
potpourri “of” idioms
compounds
19
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
For t|e frst two, again it is inportant to renenoer. a preposition can |ave as its oo|ect
eit|er an ordinary noun or (nore likely on t|e CMlT) a gerund p|rase, out if we want to put a
full noun ÷ action p|rase, t|e CMlT frowns on |aving a |noun| ÷ |participle| follow a preposi!
tion. T|is latter structure denands a full suoordinate clause. ¦n fact, t|is is precisely t|e
difference oetween "oecause of" and "oecause."
19) Because of t|e uncertainty surround t|e new tax law oeing deoated in Congress, t|e
stocks dropped for a t|ird consecutive day.
20) ¦nstead of invading t|e ¦talian peninsula oy sea, as all previous aggressors |ad done,
Hannioal travelled over t|e llps to invade oy land fron t|e nort|.
T|e idion "as of" is particular tricky. it is used to denote t|e precise tine of a particular
transition. T|e oo|ect of "as of" is always eit|er a tine or an event w|ose tine is well
known.
21) ls of next Wednesday, P|op|on Stores will no longer accept t|e conpetitor's coupons.
22) ls of t|e enactnent of t|e 2Ct| lnendnent in June, 1971, all citizens oetween t|e ages
of 18 and 21 |ave oeen eligiole to vote in all elections.
T|e idion "out of" can oe used for t|e p|ysical novenent fron a place = t|ink of ¦sak
Dinesen's nenoir !"# %& '&()*+ = out nore often it is used netap|orically for t|e source
naterial of sone creation.
23) Cut of innuneraole Slavic folk nelodies, Tc|aikovsky fas|ioned sone of t|e fnest
nasterpieces of t|e classical repertoire.
24) Cut of t|e seeningly intractaole contradictions oetween Newtonian and Maxwellian
p|ysics, Einstein created t|e T|eory of Pelativity.
compounds
20
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
special combinations
Finally, |ere are t|ree particular conoinations of terns wit| prepositions t|at you need to
know.
!" $%"&'( )*
!" +!),%-!)" )*
)" %..)/"- )*
¦n t|e idion in danger of l, l is sone penalty or unfortunate consequence.
25) T|e sop|onore w|o |osted all t|e keg parties was in danger of failing all of |is classes.
2C) ¦f t|e governnent of Creece defaults on its national loans, t|e country will oe in danger of
losing its Eurozone nenoers|ip.
¦n t|e idion in violation of l, l is t|e law or principle t|at t|e agent is violating.
27) Pepuolicans |ave argued t|at t|e PPlCl is in violation of t|e Connerce Clause.
28) T|e cultural critic pointed out t|at t|e oe|avior depicted on prinetine television is in
violation of nost of t|e Connandnents.
29) ¦n Euclidean Ceonetry, a triangle w|ose angles |ad a sun ot|er t|an 180° would oe in
violation of t|e Parallel Postulate.
Finally, a very tricky case. t|e idion on account of is roug|ly synonynous to t|e idion
oecause of. T|e latter is nore natural in nost cases, and usually lends itself to a nore
concise p|rasing. T|e forner is nore pretentious and veroose, w|ic| nakes it appropriate,
say, for legalese, out not particularly appropriate for t|e CMlT.
30a) Cn account of t|e stock narket's sudden and precipitous rise, t|e oond narket |as
rallied over t|e past few days.
30o) Because of t|e stock narket's sudden and precipitous rise, t|e oond narket |as rallied
over t|e past few days.
Tec|nically, oot| versions of t|e previous sentence are correct. Nevert|eless, ¦ |ave never
seen t|e idion "on account of" part of a correct answer on t|e CMlT Sentence Correction.
Cn t|e one |and, oe suspicious if you see Sentence Correct answer c|oices involving "on
account of", out on t|e ot|er |and, know t|at it is tec|nically correct.
21
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"# %&'( )*&'+ ,- . /'#/&-,0,&12 !",- 3#.1-4 ,0 35-0 6# *&77&%#( 68 . 1&51 9 &' 68 -&3#:
0",1; /7.8,1; 0"# '&7# &* . 1&512 !",- 7.00#' <.0#;&'8 ,1<75(#- ;#'51(- .1( -56-0.10,=#
<7.5-#-2
>? @&3#&1# %"& (&#-1A0 51(#'-0.1( 6.-#6.77 %#77 ,- 7,B#78 0& 3,-0.B# '511,1; .- /.'0 &* .
",0:.1(:'51 /7.8 *&' -0#.7,1; . 6.-#2
C? !"# 0#.<"#'- <"./#'&1,1; 0"# (.1<# .'# 1&0 '#-/&1-,67# *&' %".0#=#' 3.8 ".//#1 &1 0"#
%.8 "&3# .*0#'%.'(-2
D1 -#10#1<# E>4 0"# &6F#<0 &* 0"# /'#/&-,0,&1 )*&'+ ,- . ;#'51( /"'.-#4 .1( ,1 -#10#1<# EC4 0"#
&6F#<0 ,- . -56-0.10,=# <7.5-#2 D1<,(#10.7784 6&0" &* 0"#-# .'# #G#3/7.'8 &* ,(,&3- ,1=&7=,1;
0"# %&'( )*&'2+
H,'-0 &* .774 0"# %&'( )*&'+ <.1 6# 5-#( ,1 .1 ,1(,'#<0 &6F#<0 <&1-0'5<0,&14 .1( -& &1# <.1 )(& .
*.=&' *&' -&3#&1#)4 )-.8 . /'.8#' *&' -&3#&1#)4 )6.B# . <.B# *&' -&3#&1#)4 #0<2 !",- <&1:
-0'5<0,&1 0#1(- 0& .',-# ,1 #,0"#' 1.''.0,=# &' ,1 ,1*&'3.7 (.8:0&:(.8 <&1=#'-.0,&14 -& ,0 ,-
517,B#78 0& .//#.' ,1 0"# .<.(#3,< .1( /'&*#--,&1.7 /.--.;#- &1 0"# IJK!2 L#=#'0"#7#--4
0",- -0'5<05'# ;,=#- . ",10 0& -&3# &* 0"# <&'# 3#.1,1;- &* ,0- 5-#-2 D* &1# ,- )*&' . <.5-#+4
0"#1 &1# -5//&'0- 0".0 <.5-# .1( ,- ,1 *.=&' &* ,02 J.18 &* 0"# 5-#- &* )*&'+ <.''8 0",- -5/:
/&'0,1; &' *.=&'.67# <&11&0.0,&12
!%& =#'6- %,0" ,(,&3- 0".0 '#M5,'# . )*&'+ /'#/&-,0,&1.7 /"'.-# .'#
!"#$% '("
!))(* '("
the preposition “for”
uses of “for”
verbs requiring “for”
22
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"# %&'()&('# *'+(# ,-' .% /#'0 1()" .2 3.2# 4.&" &"# 5,-' * )*(%#6 .7.-1 1#2&.-2#7 *8-/#9 :,
: *'+(# ,-' ;< &"*& ; .% %-1# =-%.&.-2 -' =#'%=#)&./# -' -=.2.-2 -' =-.2&>-,>/.#4 &"*& : %(==-'&9
?@ !"# %#2*&-' *'+(#7 ,-' 2*1.2+ &"# 2#4 /#&#'*2A% "-%=.&*3 .2 ".% %&*&# *,&#' B1*' C'*73#09
!"# -==-%.&# .7.-1 D ., -2# =#'%-2 *'+(#% ,-' ;< &"#2 ".% -==-2#2& 1*0 *'+(# *+*.2%& ;9
!"# ='#=-%.&.-2% 5,-'6 E 5*+*.2%&6 ,-'1 * 2*&('*3 =*.' -, -==-%.&#%9
!"# %&'()&('# *33-4 ,-' .% ,*' 1-'# )-1=3.)*&#7 *27 %(8&3#9 B2# (%# .% &"# %&'()&('# F *33-4%
for C, w|ere P is a law or set of rules and C is sone activity or specifc case consistent wit|
&"#%# '(3#%9
G@ !"# H.'%& I1#271#2& *33-4% ,-' ,'## %=##)"< #/#2 %=##)" )'.&.)*3 -, &"# +-/#'21#2&9
J@ !"# K#.%#28#'+ L2)#'&*.2&0 M#3*&.-2 *33-4% ,-' 1-1#2&*'0 /.-3*&.-2% -, ,(27*1#2&*3 3*4%
-, F"0%.)%< %()" *% N-2%#'/*&.-2 -, O2#'+09
I %#)-27 (%# .% &- *33-4 ; ,-' P< 4"#'# ; .% %-1# '#%-(')# Q&.1#< 1-2#0< '--1< #&)9@ 2##7#7
&- *))-11-7*&# P9
R@ !"# )-(2&0 8(7+#& 7-#% 2-& *33-4 *20 *77.&.-2*3 ,(27% ,-' (2#1=3-01#2& %#'/.)#%9
S@ I,&#' 8#+.22.2+ )-2%&'()&.-2< &"# 7#/#3-=#' 7.%)-/#'#7 &"*& &"# %&*&#A% 4*&#' *33-)*&.-2
systen would not allow suffcient drinking water for |is planned |ousing developnent.
T@ C*%#8*33A% (2.U(# %&'()&('# *33-4% #%%#2&.*330 (23.1.&#7 &.1# ,-' &"# '#%-3(&.-2 -, #/#2&% *&
&"# #27 -, * +*1#9
I 1-'# *8%&'*)& (%# -, &".% .7.-1 &- *33-4 ,-' V |as t|e neaning. to acknowledge extenuat>
.2+ )-27.&.-2%< &- +./# )-2%.7#'*&.-2 &- )-2&.2+#2).#%9 :2 &".% )-2%&'()&.-2< V .% &"# U(*3.&0 -'
c|aracteristic t|at would excuse or provide nitigating conditions for soneone.
W@ I33-4.2+ ,-' &"# 0-(2+ =#'%-2A% '*%" X(7+1#2&< &"# =-3.)# 7#).7#7 &- 7'-= *33 )"*'+#%9
10) T|e career nunoers Ted Willians produced are even nore extraordinary w|en we allow
,-' ".% &4- 3-2+ %&.2&% .2 &"# *'1#7 %#'/.)#% 7('.2+ ".% ='.1#9
verbs requiring “for”
23
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|ree furt|er veros forn a set of related idions involving "for"
!"#!$%$"$& ( )*+ ,
-%!$./& ( )*+ ,
sacrìhce A for B
¦n all t|ree, l is soneone or sonet|ing t|at "takes t|e place" of B. W|en we say we are
going to suostitute l for B, we are saying t|at, in sone context, we will replace B wit| l. T|is
is precisely |ow we use t|e terninology in nat|. "suostitute (2x ÷ 7) for y." We use it wit| t|e
very sane neaning in any one of a nunoer of ot|er contexts.
11) Cn t|e World Series roster, t|e nanager suostituted a rookie for t|e in|ured veteran.
12) S|e suostitutes naple syrup for cane sugar in |er nuffn recipes.
13) Critics of t|e Soviet Union argued t|at t|e Bols|eviks nerely suostituted one oppressive
despotic systen for anot|er.
Notice, incidentally = w|en we suostitute l for B, B is gone and l is part of t|e fnal product,
out w|en we replace l wit| B, l is gone and B is part of t|e fnal product.
T|e idion to nistake l for B is like a "suostitution" t|at |appens entirely in one person's
|ead. ¦f ¦ nistake l for B, t|en l is t|e real person or situation at |and, and t|roug| ny
nistake, ¦ don't recognize l = for w|atever reason, ¦ instead an under t|e nistaken inpres
sion t|at B is at |and, rat|er t|an l.
14) T|e students, seeing an inage of Henry David T|oreau, nistook |in for Lincoln.
15) T|e inexperienced investors nistook a s|ortcovering rally for a na|or upturn in t|e
narket.
verbs requiring “for”
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|e idion to sacrifce l for B also is like a kind of suostitution. ¦n t|is idion, l is t|e resource
or asset t|at one gives up, wit| t|e specifc intention of attaining B, sone desired condition
or result.
1C) T|e executive was not willing to sacrifce |is integrity for t|e lucrative deal.
17) ¦n t|e |indsig|t of |istory, Neville C|anoerlain is seen as |aving sacrifced t|e Sudeten!
land for w|at |e naively t|oug|t would oe "peace for our tines."
18) T|e t|ink tank's paper argued t|at t|e federal deot, in effect, sacrifces t|e prosperity of
future generations for our own unoridled consunption.
verbs requiring “for”
T|is idion is an exanple of t|e sane root word taking t|e sane preposition in different
forns. Bot| t|e noun responsioility and t|e ad|ective responsiole take t|e preposition "for"
!"#$%&#'(')'*+ -%!
!"#$%&#'()" -%!
¦n oot| cases, t|e agent w|o "is responsiole" or w|o "|as responsioility" is t|e person/t|ing
on w|on events depend, and t|e oo|ect of t|e preposition "for" is t|e process or event or
person or t|ing t|at t|e suo|ect controls or influences.
19) T|e President is ultinately responsiole for t|e actions of t|e entire Executive Branc| of
t|e governnent.
20) W|ile t|e Moon's gravitation is responsiole for t|e overall cycle of t|e tides, t|e Sun's
gravitation is responsiole for t|e difference oetween spring tides and neap tides.
21) Patients' rig|ts groups conplained t|at t|e proposed nedical nalpractice reforn essen!
tially would aosolve doctors of any responsioility for t|eir professional decisions.
“responsible/responsibility for”
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"#$ #&#'( #$ )*#+),- .* / 0/12 3"#$ #$ / 45/((/3#6/7 #&#'( 3"/3 &,5#8,$ 95'( 9'5(/7 7'4#6-
:",* 0, $/1 ;'5 ,8,51 <2 =2 0, /5, $/1#*4 3"/3 < #$ $'(, 6/3,4'51 0#3" ()73#>7, (,(?,5$2
and for sone reason (legal or nat|enatical or scientifc or .), we know t|at for eac|
(,(?,5 #* 3"#$ 6/3,4'512 = #$ 35),- @'(,3#(,$ #3 #$ )$,& 3' ,A>5,$$ 5/3#'$ #* / >'>)7/3#'*
("For every 3 people w|o do X, 7 people do Y.")
22) For every |ig| sc|ool oaseoall player w|o eventually rises to a career in t|e Ma|or
B,/4),2 ('5, 3"/* CDE '3",5 "#4" $6"''7 ?/$,?/77 >7/1,5$ *,8,5 4' $' 9/5-
23) Because of t|e doninance of natter over antinatter, at least in our Solar Systen, sone
3",'5,3#6/7 >"1$#6#$3$ &')?3 3"/3 3",5, 35)71 #$ / >'$#35'* 9'5 ,8,51 ,7,635'*-
24) T|e Fundanental T|eoren of lrit|netic states t|at for every natural nunoer, t|e nunF
?,5G$ >5#(, 9/63'5#H/3#'* #$ )*#+),-
“for” every A, B
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
l preposition nust oe followed oy a noun = or oy sonet|ing playing t|e role of a noun. T|is
latter category includes gerunds and suostantive clauses.
1) C|arles Lindoerg| argued against entering World War ¦¦ on t|e side of t|e lllies.
2) T|e CEC state |e was pre|udice against w|oever t|oug|t |is predecessor's SevenPoint
Plan was a sound way to run t|e corporation.
¦n sentence #1, t|e oo|ect of t|e preposition "against" is a gerund p|rase, and in sentence #2,
t|e oo|ect is a suostantive clause. ¦ncidentally, oot| of t|ese are exenplary of idions involv
ing t|ese prepositions.
T|e preposition "against" |as connotations of conflict and opposition. T|e nost inportant
idions associated wit| "against" are.
!"#$%&'(#& *+*',-.
!"/.#(. 0"/12*+*',-.
*"+%# 3'.42*+*',-.
hght wìth/agaìnst
5'(./"6 /5#"2*+*',-.
Etynologically, t|e word "pre|udice" sinply neans to pre|udge, and t|at pre|udging could
oe favoraole or unfavoraole, out in nodern Englis|, t|e word "pre|udice" carries t|e connota
tion of |aving pre|udged in a way t|at is unfavoraole. T|e nost discussed kind of pre|udice
is racial pre|udice, t|oug| of course one could oe pre|udice aoout nany ot|er issues.
Because of t|e negative connotation, we use t|e preposition "against" wit| "pre|udice."
3) Pre|udiced against s|ort tern securities, s|e only invested in options wit| nore t|an a
year oefore expiration.
the preposition “against”
prejudiced “against”
27
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|e pair of idions "argue wit|" vs. "argue against" is tricky. ¦f we are speaking aoout t|e
nanner of one's arguing, t|en we always use "wit|".
C) T|e c|arisnatic lawyer always argued |is case wit| trenendous persuasive powers.
¦f we are discussing t|e idea or cause one opposes, t|en we always use "against."
7) Clenn Could argued against t|e strict necessity for using original instrunents in perfor
nance of Baroque nusic.
8) lt|anasius spent |is life arguing against t|e lrian interpretation of C|ristianity.
¦f t|e oo|ect of t|e preposition is a person, t|en t|e difference oetween "argue wit| |person|"
vs. "argue against |person|" is suotle. ¦n general, if t|e affliation or oond oetween two people
is stronger t|an t|eir conflict = t|e relations|ip is ongoing, and t|e conflict is tenporary oy
conparison = t|en we would use "wit|" = |usoand & wife argue wit| one anot|er, orot|er
argues wit| sister, student argues wit| teac|er. ¦n general, if t|e conflict is t|e essential
defning feature of t|e relations|ip = if l didn't |ave an argunent wit| B, t|en l would not oe
|ave any relations|ip at all wit| B = t|en we would use "against." T|is is not a
|ardandfast rule, and in sone contexts, eit|er would oe correct.
9) ¦n t|e fanous Scope trial, conservative C|ristian Willian Jennings Bryan argued against
progressive lioertarian lawyer Clarence Darrow.
T|e distinction oetween t|ese two is very nuc| like t|e distinction oetween "argue wit|" vs.
"argue against." We certainly would use "wit|" to descrioe eit|er a quality of t|e fg|ting ("|e
foug|t wit| dignity") or a p|ysical tool used in fg|ting ("|e foug|t wit| orass knuckles"). We
use "against" for any idea or cause or novenent one opposes.
10) !"# %&'( &) *&+,'- depicts Poland's enenies as Muslins, out in reality, at t|e Battle of
Poncevaux Pass, Poland foug|t against Basque C|ristians.
“argue with/against”
“fight with/against”
28
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T|ese two are virtually identical = t|e latter seens sonew|at nore connon in sports
|ournalist. For t|e purposes of CMlT Sentence Correction, oot| victory over and victory
against are correct and inply no discerniole difference in neaning. Bot| are used to descrioe
t|e party or t|ing defeated in t|e victory.
1C) T|e passage of t|e Twenty First lnendnent, repealing t|e Eig|teent|, was a decisive
victory against t|e tenperance novenent.
17) lrising fron |ig|ly controversial ideas aoout t|e p|ysical world, Cuantun Mec|anics
consolidated a clear victory over Classical Mec|anics in t|e 1920s.
11) Tyc|o Bra|e |oped to use |is extensive ooservational data of planetary positions to fg|t
against t|e Copernican systen.
ls wit| "argue", we tend to say "fg|t wit| |a person|" if t|e ongoing relations|ip is nore
enduring and/or nore essential t|an t|e nature of t|e conflict, we tend to say "fg|t against
|a person|" if t|e conflict is t|e prinary node of relating. lgain, t|is is not a strict rule, and in
sone contexts, eit|er would oe correct.
12) ¦n t|e "T|rilla in Manila", on Cctooer 1, 1975, Mu|annad lli's foug|t wit| Joe Frazier for
t|e t|ird and fnal tine.
13) Be|ind closed doors, t|e CFC argued wit| t|e |ead of t|e corporation's legal tean aoout
potential inpact of t|e new policy, out puolicly, t|ey presented a united front of support.
14) ¦n 1942, Ceneral Montgonery was assigned to Nort| lfrica to fg|t against Field Mars|al
Erwin Ponnel, t|e "Desert Fox."
15) lfter t|e Second Triunvirate collapse, Cctavian foug|t against Marc lntony and Cleopa
tra, defeating t|en decisively at t|e Battle of lctiun.
“fight with/against”
“victory over/against”
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
! #$%#&'()(&* +,') -% .&//&0%1 -2 3 *&,* 4 &$ -2 '&+%)5(*6 #/32(*6 )5% $&/% &. 3 *&,*7 85('
/3))%$ 93)%6&$2 (*9/,1%' 6%$,*1' 3*1 ',-')3*)(:% 9/3,'%'7
;< 85% =>? $%.,'%1 )& %@#%*1 3*2 +&$% 93#()3/ &* '3:(*6 )5% .3(/(*6 1(:('(&*'7
A< B3'5(*6)&* 0%// ,*1%$')&&1 )53) 5(' /&*6C)%$+ ',99%'' (* )5% B3$ &. !+%$(93* D*1%#%*C
1%*9% +(65) 0%// 1%#%*1 &* 05%)5%$ E$3*F/(* 0&,/1 -% 3-/% )& #%$',31% )5% E$%*95 )& G&(* 3'
3//(%'7
D* '%*)%*9% H;I )5% &-G%9) &. )5% #$%#&'()(&* J&*K (' 3 6%$,*1 #5$3'%I 3*1 (* '%*)%*9% HAI )5%
&-G%9) (' 3 ',-')3*)(:% 9/3,'%7 D*9(1%*)3//2I -&)5 &. )5%'% 3$% %@%+#/3$2 &. (1(&+' (*:&/:(*6
)5%'% #$%#&'()(&*'7
85% #$%#&'()(&* J&*K /()%$3//2 1%*&)%' )5% ',$.39% ',##&$)(*6 '&+%)5(*6 LJ)5% -&&F (' &* )5%
)3-/%K<I 3*1 +%)3#5&$(93//2I () 93* $%.%$ )& 3 9($9,+')3*9% &$ )5% )&#(9 &. 3 )3/F7
M< ?* .&$+3/ &993'(&*'I )5% 6%*%$3/ 0&$% 5(' 9%$%+&*(3/ '3-%$7
N< !* 39F*&0/%16%1 3,)5&$()2 &* %(65)%%*)5 9%*),$2 /()%$3),$%I )5% #$&.%''&$ 03' 3'F%1 )&
/%31 3 '%+(*3$ &* #&')C+&1%$* #&%)$27
85% )5$%% +&') (+#&$)3*) (1(&+' (*:&/:(*6 J&*K 3$%
!"#$% '(
$)*$(% +,-.$/.'($0/$($1203 '(
%$*$(%# '( +45$,5$13
the preposition “on”
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"#$% '( )**+ %,- "."'/ 0 "$ 1)$-. '2 3 /-)2$ 4'5*. *"%-#)**6 /-)2 %,)% 3 "$ %,- 7,6$"8)* ('529
.)%"'2 '2 4,"8, 0 $"%$: ;,"$ "."'/ "$ #)#-*6 5$-. "2 "%$ $%#"8%*6 *"%-#)* $-2$-: <'#- '(%-2+ 3 "$
%,- -=".-28- '# 7,"*'$'7,"8)* 52.-#7"22"2> %,)% $577'#%$ 0:
?@ ;,- $8,-/) '( 752"$,/-2%$ .-$8#"1-. "2 A)2%-B$ !"#$%"& "$ 1)$-. '2 %,- %,-'*'>6 '(
;,'/)$ CD5"2)$:
Sinilarly, t|e idion oased on C, P is a perfectly valid participial nodifer construction. lgain,
3 "$ %,- %,"2> .'"2> %,- $577'#%"2>+ )2. 0 "$ %,- %,"2> $577'#%-.:
C) Based on 25 years of researc| in t|e feld, t|e doctor |ad a |unc| t|at t|e new nedicine
4'5*. 1- $588-$$(5*:
Here, t|e participial p|rase "oased on 25 years of researc| in t|e feld" nodifes t|e noun it
touc|es, t|e noun "doctor" = t|e doctor, in |is capacity as a nedical proolensolver, is
$577'#%-. 16 ,"$ 6-)#$ '( #-$-)#8,: ;,"$ "$ 7-#(-8%*6 8'##-8%:
;,"$ "."'/+ %,'5>,+ "$ 4)2%'2*6 )15$-. "2 8'**'D5")* $7--8,:
!" $%&'( )* +,'-. /)&-*0 .'1).(-*0 %/&+ 2'%.3 +,' +'%4 ()'&*5+ ,%6' % 1,%*1' +,-& 2'%.7
8" $%&'( )* 2)9. :',%6-).3 ; %4 0)-*0 +) <9*-&, 2)97
E'%, '( %,-$- /">,% 1- $)". 8'**'D5")**6+ 1'%, )#- FGGH IJKLM: N2 OP+ %,- %-)/ "$ 2'% $579
ported oy its losing record last year = it would oe far nore accurate to say sonet|ing like
QE-8)5$- %,- %-)/ ,). ) *'$"2> #-8'#. *)$% 6-)#+ 4- $5$7-8% %,)% R:Q ;,- )5%,'#"%)#")2
speaker of #8 is certain not supported oy |is interlocutor's oad oe|avior. lgain, a "oecause"
8*)5$- 4'5*. 1- ()# /'#- )885#)%-:
“based on”
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!" $ %&'&(%) *( +, -.&( + /) -.& 0*(%/-/*( *1 0/1023)-4(0& -.4- &/-.&1 5/66 466*5 $ -* .4''&(
*1 5/66 4""&0- -.& 7246/-8 *" $9 !( *-.&1 5*1%), :(*5/(; + 5/66 4()5&1 )*3& </-4668 /3'*1-4(-
72&)-/*( 4=*2- $9
>?@ A.& 6*04-/*( *" -.&/1 5&%%/(; 1&0&'-/*( 5/66 %&'&(% *( -.& 5&4-.&19
>B@ C =4)&=466 '648&1D) ./--/(; '1*5&)) %&'&(%) 3*1& *( ./) </)246 4=/6/-/&) -.4( *( 4(8-./(;
&6)&9
!( 3*1& 0*3'6&E )&(-&(0&), &/-.&1 $ *1 + F *1 =*-.G F "1*3 -./) )-120-21& 0*26% =& 4 )2=H
)-4(-/<& 0642)&, 3*)- -8'/04668 =&;/((/(; 5/-. -.& 5*1% I5.&-.&19J
>K@ L/(0*6( "&6- -.4- /))2/(; -.& !"#$%&'#(&)$ +,)%-#"#(&)$ ).*26% %&'&(% *( 5.&-.&1 -.&
C138 *" -.& $*-*340 5*26% =& 4=6& -* %1/<& -.& M*("&%&14-& "*10&) *2- *" N41864(%9
“expend... on”
A.& <&1= I-* &E'&(%J 3&4(), /( &))&(0&, -.& )43& -./(; 4) -.& <&1= I-* )'&(%9J O.&( 5&
)'&(% *1 &E'&(%, 5& 41& ;/</(; 4548 4 1&)*210& P3*(&8, -/3&, &(&1;8, &-09@ 4(% -.&1&=8
4072/1/(; )*3& ;**%9 !( -.& /%/*3 -* &E'&(% $ *( +, $ /) -.& I'1/0&J, -.& 1&)*210& )'&(- /(
-./) /(-&140-/*(, 4(% + /) -.& ;**% I'210.4)&%J 5/-. -./) &E'&(%/-21&9 A.& (*2( "*13 *" -./)
)43& /%/*3 /) -.& &E'&(%/-21& *" $ *( +9 PQ*1 3*1& *( <&1=H"*13) <)9 (*2(H"*13), )&& -./)
'*)-9@
R@ A.& S(/-&% T-4-&) .4) &E'&(%&% *<&1 &/;.-H.2(%1&% =/66/*( %*6641) *( -.& '*)-HRU>> O41
/( !1479
>V@ W4</(; 461&4%8 5*( 4 X*=&6 $1/Y& 4(% ;41(&1&% /(-&1(4-/*(46 "43&, Z/()-&/( &E'&(%&%
t|e last t|ree decades of |is life on an apparently fruitless searc| for a Unifed Field T|eory.
>>@ !( -.& 64-& 1*2(%) *" 4 34-0., 4 ):/66&% =*E&1 5/66 =& '41)/3*(/*2) 5/-. '*5&1"26 '2(0.H
&), '1&"&11/(; (*- -* &E'&(% <4624=6& &(&1;8 *( =6*5) -.4- %*(D- )2=)-4(-/4668 %434;& ./)
*''*(&(-9
“depends on”
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"# %&'(&') *+, -+.-/-.0*1 2*)(-31' .'3*, 4'50'+3' 6330)4 .'2'+.4 6+ 7&'(&') *11 )'1'/*+(
36+/')4*(-6+ 1*74 2')8-( -(9
!:# ;67 '*4-1, * +*8' -4 )'8'8<')'. .6'4 +6( .'2'+. 6+ (&' 50*1-(-'4 6= (&*( 2')46+9
!># %&*( * 2')46+ =0+.*8'+(*11, <'1-'/'4 .'2'+.4 40)2)-4-+?1, 1-((1' 6+ &67 803& (&*(
2')46+ &*4 -+ &') <*+@ *3360+(9
!A# ;67 460+.1, * 2')46+ 41''24 6+ *+, ?-/'+ +-?&( .'2'+.4 6+ 7&*( (&*( 2')46+ '*(4 -+
(&' &60)4 -88'.-*('1, <'=6)' )'(-)-+?9
B0<4(*+(-/' 31*04'4 ?*16)'C D&-4 -.-68 1'+.4 -(4'1= 7'11 (6 (&'89
“depends on”
33
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
! #$%#&'()(&* +,') -% .&//&0%1 -2 3 *&,* 4 &$ -2 '&+%)5(*6 #/32(*6 )5% $&/% &. 3 *&,*7 85('
/3))%$ 93)%6&$2 (*9/,1%' 6%$,*1' 3*1 ',-')3*)(:% 9/3,'%'7
;< 85% /&0%$ )3$(..'= 6,3$3*)%%1 -2 )5% 0&$/10(1% )$%3)2= $%',/)%1 (* &#%*(*6 %*)($%/2 *%0
+3$>%)' )& !+%$(93* (+#&$)'7
?< 85% #$%+(,+ &. 3 93// &#)(&* (' *&) 3) 3// 1%)%$+(*%1 -2 5&0 +3*2 &#%* (*)%$%') 9&*)$39)'
&* )53) &#)(&* %@(') 3) 3*2 6(:%* )(+%7
A* '%*)%*9% B;= )5% &-C%9) &. )5% #$%#&'()(&* D(*E (' 3 6%$,*1 #5$3'%= 3*1 (* '%*)%*9% B?= )5%
&-C%9) &. )5% #$%#&'()(&* D-2E (' 3 ',-')3*)(:% 9/3,'%7 A*9(1%*)3//2= -&)5 &. )5%'% 3$% %@%+F
#/3$2 &. (1(&+' (*:&/:(*6 )5%'% #$%#&'()(&*'7
85% #$%#&'()(&* D(*E 1%*&)%' 9&*)3(*(*6 3*1 (*9/,'(&* GD(* 3 -&@D= D(* +2 53*1D= D(* )5(' -&&>D<=
3*1 )5(' 93* -% +%)3#5&$(93//2 %@)%*1%1 )& 6%&6$3#5(9 /&93)(&* GD(* H%$+3*2D<= 3* 3$%3 &.
%+#/&2+%*) GD(* $%)3(/ '3/%'D<= &$ 3* 3931%+(9 1('9(#/(*% GD(* 6%*1%$ '),1(%'D<7 80& (+#&$)3*)
(1(&+' (*:&/:(*6 D(*E 3$%
!"#$%& ()
*(+ ()
T|e frst is easy. T|e vero "to result" idionatically takes t|e preposition "in"
I< !/#53 1%932 $%',/)' (* 3 *,9/%,' 0()5 )0& .%0%$ #$&)&*'7
J< H&$-395%:K' #$&6$3+ &. !"#"$%#&'() ,/)(+3)%/2 $%',/)%1 (* )5% 1(''&/,)(&* &. )5% L&:(%)
M*(&*7
the preposition “in”
idioms involving “aid”
85(' (' 3 :%$2 )$(9>2 /())/% 0&$17 N5%* D3(1E (' ,'%1 3' 3 :%$-= )5% ',-C%9) (' )5% #%$'&* #$&:(1F
(*6 5%/#= )5% 1($%9) &-C%9) (' )5% #%$'&* 5%/#%1= 3*1 3* D(*E #$%#&'()(&* 93* -% ,'%1 0()5 3
6%$,*1 )& (*1(93)% )5% 39)(:()2 (* 05(95 5%/# 03' &..%$%17
34
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!" $% &'()*'++) ',-.- /'0.) &.(.-,1* ,2 '11.2-,23 1*. $2,4.(),15 67 &,)),)),88,9
:*.2 ;',-< ,) =).- ') ' 26=2> 1*. (.?,8,.21) 67 1*. *.+8 ?'2 @. 6@A.?1) 67 .,1*.( ;16< 6( ;76(<
B;',- 16 (.7=3..)<> ;',- 76( 4,?1,0) 67 1*. -,)')1.(<"9 C3',2> 1*. ;,2< 8(.86),1,62 ,) 76++6D.- @5
' 3.(=2- '2- -.261.) 1*. '?1,4,15 ,2 D*,?* *.+8 ,) 8(64,-.-9
C) His aid in stuffng t|e envelopes was invaluaole.
!"# %&' "&( )* ')+,, )-. ./0.1*2.' 3"' &/0"1+"41.5
E" F*. '3.2?5G) ',- ,2 1('?H,23 -6D2 ;-.'-@.'1 -'-)< )*6=+- 261 @. =2-.(.)1,0'1.-9
F*. 26=2 ;',-< ?'2 @. 76++6D.- @5 ' ;16< 8(.86),1,62 16 ,2-,?'1. ' (.?,8,.21> @=1 ,1 ,) ' 0,)1'H.
to follow "aid" wit| an infnitive. T|is is a classic idionnistake on t|e CMlT.
F*,) 4.(@ ,) =).- ,2 1*. 3.2.('+ 8')),4. ?62)1(=?1,629 F*. ?608+.0.21 67 1*. )1(=?1=(. I
J'?1,4. 4.(@K L ,) L J8')),4. 4.(@K @5 I9
M" N(.- .'1) 1*. 0.'+9 F*. 0.'+ ,) .'1.2 @5 N(.-9
O" P6)165.4)H5 D(61. !"#$% '() *+(#,-$%(.9 /-% 0"1.-%", 2'"'$'314 D') D(,11.2 @5
P6)165.4)H59
ls a general rule, t|e CMlT frowns on nost passive constructions for t|e nain vero of t|e
).21.2?.9 Q$F R 261,?. 1*'1 ,7 D. =). 1*. 4.(@ ,2 ,1) 8')1 8'(1,?,8+. 76(0 B,9.9 ;D(,11.2<"> D.
?6=+- -.261. ' )=@A.?1 D,1* ' ;@5< 8(.86),1,62 '2- =). 1*. 8'(1,?,8+. 16 06-,75 ' 26=29 F*,)
is a nuc| nore acceptaole structure on t|e CMlT Sentence Correction.
ST" :(,11.2 @5 P6)165.4)H5> F*. Q(61*.() U'('0'V64 ,) 62. 67 1*. 06)1 8*,+6)68*,?'+ 264.+)
.4.( ?6086).-9
idioms involving “aid”
“by”
35
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
Cne vero t|at particularly lends itself to t|e |past participle|"oy"|actor| nodifer structure is
t|e vero "to deternine." ¦f t|e "deternining" is t|e nain fact in a sentence, t|e CMlT would
far prefer to see it in t|e active voice t|an in t|e passive voice = "Moon p|rases deternine
tides", rat|er t|an "Tides are deternined oy Moon p|ases." ¦t's t|e nature of t|is vero,
t|oug|, t|at it's nuc| nore frequently in a nodifying role ¦ a conplex CMlTlike sentence =
|ence, its frequent appearance in t|e aforenentioned nodifer structure.
13) Deternined prinarily oy Moon p|ase, ocean tides take on oizarre and idiosyncratic
patterns in enclosed |aroors, suc| as New York Haroor and t|e San Francisco Bay.
14) l |unan is not responsiole for |is face during yout|, a face deternined alnost exclu
sively oy genetics, out arguaoly is responsiole for |is wizened face in old age, a face deter
nined largely oy lifelong enotional patterns.
15) Deternined strictly oy t|e BlackSc|oles nodel, t|e price of a stock option will rise
signifcantly w|en t|e underlying stock enters a period of volatility.
11) Feeling unappreciated oy t|e Pevolutionary lnerican leaders|ip, Benedict lrnold decid
ed to |oin t|e Britis|.
12) T|e "Caprice in l ninor", originally conposed oy Paganini as a virtuoso piece for solo
violin, served as t|e oasis of solo piano works oy Sc|unann and Bra|ns as well as an
extended concert work oy Pac|naninov.
lll of t|ese use nodifers of t|e forn |past participle|"oy"|actor| = clearly, nost active veros
in Englis| could oe plugged into t|is fornula. Two special cases deserve furt|er attention.
deternined oy and fascinated oy.
“by”
“determined by”
36
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
Finally, let's sort out tricky idion issue, t|e fascinating issue of t|e vero "to fascinate." ls
wit| all ot|er veros, t|is vero can oe plugged into t|e nodify fornula. |past participle|"oy"|ac
tor|. For t|is vero, t|is is t|e idion fascinated oy. T|is idion, oy itself, is not surprising.
1C) Fascinated oy t|e peculiarities of Duolin, Joyce flled |is novels wit| a nyriads reference
to every corner of t|e city.
¦t gets trickier w|en we consider t|e noun forn, "fascination." T|e noun "fascination" idion
atically takes t|e preposition "wit|" = fascination wit|. T|is is an inportant case in w|ic|
t|e required idionatic preposition c|anges w|en t|e word c|anges fron vero to noun.
17) l lifelong fascination wit| t|e !"#$ &'(# t|ene |aunts all of Pac|naninov's na|or works.
Bot| fascinated oy and fascination wit| are correct idions, and very predictaole nistake
patterns on t|e CMlT Sentence Corrections are t|ese two wit| t|e prepositions swapped
= "fascinated wit|" and "fascination oy" = oot| 100º incorrect.
“fascinated by” & “fascination with”
37
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l preposition nust oe followed oy a noun = or oy sonet|ing playing t|e role of a noun.
T|is latter category includes gerunds and suostantive clauses.
1) Most people worry aoout speaking in front of large groups.
2) T|e dictator was surprisingly indifferent towards w|oever criticized |is policies.
¦n sentence #1, t|e oo|ect of t|e preposition "aoout" is a gerund p|rase, and in sentence #2,
t|e oo|ect of t|e preposition "towards" is a suostantive clause. ¦ncidentally, oot| of t|ese
are exenplary of idions involving t|ese prepositions.
T|e word "indifferent" and its idion indifferent towards are tricky. T|e neaning of t|e word
"indifferent" |as aosolutely not|ing to do wit| t|e neaning of t|e word "different." T|e word
"indifferent" neans "|aving no particular concern, interest, or synpat|y." T|e word can |ave
t|e connotation of "callous, unfeeling", as w|en one is "indifferent towards anot|er's suffer
ing." T|e word also can |ave t|e connotation of |ealt|y oalance and good enotional
ooundaries, as w|en one is "indifferent towards nindless criticisn." T|e noun forn takes
t|e sane preposition. indifference towards. T|is idion lends itself well to suostantive claus
es oeginning wit| "w|et|er" or "|ow".
3) l student indifferent towards t|e niceties of grannar cannot expect to do well on CMlT
Sentence Correction.
4) ¦n t|e Cverland Canpaign, Crant pus|ed relentlessly forward, seeningly indifferent
towards |ow nany nen |e lost.
5) T|e Viet Cong foug|t oitterly for t|ree decades, indifferent towards w|et|er t|eir eneny
was t|e Frenc|, t|e lnericans, or t|e Sout| Vietnanese.
four more prepositions
“indifferent/indifference towards”
38
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!"# %&'( )%&''*+, -. /&0" -01 .&2. 3.( 4#'/ 5&'6, -(-&630-7388* 039#1 0"# :'#:&1-0-&. )3/&20;+
<. #=36:8# %-0" 3 >#'2.( -1 >-4#. -. ?@ 3/&4#, 3.( 0"-1 -(-&6 381& 8#.(1 -01#85 0& 12/103.0-4#
78321#1;
AB !"# 6&'.-.> &5 0"# %#((-.>, 0"# /'-(# %&''-#( 3/&20 0"# %#30"#';
@CB <6#'-73.1 (&.D0 2.(#'103.( :'&/3/-8-0*E :#&:8# %"& 16&9# 3 :379 3 (3* %&''* 3/&20
>#00-.> 10'279 /* 8->"0.-.>F
@@B G.8-9# &0"#' >'#30 <6#'-73. >#.#'381, H#&'># I31"-.>0&. 5'#J2#.08* "3( 0& %&''* 3/&20
%"#0"#' "# %&28( /# 3/8# 0& :3* "-1 8&*38 0'&&:1;
!"-1 -1 3 0'-79* -(-&6; I"#. %# 13* 0& 6&(#8 K 350#' L &' L -1 6&(#8#( 350#' K, L -1 0"# :'&(M
270 &' 7'#30-&. 0"30D1 0"# 5&721 &5 0"# 1#.0#.7#, 3.( 0"-1 7'#30-&. L %31 531"-&.#( %-0" 1&6#
#3'8-#' :'&(270 &' 7'#30-&., K, -. 6-.(; K -1 0"# 6&(#8 &. %"-7" L -1 /31#(;
NB O0; K30'-79D1 P30"#('38 &. Q-50" <4#.2# -. R#% S&'9 -1 6&(#8#( 350#' 0"# P30"#('38 &5
P&8&>.#;
TB U##0"&4#. 6&(#8#( "-1 !"#$% '#()* +*),-$.*, -. P 6-.&', 350#' V&W3'0X1 /012 '#()* +*)3
,-$.*, 381& -. P 6-.&';
YB V3.* Z2'&:#3. -.0#88#70238 83.(63'91, 5'&6 O:-.&W3X1 4."#,5 0& R#%0&.X1 '$#),#6#(, %#'#
6&(#8#( 350#' 0"# '->&'&21 10'2702'# &5 Z278-(X1 47-8-).5;
“model after”
“worry about”
39
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“dated at”
T|is is a diffcult construction. Most CMlT takers are faniliar wit| t|e word "date" as a
noun, and prooaoly are faniliar wit| "date" as a vero in t|e sense of an anorous encounter
= a use of t|e word |ig|ly unlikely to appear on t|e CMlT! = out fewer are faniliar wit|
t|e vero "to date" neaning "to deternine t|e date of." T|is usage is connon in acadenic
writing, and t|erefore is connon on t|e CMlT. ¦n t|e idions to date P at C and P is dated at
C, P is t|e |istorical event or oo|ect, and C is always quite specifcally a tine = eit|er a year
or period or anyt|ing else t|at indicated age.
12) Following connents oy Herodotus, nany |istorians date Honer at 7t| or 8t| centuries
BCE.
13) Current evidence suggests t|e !"#$%&' is t|e oldest oook in t|e world. it descrioes astro!
nonical events dated at 4000 BCE.
14) Paleoant|ropologists deoate w|et|er |unan control of fre can oe dated at 400,000
years ago, t|e age of t|e ()*) %,%-./0.
40
!"#$"%&' )*+$",-.-"&,
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
l preposition nust oe followed oy a noun = or oy sonet|ing playing t|e role of a noun. T|is
latter category includes gerunds and suostantive clauses.
1) Prior to conposing t|e early nasterpiece !"# %&'"(")*" +,&&-)*"#, Wagner conposed a
few secondrate operas t|at critics today would consider |ardly wort|y of |in.
2) lccording to w|oever wrote t|ese inane instructions, we cannot conplete t|e papier
nac|e |ouse wit|out a lat|e!
¦n sentence #1, t|e oo|ect of t|e preposition "prior to" is a gerund p|rase, and in sentence #2,
t|e oo|ect of t|e preposition "according to" is a suostantive clause. ¦ncidentally, oot| of
t|ese are exenplary of idions involving t|ese prepositions.
T|ese seven are t|e nost connon conpound prepositions in t|e Englis| language.
!""#$%&'( *#
!+ #,
-."/0+. #,
1'+*./% #,
2.3* *#
40* #,
5$&#$ *#
To sone extent it is a natter of deoate w|et|er sone of t|en are "conpound prepositions"
= for exanple, "prior" is an ad|ective, so if we were to say "P is prior to C", is t|at an ad|ective
÷ preposition or a conpound preposition oefore C? lnow t|at grannatical purists nay
deoate suc| t|ings. Because t|e answer to suc| questions doesn't inpinge at all on prepar
ing for t|e CMlT Sentence Correction, ¦ an |ust going to plow forward treating all seven as
conpound prepositions. ¦ will explain a oit aoout t|e usage of eac|. ¦ will not discuss t|ird,
t|e idion "oecause of", oecause t|at is treated in its own section on pg. 4C.
prepositions
compound prepositions
41
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T|is is a very specifc idion. ¦t is used to indicate t|e tine of sone inportant transition.
T|e oo|ect is always a tine of sone kind. T|e oo|ect could oe a suostantive clause oegin!
ning wit| "w|en" or "w|enever", alt|oug| t|is sonew|at unusual construction is unlikely to
appear on t|e CMlT.
3) ls of July 1, 1997, Hong long |as oeen fully a part of t|e People's Pepuolic of C|ina.
4) ls of next Wednesday, our stores will no longer carry Eridanus products.
5) ls of w|enever s|e returns fron work, we will start t|e party.
“according to”
T|is structure is used alnost always to cite an aut|ority of sone kind, eit|er a person
"according to lristotle"
"according to Margarette"
or an aut|oritative oody
"according to t|e Pussian Crt|odox C|urc|"
"according to t|e Cpra| Magazine"
or a discipline or oody of knowledge
"according to Cuantun C|ronodynanics"
"according to t|e BlackSc|oles nodel"
T|e oo|ect of t|is preposition always |as to oe soneone or sonet|ing t|at could issue an
opinion or support a position of sone kind. Most often, t|is will oe a sinple noun, suc| as
t|e ones cited in t|is paragrap|, out t|e oo|ect could oe a relative clause indicating an
unknown or indefnite suo|ect, as in exanple #2 aoove.
“as of”
42
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“instead of”
!"# %&'()&('#% *+,%&#-. /01 -,. *+, 23-)# /01 4#-, #%%#,&+-335 &"# %-4# &"+,6 -,. -'# +,&#'7
)"-,6#-83#9 !"#/'#&+)-335: &"# %&'()&('# *; +,%&#-. /0 <1 =/(3. 8# )/''#)& +0 ; > < =#'#
%+423# ,/(,%9 !52+)-3 4+%&-?#% +,@/3@+,6 *+,%&#-. /01 (%# &"# %&'()&('# *; +,%&#-. /0 <1 &/
)/,&'-%& 2'#2/%+&+/,-3 2"'-%#% /' 3-'6#' 6'-44-&+)-3 )/,%&'()&+/,%9
A-B !"#%# )//?+#% -'# %=##&#,. =+&" )+&'(% C(+)#% +,%&#-. /0 =+&" )-,# %(6-'9
!"-& %#,&#,)# =+33 -3=-5% 8# )/,%+.#'#. +,)/''#)& /, &"# DE;! F#,&#,)# G/''#)&+/,9
A8B !"#%# )//?+#% -'# %=##&#,#. =+&" )+&'(% C(+)#% '-&"#' &"-, =+&" )-,# %(6-'9
!"# DE;! 3/@#% &/ )/,&'-%& -, +,)/''#)& *+,%&#-. /01 %&'()&('# =+&" - )/''#)& *'-&"#' &"-,1
%&'()&('#9 !"# %&'()&('# *+,%&#-. /01 %##4% ,#@#' &/ -22#-' /, &"# DE;! +, +,%&-,)#% +,
="+)" &"+% %&'()&('# =/(3. 8# )/''#)&9
“next to”
H+&#'-335: &"+% %&'()&('# +,.+)-&#% 2"5%+)-3 -.C-)#,)5I *&"# 3-=,4/=#' +% ,#J& &/ &"# %"#.91
!"+% (%# +% 6'-44-&+)-335 )/''#)&: 8(& +& +% &52+)-335 &// %+423# &/ -22#-' /, &"# DE;! F#,7
&#,)# G/''#)&+/,9
K, )/33/L(+-3 ;4#'+)-, M,63+%": &"# )/,%&'()&+/, *,#J& &/1 +% (%#. -% - %5,/,54 0/' *)/47
2-'#. &/91
N-B O#J& &/ P-5.,: E/Q-'& "-. - '#3-&+@#35 %4-33 /(&2(& -% - )/42/%#'9
!"-& =+33 -3=-5% 8# )/,%+.#'#. &// )-%(-3 -,. +,0/'4-3: -,. ,#@#' =+33 8# )/''#)& /, &"#
DE;!9
N8B G/42-'#. &/ P-5.,: E/Q-'& "-. - '#3-&+@#35 %4-33 /(&2(& -% - )/42/%#'9
!"# )/42-'#. &/ %&'()&('# +% &"# 2'/2#' %&'()&('# 0/' %()" )/42-'+%/,%9
43
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
“out of”
Literally, t|is construction indicated spatial novenent fron sonet|ing enclosed or interior to
a wider expanse = "out of lfrica", "out of t|e University of Minnesota", "out of t|e ooon
docks." Many of t|ese statenents are too colloquial and casual for t|e CMlT.
T|is construction is also used colloquially to denote "lacking", as in "out of gas", "out of
oreat|", "out of |is nind." T|ese constructions will never appear on t|e CMlT.
T|e words "out of" can oe used to denote ratios = "Seven out of ten enployees said ." W|ile
slig|tly nore fornal t|an t|e ot|er forns of "out of", even t|is is quite unlikely to appear on
t|e CMlT sentence correction.
“prior to”
T|e words "prior to" nean "oefore", out t|ere is a oig difference. T|e words "prior to" func
tion only as a preposition = t|e oo|ect can only oe a noun or sonet|ing functioning as a
noun (gerund or suostantive clause). By contrast, t|e word "oefore" can function as a prepo
sition, followed oy a noun, or as a suoordinate con|unction, followed oy a full |noun| ÷ |vero|
clause. BEWlPE = t|e CMlT doesn't approve of structure |preposition|÷|noun|÷|participial
p|rase| = t|e CMlT doesn't like trying to cran t|at nuc| action into a prepositional
p|rase. ¦f you want to talk aoout t|at nuc| action, use a full |noun| ÷ |vero| clause, not |ust a
preposition. llso, note. wit| sinple clock tines or tines of day, t|e word "oefore" sounds
nore natural, and t|e p|rase "prior to" sounds artifcial.
8) Before dawn every day, t|e colonel would |og fve niles.
T|e words "prior to" would sound awkward in t|is sentence. ¦n t|e following sentences,
notice t|e suotle c|anges oetween t|e paired sentences.
9a) Before |e was 20 years, Mozart was renowned as a virtuoso perforner and an accon
plis|ed conposer.
44
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
“prior to”
!"# %&'(& )( *'+ ),-.)'-)* /-0&1 2(30&) ,0+ &-.(,.-4 0+ 0 5'&)6(+( 7-&8(&9-& 0.4 0. 0::(9;
7<'+*-4 :(97(+-&=
>?0# @-8(&- 2-<5'<<- 76"<'+*-4 *'+ 90A.69 (76+1 !"#$ &'(), |e |ad oeen fnancially suc;
:-++86< ,')* 0 :(67<- +90<<-& .(5-<+=
>?"# %&'(& )( 76"<'+*'.A *'+ 90A.69 (76+1 !"#$ &'()* Melville was fnancially successful
,')* 0 :(67<- +90<<-& .(5-<+=
B+ <(.A 0+ )*- +6"C-:) (8 )*- D"-8(&-E :<06+- 0.4 )*- +6"C-:) (8 )*- 90'. :<06+- 0&- (.- 0.4
)*- +09-1 )*- :(.+)&6:)'(. D7&'(& )(E F GA-&6.4H :0. "- 6+-4= I*-. )*-+- ),( +6"C-:)+ 0&-
4'88-&-.)1 )*(6A*1 7&("<-9+ 0&'+-=
>>0# @-8(&- J*0:K<-)(. :(6<4 9(6.) 0 +-:(.4 B.)0&:)': -L7-4')'(.1 M(0<4 B96.4+-.
oecane t|e frst person to reac| t|e Sout| Pole.
>>"# %&'(& )( J*0:K<-)(. 9(6.)'.A 0 +-:(.4 B.)0&:)': -L7-4')'(.1 M(.0<4 B96.4+-. "-:09-
t|e frst person to reac| t|e Sout| Pole.
45
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
By itself, t|e word "oecause" is a suoordinate con|unction. W|at does t|at nean? ¦t neans,
t|is word opens a suoordinate clause. l suoordinate clause, like any clause, nust |ave a
conplete |noun| ÷ |vero| structure wit|in it, like a ninisentence. in fact, if you drop t|e suoor
dinate con|unction, t|e rest of t|e suoordinate clause s|ould oe aole to stand alone as a
sentence. Furt|ernore, t|e fact t|at t|is clause is suoordinate (i.e. dependent) neans t|ere
nust oe anot|er nain, independent clause providing t|e neatandpotatoes of t|e sentence.
T|e general outline of a sentence involving t|e word "oecause" nig|t oe.
"Because" ÷ |suo. noun| ÷ |suo. vero|, |nain noun| ÷ |nain vero|.
Cf course, all kinds of ad|ectives, adveros, and ot|er nodifes can oe added to t|is structure.
T|e |suo. noun| ÷ |suo. vero| provide t|e structure of t|e suoordinate clause = and could
stand on t|eir own as a conplete sentence. T|e sentence as a w|ole depends on t|e |nain
noun| ÷ |nain vero| as its core structure. For exanple,
2) Because teenagers are insatiaoly |ungry, t|eir parents are always ouying food.
Notice t|at t|e |noun| ÷ |vero| wit|in t|e suoordinate clause, "teenagers are insatiaoly
|ungry", could work as its own sentence. t|at's a great trick to test a clause on t|e CMlT
Sentence Correction. Nevert|eless, in t|is context, "t|eir parents" is t|e nain suo|ect and
"are . ouying" is t|e nain vero.
T|e words "oecause of" is a preposition. Prepositions are designed to oe followed oy only a
noun = "oecause of t|e rain", "oecause of t|e parade", "oecause of t|e c|ild's tenper
tantrun", etc. T|e oo|ect of t|is or any preposition can oe a gerund or gerund p|rase =
"oecause of waiting for t|e senator", "oecause of linited parking", "oecause of |aving eaten
out every nig|t t|is week", etc. T|at last exanple is getting to t|e linit of |ow nuc| action,
|ow nuc| story, t|e CMlT likes to pack inside a prepositional p|rase.
“because”
“because of”
46
·- ·-
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
Cn t|e Sentence Correction, t|e CMlT is adanantly opposed to t|e following structure.
|preposition| ÷ |noun| ÷ |participle|
Even t|oug| t|is could oe grannatically correct in a tec|nical sentence, nany would oe
likely to fnd t|is in poor taste, and for CMlT Sentence Correction purposes, t|is is 100º
wrong.
Exanple "Because of t|e President going to Myannar ." WPCNC!
ls far as t|e CMlT is concerned, t|is is |ust too nuc| action, too nuc| story, for a preposi
tion to |andle. ¦f you are going to |ave oot| an action and t|e person/agent perforning t|e
action, t|en w|at you need is a clause, not nerely a prepositional p|rase.
“because of”
practice question
Having read t|is section, take anot|er look at t|e practice sentence aoove oefore reading t|e
explanation oelow. Here's anot|er practice Sentence Correction question involving t|is
idion.
!""#$%%&'(")'(&**+!),*'%-./+"0*1+%2234
!"#$%&%'()&
We |ave an actor & an action, so a preposition is not enoug|. we need a full |noun| ÷ |vero|
clause, w|ic| neans we need t|e suoordinate con|unction "oecause". T|e frst two, wit| t|e
preposition "oecause of", are wrong. C|oice (C) involves t|e nissing vero nistake = |aving
a |noun| ÷ |participle| in place of |noun| ÷ |vero|. Cnly (D) & (E) |ave "oecause" ÷ |noun| ÷
|vero|. C|oice (E) involves a very strange tense. t|e past perfect progressive = t|is is not at
all required oy or appropriate to t|e context. T|us, t|e only possiole correct answer is (D).
47
!"#$%& #()$*)#(+ ,-&,
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"#$ &$"'()*)+ (,("'- .").*$) +/* 012 0* +/()3 14"#+ "$ &*$.*(5* -"'*+/()67
dehne A as B
regard A as B
thìnk of A as B
vìew A as B
8) 199 :"#$ ": +/*-*; < (- +/* "4=*.+ ": .")+*'&91+("); +/* 9(+*$19 $*:*$*).*; 1), > (- +/* (,*1 "$
5(*0 0* 1++$(4#+* +" (+? @/* 91-+ +/$** ": +/*-* 1$*; *--*)+(1992; -2)")2'"#-?
AB !"# %#&'()* %'+,'-./01 defnes a "oore" as "l person w|o talks w|en you wis| |in to
listen."
CB D91,('($ E"$"0(+F $*61$,*, G5(1+"-915 H(./+*$ 1- +/* 6$*1+*-+ ": +/* H#--(1) &(1)(-+-?
IB J#/1''1, <9( +/"#6/+ ": /*1520*(6/+ ./1'&(") K1.3 K"/)-") 1- +/* &$*,*.*--"$ 0(+/
0/"' /* /1, +/* '"-+ () ."''")?
LB J(9(+1$2 /(-+"$(1)- 5(*0 M1+/1)1*9 N$**)* 1- ")* ": 6$*1+*-+ <'*$(.1) 6*)*$19-; 1), 2*+
+/* &#49(. 3)"0- )*O+ +" )"+/()6 14"#+ /('?
¦n t|is collection of idions, t|e word "as" is used to denote t|e role of a person or t|e use of
1) "4=*.+?
apprentìceshìp as
work as
use as
empIoy as
For t|e frst idion, see SC #135 in t|e CC13. ¦n oot| of t|e next two idions, t|e words
"work" and "use" can oe used as eit|er nouns or veros. (T|at's a quite selfreferential sen
+*).*PB
cognitive idioms
idioms of role
48
!"#$%& #()$*)#(+ ,-&,
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
5) l 17yearold Ben|anin Franklin ran away fron Boston, and went to P|iladelp|ia, looking
for work as a printer's aide.
C) Would a free weig|t work well as a |anner?
7) Einstein's revolutionary insig|t was to use t|e equivalence of inertial franes as t|e oasis
of |is new paradign.
8) T|e senator agreed wit| t|e court's oasic ruling, out oo|ected to its use as a political
criticisn of t|e current adninistration.
9) ¦n 1723, t|e city of Leipzig enployed Jo|ann Seoastian Bac| as Cantor, or nusic naster,
of t|e city's sc|ool and c|urc|es, a position |e |eld until |is deat| in 1750.
10) Did you know you can enploy a suostantive clause as t|e oo|ect of a prepositional
p|rase?
T|e word "as" is used extensively in conparisons. Cne particular construction nerits spe
cial nention.
!"#$ &' ( "! &' )
11) W|ile ot|er nannals lack t|e cognitive capaoilities associated wit| t|e |unan cereoral
cortex, all nannals |ave a linoic systen, t|erefore fundanental enotions are t|e sane to
ot|er nannals as to |unans.
T|e idion so as to is roug|ly a synonyn of so t|at = oot| are used to discuss t|e purpose
of an action.
12) Like Hannioal and C|arlenagne oefore |in, Napoleon crossed t|e llps so as to invade
¦taly oy land fron t|e nort|.
idioms of role
a comparisons idiom
49
!"#$ &#'( )(*)#+,-,#"+
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
You know your idions, rig|t? You've studied a list=indeed you've veritaoly pored over it (not
pored t|roug| it!)=so you can distinguis|, wit| t|e unerring eye of a seasoned grannarian,
t|e nuances of (or was t|at in?) idion usage. T|en, in t|e nidst of a question and a flurry of
words, you olank out.
¦t is w|at ¦ call list lull=t|e tendency for your orain to oe lulled to sleep oy an seeningly
endless series of words followed (or not followed) oy a preposition, and for you to oe lulled oy
t|e false conplacency t|at you |ave learned t|e proper idionatic construction. For w|en you
open t|e Cffcial Cuide, you are suddenly stynied, !"# %& "&&'%()&*+ &, ,' "&&'%()&*+ %-? (¦t's
t|e latter).
To see if you truly know your idions, ¦'ve concocted a nasty little quiz. Below are four sen
tences, eac| containing several idions. You |ave to c|oose w|ic| idion of t|e two (or t|ree)
is correct. Sonetines neit|er will oe correct. Ct|er tines oot| will oe correct.
Donning ny nat| |at. ¦f a sentence tests four idions, and t|ere are four different possioili
ties, t|e c|ances of guessing correctly are 1 in 25C. So if you can answer all fve correct
ly.well, you |ave a knack for (not towards!) idions. Cood luck!
1. T|e governnent !"#$""!%!"#$""! '()' anyone w|o dared '* +$"),%+$"),-./ t|e curfew
oe |eld accountaole *.%0*$ t|eir !-1$"/)$! *0%!-1$"/)$!-./ t|e law.
2. lttriouting t|e unprecedented droug|t '*%'*2)$!1 c|anges in t|e solar cycle, t|e researc|
tean failed to )##*3.' 0*$%')," )##*3.' *0 t|e influence of any terrestrial culprits, nanely
our destruction -.%*0 rainforests and our unoridled consunption -.%*0 gasoline.
3. Prone -.%'* nistaking natural c|ild|ood inpulsivity )1%0*$ attention defcit disorder (lDD),
c|ild|ood psyc|ologists are notorious -.%0*$ overnedicating c|ildren, creating a lifelong
dependency *.%'*2)$!1 certain nedications.
4. 4* #-'"%#-'-./ t|e proliferation of snart p|ones as one of t|e c|ief #)31"1 *0%#)31"1 0*$
student inattention, nany |ig| sc|ools are cracking down *.%35*. t|e 31" *0%31" -. |and
|eld devices oy $"63-$-./ '()'%$"63-$-./ students to 13+7-'%13+7-' '* a netal detection test.
lnswers.
1. decreed t|at, oot|, for, disregard of
2. to, account for, of, of
3. to, for, for, on
4. Citing, oot|, on, use of, requiring, suonit to
50
IDIOMS INVOLVING
CLAUSES & SENTENCE
ORGANIZATION
!"#$%&' $)&
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IDIOMS INVOLVING
CLAUSES & SENTENCE
ORGANIZATION
S
E
N
T
E
N
C
E
S
E
N
T
E
N
C
E
S
E
N
T
E
N
C
E
51
!"#$% '()' *"+,-#" ./0-/-'-1"%
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|e infnitive forns of veros are t|e "dictionary forn" of t|e vero, t|e forn you would fnd if
you looked t|e vero up in a standard dictionary. We construct t|e infnitive as follows. "to" ÷
|t|e infnitive forn|. For alnost every vero in Englis|, t|e infnite forn is identical to t|e
present tense of t|e vero, w|at we would use after t|e pronoun "¦" in t|e present tense = ¦
walk, ¦ eat, ¦ listen = t|ese oecone t|e infnitives. to walk, to eat, to listen. T|e only vero for
w|ic| t|e infnitive forn is wildly different fron any of t|e present tense forns is t|e nost
irregular vero in t|e entire language. t|e vero "to oe", wit| present test forns an/is/are.
T|e infnitive itself acts as a noun in a sentence. Nevert|eless, since t|e infnitive is t|e forn
of a vero, it can take adveros & direct oo|ects. W|en we attac| all t|ese ot|er forns to t|e
infnitive, we create an infnitive p|rase.
the infinitive
Certain Englis| veros idionatically denand t|e infnitive. t|at is to say, t|e only grannatical
ly correct construction t|at can follow t|en is an infnitive or an infnitive p|rase. Here are a
few inportant exanples of t|ese veros.
! !""#$ l to do X
! %&##'( to do X
! )(%*)( to do X
! +#,-*) l to do X
! .(,'/!)( l to do X
! 0,1 to do X
Notice, t|ose six veros are all aoout volition and intention. T|ese veros are connon in
Englis|, and connon on t|e CMlT Sentence Correction. T|e CMlT wants you to know
t|ese idions. eac| one of t|ese six veros nust |ave an infnitive, and it is an idion nistake
to follow t|en wit| anyt|ing else = "¦ persuaded |er into .", "¦ foroid |in fron doing .."
=all autonatically incorrect.
verbs + infinitives
52
!"#$% '()' *"+,-#" ./0-/-'-1"%
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|ere are a few ot|er constructions t|at require t|e infnitive
T|e words !"#$ & !"%#%&'( T|e word "aole" is an ad|ective, and t|e corresponding noun forn
is "aoility." Bot| of t|ese nust oe followed oy an infnitive or infnitive p|rase. T|is is an
idion t|e CMlT Sentence Correct loves to test. Connon nistake patterns involve t|e word
"aoility" followed oy sone ot|er preposition and t|en a gerund. "t|e aoility for doing X", "t|e
aoility of doing X" = all incorrect!
T|e ad|ective )$#*+&!,&. T|is ad|ective idionatically takes t|e infnitive. e.g. "¦ was reluctant
to do X." ls wit| "aoility", any ot|er preposition ÷ a gerund is wrong!
T|e idion "%, .)/$) &. /. 0". t|is is an idionatically correct way to descrioe t|e purpose or
intention or goal of one's action. For exanple. "T|e independent investor puolis|ed a series
of scat|ing articles aoout t|eir nanagenent procedures in order to s|ortsell t|at conpany."
T|e structure descrioes a frst action undertaken (|ere, puolis|ing t|e articles) in order to
oring out a second less oovious result or consequence (s|ortselling t|e conpany). You are
expect to understand t|is idion on t|e CMlT, and you are expect to recognize t|is as correct
and ot|er variants (e.g. "in order t|at |e could .") incorrect.
other words + infinitives
lnot|er vero t|at requires special nention is t|e vero "to 1!,&." ¦n nost constructions you
are likely to see on t|e CMlT, t|is vero also idionatically takes an infnitive. Following t|e
vero "want" wit| a "t|at"clause is always wrong on t|e CMlT. Cne alternate acceptaole
construction is w|at is called an "oo|ect conplenent". t|e structure of t|is forn is "want" ÷
|direct oo|ect| ÷ |ad|ective|. For exanple.
·T|e s|eriff wanted t|e oandit dead.
·T|e CFC wants t|e overseas division solvent oefore t|e end of t|e year.
T|is is a connon forn in casual speec|, and t|ere's an off c|ance it could appear on a
CMlT Sentence Correct in t|e future. ¦n ot|er words, don't autonatically discount t|e vero
"want" if it is not followed oy an infnitive. it could oe an "oo|ect conplenent."
verbs + infinitives
53
Having read t|is, take anot|er look at t|e idions in t|ose practice sentences oefore looking
at t|e explanations oelow. Here's anot|er practice Sentence Correction sentence on idions.
!""#$%%&'(")'(&**+!),*'%-./+"0*1+%2234
practice
!"#$% '()' *"+,-#" ./0-/-'-1"%
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
54
!"#$% '() *+,'+- ./'0%"%
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
First of all, a "t|at" clause nust |ave a full |noun|÷|vero| structure, a structure t|at could
stand on its own as a sentence. Sonetines "t|at" is pronoun (as in t|e previous sentence)
and serves as t|e suo|ect of t|e clause, out as t|e oo|ect of "t|inking" or "arguing" veros, t|e
word "t|at" introduces a suostantive clause, w|ic| |as its own suo|ect after t|e word t|at.
lgain, in suostantive clause, w|at follows t|e "t|at" could oe a standonitown sentence in
its own rig|t.
1a) He oelieves t|at t|e Mets will |ave a winning record in 2013.
1o) T|e Mets will |ave a winning record in 2013.
Pegardless of w|et|er you agree wit| t|e content, w|at follows t|e word "t|at" functions as
a full grannatically correct sentence on its own.
basics of “that” clauses
l. !"#$$#%& $() *!+, -$(.$/
¦n colloquial speec|, t|e word "t|at" is dropped all t|e tine. "¦ t|ink it's going to rain." "¦
douot |e's coning." "S|e clains |e is not t|e oest for t|e |oo." Cf course, t|ose topics are
also infornal, out even at t|e level of grannar, t|ese sentences would oe incorrect on t|e
CMlT Sentence Correction, oecause t|ey onit t|e word "t|at" oetween t|e vero and t|e
clause.
B. use oI the infnitive instead oI the "that" clause
T|is is less connon, out |eard sonetines. "¦ know |er to oe |onest." "¦ t|ink Mooy Dick to
oe t|e greatest lnerican novel." T|is is used enoug| in speec| (especially oy folks trying to
sound fancy) to sound plausiole. Don't oe fooled. T|is is also 100º wrong as a suostitute
for "t|at" clause following one of t|ese veros.
colloquialisms
55
!"#$% '() *+,'+- ./'0%"%
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"#$ &' ($) '&**&+,-. /)012 ,3,&4"(,#"**5 ("6)2 " 7($"(8 #*"92): " 2912("-(,/) #*"92): "2 ,(2
3,0)#( &1;)#(< =&0 "** &' ($)2): 30&>>,-. ($) 7($"(8 +&9*3 1) #&-2,3)0)3 ,-#&00)#( &- ($) ?@AB<
For all of t|ese except "oelieve", t|e infnitive is also incorrect.
!"#$% '(!'
believe that
claim that
conclude that
contend that
)*$+' '(!'
hold that
predict that
,$##%,' '(!'
'(-./ '(!'
C&4) )D"4>*)2E
FG B$) *"+5)0 #*",4)3 ($"( $,2 #*,)-( +"2 &9( &' ($) #&9-(05 '&0 ($"( )-(,0) +))6<
HG B$) B$)&05 &' I)*"(,/,(5 >0)3,#()3 ($"( -&($,-. +,($ 4"22 #&9*3 (0"/)* "2 '"2( "2 ($) 2>))3
&' *,.$(<
JG B$) $,2(&0,"- "0.9)3 ($"( A'.$"-,2("- +"2 4&0) " K9".4,0) '&0 ($) C&/,)( L-,&- ($"-
M,)(-"4 +"2 '&0 ($) L-,()3 C("()2<
B$) /)01 71)*,)/)8 #"- "*2& ("6) "- &1;)#( +,($ ($) ,3,&4"(,# >0)>&2,(,&- 7,-8
NG O90) P"-3 Q933$,2(2 1)*,)/) ,- 2"*/"(,&- ($0&9.$ 0)>)(,(,&- &' ($) -"4) &' ($) A4,3"
Q933$"<
Unlike t|e ot|ers on t|e list, t|e vero "oelieve" can legally and legitinately take t|e infnitive.
RG S&-2>,0"#5 ($)&0,)2 1)*,)/) O&>) T&$- O"9* U (& $"/) 1))- 4903)0)3: >&22,1*5 ,- #&--)#V
(,&- +,($ ($) "''",02 &' Q"-#& A410&2,"-&<
verbs
56
!"#$% '() *+,'+- ./'0%"%
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|e word "predict" also can take an ordinary noun as a direct oo|ect.
7) SU5 Crand Unifed T|eory predicted proton decay.
8) T|e analyst predicted a stock narket cras| oy t|e end of t|e year.
verbs
T|ese two veros require special nention.
!""#$% '(!'

Bot| of t|ese take t|at clauses, like t|e ones aoove, and for oot| of t|ese, oot| colloquialisn
would oe incorrect on t|e CMlT. But, oot| of t|ese can also include a person, a recipient of
t|e news, as an oo|ect.
T|e word "assure" takes an ordinary direct oo|ect as t|e recipient, along wit| t|e "t|at"
clause.
9) T|e CFC assured t|e Board of Trustees t|at t|e conpany would renain solvent t|roug|
t|e end of t|e calendar year.
T|e vero "reveal" can |ave only w|at is revealed as an oo|ect, or it can also include a recipi
ent, following t|e preposition "to", t|e person or group to w|on sonet|ing is reveals. T|is is
conplicated oy t|e fact t|at w|at is reveals could oe a full t|at clause or a sinple noun as a
direct oo|ect, and eit|er of t|ese can oe acconpanied oy a "to" preposition p|rase for t|e
recipient. Here are exanples of t|e variations.
10) Leeuwen|oek's inprovenents to t|e nicroscope revealed t|e existence of individual
oiological cells.
two more verbs
57
!"#$% '() *+,'+- ./'0%"%
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|e fnal vero, "to ask", requires special treatnent. ¦ronically, unlike t|e ot|ers, |ere t|e
ordinary infnitive construction is legal. T|e p|rase !" $%& !" '" ( )*+,)-% !.$! !.- %/01-2! "3
!.- %-4!-42- )% 5-6/-%!)47 +-5*)%%)"4 !" '" (8 9.),- !.- +.5$%- !" $%& : !" '" ( )*+,)-% !.$!
!.- %/01-2! .$% %"*- +5);),-7- "5 $/!."5)!< ";-5 :8 $4' !.- %/01-2! 9$4!% : !" '" (=
>?@ A.- %!/'-4! $%&-' !" ,-$;- %2."", -$5,<=
>B@ A.- !-$2.-5 $%&-' !.- %!/'-4! !" 95)!- !.- $4%9-5 "4 !.- 0"$5'=
C- 2$4 $,%" /%- $ D!.$!E 2,$/%- 9)!. !.- ;-50 D!" $%&E8 0/! .-5-8 !.- D!.$!E 2,$/%-8 !.- "01-2! "3
!.- 5-6/-%!8 )% +.5$%-' )4 !.- %/01/42!);-=
>F@ A.- !-$2.-5 $%&-' !.$! !.- %.-,;-% "4 !.- %)'- "3 !.- 5""* 0- &-+! 2,-$5=
>G@ H)5 I2!"5 $%&-' !.$! J)47 K5!./5 2.""%- .)% .$,3L05"!.-5 J$<8 I2!"5M% %"48 $% .)% %-4-L
%2.$,=
>N@ A.- O"47,- I*+-5"58 )4 ,$/42.)47 $4 )4!-54$!)"4$, !5)0/!- *)%%)"4 $25"%% ,$4' $4' 9$!-58
-%%-4!)$,,< 9$% $%&)47 !.$! !.- 9.",- 9"5,' $2&4"9,-'7- P.)4$ $% !.- %/+5-*- 4$!)"4=
asking
>>@ H-4$!"5 Q2P$5!.< 5-3/%-' !" 5-;-$, !" P"475-%% !.- $2!/$, 4$*-% "3 !.- D&4"94 2"*L
*/4)%!%E 9."* .- $,,-7-' 9-5- 9"5&)47 )4 !.- H!$!- R-+$5!*-4!=
>S@ T4 SUUV8 1"/54$,)%! W"0-5! X";$& +/0,)2$,,< 5-;-$,-' )4 .)% 2",/*4 !.$! Y$,-5)- :,$*- 9$%
$ 2";-5! PTK "+-5$!);-8 !.-5-0< 5/)4)47 .-5 2$5--5 $% $ %+<=
13) T|e fnal witness revealed to t|e |ury t|at all of t|e previous witnesses were |eavily
)4!"Z)2$!-' $! !.- !)*- "3 !.- 25)*-=
two more verbs
58
!"#$
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"#$ &# &'$( ' )*+,-./$'(# 01'*)# (, /$./0'(# ("# 2*-2,)# ,- /$(#$(/,$ ,3 ),4# '0(/,$5 ("'(
01'*)# 0'$ +#6/$ &/(" ("# &,-.) 7), ("'(8 ,- 7), ') (,89 :#-# '-# ' 0,*21# #;'421#)<
=> ? &#$( /$(, (,&$ ), ("'( ? 0,*1. )## @'-0/' +#3,-# )"# 1#3(9
A> ? &#$( /$(, (,&$ ), ') (, )## @'-0/' +#3,-# )"# 1#3(9
B,(" ,3 (",)# '-# 2#-3#0(1C 0,--#0(9 ?$ ("/) /$)('$0#5 ("# )#0,$. /) )1/6"(1C )",-(#-5 ), /( &,*1.
+# 4'-6/$'11C 2-#3#-'+1#5 '1(",*6" ("# D@EF GH &/11 $#I#- ')J C,* (, 0,42'-# (&, 0,$)(-*0K
tions as sinilar as t|is. Notice, t|e second forn, "so as to", is slig|tly nore effcient w|en t|e
'0(,- /$ ("# /$.#2#$.#$( 01'*)# /) ("# )'4# ') ("# '0(,- /$ ("# )*+,-./$'(# 01'*)#9 !"'( /3
(",)# (&, '0(,-) '-# ./33#-#$(L
M> ? 1#$( N,+#-( 4C 0'-5 ), ("'( "# 0,*1. .-/I# (, (,&$ '$. )## @'-0/' +#3,-# )"# 1#'I#)9
O> ? 1#$( N,+#-( 4C 0'-5 ), ') (, '11,& "/4 (, .-/I# (, (,&$ '$. )## @'-0/' +#3,-# )"# 1#'I#)9
E6'/$5 +,(" '-# 0,--#0(5 '1(",*6" $,& ("# )#0,$. 0,$)(-*0(/,$ ),*$.) ' +/( (,, &,-.C '$.
/$./-#0(9 E6'/$5 ("# D@EF GH &/11 $,( "'I# C,* 0,42'-# (&, )#$(#$0#) ("/) 01,)#9 F"#
CMlT defnitely does not like t|is variation at all.
! #$%& '%&( &(#% )( ! *(+,- )$$ ./0*'/ 1$2(0$ )3$ ,$2&4
F"# &,-. 7("'(85 ,- ("# &,-.) 7') (,85 '-# $##.#. /$ ("/) 0,$)(-*0(/,$9 G#$(#$0# PQ 0,*1. +#
'$ /$0,--#0( '$)&#- 0",/0#5 0,42'-#. (, #/("#- P= ,- PA '+,I#9
clauses of purpose
F"# &,-. 7),8 0'$ +# *)#. ') '$ '.I#-+ /$(#$)/3C/$6 ("# .#6-## ,3 ' $,*$9
R> S,0'(#. ,$ ,$# ,3 ("# 4,)( )0#$/0 )(-#(0"#) ,3 ("# T$,$.'6' N/I#-5 ("# )*+*-+ ,3 E*-#*4
/) ), #;2#$)/I#9
E.4/((#.1C5 ("/) /) ' +,-.#-1/$# 0,11,U*/'1 *)'6# $,( 1/J#1C (, '22#'- ,$ ("# D@EF9 F"# &,-.)
7') V ')8 '-# *)#. 3,- 0,42'-/),$)9
comparisons
59
!"#$
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
7) Located on one of t|e nost scenic stretc|es of t|e Cnondaga Piver, t|e suouro of lureun
is as expensive as t|e nost exclusive neig|oor|oods of Westc|ester County, nort| of New
York City.
T|at conparison is 100º grannatically correct. T|e proolen cones w|en t|ese two forns
are conflated.
!" $%&'()* %+ %+) %, (-) .%/( /&)+0& /(1)(&-)/ %, (-) 2+%+*'3' 405)16 (-) /78718 %,
971)7. 0/ /% ):;)+/05) '/ (-) .%/( ):&<7/05) +)03-8%1-%%*/ %, =)/(&-)/()1 >%7+(1?6
+%1(- %, @)A B%1C >0(?D
T|at is a classic nistake pattern for a conparison on t|e CMlT SC. ¦t's all t|e nore tenpt
ing oecause, as ¦ will discuss oelow, t|e conoination "so . as" is correct in an entirely differ
ent structure. ¦n a sinple conparison of two nouns, t|e structure "as . as" is correct, and
t|e structure "so . as" is always wrong.
Sonetines we specify t|e degree of an ad|ective ("so large", "so far nort|") sinply for
enp|asis. Sonetines, we construct a conparison ("as large as", "as far nort| as"). Sone
tines, t|oug|, we underscore t|e degree of an ad|ective in order to discuss sonet|ing t|at
results fron t|is. Cne perfectly correct construction for t|is is t|e forn. "so |ad|ective| t|at".
For exanple,
9) Jupiter is so large t|at, if it were |ollow, a t|ousand Eart|s could ft inside.
10) T|e city of Murnansk is so far nort| t|at it undergoes nore t|an two full nont|s of
sunless darkness in t|e niddle of winter.
Bot| of t|ese are 100º grannatically correct, and eit|er could oe t|e correct answer on a
CMlT SC question. lnot|er perfectly correct construction is t|e forn. "so |ad|ective| as to"
= t|is is t|e legitinate use of t|e "so . as" conoination! For exanple,
clause of consequence
comparisons
60
!"#$
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
11) T|e |urricane was so powerful as to topple every telep|one pole on Main St.
12) Mariano Pivera is so doninant a closer as to top t|e career rankings in ld|usted EPl÷.
lgain, perfectly correct, and eit|er could oe could oe t|e correct answer on a CMlT SC
question. Be careful, t|oug|, not to confuse t|is conpletely correct use of "so . as" wit| t|e
faulty conparison given in #8 aoove.
clause of consequence
T|e following questions in t|e CC13 feature sone of t|ese uses of "so". SC #1C, #35, #39,
and #111. Furt|ernore, |ere's a Magoos| practice question.
!""#$%%&'(")'(&**+!),*'%-./+"0*1+%2234
further practice
61
!"#$% "'( !)'$%*#%'+%
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"# %"&## '&()*&+ (,(-). ,#*/(01 2(%" 3*4.#. *&# *. 5-//-2.6
!"#$%&"
!"#$%&" ()
*%" +(
T|e frst two were already discussed on p. 4C. T|e oig idea is t|at !"#$%&" is a suoordinate
con|unction, w|ic| neans nust oe followed oy a full olown |noun| ÷ |vero| clause, a clause
t|at wit| t|e word "oecause" could stand on its own as a oonafde independent sentence.
1) Because oxygen receives electrons in alnost all its c|enical reactions, oxygen itself is
never "oxidized", instead, oxygen is reduced as it oxidizes t|e ot|er reactant.
2) Because Poosevelt violated Was|ington's precedent of serving only two terns, t|e lneri7
can people ens|rined t|is precedent as law in t|e TwentySecond lnendnent.
Notice t|at in oot| sentences, everyt|ing after t|e word "oecause" and oefore t|e frst
conna could oe an independent standonitsown sentence.
By contrast, oot| !"#$%&" () is a conpound preposition. ¦t also identifes a cause, out t|at
cause nust oe t|e oo|ect of a preposition. a noun. Cccasionally, t|e oo|ect nay oe a gerund
or a suostantive clause, out t|ese constructions are rare on t|e CMlT Sentence Correction.
3) Because of t|e lingering effects of t|e recession, t|e Federal Peserve introduced nultiple
rounds of Cuantitative Easing.
4) P|ysicists |ave aoandoned nost t|eories t|at call for proton decay, oecause of a con7
plete lack of experinental evidence for t|is process.
!"# '"&*.# *%" +( (. .()(/*& %- !"#$%&" ()8 *0, (0 3-//-94(*/ 4.# %"#+ *&# 4.#, (0%#&3"*01#7
aoly, out t|ere is a suotle difference. T|e words "oecause of" are a conpound preposition,
and t|e preposition p|rase forned can nodify t|e vero and t|us oe placed in any part of t|e
sentence. T|e word "due" is an ad|ective and nust nodify a noun. Most often, t|is occurs
w|en "due to" follows "is"/"are" in t|e predicate, nodifying t|e suo|ect. lgain t|e "to" t|at
idionatically follows t|e word "due" is a preposition and can only oe followed oy a noun, or
on rare occasions, oy a gerund or suostantive clause.
idioms of cause
62
!"#$% "'( !)'$%*#%'+%
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
5) T|e delay, due to t|e senator's c|ange in plans, cost t|e convention sponsors t|ousands
of dollars.
C) T|e s|arp rise in t|is stock is due to t|e crisis in t|e corporation of t|eir closest conpeti!
tor.
¦n sentence #5, "due" nodifes t|e noun "delay", and sentence #C s|ows t|e nost typical use
of t|e "due to" structure, following t|e word "is" and nodifying t|e suo|ect. T|e CMlT is
quite unlikely to test on t|e suotle difference oetween "!"#$%&" ()" and "*%" +(".
T|e CMlT defnitively does not like t|e structure |preposition|÷|noun|÷|participial p|rase|.
Prepositions aren't designed to |andle t|at nuc| action. ¦f you want full |noun| ÷ |vero| type
action, use a suoordinate con|unction.
!"# %&'"()& *+ ,-) ./**0) 12-34 +/*5 .,& '*617 8"0*6&*3 ,"1 .* /&./&". +/*5 9())-":
T|at sentence structure will oe wrong 100º of t|e tine on t|e CMlT Sentence Correction.
Here is a corrected version of t|e sane sentence, using t|e suoordinate con|unction "oe!
cause" instead.
7o) Because |is troops were dying fron t|e cold, Napoleon |ad to retreat fron Pussia.
idioms of cause
T|ere are six clauses of consequence t|at appear regularly on t|e CMlT.
&( +,$+
&( $& +(
&%#, +,$+
&( !"#$%&'()%* +,$+
&( !"#$%&'()%* $& +(
&%#, !+,-+* +,$+
clauses of consequence
63
!"#$% "'( !)'$%*#%'+%
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
¦n all six of t|ese, w|at precedes t|ese words it t|e causing situation or condition, and w|at
follows t|en is w|at results as a consequence. T|is is a standard construction for denon!
strating t|e purpose of an action. T|e four wit| "t|at" require a full |noun| ÷ |vero| clause, and
t|e two wit| "to" denand an infnitive p|rase.
8) T|e Berlin lirlift provided t|e city wit| food and valuaole resources, so t|at t|e vitally
inportant city would not fall into Soviet control.
9) Upon |is election, Pope Jo|n Paul ¦¦ decided to learn Spanis|, so as to connunicate
directly wit| t|e single largest group of Cat|olics in t|e world.
10) T|e local rulers of early nedieval Europe were alnost constantly at war, suc| t|at t|e
infrastructure |ad little c|ance to develop oeyond t|e nost rudinentary level.
¦n t|e two structures t|at involve an ad|ective, it nust oe an ad|ective t|at adnits of degree
= i.e. one could oe nore or less of t|is ad|ective. Cne can oe nore |appy or less |appy,
nore tired or less tired, nore ric|, nore |ealt|y, nore educated, etc. Sone ad|ectives |ave
an allornot|ing quality = left|anded, electric, fnancial, individual, etc. = one cannot oe
"nore" or "less" or any of t|ese. Tec|nically, t|e word "unique" is in t|is latter category =
"#$%&'()* (" %(&'%, -)(.-% #, (& (")/&0 1)2 (& (" 3#*(41335 ()4#,,%4& &# "15 "#$%&'()* (" 6$#,%
unique" or "less unique." Cnly ad|ectives t|at adnit of degree, ad|ectives aoout w|ic| we can
legitinately say "nore" or "less", can oe used in t|ese two structures. Notice, we could use a
participle in t|e place of an ordinary ad|ective.
11) T|e |ig|est peaks of t|e Hinalayas are so tall t|at t|ere is insuffcient oxygen to support
life at t|e peaks.
12) T|e appeal of t|e 1942 fln !"#"$%"&'" is so enduring t|at, ever since its release, it |as
oeen naned as one of t|e greatest flns of all tines.
13) Clenn Could was so devoted to recreating flawlessly t|e intentions of t|e conposers t|at
|e foreswore live perfornance entirely and c|ose to perforn only in t|e pristine conditions of
t|e recording studio for t|e last 18 years of |is life.
clauses of consequence
64
!"#$% "'( !)'$%*#%'+%
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
14) T|e planets Venus and Jupiter are so orig|t as to outs|ine easily t|e stars of t|e nig|t!
tine sky.
15) Critics suggest t|at Jo|nson oecane so concerned wit| t|e lnerican involvenent in
Vietnan as to neglect entirely t|e social prograns for w|ic| |e |ad oeen elected.
Notice, in oot| #13 and #15, t|e ad|ective's place is taken oy long participial p|rases. expect
to see sinilar constructions on t|e CMlT Sentence Correction.
¦n t|e fnal construction, !"#$ "#$%#& %$&%, t|e noun nay oe nodifed oy an ad|ective t|at is
t|e oo|ect of t|e intensifer "suc|". T|e noun also nay oe a singular noun wit| t|e article "a"
" $!"#$ & '(&)*+,$% $!"#$ & '(-"./$$% $!"#$ & /(012*.$% $!"#$ & $*2/" = out t|is construction
would oe rare in t|e fornal language of t|e CMlT.
1C) Modern nat|enatics is suc| a diverse and fragnented discipline t|at few professors
understand nuc| outside of t|eir own narrow region of expertise.
17) T|e Don Juan legends presented suc| a provocative c|aracter t|at nunerous works of
art and suosequent p|ilosop|ical works explored t|e t|enes.
18) T|e oallet 3* 4&#(* +" /(-5'*./! presented suc| radical oreakt|roug|s in tonality t|at it
produced riots anong t|e audience at t|e preniere.
clauses of consequence
65
!"#$%& $( )$%*+,#&$-
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"# %&''&()*+ %&,-. /0* 1# 2.#3 ("#* &*# 4#,- &% 4"# /&-50,).&* ). 4"# .216#/4 &% 4"#
.#*4#*/#7 0 8#,9 /&--&* %&,- &* :;<! =#*4#*/# >&,,#/4)&*?
!"#$ &'()
!"#$ *(+,$-&./$0 &'()
+.11$#$)& 1#"!
.) -")&#(2& &" 34 5
6)7.8$ 34 5
-"!9(#$+ &" 34 5
T|e frst involves a few variations. ¦f t|e vero is intransitive (i.e. it takes no direct oo|ect), t|en
(# /0* 2.# 4"# /&*.4,2/4)&* < @8#,1A B-&,# 4"0*C D?
1) llison sings nore t|an Bertrand.
E#,#7 4"# 5",0.# B-&,# 4"0*C /0* 1# ,#5'0/#3 ()4" 0*9 /&-50,04)8# 038#,1 5",0.#?
2) C|arles sleeps nore deeply t|an David.
3) Elizaoet| laug|s nore |eartily t|an Francine!
¦n any of t|ose t|ree, it would also oe correct to stick a vero after t|e word "t|an"
1a) llison sings nore t|an does Bertrand.
2a) C|arles sleeps nore deeply t|an David does.
T|ese sentence are fne eit|er wit| or wit|out t|e vero after t|e word "t|an."
¦f t|e vero is transitive (i.e. it takes a direct oo|ect), t|en we use t|e construction 3 :/$#;<
=!"#$> :+.#$-& ";,$-&< =&'()> 5 "# 3 :/$#;< :+.#$-& ";,$-&< :-"!9(#(&./$ (+/$#;< =&'()> 5?
4) Cerald |as puolis|ed nore articles t|an Henry.
5) ¦p|igenia follows oaseoall nore avidly t|an does Janes.
comparisons to subjects
66
!"#$%& $( )$%*+,#&$-
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
C) len gives nore noney to c|arity t|an does Lawrence.
¦n #4, we could |ave added a vero after "t|an" = t|at also would |ave oeen correct. ¦n #5
and #C, t|e vero after "t|an" is aosolutely necessary to resolve anoiguity. Consider t|en
!"#$%&# #$"( ()*%+, -)./0
!"# %&'()*+(" ,-..-/0 1"0*1".. 2-3* "4(5.6 7'"+ 8"2*09
:"# ;*+ )(4*0 2-3* 2-+*6 7- <'"3(76 7'"+ ="/3*+<*9
Does ¦p|igenia follow Janes as well as oaseoall? Does len give noney to Lawrence as well
as to c|arity? T|e aosence of a vero creates anoiguity. is t|e oo|ect of "t|an" in parallel wit|
t|e suo|ect or t|e direct oo|ect? T|is anoiguity did not arise in #4, oecause Cerald could not
possioly "puolis|" Henry = oecause of t|e context, Henry can only oe parallel to t|e suo|ect.
1"#$%&# #$) -)./2 #$%&3$2 #$) %#$). #!% 4.) 45/"3&%&(2 4+, #$) 6789 :)+#)+*) ;%..)*#"%+
!"#$% 45/"3&"#<=
T|e ad|ective "different" idionatically take t|e preposition "fron." T|e construction !" $%
&$''()(*+ '),- ./ contrasts l wit| B, out it's not very interesting in and of itself. ¦f we add an
!$* +01+/ *>4&()2 #$)+ #$) ()+#)+*) /)*%5)( 5&*$ 5%.) (%?$"(#"*4# ),0
7) T|e fnal novenent of Bra|ns' !"#$%& ()*+&",) is different fron t|e fnal novenent of
-".#&4>>< )-).< %#$). (<5?$%+< "+ #$) *>4(("*4> .)?).#%".) "+ #$4# "( 4 ?4((4*43>"4=
T|e next t|ree idions all act as nodifers to t|e suo|ect.
8) Conpared to t|e -",. /01., Leonardo's /.2) 30%& ., 4$*0,5 $4( 4 (5">) #$4# "( @4. >)((
@45%&( /&# A&(# 4( )+"354#"*=
9) ¦n contrast to |is depraved predecessor Caligula, Claudius (10 BCE lD 54) was a particB
ularly |ust and effcient ruler w|o enric|ed t|e enpire wit| extensive puolic works.
10) Unlike a naze, a laoyrint| |as only one pat| fron entrance to goal and t|us involves no
*$%"*)( 4# 4>>0 "#( %/A)*# "( "++). .)@>)*#"%+ 4+, 5<(#"*4> *%+#)5?>4#"%+2 .4#$). #$4+ #$) .4#"%B
nal puzzlesolving t|at a naze denands.
comparisons to subjects
67
!"#$%& $( )$%*+,#&$-
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Sentence #10 was a "twofer" = in addition to t|e "unlike" idion, we also |ad an exanple of
t|e !"#$%&" $%#() t|an idion. Bot| rat|er and instead can oe used as adveros, neaning "on
t|e contrary," out t|ese constructions don't appear on t|e CMlT. T|e CMlT focuses on
rat|er t|an vs. instead of. T|e latter is a conpound preposition, and as suc|, could only take
a noun as its oo|ect. By contrast, "#$%&" $%#( can act as eit|er a preposition (taking a noun)
or a suoordinate con|unction (followed oy a full clause). ¦nstead of could only put nouns in
parallel, out rat|er t|an can put nouns or veros or entire actions in parallel. ¦n general, t|e
CMlT seens to avoid t|e situations in w|ic| a correct use of "instead of" would oe allowed,
and seens to use "instead of" only as an incorrect c|oice for "rat|er t|an."
11) S|e sinply ooug|t a condo in Boston, rat|er t|an pay for a |otel roon for several
nont|s.
¦n t|at sentence, t|e veros "ooug|t" and "pay" are in parallel. Notice, since t|e latter action is
|ypot|etical, it is in t|e suo|unctive. ¦f t|is were t|e correct c|oice in a Sentence Correction
question, a typical incorrect c|oice would oe.
**#+ ,%& -./012 3456%$ 74(84 .( 94-$4(: .(-$&#8 4; 0#2.(6 ;4" # %4$&1 "44/ ;4" -&<&"#1
/4($%-=
“rather” vs. “instead”
Because all t|ree of t|ese are nodifers, all t|ree are vulneraole to proolens involving t|e
nodifer touc| rule. For exanple, consider
>#+ ?4/0#"&8 $4 $%& !"#$ &'($: @&4(#"84 0#.($&8 )*+ &$,- .'/* $# 012'#+ .( 4"8&" $4===
T|is is a classic CMlT Sentence Correction nistake pattern = |ere, t|e grannar suggests
we are conparing t|e painting T|e Mona Lisa to t|e artist Leonardo da Vinci. T|e CMlT
loves to construct incorrect SC answer c|oices of t|is forn. nisplaced nodifers and viola
tions of t|e Modifer Touc| Pule for conparative nodifers! T|is is one of t|e nost connon
nistake patterns on t|e entire Sentence Correction section.
comparisons to subjects
68
!"# %&'%#& ()('*+ "#&# ,&# !"#$"%&'"#( *+$,++% - .%! / ,-) !"#$"%0$"1% *+$,++% - .%! /.
!"#$"%&'"#( - 2314 / ,-) $(+ !"#$"%0$"1% 12 - 2314 /5 !"# +/012# )(33#&#-4#+ 0#15##- 1"#+#
are not wort| exploring = t|e CMlT Sentence Correction will not split |airs like t|is. ¦n all of
1"#+# 4'-+1&/41('-+. 0'1" 6 ,-) 7 ",8# 1' 0# #(1"#& -'/-+ '& +'*#1"(-9 1",1 ,41+ ,+ , -'/-
= a gerund or a suostantive clause. Here's an exanple wit| gerunds.
12) Many et|icists do not distinguis| oetween telling an outrig|t lie and intentionally con:
4#,2(-9 +'*# %,&1 '3 1"# 1&/#;
Here's an exanple wit| suostantive clauses.
13) T|e distinction of w|at t|e eye sees fron w|at t|e orain perceives is, for all practical
%/&%'+#+. *#,-(-92#++;
distinction
!"#$%& $( )$%*+,#&$-
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
7'1" '3 1"#+# ()('*+ ,&# 4'&&#41< "% 01%$3.#$ ,"$( ,-) "% 01%$3.#$ $1; !"# 4'-+1&/41('- =,+
4'-1&,+1#) 5(1">1'? (+ -'1 ,44#%1,02#; 7'1" =5(1"? ,-) =1'? ,&# %&#%'+(1('-+. +' ,9,(-. 1"#@
can oe followed oy a noun, or oy sonet|ing t|at acts as a noun = a gerund or a suostantive
clause. Here's an exanple wit| a gerund.
14) ¦n contrast to sending an enail, writing a text nessage seens like suc| an evanescent
3'&* '3 4'**/-(4,1('-;
T|e CMlT Sentence Correct does not like t|e structure |preposition||noun|participial p|rase|
= t|at's too nuc| "action" for a preposition to contain.
!"#$ &' ()'*+#,* *) -#'*. #,,/0'/'0 1/, .'.2/., *) 1.334 5)6(.4 /' !"##$%&#' )&*$4 (.3.7
8+#*., #'9 1#, :;' .<.' =/*1 *1. =)+9, ): 1/, 1#+,1.,* (+/*/(,>
We would |ave to c|ange t|at frst action entirely to a noun (e.g. "Dante's assignnent of |is
#-#*(#+ 1' "#22? A !"#"!$%&), or |ave to use a suoordinate con|unction contrast word, suc|
,+ 6,(+3+.#7
15o) W|ereas Dante assigned |is enenies to |ell, Joyce, in Finnegans Wake, celeorates and
",+ 3/- #8#- 5(1" 1"# 5'&)+ '3 "(+ ",&+"#+1 4&(1(4+;
contrast
69
!"#$%& $( )$%*+,#&$-
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"#"$ &" #"'() *)" )"+,)*- ./ 0'#1'--2-$ -.3" ./ *)" 3.-* -.4)+-*+('*"5 6'1,2'," 7.2 (.265
-"" .1 *)" 89:; <"1*"1(" =.##"(*+.1>
!"#$ &' ( "! &' )
*+!& "! ,- !' .
/ 0! &' 1 23"& ( 0! &' )
T|e frst is a renarkaoly succinct construction. ¦n t|is, l and B are nost often people, and
t|e suo|ect is sone sort of experience.
1C) lre t|e enotional inflections in t|e |unan voice t|e sane to a dog as to a oaoy?
Notice, we could include repeat t|e suo|ect & vero after "as" = !"# %&'( ")' %* " +"+(, = t|is
&.265 '6-. ?" (.##"(*$ ?2* 6"-- -2((+1(*>
¦n t|e second idion, P and C are full |noun|÷|vero| clauses, descrioing actions we are con@
4'#+1,>
17) Just as Darwin's ideas "det|roned" |unans fron t|eir supposed unique place anong
oiological entities, so Freud's ideas suoordinated t|e conscious suo|ect to nuc| nore power
forces of t|e Unconscious.
18) Just as t|e Sun is t|e center of eig|t planets and nunerous snaller satellites, so Jupiter
|olds in oroit four large noons and dozens of snaller noons, forning a "solar systen in
3+1+'*2#">A
Per|aps t|e nost sop|isticated is t|e fnal idion, w|ic| conpares two relations|ips = it
conpares t|e relations|ip oetween X & Y to t|e relations|ip oetween l & B.
19) Franklin was to nany of t|e younger nenoers of t|e Continental Congress, suc| as
Jefferson and Hancock, w|at Niels Bo|r was to t|e founders of Cuantun Mec|anics.
20) T|e ancient Celtic stories of lrt|ur were to Malory's -' .*)%' /01)%&2) &)'* 92-6+3 *'6"-
./ *)" .30)"4 were to Dante's /3536' 7*8'9(>
sophisticated idioms
70
! #$%&'( )*%+,
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
1) lccording to lepler's Second Law of Planetary Motion, as a planet noves t|roug| its
elliptical oroit, it c|anges its oroital speed as its distance fron t|e Sun c|anges. in particular,
t|e closer t|e planet is to t|e Sun, t|en it is noving its oroit t|at nuc| faster.
l. t|e closer t|e planet is to t|e Sun, t|en it is noving in its oroit t|at nuc| faster
B. t|e closer t|e planet is to t|e Sun, t|e faster it noves in its oroit
C. w|en t|e planet is closer to t|e Sun, t|e faster it noves in its oroit
D. w|en t|e planet is closer to t|e Sun, noving fasting in its oroit as well
E. oy oeing closer to t|e Sun, also noving fasting in its oroit
2) lepler's T|ird Law says expresses t|e relations|ip oetween t|e senina|or axis of a
planet's oroit and its oroital period. t|e furt|er a planet's oroit is fron t|e Sun, t|e longer t|e
planet's period of revolution around t|e Sun.
l. t|e furt|er a planet's oroit is fron t|e Sun, t|e longer t|e planet's period of revolution
around t|e Sun
B. w|en a planet's oroit is furt|er fron t|e Sun, t|e longer t|e planet's period of revolution
around t|e Sun
C. t|e furt|er a planet's oroit is fron t|e Sun, t|ereoy t|e planet's period of revolution around
t|e Sun is t|at nuc| longer
D. w|en a planet's oroit is furt|er fron t|e Sun, t|e planet's period of revolution around t|e
Sun oeing t|at nuc| longer
E. oy |aving an oroit furt|er fron t|e Sun, a planet also |aving a period of revolution around
t|e Sun oeing t|at nuc| longer
practice question
Suppose l and B are two itens or qualities or quantities, and we want to express |ow one of
t|en c|anges as a result of t|e ot|er one c|anging, t|at is, we want to express t|e interre
lated nature of t|eir c|anges. T|is is t|e fornal structure of t|e idion.
!"#$% (conparative ad|ective or advero) (independent clause aoout l), !"#$% (conparative
ad|ective or advero) (independent clause aoout B)
the idiom
71
! #$%&'( %)%*+
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"# %&'() !"#$% *#+,--,-+ #./" 0.'1 .'# /'2/,.34 .) ,) 1"# /&55. )#0.'.1,-+ 1"# 1%& 0.'1)6
!",) ,(,&5 )1.-() .3&-# .) .- ,-(#0#-(#-1 /3.2)#4 .-( 1"#'#7&'# /.- *# . /&503#1# )#-1#-/#
*8 ,1)#374 &' /.- 03.8 . '&3# ,- . 3.'+#' )#-1#-/#6 9#'# .'# )&5# #:.503#)6
;< !"# ",+"#' 1"#8 7384 1"# ".'(#' 1"#8 7.336
=< !"# )1'.,+"1#' .- .''&%4 1"# 1'2#' ,1 73,#)6
>< !"# "&11#' 1"# )2'7./# 1#50#'.12'# &7 . )1.'4 1"# 5&'# 3,+"1 0#' )?2.'# 5#1#' ,1 '.(,.1#)6
@< A!"# 5&'# 8&2 1,+"1#- 8&2' +',04 !.'B,-4 1"# 5&'# )1.' )8)1#5) %,33 )3,0 1"'&2+" 8&2'
fngers."
C7 8&2 2-(#')1.-( 1"# 3.8&21 &7 1",) ,(,&54 )## %"#1"#' 1".1 /".-+#) 8&2' .-)%#') 1& 1"#
?2#)1,&-) .*&D#6 E&2 5.8 %.-1 1& +,D# 1"#5 . )#/&-( 3&&B *#7&'# '#.(,-+ 1"# )&321,&-)
*#3&%6 F.8 1"# G&'/# *# %,1" 8&26
Like a question in t|e CC13 (SC #2), t|is question is designed specifcally to test t|is pattern.
H-38 &-# &7 1"# .-)%#') ,- #./" 7&33&%) 1",) 0.'1,/23.' ,(,&5 0#'7#/1384 .-( 1"# &1"#' 7&2'
.-)%#' /"&,/#) ,- #./" .'# *&1" ,(,&5.1,/.338 .-( +'.55.1,/.338 ,-/&''#/16 !"# /&''#/1
/"&,/#) .'# &'( in t|e frst and &*( ,- 1"# )#/&-(6
practice questions solutions
72
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"#$ &'()*+ () ,(-$ ./01+2 /0&+2 '"3+$+2 ,04)#"4$1+2 $&/56 /"#$ () /"3)&07,$ 3)(&+5 8'$
'0,,#019 "- (&$#+ &'0& 01$ /"3)&07,$ )"3)+ (+ &'0& 4$ 4"3,: 0+92 ;'"4 #0)<=> .'"4 #0)<
/01+= '"4 #0)< /0&+= $&/56
!"#$ &'()*+ () ,(-$ .0(12 40&$12 ?,$0+31$2 ?0()2 +/($)/$2 01&2 #")$<2 $&/56 /0) /"#$ () @01<()*
A30)&(&($+2 73& &'$1$ 01$ )" /"3)&07,$ 3)(&+B 10&'$12 &'$+$ &'()*+ /"#$ () 4'0& <"3 #(*'& /0,,
3)/"3)&07,$ 73,95 8'$ '0,,#019 "- 3)/"3)&07,$ )"3)+ (+ &'0& 4$ 4"3,: 0+9 &'$ A3$+&(")
;'"4 #3/'=> .C"4 #3/' 0(1 (+ () &'0& &(1$= C"4 #3/' ?0() 40+ '$ ()= C"4 #3/' +/($)/$
:"$+ +'$ 9)"4=6
8'(+ :(+&()/&(") 7$&4$$) /"3)&07,$ @+5 3)/"3)&07,$ 4(,, 7$ (#?"1&0)& 7$,"45
countable vs. uncountable
D'$) +"#$&'()* /"3)&07,$ ()/1$0+$+2 4$ 3+$ ;#"1$>
E6 C",,0): '0+ #"1$ &3,(?+ &'0) :"$+ 0)< "&'$1 /"3)&1< () D$+&$1) F31"?$5
83,(?+ 01$ +$?010&$G <"3 /0) /"3)& '"4 #0)< &3,(?+ <"3 '0@$5
D'$) +"#$&'()* 3)/"3)&07,$ ()/1$0+$+2 4$ 0,+" 3+$ 0,+" ;#"1$>
H6 8'$ I! !&0&$ "- J$"1*(0 '0+ #"1$ ,0): &'0) :"$+ &'$ +&0&$ "- K$))+<,@0)(05
L6 M& /"+&+ #"1$ &" *" &" &'$ 70,,*0#$ &'0) &" *" &" &'$ "?$105
N0): (+ 0) 3)/"3)&07,$ )"3)2 0): () OL2 &'$ (#?,(/(& )"3) (+ ;#")$<>2 4'(/' (+ 0,+"
3)/"3)&07,$5
8'$ A3$+&(") 01(+$+G 4'$) :" 4$ 3+$ ;*1$0&$1> 10&'$1 &'0) ;#"1$>= D$ 3+$ ;*1$0&$1> 4'$)
&'$ )"3) () A3$+&(") !" $ %&'()*5 D$ /0) /"3)& &'$ )3#7$1 "- &3,(?+2 73& 0 &3,(? (&+$,- (+ )"&
0 )3#7$15 !"#$ $P0#?,$+ "- )"3)+ &'0& 01$ &'$#+$,@$+ )3#7$1+ 01$G ?$1/$)&2 ()&$1$+& 10&$2
?"?3,0&(")2 @",3#$2 :(+&0)/$2 ?1(/$2 /"+&2 0): )3#7$15
“more” vs. “greater”
73
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
4) T|e area of Ceorgia is greater t|an t|at of Pennsylvania.
5) T|e price of a trip to t|e oallgane is greater t|an t|e cost of a nig|t at t|e opera.
C) Call option prenia are greater w|en interest rates are |ig|er.
(Notice, for certain econonic quantities, we will use "|ig|er" for an increase.) ¦n general,
t|ings take "nore" out nunoers take "greater." T|e "increasing" case is t|e easier of t|e two
cases.
¦ will warn you. we are coning up on one of t|e nost frequently nade nistakes in spoken
Englis|. Even ot|erwise |ig|ly literate and intelligent people routinely nake t|is nistake.
Yet, t|e CMlT will penalize you for naking t|is nistake. ¦t's t|e confusion of "less" and
"fewer."
W|en sonet|ing uncountaole decreases, we use "less".
7) Pennsylvania |as less land t|an does Ceorgia.
8) ¦ |ave gotten less water in ny oasenent since sealing t|e windows.
Cl, now get ready for t|e nistakezone. W|en sonet|ing countaole decreases, we use
"fewer".
9) Fenale drivers tend to get fewer speeding tickets.
10) My dorn |ad fewer international students.
11) W|en fewer people are unenployed, t|e interest rates tend to rise.
12) ¦f you were ric|, would you |ave fewer proolens?
¦t's quite possiole t|at sone of t|ose, or even all of t|ose, "sound" wrong. Many nany people
would nake t|e nistake of using t|e word "less" in t|ose sentences even t|oug| t|e word
"fewer" is 100º correct. ¦f you can count it, you need to use "fewer" instead of "less." ¦n
ot|er words, w|enever you would use "|ow nany?" instead of "|ow nuc|?", you need to use
"fewer" instead of "less."
“more” vs. “greater”
74

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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!" $%& '(") $%& '*++&, -., $%& (//0$*1& 1.2$ '*3&24,&(3 5,(11($*6(//" *+6.,,&6$ 2*5+7 8$&+
*$&12 ., /&229: ;.' 1(+" $*1&2 %(<& ".= 2&&+ $%($ 5,(11($*6(/ &,,., ($ $%& 5,.6&," 2$.,&>
?&,6*-=//") '%&+ '& 6.14(,& +=1@&,2) (+3 +=1@&,2 3&6,&(2&) '& 6(+ 2*14/" 5. @(6A $.
=2*+5 8/&22:9
BCD E%& 4.4=/($*.+ .- ?.+5./*( *2 /&22 $%(+ $%($ .- F.2 G+5&/&2:
BHD E%& 6.2$ .- ( +*5%$ ($ $%& .4&,( *2 /&22 $%(+ $.$(/ 6.2$ .- ( 3(" ($ $%& @(//5(1&:
BID E%& 1&/$*+5 4.*+$ .- J*+6 *2 /&22 $%(+ $%($ .- 6.44&,:
!EK) 81&/$*+5 4.*+$9 *2 ( $&14&,($=,&) 2. *$ *2 *+3&&3 ( +=1@&,:
“less” vs. “fewer”
75
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"#$% '( )**+ %#, %-"$ ./0%/01/ 2'##/1%"'0 34/$%"'05 6 (4** /78*)0)%"'0 9"** ('**'9 *)%/# "0 %-/
8'$%5
:; <-/#/)$ ='%- >4#'8/ )0? 2-"0) 4$/ $%)0?)#? #)"*#')? @)4@/ A:BCD EE;+ F4$$") ?/*"=/#G
)%/*, 1-'$/ %-/ 9"?/# HF4$$")0 @)4@/I A:DJK EE; %-)% @"L/$ @#/)%/# $"?/G%'G$"?/ $%)="*"%, "0
#)"*9),$ 1)#$ )0?+ E'#/ "E8'#%)0%*,+ )1%$ )$ ) 0)%"'0)* ?/(/0$/+ $' %-)% "% 9'4*? =*'1M ('#/"@0
)#E,N$ $488*, *"0/ )0? 8#/L/0%"0@ %-/$/ ='#?/#"0@ 8'9/#$ (#'E "0L)?"0@ =, %#)"05
65 )1%$ )$ ) 0)%"'0)* ?/(/0$/+ $' %-)% "% 9'4*? =*'1M
O5 )1%$ *"M/ ) 0)%"'0)* ?/(/0$/+ $' )$ %' =*'1M
25 )1%$ )$ ) 0)%"'0)* ?/(/0$/+ =*'1M"0@
P5 )1%"0@ )$ ) 0)%"'0)* ?/(/0$/+ =*'1M"0@
>5 )1%"0@ *"M/ ) 0)%"'0)* ?/(/0$/+ 9'4*? =*'1M
Q0 @/0/#)* H*"M/I "$ ('**'9/? '0*, =, ) $"0@*/ 0'40+ )0? "$ 4$/? %' 1'E8)#/ 0'40$R =4% H)$I "$
('**'9/? =, ) (4** 0'40 S L/#= 1*)4$/+ )0? "$ 4$/? %' 1'E8)#/ )1%"'0$5
J; T-"$ #''M"/ $9"0@$ *"M/ T/? <"**")E$5
C; T/? <"**")E$ */)?$ %-/ E)U'#$ "0 1)#//# '0G=)$/ 8/#1/0%)@/+ )$ O)=/ F4%- */)?$ "0 1)#//#
$*4@@"0@ 8/#1/0%)@/5 >)1- "$ "0 $/1'0? 8*)1/ =/-"0? %-/ '%-/# '0 %-/ #/$8/1%"L/ *"$%$5
“like” vs. “as”
V'4 9"** @/% ) *'% '( E"*/)@/ '4% '( %-/ @/0/#)* #4*/ ('# H*"M/I L$5 H)$I+ =4% "% "$ 0' *'0@/# )
#/*")=*/ @4"?/ 9-/0 ,'4 @/% %' %-"$ "?"'E5
Q0 >0@*"$-+ %-/ "?"'E H%' )1% *"M/I E/)0$ %' =/-)L"'# '# 1'E8'#% '0/N$ $/*( "0 "E"%)%"'0 '(
$'E/%-"0@ /*$/5 Q( Q H)1% *"M/ ) M"0@I+ %-)% "E8*"/$ %-)% Q )E 0'% ) M"0@+ =4% $'E/%-"0@ )='4%
E, =/-)L"'# A8#/$4E)=*,+ E, /0%"%*/E/0% )0? 8#/$4E8%"'0; #/$/E=*/$ %-)% '( ) M"0@5
“act like”
76
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
l person is capaole of intending to initate sonet|ing, so a person can "act like" sonet|ing.
Conceivaoly, an intelligent aninal (one of t|e |ig|er prinates, for exanple) could oe induced
to initate sonet|ing, in w|ic| case we could say. t|e c|inpanzee "acts like" suc|andsuc|.
lny inaninate oo|ect is utterly devoid of intentionality, so we cannot in any way attrioute
initative oe|avior to it. t|erefore, we can never use t|e idion "act like" wit| an inaninate
oo|ect. Wit| an oo|ect, we always |ave to use "act as."
“act like”
First of all, fron t|e foregoing discussion, we know t|at t|e inaninate oo|ect "Pussian
gauge" cannot "act like" anyt|ing, oecause it doesn't |ave t|e conscious aoility to initate. ¦f
t|e suo|ect is an inaninate oo|ect, we need to use "act as". T|us, (B) and (E) are out inne
diately.
We also |ave two parallel constructions we need to naintain |ere. We need t|e two veros
following "Pussian gauge" to oe in parallel = t|e frst is "gives", so t|e second |as to oe t|e
parallel "acts" = t|us, (D) is out.
T|e second parallelisn is oetween "would olock"/"olocking" and t|e participle "preventing",
clearly, we need t|e participle "olocking" for t|e frst vero. T|erefore, (l) is out, and t|e only
correct answer renaining is (C).
explanation of the question
77
!"#$%& $( )*$+, -." /-01&
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|e vero consist is an intransitive vero = t|at is, a vero t|at does not take a direct oo|ect, in
ot|er words, t|ere's no passive forn of t|is vero, so we only |ave to worry aoout t|e active
forn. ¦n t|e construction "P consists of C", P is t|e w|ole, and C is t|e part.
1. ¦n poker, a full |ouse consists of a pair of one value and t|ree of a kind of anot|er value.
2. Most soft drinks, consisting of little nore t|an sugar water, |ave no nutritional value.
“consists of”
¦n t|e active forn, "P conposes C", P is t|e part, and C is t|e w|ole. t|e active forn of t|is
vero is rare in fornal language. T|e word "conpose" is used nore connonly in t|e passive.
T|e passive forn of t|is vero does not follow t|e standard pattern wit| t|e preposition "oy"
= instead, t|e passive of "P conposes C" is "C is conposed of P."
3. T|e Legislative Branc| of t|e United States governnent is conposed of two c|anoers,
t|e House of Pepresentatives and t|e Senate.
4. T|e US Virgin ¦slands, conposed of t|ree large islands and nunoer of snaller islands,
|ave oeen a US territory since 191C"
“compose”
T|is is a very tricky word, and few people use it correctly, nany confuse it wit| "conpose",
w|ic| neans sonet|ing quite different. Tec|nically, in t|e construction "P conprises C", P
is t|e w|ole, C is t|e parts, and it is understood fron t|is construction t|at C is an ex|aus
tive list of t|e parts.
5. T|e state of California conprises 58 counties.
C. l oaseoall tean, conprising a full roster of 25 nen, never |as nore t|an nine players on
t|e feld at any one tine.
“comprise”
78
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"#$ &'() *+,-. /-$+ )' ,$'. #0 1"' 2/$$#&'3 4/05 6+-7$ *+06,$' 1"#$ 8+(. 8#1" 1"' 8+(.
9*+:2+$';< /0. 8' $'': 1+ )' ('/*"#0= 1"' 2+#01 /1 8"#*" 1"' :#$1/7'$ /(' $1/(1#0= 1+ )-''.
+&'( #01+ $1/0./(. >0=-#$" ? 1(/.#1#+0/--5< 9#$ *+:2(#$'. +6; 8+,-. "/&' )''0 *+0$#.'('.
/)$+-,1'-5 8(+0=< ),1 0+8< $+:' /,1"+(#1#'$ +0 ,$/=' /--+8 #13 @#&'0 1"' *+06,$#+0 +&'( 1"#$
8+(.< A )'-#'&' 1"' @4B! #$ -#7'-5 1+ /&+#. #13
“comprise”
Now, per|aps t|e trickiest word on t|e list. ¦n t|e active construction "P exenplifes C", P is
t|e specifc exanple, and C is t|e general case.
8. Magoos| exenplifes t|e snall |ig|tec| Bay lrea startups t|at |ave oeen successful
.+#0= ),$#0'$$ /(+,0. 1"' =-+)'3
C3 !"# %&'()* +,-."'/,< 'D':2-#65#0= / $5:2"+05 +6 1"' E-/$$#*/- 2'(#+.< /(=,/)-5 *+01/#0$
all t|e defning features of t|e Ponantic novenent.
FG3 !"' H,/1'(0#+0$< 'D':2-#65#0= / 0+0*+::,1/1#&' .#&#$#+0 /-=')(/< 6+(: +0' +6 +0-5 18+
fnitedinensional division rings containing t|e real nunoers as a proper suoring.
“exemplify”
!"#$ :/5 )' 1"' '/$#'$1 8+(. +0 1"' -#$13 A0 1"' /*1#&' 6+(: 9I #0*-,.'$ J;< I #$ 1"' 8"+-'
/0. J #$ 1"' 2/(1K 1"#$ /*1#&' 6+(: #$ *+:2-'1'-5 $1(/#="16+(8/(.3 !"' 2/$$#&' 6+(: #$ ,0,$,/-
+0-5 #0 1"/1 #1 1/7'$ 1"' 2('2+$#1#+0 9#0;< #0$1'/. +6 1"' $1/0./(. 2('2+$#1#+0 9)53;
L/3 !"' >,(+2'/0 M0#+0 #0*-,.'$ )+1" N-+&/7#/ /0. N-+&'0#/3
L)3 O+1" N-+&/7#/ /0. N-+&'0#/ /(' #0*-,.'. #0 1"' >,(+2'/0 M0#+03
“include”
79
!"#$%& $( )*$+, -." /-01&
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
!"#$%&' )*+ ,-./ )*+ /*%&' 0.1$ '* .%23$# 4$./5%, 6*78#$0$%25*% 9+$2'5*%2 .:*+' 9+.'$#;
%5*%2<=>
W|en we c|ange "P exenplifes C" to t|e passive "C is exenplifed oy P", t|e suo|ect of t|e
8.2251$? @? 52 '0$ ,$%$#.- A.2$? .%/ '0$ *:B$A' *C D:)E 52 '0$ $F.78-$G
11. Beta decay is exenplifed oy t|e decay of C14 to staole Nitrogen.
12. Pirates of t|e socalled "Colden lge of Piracy", exenplifed oy Captain lidd and Black;
:$.#/? 8-.)$/ . -.#,$ #*-$ 5% '0$ 2$''-$7$%' .%/ A*%'#*- *C H+#*8$.% A*-*%5$2 5% '0$ I$3
J*#-/G
13. Janes Joyce's literary alter egos, exenplifed oy Step|en Dedalus in oot| !"#$#%&$ "( $)*
+#$&,$ %, % -"./0 1%/ .%/ '0$ K-)22$2 .%/ :) L0$7 '0$ M$%7.% 5% 2&//*0%/, 3%4*? *CC$#
052 :5*,#.80$#2 '.%'.-5N5%, 5%25,0'2 5%'* 052 7*'51.'5*%2 .%/ 7$'0*/2G
“exemplify”
80
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
First, consider t|is question oefore you read t|e section.
1) ¦n a recent policy s|ift, t|e nanagenent of t|e county's puoic seniorcitizen facilities |ave
cut staff |ours as neans to greater econonic sustainaoility and |ave lowered t|e percent
age of new residents it will accept w|ose only source of incone is Social Security.
l. to greater econonic sustainaoility and |ave lowered
B. to greater sustainaoility econonically and |ave lowered
C. of greater econonic sustainaoility and lowering
D. of greater sustainaoility econonically and lowering
E. for greater econonic sustainaoility and t|e lowering of
l conplete explanation of t|is question will cone at t|e end of t|is section.
question
Cne of t|e splits in t|is SC question is t|e opening preposition, t|e preposition w|ic|
acconpanies "neans" in t|e sten.
T|is is one of t|e suotlest of Englis| idions. First of all, "neans for" is wrong 100º of t|e
tine. t|at's easy. W|at's diffcult is t|e difference oetween "neans of" and "neans to."
W|en we say "X as a neans of Y" suggests t|at X is a kind of Y. For exanple, ¦ nig|t say.
2) Dining out only seldon is a neans of saving noney.
3) Hand gestures alone do not always suffce as a neans of connunication.
¦n #2, t|ere are nany ways to save noney, and one of t|ose, one kind of way to save noney,
is to dine out infrequently. ¦n #3, t|ere are several forns of connunication, and one of
t|ose, alt|oug| not always t|e nost effcient, are |and gestures.
Notice, in particular, t|e specifc Englis| idion "oy neans of", w|ic| neans "wit| t|e use or
|elp of."
difference a preposition makes
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4) Having lost ny paddles downstrean, ¦ rowed t|e canoe oy neans of a plank.
By contrast, t|e idion "X as a neans to Y" clearly delineates a difference oetween X and Y. X
is a step on t|e way to Y, out X and Y are clearly different t|ings, and one's intent is to use X
and t|ereoy nove past it toward Y. ¦n t|is construct, Y is t|e true goal, t|e true oo|ect of
one's intention, and X is nerely a net|od enployed to ac|ieve t|is goal.
5) S|e adopted a nocaro diet as a neans to losing weig|t quickly.
C) T|e |istoric town invested in a oillooard along t|e nearoy interstate as a neans to
increased tourisn.
¦n #5, t|e nocaros diet is not a goal in and of itself. rat|er, it is sinply a tool, a net|od, out
w|ic| t|e person in question intends to lose weig|t. ¦n #C, t|e oillooard is not a goal in and
of itself, t|e town's goal is increased tourisn, and t|e oillooard is sinply a net|od t|ey |ope
will ac|ieve t|is.
By no neans s|ould you assune t|ese are t|e only idions in Englis| involving "neans", out
oy all neans you s|ould study t|is particular distinction, a possiole split on nore c|allenging
Sentence Correction questions. We want to support your understanding of CMlT SC oy any
neans!
difference a preposition makes
1) ¦n a recent policy s|ift, t|e nanagenent of t|e county's puoic seniorcitizen facilities |ave
cut staff |ours as neans to greater econonic sustainaoility and |ave lowered t|e percent
age of new residents it will accept w|ose only source of incone is Social Security.
l. to greater econonic sustainaoility and |ave lowered
B. to greater sustainaoility econonically and |ave lowered
C. of greater econonic sustainaoility and lowering
D. of greater sustainaoility econonically and lowering
E. for greater econonic sustainaoility and t|e lowering of
the question again
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T|e foregoing discussion |as prooaoly |elped you narrow down t|e c|oices. "Means for" is
always wrong, so (E) is out. Here we are discussing cutting staff |ours vs. greater econonic
sustainaoility. We don't want to suggest t|at cutting staff |ours is a kind of greater econon
ic sustainaoility. Pat|er, cutting staff |ours is not desiraole in and of itself, out it's a step t|e
seniorcitizen facilities are taking to reac| t|eir intended goal of greater econonic sustain
aoility. T|erefore, in t|is context, "neans to" is correct and "neans of" is incorrect. T|at
narrows c|oices down to (l) and (B).
Notice, also, t|e veros "|ave cut" and "|ave lowered"/"lowering" nust oe in parallel, so "|ave
lowered" is correct = also (l) and (B) only. T|e difference oetween t|en is anot|er tricky
split ¦ |ave discussed in t|is post. |ttp.//nagoos|.con/gnat/2012/gnatsentencecorrec
tiont|epowerofalt|ead|ectivalending/. T|e p|rase "greater econonic sustainaoility"
tells us specifcally. w|at kind of sustainaoility? Very specifcally, t|ey want to stay fnancial
ly afloat. t|at's econonic sustainaoility. By contrast, "greater sustainaoility econonically"
neans t|ey want oroader sustainaoility in general (fnancial, enotional, noral, spiritual, etc.)
and t|ey want to ac|ieve t|is oroad sustainaoility econonically, t|at is to say, at low cost. ¦n
context, t|at's wacky. Clearly, t|e word "econonic"/"econonically" is supposed to tell us t|e
specifc kind of sustainaoility, not to qualify t|at t|is oroad openended sustainaoility s|ould
oe ac|ieved wit| costcutting neasure. T|erefore, (l) is t|e oest answer.
the explanation
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T|is post concerns t|e idions surrounding t|e use of "idea" words. !"#$% '#(!#)% *!#+% ",-.
/0!1#% ",23$% 40!1-!4(#% 564,/5#7!7% /5#,06% /#$-5!12% !"#,(,26, etc. W|at are t|e correct
idions to use wit| t|ese words. oelief in? principle of? doctrine t|at? Let's sort all t|is out.
“idea” words
First of all, t|e idion is very different depending on w|et|er we talking aoout t|e source of
t|e idea or t|e content of t|e idea. Here, let's focus frst on t|e 7,80-#. T|is includes not
only t|e person w|o cooked up t|e idea, out also all t|e folks w|o in one way or anot|er
"!1/#0$-/" wit| t|e idea, oy agreeing, disagreeing, supporting, disproving, etc.
For t|e source or ot|er interaction, we can use eit|er a "t|at"/"w|ic|" suoordinate clause
!" $%& '()*+,-& *%.* *%& /(/& /+()0.,1&' 23
4) Tne |oea aoout wn|cn Darw|n frst wrote .
4" $%& 5,&6 *%.* 7/,-(8. +&/9',.*&' 23
o) Tne tneory tnat E|nste|n suµµ|anteo ..
Notice t|at, in #4, we used t|e idion "to write aoout." We also can use t|e preposition "of"
specifcally for a source.
7) Tne ooctr|nes ot c|ass|ca| 8uoon|sn ..
3) Tne teacn|nçs ot Contuc|us ..
9) Tne tnouçnt ot tne Tnon|st scnoo| ..
!C) Tne |oeo|oçy ot tne |nner Pouçe ..
Certain "interactwit|t|eidea" words |ave t|eir own idion. For exanple, t|e veros "argue",
"fg|t", and "struggle" are used wit| t|e preposition "against".
!!) Tne v|ew aça|nst wn|cn /tnanas|us touçnt ..
!2) Tne µos|t|on aça|nst wn|cn 8ryan arçueo ..
Source of the idea/interaction
with the idea
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¦n contrast to talking aoout t|e source of t|e idea or ot|er people's relations|ip to t|e idea,
t|e CMlT will also talk aoout w|at ideas "#$%"&&' ("'. For w|at idea is actually saying, t|e
t|oug|t enoodied in it = t|is is tricky. ¦f we are going to nane only a single noun, t|en we
can use t|e prepositions "aoout" or "of", or t|e participle "concerning," out if we are going to
descrioe a conplete action, t|en t|e CMlT doesn't like cranning an entire action into a
prepositional p|rase = for t|is case, t|e CMlT would denand eit|er a "t|at"/"w|ic|" clause
wit| a full |noun| ÷ |vero| structure.
Nounonly constructions.
!3) Tne ooctr|ne ot tne Proµnet Munannao´s un|que status anonç µroµnets ..
!4) Tne ooctr|ne aoout Cnr|st´s nunan ano o|v|ne natures ..
!5) Tne teacn|nç concern|nç tne atter||te ..
!o) Tne teacn|nçs ot oeµtn µsycno|oçy ..
!7) Tne |oea ot nyorostat|c equ|||or|un ..
!3) Tne µr|nc|µ|e ot |east act|on ..
Full clause constructions.
!9) Tne ooctr|ne tnat Cnr|st µreex|steo tron a|| etern|ty
2C) Tne teacn|nç tnat tne 8uoona, |n n|s frst sernon, ¨turneo¨ tne wnee| ot Dnarna
2!) Tne ax|on oy wn|cn tne çeonetr|c sµace oecones Euc||oean
22) Tne |oea tnat neav|ertnana|r nacn|nes can t|y
23) Tne nyµotnes|s tnat |ranc|s 8acon wrote Snakesµeare´s µ|ays
24) Tne µr|nc|µ|e tnat one snou|o counter v|o|ence w|tn trutn
content of the idea
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!" $%&' $%())*+ ,*-.* /)&*01-. 2' 3.0-&1 4+.0* %& %,5+).05' )& 5+- 6789
:" ; /)&*01-. <-1 =0>>0%2* 5+- (.-%5-*5 ?%*-?%>> +055-. )3 %>> 502-*9
@)5+ )3 5+)*- ,*- 5+0* 010)2 /)..-/5>'9 <+- *5.,/5,.- )3 5+0* 010)2 0*
!"#$%&'() +',-"./&0"1 2 3
<+- &),& A 0* 5+- B-.*)& ). 5+0&( '), %.- -C%>,%50&(D %&1 @ 0* 5+- .%&E ). >-C-> ). *5%50)& ).
-5/9 5) F+0/+ '), %.- %**0(&0&( 5+-29 ;& *-&5-&/- G!H
A I 2' 3.0-&1 4+.0*
@ I %& %,5+).05' )& 5+- 678
;& *-&5-&/- G:
A I <-1 =0>>0%2*
@ I 5+- (.-%5-*5 ?%*-?%>> +055-. )3 %>> 502-*
Idiom #1:
“consider” + noun + noun
J" ; /)&*01-. $%.(%.-55- C-.' 0&5->>0(-&59
K" $%&' ,&3%0.>' /)&*01-. L-F M).E 405' ,&3.0-&1>'9
N" <+- %&%>'*5* /)&*01-.-1 5-/+ 0&1,*5.' *5)/E* ,&>0E->' 5) .0*- ?-3).- 5+- &-F '-%.9
T|is idion is sinilar to t|e frst, and all t|ree of t|ose use t|is idion correctly. T|e structure
)3 5+0* 010)2 0*
Idiom #2:
“consider” + noun + adjective
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!"#$%&'() +',-"./&0"1 2 3
!"#$%& ()* %+,% ! $- ()* .*/-+% +/ ()$%" 0+, #/* *1#2,#($%"& #%3 4 $- ()* #35*6($1*& ()* 7,#2$(0&
8)$6) ()* -,95*6( #-6/$9*- (+ !: ;% -*%(*%6* <=>
! ? @#/"#/*((*
4 ? 1*/0 $%(*22$"*%(
;% -*%(*%6* <A>
! ? B*8 C+/D E$(0
4 ? ,%F/$*%320
;% -*%(*%6* <G>
! ? (*6) $%3,-(/0 -(+6D-
4 ? ,%2$D*20 (+ /$-* 9*F+/* ()* %*8 0*#/
Idiom #2:
consider + noun + adjective
B+($6*& ()$- $- # 1*/0 62*#%& -$H.2* $3$+H: I% ()* J*%(*%6* E+//*6(& ()* K@!L 2+1*- (+ "$1*
$%6+//*6( 1*/-$+% +F ()* F+/H>
!"#$"%$ '"%!()$*! + ," -$ .
!"#$"%$ '"%!()$*! + /! .
!"#$"%$ '"%!()$*! ,0/, + (! .
!"#$"%$ '"%!()$*! + !0"12) -$ .
lll of t|ose are wrong. lll of t|ose nay sound nore "dignifed", nore "fornal", t|an t|e
sinplicity of "soneone considers l B", out in t|is case, t|e sinple answer is 100º correct,
#%3 #22 ()*-* 1#/$#%(- 8$() *M(/# 8+/3- #28#0- 8$22 9* $%6+//*6( +% ()* K@!L J*%(*%6* E+/N
/*6($+%: O**. $( -$H.2*P
keep it simple
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!"#$%#&'("#) +,- $"(#(#. /",0)1 '2-3 2-45 '" 4(#6 '".-'2-, '/" #"%#)7 ", '/" 8-,9)7 ", '/"
4+,.-, )',%&'%,-) (# + )-#'-#&-: !""#$%&'(%&) +"&,-&+(%"&. ;-:.: <+#0=7 <9%'=7 <",=> )(?543 4(#6
'/" /",0) ", 5+,') @ '2-3 &+# -8-# 4(#6 '/" (#0-5-#0-#' &4+%)-): /-0"#$%&'(1 +"&,-&+(%"&.
;<9-&+%)-=7 <'2+'=7 </2"=7 -'&:> (#',"0%&- + )%9",0(#+'- &4+%)-7 + 0-5-#0-#' &4+%)-: A#-
%#(B%- C-+'%,- "C D#.4()2 () + '2(,0 &+'-.",37 '2- +"##12'(%31 +"&,-&+(%"&. @ -+&2 () + 5+(, "C
/",0) ", + 5+(, "C )2",' 52,+)-)7 +#0 +4'2"%.2 )-5+,+'-0 (# '2- )-#'-#&- '2-3 +&' '".-'2-, +)
+# ",.+#(E(#. %#(': F"/ '2() /",6 &+# 9- 5+,'(&%4+,43 &"#C%)(#. '" C"46) 4-+,#(#. D#.4()2 +) +
)-&"#0 4+#.%+.-:
conjunctions
1%(41# 5 "# 6
&1%(41# 5 &"# 6
0"(4 5 '&$ 6
&"( 5 0-( 6
&"( "&27 5 0-( '2." 6
&"( ,-.( 5 0-( '2." 6
&"( ." 8-+4 5 '. 6
01(911& 5 '&$ 6
,-.( '. 5: ." 6
;"# 131#7 5: 6
T|e frst two are "all purpose" in t|e sense t|at t|ey can |oin two individual words (two
#"%#)7 '/" 8-,9)7 '/" +0$-&'(8-)7 -'&:> ", 52,+)-) ", -8-# (#0-5-#0-#' &4+%)-): G2-)- +,-
'2- ?")' C4-H(94- (# '2-(, %)-: I-?-?9-, '2+' <#-('2-, J#",= &"%#') +) + )(#.4- #-.+'(8-7 )"
+#"'2-, #-.+'(8- /('2 '2-)- /"%40 9- + 0"%94- #-.+'(8-:
correlative conjunctions
T|e next fve require sone connents.
0"(4 5 '&$ 6
&"( 5 0-( 6
&"( "&27 5 0-( '2." 6
contrast and joining
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!"# %&'# ( )&# *+'" ,
!"# '" -&./ ( *' ,
T|ese can contrast single nouns or single veros, out it's nuc| nore likely for t|e CMlT to
use t|en to set in parallel two of a nore sop|isticated structure (vero p|rase, infnitives,
participial p|rase, gerund, etc.) None of t|ese are used to link two independent clauses.
,"#/ ( *!0 , sinply affrns oot| elenents equally, w|ereas !"# ( )&# , negates t|e frst and
affrns t|e second. T|e next two, !"# "!+1 ( )&# *+'" , and !"# %&'# ( )&# *+'" ,, also
affrns oot| elenents, out wit| t|e connotations t|at l is nore expected or nore taken for
granted and B is nore of a surprise or sonet|ing additional.
1) Beet|oven was not only a great conposer out also an electrifying pianist, according to
contenporary accounts.
T|e frst, "great conposer", is expected = anyone w|o |as |eard of Beet|oven knows |e's a
conposer. T|e second nay cone as a surprise to folks w|o are not particularly faniliar wit|
|is oiograp|y. T|is w|y t|e "not only . out also" idion is nore appropriate |ere t|an t|e
"oot| . and" would oe.
Be careful not to conflate t|ese idions = typical CMlT nistake patterns include "not . out
also" and "not only . out". Make sure you know exactly |ow to use t|ese.
T|e fnal one is t|e nost sop|isticated of t|ese fve. !"# '" -&./ ( *' ,. ¦t denonstrates a
difference in degree. w|atever is oeing asserted, l is true or relevant, out it is less true or less
relevant, and B is nore so oy conparison. T|is is used for nouns prinarily for nouns,
nounlike p|rase (infnitives & gerunds), prepositional p|rase or participial p|rases.
2) T|e CEC wants to organize a new division around t|ese six products, not so nuc| to
pronote t|e sales of t|ese six as to estaolis| a foot|old in a new narket sector.
3) ¦n conposing t|e Bill of Pig|ts, t|e Founding Fat|ers valued not so nuc| defending t|e
rig|ts of crininals as protecting any innocent person fron un|ust punis|nent.
4) ¦ronically, Colunous is renenoered not so nuc| for |is original goal, fnding t|e sea route
to lsia, as for |is accidental discovery, Nort| lnerica.
contrast and joining
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!" $%&'( )*+ ,(-.-&*/ )0.' (12 *2 &)' 3455 60(7, 8'(*'+9 :*;+02 (012,', &)' ;-+'+ 20& +0
.1/) (122*2< -+ )0;;7*2<=
>)*+ %0(. /-2 -7+0 /02&(-+& &?0 @'(;+9 ?*&) - %0(.-&A B+1;C'/&D E,0 20& +0 .1/)F B@'(; G3D
E-+F B@'(; GHD=
I" J7K*2< +L1*(('7+ ,0 20& +0 .1/) %7K -+ <7*,' *2 - 702< 7'-M %(0. &('' &0 &(''=
T|e word "oetween" is a preposition in t|is construction, so l & B nust oe eit|er nouns, or
+0.'&)*2< &)-& /017, &-N' &)' M7-/' 0% 20129 +1/) -+ - <'(12,= >)' ?0(, E;'&?''2F -MM'-(+
.0+& %('L1'2&7K 02 &)' :O$> *2 &)' /02+&(1/&*02+ !"#$$%&%'(% *%+,%%'- -2, !"#.+#'(+#/'
*%+,%%'0-
P" !"#$ &'(($)$*+$ ,$-.$$* -#$ )'/#- .0)& 1*& -#$ 12304- )'/#- .0)& '4 -#$ &'(($)$*+$
,$-.$$* 2'/#-*'*/ 1*& 1 2'/#-*'*/ ,5/67 Q O-(N >?-*2
contrast and joining
>)*+ /02+&(1/&*02 *+ 1+', 027K &0 7*2N &?0 *2,'M'2,'2& /7-1+'+= R& +'&+ 1M - /0.M-(*+029 -2,
*& *+ ,*+/1++', %1(&)'( *2 &)' *,*0.+ 0% /0.M-(*+02=
just as A, so B
T|e word "oetween" is a preposition in t|is construction, so l & B nust oe eit|er nouns, or
+0.'&)*2< &)-& /017, &-N' &)' M7-/' 0% 20129 +1/) -+ - <'(12,= >)' ?0(, E;'&?''2F -MM'-(+
.0+& %('L1'2&7K 02 &)' :O$> *2 &)' /02+&(1/&*02+ !"#$$%&%'(% *%+,%%'- -2, !"#.+#'(+#/'
*%+,%%'0-
P" !"#$ &'(($)$*+$ ,$-.$$* -#$ )'/#- .0)& 1*& -#$ 12304- )'/#- .0)& '4 -#$ &'(($)$*+$
,$-.$$* 2'/#-*'*/ 1*& 1 2'/#-*'*/ ,5/67 Q O-(N >?-*2
between A and B
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Here, t|e word "for" is a preposition, so l and B |ave to oe nouns. ¦n fact, in t|is idion, l & B
!"#$ &' ($ )'*)+$&$ *',*-. /!0- 010'2 10-),--$- " )'++$-3'*1$*)$4 $53+$--0*6 &!$ +"&0'
($&7$$* &!$ $8$2$*&- '9 : "*1 &!$ $8$2$*&- '9 ;. <& 0- 9+$=,$*&8> ,-$1 0* $)'*'20) "*1
3'80&0)"8 )'*&$5&-. <* 9")&4 &!0- 0- " 9+$=,$*& 010'2 0* ?@:/ 2"&! 3+'(8$2-.
8) For every dollar Poscoe Corporation spends on P & D, Utica Central spends seven dollars.
AB C'+ $#$+> #'&$ @)D'+20)E 70*- 0* &!$ @017$-& 70&! &!0- *$7 -&+"&$6>4 !$ -&"*1- &' 8'-$
&7' '+ &!+$$ 0* &!$ F'+&!$"-& "*1 0* D"809'+*0".
GHB C'+ $#$+> GHI 0*)+$"-$ 0* &!$ #"8,$ '9 54 > 0*)+$"-$- JKI.
for every A, B
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!"# %&'( )*+, *- .-#( +&' /01.-#- 2"12 -3#/*+4 /&5(*2*&5- &' -3#/.012# &5 -&6#2"*57 "43&2"#28
*/109
1) Condition. "¦f you fnis| your peas, you can |ave dessert."
2) Hypot|etical. "¦f ¦ regularly ate ny vegetaoles, ¦ prooaoly would oe |ealt|ier."
¦n fornal logic, t|e clause following t|e "if" clause would oegin wit| t|e word "t|en". t|at's
perfectly acceptaole grannatically, out not at all necessary. For exanple, in oot| of t|ose
sentence, t|e word "t|en" could oe inserted rig|t after t|e conna, and would add a oit of
enp|asis to t|e logical relations|ip, if t|at were sonet|ing t|at needed underscoring.
T|e last clause of t|e previous paragrap| |ig|lig|ts a particular category of conditional
statenents, t|ose using t|e suo|unctive. For nore on t|e suo|unctive nood, see t|is post.
T|e CMlT loves "if"clauses involving t|e suo|unctive.
when to use “if”
T|e word "w|et|er" is a relative pronoun, w|ic| neans it introduces a relative clause. l
"w|et|er" clause is always aoout t|e uncertainty in a c|oice or alternative, and t|e clause
itself nay stand apart fron t|e sentence, t|e way an "if" clause does, or nay act as a noun.
W|en it stands apart, it is like an "if" clause in w|ic| t|e defnite causal nature |as oeen
replaced wit| uncertainty or irrelevance. W|en it acts as a noun, t|e clause nay act as t|e
suo|ect of t|e sentence, or as t|e oo|ect of an epistenological vero (to know, to wonder, etc.)
or a volitional vero (to care, to prefer, etc.)
!"#$%& #(#)"*
3) W|et|er you study Frenc| or Spanis|, you will encounter an unfaniliar language in Japan.
4) W|et|er or not ¦ get t|e raise, ¦ an going to ouy t|at new car.
when to use “whether”
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|e word "w|et|er" inplies a c|oice, at least a pair of alternatives. Sonetines t|at c|oice is
nade explicit (as in sentences #C and #8), and sonetines it is inplicit (as in sentences #5 &
#7). W|en t|e c|oice is inplicit, is it grannatically correct to add t|e words "or not" after
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W|en t|e "w|et|er" clause acts as a noun, t|e words "or not" add aosolutely not|ing to t|e
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5a) W|et|er you like |azz will influence your opinion of t|is new cluo.
5o) W|et|er or not you like |azz will influence your opinion of t|is new cluo.
“whether ... or not”
Notice, in eit|er of t|ose. if we renoved t|e uncertainty of t|e c|oice, we could replace t|e
word w|et|er wit| t|e word "if" to get a nore defnitive conditional statenent. Wit|out
naking t|ose c|anges, t|e word "if" would oe wrong.
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5) W|et|er you like |azz will influence your opinion of t|is new cluo.
C) W|et|er ¦ walk on |er left or rig|t side natters a great deal to |er.
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7) ¦ don't know w|et|er t|ere is intelligent life elsew|ere in t|e Universe.
8) He doesn't care w|et|er you serve oroccoli or Brussels sprouts wit| dinner.
¦n sentence #58, t|e word "if" would oe 100º incorrect. T|e CMlT Sentence Correction
loves to test t|at particular nistake.
when to use “whether”
93
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
T|e neaning of oot| sentences is exactly t|e sane. T|e second sentence adds two nore
words t|at contrioute zilc| to t|e overall neaning of t|e sentence. W|at is CMlC's opinion
of tossing in extra words t|at lengt|en t|e sentence and contrioute oupkis to t|e neaning?
ls you nay well guess, t|ey frown on t|ese. Don't expect to see "w|et|er or not" in any
correct CMlT SC answer c|oice w|en t|e clause is used as a noun.
W|en t|e clause stands apart, as in sentences #3 & #4, t|at's anot|er natter. ¦n t|at con!
struction, t|e alternative nust oe nade explicit. ¦n #3 t|ere already was an explicit conpari!
son of t|e two languages, out in #4 we aosolutely nust include t|e words "or not" after t|e
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words "w|et|er or not" could oe correct on CMlT sentence correction.
W|et|er or not you like it, knowing t|e correct use of "w|et|er" and "if" is inportant for
CMlT Sentence Correction. ¦f you can naster t|ese distinctions, you will perforn well on a
question t|at t|at oefuddles nany.
Two relevant SC questions in t|e CMlT Cffcial Cuide, w|ic| appear as.
a.) #34 & #75 in CC12e, and
o.) #34 & #78 in CC13e
“whether ... or not”
94
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PREPOSITIONS & IDIOMS
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easy
Choose the option that best answers the question.
The answer is B.
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96
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medium
Choose the option that best answers the question.
The answer is C.
Try the question online and watch the video explanation: http://gmat.magoosh.com/questions/3224
97
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very hard
Choose the option that best answers the question.
The answer is D.
Try the question online and watch the video explanation: http://gmat.magoosh.com/questions/3289
98
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