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SAT Grammar Question

butter7butter7 9 replies3 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 12 New Member
I encountered this question in Erica Meltzer's SAT Grammar book:
"[Judith Jamison] was spotted by choreographer Agnes de Mille, who invited her to appear in a performance with the American Ballet Theater. Jamison moved to New York the following *{year, eventually joining} the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater."

*The part with { } is the underlined portion of the question
(A) NO CHANGE
(B) year, but she eventually joined
(C) year; and eventually joined
(D) year, she eventually joined

I was very hesitant between (A) and (B), but I eventually chose (B). The correct answer is (A). I understand why (A) is correct, but why is (B) wrong? (Just my guess) Is it because the "eventually" is used incorrectly in the answer choice because it is a traditional word?

Any help is appreciated, thank you!
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Replies to: SAT Grammar Question

  • TTdd16TTdd16 279 replies8 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 287 Junior Member
    The "but" is incorrect in B. "And" would be correct if used instead of "but." There's nothing to indicate the meaning of "but" in the context of the sentence, so it's the wrong word.
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  • LoveTheBardLoveTheBard 2095 replies20 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 2,115 Senior Member
    If the sentence is grammatically correct with the "NO CHANGE" option, and the unaltered sentence conveys the proper meaning with the greatest simplicity, there is no reason to select another option. In this example, all of the above conditions are met.

    No change would give you:

    "Jamison moved to New York the following year, eventually joining the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater."

    I can see why you might have been confused. JJ was invited by De Mille to appear with the ABT. The following year, JJ joined Alvin Ailey (not the ABT).

    "But" would have worked had the clause drawn the contrast as in the example below:

    "Jamison moved to New York the following year, but she eventually joined the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater rather than the American Ballet Theatre."

    This, however, changes the focus of the statement.

    The word "eventually" implies that whatever happened later was not what might have originally been anticipated -- or what the preceding sentence might have lead you to think would happen -- so the "but" is superfluous (or, to use it properly, it would need to be paired with a contrasting "rather than" or "instead" as demonstrated above.

    Choice "C" would be correct if there were a comma rather than a semicolon.
    Choice "D" would be correct if there were a semicolon rather than a comma.

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  • butter7butter7 9 replies3 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 12 New Member
    Thank you all for the answer explanations! Now the answer (A) makes a lot more sense.
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