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This is from my English Cambridge Proficiency Book. In Unit 8 about inversions, I had to rewrite the sentence:

Original sentence:

It is very difficult for town centre redevelopment to achieve a harmonious balance between old and new

My answer:

Rarely is it easy for town centre redevelopment to achieve a harmonious balance between old and new

Correct question (according to the book):

Rarely do/will/can town centre redevelopments achieve a harmonious balance between old and new.

I wonder why my answer isn't acceptable.

Is there anything fundamentally wrong with my sentence?

Thanks

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    Your sentence is fine. It uses what's called the enduing present tense to illustrate an ongoing situation or general truth. – deadrat May 19 '16 at 20:13
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    I am wondering why both you and they used rarely since it doesn't appear in the original sentence. – WS2 May 19 '16 at 20:22
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Your answer is not only perfectly acceptable, but a more accurate rendering than the one they want.

In their answer they have tacitly applied an implication (which is not even a logical implication, but a material one) that 'X is difficult' => 'X occurs rarely'. I think this is inappropriate in a grammar book.

  • But his answer also equates 'difficult' & 'rarely', so why is it better? – TrevorD May 19 '16 at 23:33
  • True, it does. But it reverses the "difficult" into "easy", rather than omitting it altogether. – Colin Fine May 19 '16 at 23:35
  • Point taken; previously overlooked; & now I agree! – TrevorD May 19 '16 at 23:37

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