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I was going through a test and came upon this question:

Unfortunately, one of those species is the Bark Scorpion, just about the only species whose venom is considered truly dangerous and often fatal to humans.

Here are the choices to replace the bold part of the sentence:

  • A. NO CHANGE

  • B. Bark Scorpion which is just about the only species

  • C. only one that is the Bark Scorpion species,

  • D. Bark Scorpion, yet just about the only species

The test picks B as the right answer. While I do not see a problem with B, I do not see a problem with A. NO CHANGE as well. Can anyone explain to me why answer choice A is wrong.

Thanks

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    I see B as an alternative, but nothing wrong with the sentence as is. I think perhaps A is considered wrong because it implies that B is not an acceptable alternative.
    – fixer1234
    Jun 19, 2017 at 1:13
  • Does B really come without a comma before "which"? Which in this sentence is a non-restrictive relative pronoun. A C- for the exam writer.
    – Xanne
    Jun 19, 2017 at 6:07

1 Answer 1

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I'm guessing this is from an ACT. For the purposes of the ACT, typically only non-essential appositives should be between 2 commas. as written, the phrase "one...Scorpion" is between 2 commas, but it is not a non-essential appositive. Answer choices C and D would also create this problem of placing the phrase between 2 commas even though it is not a non-essential appositive. Answer choice B is the only one that does not result in this issue.

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