Thursday, May 7, 2009

#56 OG11

In a plan to stop the erosion of East Coast beaches, the Army Corps of Engineers proposed building parallel to shore a breakwater of rocks that would rise six feet above the waterline and act as a buffer, so that it absorbs the energy of crashing waves and protecting the beaches.

A. act as a buffer, so that it absorbs
B. act like a buffer, so so as to absorbs
C. act as a buffer, absorbing
D. acting as a buffer, absorbing
E. acting like a buffer, absorb

Answer: The last part of the sentence describes the breakwater and should consist of two grammatically parallel phrases, absorbing... and protecting, in order to show two equal functions. Act is followed by like to mean to behave or comport oneself and describes the action of a person: He acted like a fool. Here, act as describes the function of a thing; the breakwater ... acts as a buffer. As an inanimate object, breakwater cannot "behave" itself; it must be performing some function.

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