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    #1

    Is this part of the sentence incorrect?

    Dear teachers,

    Please give me a hand!
    This afternoon when I was clearing my daughter's desk for her, I cast a glance at one of the two open pages of her summer break English exercise-book and found an exercise she finished which in my view is wrong. However, when I afterward discussed it with her, she disagreed with me over it and said that the answer to the exercise had been given according to her textbook content. By the way, my daughter will be in the final year of a senior high in my city,located in eastern China.Then we went to that textbook page for a check. My daughter was right about her assertion: according to the textbook reading material, her answer to the problem in her summber break English exercise-book is correct; however, my English linguistic intuition tells me that part of the sentence in question is wrong. The following is the paragraph from which the sentence my daughter and I "quarreled" over is taken:

    Cloning is producing an exact copy of a plant or an animal using its cells. The first mammal to be cloned successfully from an adult cell was Dolly the sheep. She was born in 1996 and died in early 2003, at a much younger age than normal. When she was born, many people were worried that cloning would lead to more diseases in the animal world. However, in general the scientists were praised for their wonderful scientific advance.

    The disagreement betwen my daughter and me is about the underlined part of the second sentence of the above paragraph. My view is that Dolly was already a past event when we are here talking about cloning, so we do not need to use "to be used", which is equal in meaning to "that/which would be cloned" in this writing situation. In my opinion, "to be cloned" should be changed to simply "cloned", which is equal to "that/which was cloned". I insist that "The first mammal cloned successfully from an adult cell was Dolly the sheep" is the best sentence construction in terms of the tense the part of the sentence in question implies. But am I right about it? Please help me out! Thanks a lot!
    Richard
    Last edited by ohmyrichard; 14-Aug-2012 at 15:38.

  1. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Is this part of the sentence incorrect?

    You CAN say "The first mammal successfully cloned was..." but there is nothing wrong with the original and it "feels" more natural that way.

    Elbonia was the first territory on the newly discovered continent to be explored. -- This would sound really awkward as "the first terriroty explored."


    (PS: Summer, no B.)
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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    #3

    Re: Is this part of the sentence incorrect?

    So, you mean "to be cloned successfully from an adult cell" and "successfully cloned from an adult cell" are both grammatically correct in this context? Please note that in my OP, I focused on:

    The first mammal to be cloned successfully from an adult cell =The first mammal that/which would be cloned successfully from an adult cell
    The first mammal successfully cloned from an adult cell =The first mammal that/which was successfully cloned from an adult cell

    And thus I claimed in my OP that "to be done" implies something that you will/would do some time later and that the use of this structure is inappropriate and should be changed to "The first mammal successfully cloned from an adult cell".

    Do you really mean that "to be cloned successfully from an adult cell" and "successfully cloned from an adult cell" are both grammatically correct in this context? Thanks!

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Is this part of the sentence incorrect?

    Quote Originally Posted by ohmyrichard View Post
    So, you mean "to be cloned successfully from an adult cell" and "successfully cloned from an adult cell" are both grammatically correct in this context?
    Yes
    Please note that in my OP, I focused on:

    The first mammal to be cloned successfully from an adult cell =The first mammal that/which would be cloned successfully from an adult cell
    The first mammal successfully cloned from an adult cell =The first mammal that/which was successfully cloned from an adult cell
    There is no justification for this.
    Do you really mean that "to be cloned successfully from an adult cell" and "successfully cloned from an adult cell" are both grammatically correct in this context? Thanks!
    Once again, yes.

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    #5

    Re: Is this part of the sentence incorrect?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    You CAN say "The first mammal successfully cloned was..." but there is nothing wrong with the original and it "feels" more natural that way.

    Elbonia was the first territory on the newly discovered continent to be explored. -- This would sound really awkward as "the first terriroty explored."
    (PS: Summer, no B.)
    Thanks for answering my question, Barb_D.

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    #6

    Re: Is this part of the sentence incorrect?

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    YesThere is no justification for this. Once again, yes.
    Thanks a lot, 5jj.

  3. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: Is this part of the sentence incorrect?

    "To be" can be past or future.
    The first student to be recognized at tomorrow's award ceremony will be Allison.
    The first student to be recognized at yesterday's award ceremony was Allison. The first student [who was] recognized was Allison
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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    #8

    Re: Is this part of the sentence incorrect?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    "To be" can be past or future.
    The first student to be recognized at tomorrow's award ceremony will be Allison.
    The first student to be recognized at yesterday's award ceremony was Allison. The first student [who was] recognized was Allison
    Thanks for your further explanation, Barb_D. Now I realize that my original understanding of the grammatical issue was incomplete. Thank you for pointing out the flaw in it.

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