ready to be used whenever necessary

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LQZ

Senior Member
Mandarin
A version of the document sat for years in a classified safe in New York, updated and rewritten by Michael Farbiarz, the lead prosecutor, as new evidence was developed, ready to be used whenever necessary. ---taken from the New York Times

Dear all,

I suppose the part in red is modifying new evdence, but need your confirmation. If my understanding is correct, should a comma be replaced with a and? Thanks.


LQZ
 
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  • owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    I also think that "ready to be used whenever necessary" modifies "new evidence". I think it's a little smoother without the "and" after the comma.
     

    owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    Hello, LQZ

    I think the red part is modifying 'A version of the document sat'
    Hi, Coolie. Your remark made me re-read the sentence. I think you're right. This modifier sure has wandered a long way from the thing it was modifying. Maybe it's lost. It wouldn't surprise me to learn that many readers have joined it in the wilderness.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    I agree with coolie in blue. The red part modifies "a version (of the document)". In other words, the sentence could be compressed to:

    A version of the document sat for years in a classified safe in New York, ready to be used whenever necessary.
     

    LQZ

    Senior Member
    Mandarin
    owlman5, I think you should be cautious.
    The original poster's suggestion often makes the next poster mistaken.
    I am not intentionally misleading anyone. :( When I have trouble understanding a sentence, I often post a thread to ask for help. Sadly, I was dead wrong this time.

    Thank you,everyone. :)
     

    owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    I am not intentionally misleading anyone. :( When I have trouble understanding a sentence, I often post a thread to ask for help. Sadly, I was dead wrong this time.

    Thank you,everyone. :)
    Hi, LQZ. Though I certainly won't try to speak for Coolie, I don't think he was implying that you were trying to mislead anybody. Your opinion about the phrase and what it modified might have influenced mine. I don't know. What I do know is that I would have tried to find another way to write the sentence if it were my idea. Again, the modifier has been tacked on the end of several words that stand between it and the noun it modifies. That's enough to confuse a lot of people.
     

    LQZ

    Senior Member
    Mandarin
    Hi, LQZ. Though I certainly won't try to speak for Coolie, I don't think he was implying that you were trying to mislead anybody. Your opinion about the phrase and what it modified might have influenced mine. I don't know. What I do know is that I would have tried to find another way to write the sentence if it were my idea. Again, the modifier has been tacked on the end of several words that stand between it and the noun it modifies. That's enough to confuse a lot of people.
    Thank you, owlman5. :) I wouldn't complain.
     
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