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Sentence Correction: Preposition and Idiom Questions - Overview

In the late Ottoman empire, the term Qanun (derived from the Greek "canon") was the secular administrative law that extended to all subjects, excepting for the realm of personal law which was administered by the religious law of each confessional community, known in Turkish as a millet

Incorrect.

This answer choice is illogical. This sentence tries to define the term "Qanun". However, the term Qanun itself is not the secular administrative law; the term only refers to that law. Stating that a word or a term is what it describes is illogical, e.g. the word 'cake' is tasty.

What helps us identify this mistake in the original sentence is the following Stop Sign:

The word/term...   (it) is...

Whenever we see this Stop Sign, we know that the question is checking the use of refers to/defines/describes after the word/term(and not is or was).

In addition, the phrase excepting for is non-idiomatic

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Incorrect.

While this answer choice corrects the original logical mistake, it repeats the idiom mistake in the original sentence. The phrase excepting for is non-idiomatic

[[snippet]]

Incorrect.

While this answer choice corrects the original logical mistake, it repeats the idiom mistake in the original sentence. The phrase excepting for is non-idiomatic

[[snippet]]

Incorrect.

While this answer choice corrects the original logical mistake and the idiom mistake, it introduce a new logical mistake. Although the word except is used correctly, it requires in this case a preposition after it. Without such preposition, the construction all subjects, except the realm of personal law presents the realm of personal law as one of the subjects of the Ottman empire, which is illogical.

Note that here subject means citizen or resident of the empire (and not a topic). We know this because the sentence draws the comparison between secular law for all residents vs. religious law in local communities.

Excellent!

This answer choice corrects the original logical mistake by changing the term Qanun...was to the term Qanun...referred to. It also changes the idiom mistake by changing the incorrect idiom excepting for to except in.

The use of the preposition in (except in the realm of personal law) clearly indicates that secular law extended to all subjects generally, but did not extend to all subjects in matters concerning personal law.

the term Qanun (derived from the Greek "canon") was the secular administrative law that extended to all subjects, excepting for

Qanun (a term derived from the Greek "canon") was the secular administrative law that extended to all subjects, excepting for

the term Qanun (derived from the Greek "canon") referred to the secular administrative law that extended to all subjects, excepting for

Qanun (derived from the Greek "canon") was the term for the secular administrative law that extended to all subjects, except

the term Qanun (derived from the Greek "canon") referred to the secular administrative law that extended to all subjects, except in