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The impression that science is incomprehensive magic, to be understood only by a chosen few who are suspiciously different from ordinary mankind, is bound to turn many youngsters away from science.

About 'to be understood only by a chosen few...', is it:

(1) An infinitive which modifies 'incomprehensive magic'
(2) [Science is incomprehensive magic]+[science is to be undersood only be a chosen few]

?
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Taka, to be understood only by a chosen few who are suspiciously different from ordinary mankind, is bound to turn many youngsters away from science.

About 'to be understood only by a chosen few...', is it:

(1) An infinitive which modifies 'incomprehensive magic'
(2) [Science is incomprehensive magic]+[science is to be undersood only be a chosen few]

?
Yes, the underlined it's an infinitive clause modifiying The impression that science is incomprehensive magic.
Goodman

Yes, the underlined it's an infinitive clause modifiying The impression that science is incomprehensive magic.

? The infinitive modifies the enitre 'the impression' part??
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TakaThe impression that science is incomprehensive magic, to be understood only by a chosen few who are suspiciously different from ordinary mankind, is bound to turn many youngsters away from science.

About 'to be understood only by a chosen few...', is it:

(1) An infinitive which modifies 'incomprehensive magic'
(2) [Science is incomprehensive magic]+[science is to be undersood only be a chosen few]

?
Shouldn't that be, "incomprehensible magic"?
to be understood only by a chosen few who are suspiciously different from ordinary mankind,

The above words are 'non-identifiable relative clause' too.

You could just take it away; it still makes a sensible sentence.
The first interpretation that strikes this native speaker is (2). The comma could even be a dash.

CJ
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CalifJimThe first interpretation that strikes this native speaker is (2). The comma could even be a dash.

CJ

Initially, I thought so too, CJ.

But isn't it going to be against the rule of prallelism?
Hi,

I'd say #2, too.

Clive
Re: parallelism

I don't think there is actually a rule of parallelism. Many sentences exhibit non-parallel structures even where the corresponding parallel structure is possible, and yet they are grammatical sentences. I would consider parallelism more of a stylistic device than a rule.

CJ
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