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I came across the following incomplete sentence with four choices marked A,B,C and D. The answer is A. I am quite confused why C is not correct. What is the difference between A and C?

______, a man who expresses himself effectively is sure to succeed more rapidly than a man whose command of language is poor.

A) Other things being equal

B) Were other things equal

C) To be equal to other things

D) Other things to be equal
Comments  
A) means "supposing all the other things are equal", so the only difference in the persons compared is their command of language. The sentence states that those with a good command of language will succeed more rapidly than those whose command is poor.

B) could express an aim, but doesn't make much sense since a man is not a thing.
Hi guys,

A is correct and is undoubtedly the answer that the teacher is expecting.

However, B is also possible. It's just much more formal speech. 'Were other things equal . . .' is a shorter form of 'If other things were equal. . .'

'Things' refers to the circumstances, not to the 'man'.

Best wishes, Clive
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Oh yes, sorry, I had read C instead of B ... Emotion: embarrassed
In a way, they are testing how much you read. If you read a lot, you will come across only one of these expressions frequently, and not the others. The test makers do not expect you to work out the meaning or grammar of each of these expressions. They expect you to recognize immediately that only one of them is in common use, and that one is A. It is only an accident of history that "other things being equal" is the standard phrase in modern English.

CJ
Hmmm...that's an interesting theory. Then to be fair, they should have written choice A as "All other things being equal" since that's how most people say the phrase.
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that's how most people say the phrase
Not to judge by Google results.
CJ