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Is the following sentence correct?

This text has altered significantly compared to original version.

3 Answers 3

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First, you should put the definite article before original version.

Second, the compared to clause is very frequently encountered in statements of this sort, but it’s wordy and in the end redundant. A comparison is implicit in the word altered; and in this particular sentence it will be ordinarily taken for granted that the comparison is with the original. You need say only:

This text has been significantly altered.

To be sure, if you are comparing multiple versions you do need to say which particular text you are comparing this one to; but that may be gracefully said:

This text has been significantly altered from the original.

By and large, there is no need to mention the comparison explicitly if a comparison is implicit. Tim is taller compared with Carol is redundant; say

Tim is taller than Carol.

Mentioning the comparison is only required if your statement is cast in the positive grade:

Tim is tall compared with Carol, but short compared with Mike.

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I would write:

This text has been significantly altered, compared with the original version.

About using compare to, or compare with, the NOAD has the following note.

Traditionally, compare to is used when similarities are noted in dissimilar things: "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" To compare with is to look for either differences or similarities, usually in similar things: "Compare the candidate's claims with his actual performance." In practice, however, this distinction is rarely maintained.

As per the adverb, it should be closer to the verb it modifies.

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    What about was? This text was altered... would it be OK too? or should I have to specify the time? Feb 4, 2013 at 15:17
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    Using the simple past is fine too, and it would not require to specify the time. Although, there is a difference between using the simple past, or the present perfect.
    – apaderno
    Feb 4, 2013 at 15:20
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It is almost correct. You're missing the word "the" before "original version". This would be correct:

This text has altered significantly compared to the original version.

Now, to break the sentence down in more detail. At some point, there was an original version of the text. Since the time the original was written, it has altered. Therefore the new text (in your sentence, referred to as "this text") has altered. How do you know it was altered? By comparing it to the original text. So yes--the sentence is correct. The text has altered, and you know this by comparing it to the original version.

I notice other answers mentioned "compared with" as well as "compared to". While I don't doubt that "compared with" is correct, I would say that personally it sounds odd to me. I can't put my finger on why but I will say that, as a native speaker, I would use "compared to". Just something that stood out at me. :)

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  • has altered or has been altered. which is correct? Is "the" necessary? I think in some sentences "the" can be omitted.
    – user288
    Feb 4, 2013 at 23:37
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    Either "has altered" or "has been altered" is correct. And yes, the "the" is absolutely necessary. You need an article before the noun.
    – WendiKidd
    Feb 4, 2013 at 23:43

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