"The orbits of comets in our solar system are much more eccentric than planet Earth, which revolves around the Sun following a relatively circular path.

According to the sentence above, the error contained in the sentence above is "than planet earth".

Why is that? The question just tells me the error; Not an explanation of why it is the error.


2 Answers 2


For clarity, I would say more eccentric than planet Earth's, the possessive clarifying that the orbit of Earth is what is discussed. Otherwise the comparison is between orbits and Earth as a planet, which may be the source of the error.


The sentence appears to compare "orbits" with "planet Earth". This is probably not what the writer intended. Instead they intended to compare "orbits of comets" with "the orbit of the planet Earth".

The orbits of comets are more eccentric than that of planet Earth...

But as noted in a comment, native speakers are not robots, and we could follow the intended meaning perfectly well. There is no need to mark this as an error. Similar expressions occur frequently without causing problems.

  • 2
    Just because I understand it doesn't mean it isn't an error. I think any native English speaker would consider this sentence jarring.
    – Daniel
    Commented Jan 30, 2019 at 22:46

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