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What is the meaning of "rare brain blood clots sent scientists~" in the following sentences,

Denmark, which halted using the AstraZeneca vaccine on March 11, was among more than a dozen countries that temporarily paused use of the vaccine after a small number of reports of cases of rare brain blood clots sent scientists and governments scrambling to determine any link.

? (Source: COPENHAGEN (Reuters) : Denmark reports two cases of serious illness, including one death, after AstraZeneca shot By Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen )

Does "rare brain blood clots sent~" mean "a small number of reports of cases of rare brain blood clots were sent by scientists and governments scrambling to determine any link" ?

Or Does "rare brain blood clots sent~" mean "a small number of reports of cases of rare brain blood clots were sent and scientists and governments scrambling rare brain blood clots to determine any link"?

2 Answers 2

1

Q

a small number of reports of cases of rare brain blood clots sent scientists and governments scrambling to determine any link.

A1

"a small number of reports of cases of rare brain blood clots were sent by scientists and governments scrambling to determine any link"

A2

"a small number of reports of cases of rare brain blood clots were sent and scientists and governments scrambling rare brain blood clots to determine any link"

A1 has different meaning from Q. A2 also has different meaning from Q.

The subject of the clause Q is 'a small number of reports of cases of rare brain blood clots'. The 'sent' in Q means more like 'made', 'caused', or 'resulted in'; it does not mean 'delivered' or 'despatched'.

Replacing the confusing 'sent' with another verb, I modify A2:

"[A] small number of reports of cases of rare brain blood clots [made] scientists and governments [scramble] to determine any link."

3

Neither. The cases were not being sent, it was the occurrence of the cases that were the reason for the scientists to urgently investigate them.

Another example might be a fire alarm ringing in a crowded theatre: the fire alarm sent the patrons hurrying to the fire exits.

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  • if so, does "rare brain blood clot sent scientists and governments scrambling to determine any link" mean "rare brain blood clots forced scientists and governments scrambling to determine any link"? does "sent" in the sentence mean "forced" ?
    – user175012
    Mar 21, 2021 at 6:50
  • 2
    Using ‘forced’ in the sentence would require dropping ‘scrambling’. The sentence is using the phrase ‘sent scrambling’.
    – Wade B
    Mar 21, 2021 at 6:57

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