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Recently, I just have read an article about Jeremy England, a physicist who has his own lab in MIT, who has derived a mathematical formula that he believes explains the living things.

I think it grammatically correct. But does this sentence sound good with two whos? I'm not sure because besides the repeated who, the first who supports for a physicist, which in its turn supports for England, and the second who supports directly to England. I suspect that this sentence can be shorten somehow.

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  • I've wikified Jeremy England because this news about a possible math-based explanation of life seemed quite interesting to me. Jan 14 '15 at 12:13
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    An article in Quanta magazine is really deserved to read.
    – Ooker
    Jan 14 '15 at 12:59
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I would remodel it thus:

Recently I read an article about Jeremy England, a physicist who has his own lab at MIT and who has derived a mathematical formula that he believes explains the living things.

A relative clause tends to be perceived to be referring to the closest acceptable referent. I guess the reader will anyway percieve the second who as referring to "physicist", not directly to "Jeremy England".

Another possible way to remodel it is thus:

Recently I read an article about Jeremy England, a physicist with his own lab at MIT, who has derived a mathematical formula that he believes explains the living things.

I'm not sure if with is the best choice but my idea here it to turn the second part of the sentence into a phrase, not clause. This way, who will refer to Jeremy England, IMHO. At least in the text-based form. In an audio form, the listener might fail to "hear" the comma and so might lump the last two parts into one.

As an aside, I would also get rid of "just", it clashes a bit with "recently". And, per TRomano's suggestion below, of the Present Perfect: "recently I read", not "recently I've read".

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    The reordering is an improvement, but a couple of points. "at MIT" rather than "in MIT". Also, to my ear, the simple past is better than pres perf. when you have explicitly begun with "recently". Recently I read..... You are right to suggest "a physicist with his own lab at MIT, who..." in order to avoid the "who ... and who" construction. Jan 14 '15 at 12:53
  • @TRomano - thank you for the comments! I also initially dropped the Present Perfect, but then scanned Google Books and there were instances of "Recently I've read", so I returned the "have". Jan 14 '15 at 12:56
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    books.google.com/ngrams/… You may have to click the button again to rerun the search. Jan 14 '15 at 12:58

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