As the following combination to clear this marble is not proper, in fact, we can use the combination to clear the table such that removing dirt from the table by another combination is impossible quicker than the former combination.

I know the bold part has some problems. Could you please help me to correct it? I am wondering how to say it. Would you please give me other idioms or structures to give the sentence a better form? more polished or vivid? I need other forms or idioms instead of especially the bold part. I don't like it and I think it is poor English.

  • Not sure about the context, but perhaps try such that there is no other combination(?) that can clear this marble faster (or more quickly). Commented Jul 12, 2015 at 16:59
  • Honestly, I'm not sure what you're saying at all. Do you mean "marble" as in a slab of the rock... as in a marble tabletop? And what do you mean by "proper"? If it's "not proper" how is it the combination the fastest? By "clear" do you mean "clean"?
    – Catija
    Commented Jul 12, 2015 at 19:40
  • The bold part is not where the problems lie. All of the text leading up to the bold makes no sense.
    – Ast Pace
    Commented Jul 12, 2015 at 21:23

3 Answers 3


It does have a problem, but that problem cannot be solved by changing just the part you indicated.

I think what you want to say is this:

As the following combination to clear this marble is not proper, in fact, we can use the former combination to clear the table such that it is impossible for another combination to remove the dirt quicker.


Since "quicker" is an adjective, it seems that you are trying to modify the noun "combination" when you should be using the adverbial form ("more quickly") to modify the verb "remove".

It would help to see the context. I suspect breaking the passage into multiple sentences would improve it. Relative to the the phrase in question, it would be easier to understand if you restructured it as follows:

It is not possible to remove the dirt from the table more quickly using the former combination.

You use "combination" several times in the first part of the passage without clear antecedents, which makes it difficult to understand overall. It seems that there are multiple formulation of a marble cleaning product, but it's difficult to tell how many. Breaking the passage into multiple sentences would probably help.


The clearest way to say it is indeed as Codeswitcher suggested.

The latter part is grammatically correct, but convoluted and hard to parse. However, I think we could untangle just that latter part, as you asked, by rearranging and condensing. When thus properly arranged, "former combination" becomes superfluous (I removed it, as did Codeswitcher .)

  • ". . . from the table quicker by another combination is impossible.

Edit: it occurs to me that maybe the "former combination" referred to was not even mentioned in the quoted passage, in which case we need more context before we can confidently attach (or detach) "former" anywhere in the rewrite.

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