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1) "As it happened" reports an event whose occurrence was previously in doubt or not expected, often in contrast to what was expected.

Q) What does the underlined part describe/modify in the previous sentence? Does it modify the verb "report"? Or does it modify the noun "an event"? Or the clause "whose occurrence was previously in doubt or not expected"?

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1) "As it happened" reports an event whose occurrence was previously in doubt or not expected, often in contrast to what was expected.

Q) What does the underlined part describe/modify in the previous sentence? Does it modify the verb "report"? Or does it modify the noun "an event"? Or the clause "whose occurrence was previously in doubt or not expected"?

Hi, Language learner—"Often in contrast to what was expected" modifies the verb phrase headed by "reports" ("reports an event whose occurrence was previously in doubt or not expected"). Compare:

  • This phrase reports, often in contrast to what was expected, an event whose occurrence was previously in doubt or not expected.

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