An independent clause that refers to a hypothetical situation contingent on another set of circumstance.

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Conditionals (Past Tense)

In terms of conditional sentences, is it correct to say: if you knew why I WAS here, then I wouldn't need to be here. or If you knew why I WERE here, then I wouldn't need to be here. Which ...
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23 views

What does “Had X not Y” mean? [duplicate]

In this sentence, It should have, had the umpire not been intimidated by the reputation of the man who had come in to bat why "had" is being used here? what is its meaning in the above context? ...
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82 views

Grammar: French conditionnel in English?

Could anybody help me here, please? I’d like to know the grammatical form of the verb “can" in the following examples: 18y old Tim is asked by a relative what he’s going to do with his life. ...
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54 views

What’s the difference between “if I were” and “if I would be”? [on hold]

Can someone tell me the difference between these two phrases: if I were rich if I would be rich I am not a native English speaker, so it’s hard for me to see any difference in meaning between ...
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122 views

Inverted conditional sentence using 'can' and 'will'

On this page in Wikipedia!, it states for first conditional sentences: The condition can also be expressed using the modal verb should. This form can be used to make an inverted condition ...
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97 views

Is the tense change of the verb “need” to “needed” mandatory?

If the tense change of the verb "need" to "needed" is not mandatory, then if it was changed then how would it affect the meaning in the sentences below? If they asked for help, I would provide ...
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76 views

When did it become common to 'double the conditional'?

Twins is a 1988 comedy featuring Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito as genetically engineered twins. The fact that they’re genetically engineered is used to explain the differences between ...
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Placing a comma after a conditional statement

I've always had difficulties in figuring out where commas should be placed. For example, in a phrase containing a conditional statement, how should I write... If they don't arrive by noon, she'll ...
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1answer
56 views

A use of “should” [duplicate]

I don't get to understand the meaning of "should" in this sentence. She stared out of the window with her lips pinched together, and it seemed quite natural that the rain should have begun to ...
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2answers
52 views

“Would have not” vs. “would not have”

That would not have happened if John had completed his work. That would have not happened if John had completed his work. The former seems correct. The latter doesn't seem incorrect. ...
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Using “will” after “if”

I've been told that native-speakers don't ever use "will" after "if", and that saying it this way is a not-native style. So from the film (Harry Potter, pt5) I noticed a line that confused me. Look ...
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2answers
283 views

Is it grammatical to introduce a result clause using “then”?

Is it grammatical to introduce a result clause by using then as in these examples: Don’t be lazy – then you will fail. Don’t kill him – then you will regret it. If so, then is the then in these ...
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“only if we ignored X, might Y happen”?

In spite of the general guidance on conditionals found on this site, I am struggling with which tenses to use in the following sentence to properly convey what I mean: Only if we ignored these ...
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153 views

“If there were” vs. “if there was” [closed]

I saw that there were already examples on this, but I didn't find any specific enough. My problem is this sentence: If there were anything that he didn't want, it was to hurt me. I previously ...
6
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1answer
257 views

Subjunctive and conditionals

This is another subjunctive and conditional question. I am interested in the formal, even archaic, uses, not just the modern uses (I am given to understand that the subjunctive is disappearing from ...
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2answers
130 views

“I would like that he was normal”; is this sentence correct?

I would like that he was normal. This sounds a little awkward but plausible. Is it valid English? How about another example: I would like that he bathed before going to sleep. It sounds a ...
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Future tense in conditional clauses

All the textbooks I have ever come across during the course of my studying English emphasize that future tense should not be used in conditional clauses. For example, If it rains in the evening, ...
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2answers
173 views

What does “would not have been possible had I remained” mean?

What does this mean? I am sure this would not have been possible had I remained a typical Anglophone North American. I have never heard that before and I really find it strange. I deduce that ...
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70 views

How can I rephrase a question with if clause, to be answered only if the event of the “if” clause happened [closed]

I would like to ask a question which is to be answered only if some past condition is met: If you did something in the past, could you tell me more about it? How should I rephrase it?
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318 views

Trouble with second conditionals (with “could”)

I would do B if you could do A. This is a statement which has been bothering me for quite a while. I come across such statements often and, to me, they make no sense. Could is the subjunctive of ...
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494 views

How does the false-conditional work in “I made sandwiches if you want some”?

This use of "if" has a completely different meaning than its normal conditional meaning. Can someone explain to me how this construction works, and provide other examples of this sort of thing?
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2answers
176 views

If- conditional construct using future events

A friend invited me to his summer house later this summer, so I told him I would if it doesn't overlap with my plans. This is how I stated it: I’d come, if it doesn't overlap with my scheduled ...
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69 views

Wondering if this mixed conditional is correct or not ( taken from Euronews )

Earlier on his arrival in Warsaw the president had met US and Polish air personnel from a detachment of F-16 fighter jets. Obama also stressed that more sanctions were being prepared against Russia ...
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103 views

Usage of “I will be. . . if it were”

I found a statement in one of my old write-up and I can't not be sure if this is wrong. I am not a native English speaker. I will be surprised if it were to be discovered that consciousness is ...
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Comma in conditional sentence and in antithesis

I've got a couple questions: Should I always put comma between condition and consequence parts, like in the following sentence: If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask. Should I always ...
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1answer
50 views

Future conditional

What is the grammatically correct way to say that a person who has died would be a certain age next month? He "would have been 89 next month?" Or "were he alive, he would be 89 next month ?"
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General rules for identifying conditional sentences?

I am trying to identify the subject and object in the following sentence: Come to me, and I'll give you a fight you'll never forget At first, it appeared as if whenever a conjunction appears ...
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135 views

Commas After Conditionals

It seems to me that commas for conditionals are falling out of favor. I often see the comma dropped in sentences like: If you get stuck in a passive sentence always ask the question: I would ...
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Must conditional sentences begin with “if?”

I've been looking at conditional sentences (conditional clauses). Every example I've see is along the lines of, "if [x] then [y]." I've seen alternatives/substitutes for the if part: were I ...
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134 views

Is a comma or “if” needed in this sentence

"X might not have been made had money been a priority" We are discussing with friend about this sentence, which I had trouble understanding at first. To me, it'd have been more idiomatic adding ...
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1answer
56 views

2nd Condition or mixing 2nd and 3rd for assumption time in the past

Which of the two following sentences would be better to use for a situation where I regret that I did not do something in the past? If it were yesterday, I would buy the car. If it were yesterday, I ...
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1answer
54 views

“going to” in conditionals [closed]

If you said 'no', I would call your parents" = If you said 'no', I am going to call your parents OR If you said 'no', I was going to call your parents If you had said 'no', I would have called ...
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2answers
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Conditional about a deceased person

"Tom would know about the ledger" in this example the said person is deceased (not alive at the moment) so why can't we use would have in this sentence. Which is more grammatical?
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Is this sentence grammatically correct, and is it an example of the subjunctive?

Is this sentence grammatically correct, and is 'your ensuring' here an example of the subjunctive? "We appreciate your ensuring all workstations are switched off before leaving the office locked at ...
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Conditional sentences - which is correct?

If I had bought insurance for the trip, I would have got a refund after I got sick and had to cancel. OR If I had bought insurance for the trip, I would have got a refund after I had got sick and ...
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How do the tenses and aspects in English correspond temporally to one another?

Non-native speakers often get confused about what the various tenses and aspects mean in English. With input from some of the folk here I've put together a diagram that I hope will provide some ...
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3answers
103 views

Using Conditionals 2 and 3 together

I'm a native English speaker (American). I was trying to explain a sentence to a non-native speaking friend, but didn't do a very good job of it. The sentence is: Sam got to the station just in ...
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1answer
47 views

“He is a hero” or “He was a hero”?

Talking to someone who says What if my son is a hero! would someone respond It would not surprise me if he is Or would they respond It would not surprise me if he was
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372 views

conditional sentence

If I had to guess I’d say we are looking at the same records. Why not say we were looking at the same records for the present? And yes, the situation is about the present circumstances. So ...
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34 views

“But had events gone another way”(grammar) [duplicate]

The whole sentence is "But had events gone another way, this would be a rather different memoir." Why is the sentence not like "But the events have gone another way"? "Have" and "events" are ...
2
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2answers
151 views

what's the meaning when “be” is followed by an infinitive

"If two Weeping Angels were to look at each other at the same time, they would be trapped in stone form until an outside force moves them apart." My questions are about the phrase "were to look": ...
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5answers
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“If I didn't have” vs. “if I hadn't had”

Can someone please tell me if these sentences are correct? I prefer number one. Here I am trying to talk about a past condition that didn't actually happen because the person had the example sentences ...
4
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3answers
62 views

On the verb form in the first clause of constructions using “and” to connect action and consequence

Consider the following: You do this one more time and I'll slap you. What form is "do"? I'd like to say it is the bare infinitive (see below), but I'm led to believe that it is the present ...
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1answer
60 views

“If the robot can learn from a human, it can/could keep track of humans.”

I have the following sentence and I don't know whether "can" or "could" would be a better choice. If the robot can learn from a human, it could keep track of humans. If the robot can learn ...
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3answers
456 views

“Even were he not to…”

I am currently reading "Do androids dream of electric sheep?" by P.K. Dick and I have come across a grammatical structure I don't quite understand. The excerpt is the following (no spoilers, don't ...
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1answer
909 views

Conditional sentences not starting with “if”

Were I rich, I would live on Long Island. If I were rich, I would live on Long Island. Is the first sentence still used, or is used in particular contexts (in example, to give emphasis to the ...
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42 views

The verb “should” as a conjunction [duplicate]

Here is the phrase from Wikipedia: CFO Peter Klein has said that Microsoft has no alternate plan should its current mobile strategy fail. Another example: Should Microsoft’s tablet and phone ...
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1answer
110 views

Explain “Conditional Sentences” [closed]

I need help with the the conditional sentences, please explain there structures with the examples in simple English
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4answers
3k views

“would love/like to” usage?

What is the difference between the sentences "I would love/like to play cricket" and " I want to play cricket." Is there any difference in the moods?
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184 views

Is it “get” or “gets” in “Nobody move and nobody get(s) hurt”? [duplicate]

Which of these is correct? 1.) "Nobody move and nobody gets hurt." or should it be, 2.) "Nobody move and nobody get hurt." Here's some related info in wikipedia.