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

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91
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6answers
18k views

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 ...
0
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2answers
84 views

Difference in usage between 'If I were you, I would X' and 'If I were you, I would have Xed'

"If I were you, I would look for another job" and "if I were you, I would have looked for another job" what is the difference between these two sentences?
0
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1answer
63 views

Verb tenses and types

I believe that the verb tenses in: She will cry to think that I would leave her are: future simple, infinitive, past (of "will"). Am I correct please?
2
votes
3answers
150 views

strange conditional

What's the difference between 1 and 2? Is 1 a good conditional? I can't imagine the consequences if the police found out. I couldn't imagine the consequences if the police found out. I'd ...
5
votes
3answers
559 views

Future tense usage: “When you see it …”

I wonder why the phrase is "When you see it you will shit brix," and not "When you will see it you will shit brix." Is the version with two will incorrect? What grammar rule says that you should not ...
1
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2answers
452 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 ...
0
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1answer
46 views

Mixed conditional usage

I want to combine two unreal conditions using mixed conditional. Two unreal conditions are in the past and in the present. I made this : If I had not been absent that day, I may study at Harvard ...
1
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3answers
63 views

Tense of a zero conditional when the main clause is in present perfect

I'm not sure about the terminology so I'll just give examples. Present simple: In 19th century, if you wanted to go to Japan, you had to sail. Past simple: Today, if you want to go to ...
4
votes
2answers
265 views

The use of "were- should- had” at the beginning of sentences instead of “if”

Conditionals in English are usually formed by using if with normal word order; but for the three past (subjunctive) forms were, should, and had, it is also possible to express the conditional through ...
0
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1answer
82 views

Correct grammatical form for a conditional statement describing a habit in the past

Let's say I want to describe a habit in the past (something that happened many times over and over again) in the form of a conditional statement. Is the following sentence grammatically correct? ...
0
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0answers
26 views

Conditional sentences. Punctuation in the main clause which is a compound sentence

If event A happens, event B will happen, and event C might happen. Do I need to put a comma before "and?"
8
votes
4answers
496 views

Present tense and conditional tense in a stated past tense

I have a question about using past and conditional tenses in a context that refers to something told in the past. I think I’ve seen both forms used in films/books, etc., but I'm not sure about it ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

Second conditional for the past?

I've just come across the following sentence: If you were born 50 years earlier, how would your life be different now? Wouldn't it be more precise to say: If you had been born 50 years ...
1
vote
2answers
58 views

The third conditional questions

Today while speaking to a colleague of mine I said "Had you studied well, you would have cleared the exam ". I was rebuked for not using the third conditional correctly. I was told that the correct ...
1
vote
3answers
187 views

Is it correct to say “if you (will not come) by tomorrow ,let me know”

Which one is correct?: if you (will not come) by tomorrow ,let me know if you (do not come) by tomorrow ,let me know I have read posts here about using "will" in the if clause.in this answer Is ...
0
votes
0answers
37 views

Is it OK to use imperative after a conditional?

Is it allowable to use imperative after an "if" clause in past tense, e.g If you told your secret to anyone, don't ask him/her to be quiet.
2
votes
2answers
98 views

'I thought I would …, once it is/was'

Which verb should be used in place of "is" which is currently used in condition in the following sentence: "They thought that subsequent contributions to the joint venture would be made into the ...
0
votes
1answer
81 views

the use of “were to” to mean “suppose” or “imagine”

Is it okay to use the counterfactual subjuntive verb phrase, "were to" with the present tense of a main clause? I thought that "if subject + were to + verb" should be used with "would" or "could" in a ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

First conditional with “would” instead of “will”

Consider the following sentence with a first conditional: If it rains tomorrow, I will go to the cinema. All the examples of first conditionals that I found use "will" instead of ...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

When two or more dependent clauses are used?

I want to explain my problem with the following sentence: No one knows if the excited stammerer knew of the earlier word, or simply made a mistake or if the story was just a clever marketing ploy ...
1
vote
2answers
100 views

Is “were I you” archaic?

Would the following usage be considered archaic? Were I you, I would ask her for a date.
2
votes
3answers
291 views

Why is “till” used in this expression: “If we don't leave till after lunch…”?

If we don't leave till after lunch we'll be cutting it very fine. I understand it to mean: "If we don't leave after lunch, we'll be cutting it very fine." (In the event of our not leaving ...
2
votes
1answer
110 views

Dropping “then” in “If” statements [duplicate]

As an Example, I want to refer to this Wikipedia article where there are many conditional sentences. Some of them drop the "then", some of them use it. When I change that (drop it where it was used or ...
0
votes
2answers
56 views

Third conditional

I'm getting familiar with the third conditional, and there is a site where I read this: It's used to describe a situation that didn't happen, and to imagine the result of this situation. What ...
0
votes
2answers
130 views

How to paraphrase “You had better…” with the use of conditional (if)?

I've try to explain my question on an example. I've got following sentence: You had better correct that source code. How to rewrite it with the use of conditional or if statement? I would like to ...
2
votes
1answer
81 views

Does an inverted protasis mean just plain “if”, or does it mean “even if”?

When the first part of a conditional’s if-clause is inverted and the if consequently dropped, is the missing if just a plain old “simple if”, or is it more of an “even if”? For example, in this ...
1
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1answer
35 views

'Were' or 'are' in the conditional tense?

I am not sure how a sentence I want to write should be written: I would choose the apple in the case where an unknown number of apples were to be stored in the box. I would choose the apple ...
0
votes
1answer
97 views

Is the question “If you didn't break the vase, who did?” a conditional sentence?

My problem is that I was taught (I think wrongly) that whenever a conditional sentence refers to past, there should be past perfect tense in the if clause, as in example 1. Example 1: If you ...
-1
votes
2answers
139 views

When to use “Do you mind…?” and when “Would you mind…?”

I know that "Would you mind… ?" (the Present Conditional) is more polite than "Do you mind…?" (the Simple Present), and also, that they have to be completed this way: "Do you mind if I do sth?/Would ...
-2
votes
1answer
86 views

Why is there “was” instead of “were” in this conditional type 2? [closed]

Why is "was" used here while there must be "were"? If the foe-caster made the correct observation and the campaign was successful,....... conditional type-2
3
votes
2answers
8k views

“If not for you” meaning

Today I have encountered a phrase: If not for you, I would be poor. I would think it is like "if there were not you", is it like that? On the other hand, how would I say the following as the ...
0
votes
1answer
63 views

How to use “was” in conditional sentence?

I have read that in conditional sentences he\she\it is used with "were",not with "was",but in Agatha Christie's book I sow "if he was right..." Is it mistake? UPD: as per request the full sentences ...
0
votes
1answer
49 views

Why is the “were” placed ahead? [duplicate]

Loosely speaking, the mode is the highest bump, the median is where half the area is to the right and half is to the left, and the mean is where the histogram would balance, were it a solid object cut ...
1
vote
1answer
940 views

Meaning and use of “would have to be” in this sentence

I'm a beginner of English and really appreciate that you can help me learn more. I noticed a sentence: I think all the girls in the anime are awesome, but my favorites would have to be Nozomi and ...
1
vote
2answers
8k views

“If you were to …” or “If you …” or “If you will …”

If you were to go home you would feel better versus If you went home you would feel better versus If you will go home you will feel better Are all the above correct? Are ...
0
votes
1answer
134 views

I wish I would and sequence of tenses

Let us suppose we want to say that we want to resume practicing a language before we forget it absolutely. So we will say: I wish I would resume ... before ... And what after before? Can we use the ...
6
votes
1answer
913 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
84 views

What is the difference between 2nd and mixed conditional?

Could someone explain the difference in meaning between these two forms of conditional? 1.If I had time, I would be there. 2.I would have been there if I had time.
0
votes
2answers
87 views

Conditional sentence about something that has happened in the past but we have no clue how it happened

Let's imagine that yesterday there was a match between England and Brazil. I want to say a conditional sentence about the result of yesterday's match, but I don't know the result of the match. If I ...
-1
votes
1answer
544 views

“You look like your brother” or “Your brother looks like you”? [closed]

My friends are always saying stuff like, "You look like your brother ," or "Your brother looks like you." My brother is 4 years younger than me and I really can't see the resemblance; but it got me ...
1
vote
0answers
50 views

Unreal Conditional and Subjunctive [duplicate]

I have read that in using unreal conditionals, irrespective of personal pronouns, it mandatory to use subjunctives to form verbs. " If Jack was playing they would probably win " - if I am correct, ...
2
votes
2answers
3k 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. ...
1
vote
1answer
157 views

using “if” - when to use present tense, and when to use past tense?

As a native speaker of English, these two sentences sound acceptable to me: A full refund can be claimed if the school fails to provide a textbook. A full refund could be claimed if the ...
6
votes
1answer
134 views

What's the truth about the subjunctive and conditional statements, anyway?

I have generally (I would say always, but I'm not sure I always thought this) supposed that in English, uses of the subjunctive are quite limited. They include desires, judgments, etc. ("I desire that ...
3
votes
2answers
524 views

Tense agreement in conditional statements: “I could do whatever I want” vs. “I could do whatever I wanted”

Consider the following sentences: If I had my own place, I could do whatever I want. If I had my own place, I could do whatever I wanted. She said I could do whatever I want. She ...
3
votes
3answers
14k views

“If I go..” vs. “If I will go..” referring to the future [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Future tense in conditional clauses Which one is correct? option 1: If I go there, I can meet her or option 2: If I will go there, I can meet her I clearly ...
0
votes
2answers
557 views

“I like to” vs. “I'd like to”

When making a polite request, people often use the phrase, "I'd like to [SOME REQUEST]". But I also see the form, "I like to [SOME REQUEST]". For example, a former boss would arbitrarily interchange ...
0
votes
0answers
100 views

Conditional sentence type (if + subj. + simple past, subj. + simple present be + subj. complement)

A colleague asked me for an identification and explanation of a conditional sentence. I got as far as confirming that it is conditional and indicative (rather than subjunctive), but I am having ...
0
votes
0answers
242 views

Which is correct “was” or“ were”? [duplicate]

It's hard to imagine a pine tree wishing it was an oak. It's hard to imagine a pine tree wishing it were an oak. Which is correct sentence?
1
vote
1answer
90 views

Using “should” in a conditional sentence

I have a question about certain conditional sentences. Specifically with these rules: If + present = future For example: "If I win the lottery, I will go to France." If + past = conditional ...