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

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7
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4answers
359 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
22 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
43 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.
2
votes
2answers
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 ...
0
votes
0answers
39 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
votes
1answer
34 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
2answers
46 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
60 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
52 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
122 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
354 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 ...
1
vote
0answers
34 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
2k 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
64 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
77 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
452 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
13k 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
108 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
60 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
62 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
67 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 ...
0
votes
0answers
62 views

A Question on Shakespeare's use of conditionals [duplicate]

The following is a big question, but I am really confused by the use of conditional in this Shakespearean excerpt. From The Taming of the Shrew, Act I, Scene I: 142 I am agreed; and would I ...
2
votes
1answer
625 views

Mixed conditional clause type 1-3

I came across the following conditional clause while studying a grammar book published by Oxford: "If you know London so well, you shouldn't have got so hopelessly lost." The writer of the book has ...
0
votes
1answer
153 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
148 views

Which dialects of English consider “would” to be a polite form of “will”?

My recent trip to India exposed me to many sentences using "would" as a polite substitute for "will", as in Please make sure to leave on time. The last bus would depart at 8PM. Thanks for ...
4
votes
2answers
196 views

If and Whether - or not? Interrogative and Conditional words

It's clear to me that in some situations, "if" works but "whether" does not: 1a) If it rains, I shall take my umbrella. 1b) Call me if rain is predicted. Also some where only "whether or not" will ...
2
votes
2answers
199 views

“Would you mind if I smoked here?” — Conditional or not?

(1) Would you mind if I smoked here? Is (1) a conditional (i.e., a sentence containing a conditional clause)? Or is the if-clause complement of the verb mind? EDIT I feel the need to make it ...
0
votes
2answers
61 views

Usage of the Future Tense with a Conditional containing “unless”

Unless the plane encounters unexpected turbulence, it ------- in Iceland shortly before 5 P.M. In this conditional sentence using "unless", should the blank be filled with: 1) is arriving, 2) will ...
1
vote
4answers
370 views

Using a present tense verb in an “if” clause, followed by the main clause

Is it possible to have a present tense verb in a sentence like this: If you resign now, you'd feel sorry later. Or must you always follow the second conditional format, arriving at a sentence ...
1
vote
3answers
107 views

Does good grammar offend?

I'm not a grammar nazi in my native language, and SURELY nor in the language I learn (English). And I think, when a person is expressing thoughts, he or she shouldn't think about grammatical ...
87
votes
5answers
15k 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
75 views

“Supposing Jane ______ with us, what would you do?”

In this sentence: Supposing Jane ______ with us, what would you do? The available options for filling in that blank were: would come came will come has come is coming Could I know which is ...
2
votes
3answers
656 views

I recommend vs. I would recommend

I just realized that throughout my life I have interchanged "I recommend that you do X" and "I would recommend that you do X". Is there a difference in their meanings in modern-day usage, or are they ...
2
votes
2answers
95 views

Is there such a thing as a “past subjunctive”?

Is there really such a thing as a “past subjunctive” in English? I actually learned the term “past subjunctive” from my Spanish class. From what I already know, the subjunctive is used with ...
0
votes
1answer
462 views

Is it grammatical to use “would” twice in a sentence? Why? Please consider the following examples [duplicate]

Is "would" used correctly in these sentences? I would not be surprised if you would lose. I would not give you the weapon if you would use it to harm others.
1
vote
1answer
70 views

Which is the most appropriate verb tense and mood for this text?

Access or use of this system without authorization or in excess of authorization either express or implied may subject violators to criminal and civil action. On top of that we would probably ...
2
votes
6answers
86 views

A good sentence for specifying “without considering something” formally

Suppose that someone has done something valuable, but in doing that he has made some kind of cheating. I want to say that if we ignore the cheating, the work is valuable itself. What is an ...
0
votes
0answers
17 views

Use of would vs will? [duplicate]

What's the different between would and will? For example: How would it be? How will it be? When should I use one vs the other?
0
votes
2answers
128 views

Why is it called zero conditional?

What's the meaning of the zero conditional or the first or the second .. Does it mean the form of the verb and what does that exactly mean does it mean infinitive although the present simple is used! ...
2
votes
2answers
204 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 ...
1
vote
2answers
57 views

Does “should” imply an opinion? [closed]

If I am given a short story about a situation. Then at the end I am asked: Should this person complete task A? Does that imply that I have to give my opinion and support it from points in the ...
0
votes
1answer
27 views

conditional perfect continuous [closed]

If he had not supported me, I would not have been standing here in front of you like this. Is the above sentence gramittically correct or not. Regards, sri.
-1
votes
4answers
112 views

“If you get lonely, I hope you phone me” vs. “will phone me”

Which one is correct? If you get lonely, I hope you phone me any time. If you get lonely, I hope you will phone me any time. A detailed explanation would be fantastic.
3
votes
3answers
6k views

past perfect + would have + ed-participle / past simple + would + infinitive

Could you clarify difference between sentences: If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses If I asked people what they wanted, they would say faster horses ...
5
votes
2answers
560 views

Why is it “could” and not “can” in the famous line: “If a face could launch a thousand ships”? [duplicate]

This is from a song lyric If a picture paints a thousand words, Then why can't I paint you? The words will never show the you I've come to know. If a face could launch a thousand ships, ...
4
votes
6answers
734 views

Difference between “would have + past participle” and “would + bare infinitive” in the main clause of a past subjunctive sentence

I'm wondering about the difference in meaning, if any, between the two sentences in each of the following examples. Example 1. a. If he was a serious leader, tackling the debt would have been a ...
4
votes
2answers
269 views

“If a man write a better book, preach a better sermon…”

There is an old quotation attributed to Ralph Waldo Emerson: If a man write a better book, preach a better sermon, or make a better mouse-trap than his neighbour, tho' he build his house in the ...
5
votes
1answer
208 views

When did it become common to 'double the conditional'? [duplicate]

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 ...
2
votes
1answer
277 views

Transform the conditional sentence beginning with word 'Unless'

I have a sentence and need to transform it to begin with word unless. The sentence is Study hard now or you will regret it later. I am not able to begin this using Unless. My attempts are ...
2
votes
1answer
181 views

Is “I would understand everything you said if you said it in Portuguese” correct?

"I would understand everything you said if you said it in Portuguese." Is it any kind of conditional? And if it is, can you tell me which one? As I wrote this I had the feeling that it ...