Questions regarding the subjunctive verb mood

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Could the sentence “Not even death can do us part” be considered correct?

Not even death can do us part. These are lyrics from the Beyoncé song "Sweet Dreams" (link to the part in question.) I've been curious about this for a while. If one considers "Till death do us ...
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1answer
208 views

Clause explaining “the requirement that…”

What should the verb form in that clause be? Example: which of the following is correct? They need to obey the requirement that their pockets are empty. or They need to obey the requirement that ...
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1answer
230 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 if ...
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3answers
378 views

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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1answer
2k 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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3answers
191 views

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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1answer
213 views

Uncertain whether pirate talk be authentically or mockingly archaic

@ZhanlongZheng asked the following question on ELL: Barbosa: I defended her mightily enough, but she be sunk nonetheless. Jack Sparrow: If that ship be sunk properly, you should be ...
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4answers
4k views

Present perfect in subjunctive past tense (I wish I had done)?

It's an exercise, imagine you're in the situation, and write a sentence with "I wish". the situation is: "You've painted the gate red. Now you think that it doesn't look very nice." Because it'...
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3answers
268 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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2answers
611 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 were ...
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2answers
318 views

Hypothetical declarative with the present subjunctive

So there's this usage of what seems to be the present subjunctive that I haven't been able to find references on: A: "He said he was going to kill you." B: "What? He kill me? Fat chance!" ...
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1answer
110 views

“Does our process cause users to abandon tasks they WERE/ARE about to perform?”

I have written the following sentence as part of the conclusion to my thesis. This represents one of the future research questions, i.e., it is not part of my research questions, it is something that ...
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2answers
962 views

“would rather” + subject + past subjunctive

What is the difference between: The company would rather each employee be provided with ID card. The company would rather each employee were provided with ID card.
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2answers
6k views

It vary or it varies?

In "The Origin of Species " of Charles Darwin, Chapter 1, we can read this: it follows that any being, if it vary however slightly in any manner profitable to itself, under the complex and ...
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1answer
66 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
451 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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3answers
3k views

“Small Latin and Less Greek”

About a third of the way through his poem "To the Memory of My Beloved the Author, Mr. William Shakespeare and What He Hath Left Us," Ben Jonson writes: And though thou hadst small Latin and less ...
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3answers
281 views

how to conjugate verb in dependent clause inside subjunctive mood

In the sentence I pretended that I understood, lest he think I am stupid or deaf. the "he think" part is definitely present subjunctive, but I'm not sure how the "I am" part should be conjugated....
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1answer
650 views

“that one consider” or “that one considers”? [duplicate]

I have a question to ask regarding this quote. In the formation of a marketing strategy, it is imperative that one considers the marketing mix, also known as the 4Ps – product, price, place, and ...
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6answers
2k views

“I hope this computer work”?

Why is the phrase "I hope this computer work" unacceptable? The word "hope" makes the phrase subjunctive, so why isn't it correct to use the infinitive verb form?
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2answers
544 views

Why does Hamlet not say, “ere he rots?”

How long will a man lie i' the earth ere he rot? The quoted line is Hamlet's. I wonder why the "rot" is not "rots".
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3answers
626 views

“That… be” construction

We will make the convention that exact categories be skeletally small. Is this construction (used in a mathematical context) correct? There is something that strikes me as odd in that "be". Should ...
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3answers
209 views

Use of the subjunctive mood, “be”

Along with the commercial database servers, there has been quite a bit of activity in the open source community in the past five years with the goal of creating a viable alternative to the commercial ...
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1answer
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Let it be done - grammatical analysis

How should the phrase "Let it be done" be interpreted grammatically? What confounds me are the following assumptions, some or all of which may be wrong: "Let" implies imperative "it be done" ...
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5answers
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How is the English Subjunctive Composed? [closed]

Yesterday, I read about the English subjunctive mood. I tried to, but couldn't, discern a concise conception of it. What do you regard as a useful and concise conception of the subjunctive mood?
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2answers
9k 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 ...
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3answers
864 views

Usage of “wish” in a sentence [closed]

I want to make a sentence with "wish". If someone is leaving tomorrow and I want him not to leave. What sentence should be correct using "wish": I wish you were not leaving tomorrow OR I wish you ...
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5answers
15k views

Difference between would and will

Thank you for your time reading this. I am from China and have learned British English for years from my middle school to undergraduate time. I normally take 'would' as the past form of 'will', ...
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1answer
90 views

Is 'that' required? Does it make a difference?

I want that he become a doctor. I want he become a doctor. Is there any difference between these?
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1answer
177 views

Subjunctive or not subjunctive?

I'm trying to express the following with the verb laugh: Given a certain condition (that has not been met yet), I will be happy. So: When she laugh, I'll be happy. However, I'm unsure if ...
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2answers
134 views

Is this sentence using Subjunctive Mood?

Here is the sentence I'm confused about: If I have not seen as far as others, it is because giants were standing on my shoulders. (Hal Abelson, MIT Professor) My difficulty is to ...
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3answers
793 views

Reported Speech with was and were

I set a test with the following direct sentence, which the students were supposed to put into reported speech: Interviewer: "Are you fluent in English?" I expected the students to write: The ...
3
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1answer
301 views

Does this sentence have too many subjunctives?

Does this sentence have too many subjunctives? If it please the king, let it be decreed that they be destroyed, and I will pay 10,000 talents of silver into the hands of those who have charge ...
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3answers
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I would that & I would to God / heaven

For I would that all men were even as I myself. (1 Corinthians 7:7) I would to God my name were not so terrible to the enemy as it is. (2H4 I.ii.219-220) Do these would-constructions mean the ...
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1answer
161 views

Conjugation of “smite” - unsure of all forms

Smite is an interesting word for which I found a use today. However, my understanding of its conjugation is as follows: I/you smite He/she/it smites We/you/they smite And then "I was smitten (down/...
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3answers
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Behave as if it was or it were

You can place the script in the head or body as you like. The script will behave as if it was located exactly where you put the script tag in the document. The sentences above are taken from ...
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1answer
9k views

Past subjunctive Vs. Present Subjunctive

The verb be is the only one that has a past subjunctive form. In some cases, be, as a subjunctive, retains its present form even if the sentence is in the past tense. Example: Present: It ...
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1answer
302 views

Infinitive use in “whether or not he be” compared with its use in “if he be”

Here is the phrase in question: . . . but whether he be, or whether he be not. . . . Is the usage of the infinitive in that phrase above the same sort of thing as occurs in this quotation: “...
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2answers
730 views

Tensed verb form or the plain form when used after “that” (in a mandative construction)

I know that each is a singular subject, but in certain cases it seems that is not the case. For example, in this sentence below, why would the correct verb be "keep" instead of "keeps?" The tour ...
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3answers
1k views

If I were him, I would doubt if she (is/was/were?) serious about this relationship

Which one is correct? If I were him, I would doubt if she is serious about this relationship. If I were him, I would doubt if she was serious about this relationship. If I were him, I would doubt if ...
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1answer
115 views

which type of conditional should I choose?

In a crowded market, I'm pushing someone in front of me aside in order to get my way through. The guy turns around, arguing why I'm pushing him. I reply: (1) If I don't push you, how can I get ...
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2answers
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“was” or “were” in the context of “X wishes that he [was / were] Y” [duplicate]

If you are saying that somebody wishes that they could have been somebody else, which would be more correct: E from the eels wishes he was Elliott Smith or E from the eels wishes he were Elliott ...
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2answers
724 views

Subjunctive mood with complex sentences

Which sentence is correct? If I could, I would find a hint which helps me. If I could, I would find a hint which would help me.
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1answer
966 views

Conditional Subjunctive and Conditional Indicative

I am confused. When should the conditional subjunctive and the conditional indicative be used? Conditional subjunctive: If you were 23 yrs old, you could join the contest. Conditional ...
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2answers
299 views

Mixed Conditionals

This question is about conditionals If I had money, I would give it you conditional 2 (present tense) If I had money, I would have given it to you conditional 3 (Past tense) But I've ...
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2answers
616 views

make sure + subjunctive

I'm wondering if "make sure" can take the subjunctive mood of a verb. Take this sentence for example: Loki would be disappointed in me if I did not make sure this was the true casket. What if ...
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4answers
680 views

Subjunctive mood

I am just curious, how often this form of Subjunctive mood is used and what alternatives are available to express the very same thing. Examples: I suggest that he implement a budget cut in March. ...
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1answer
182 views

Use of “would” for subjunctive phrases

This has been bugging me for some time; I tried to look for previous questions here but my language tools may not be sharp enough to phrase my query correctly so please forgive me if this has already ...
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1answer
97 views

Can I use subjunctive when something is possible?

To my understanding when expressing something is not fact I should use subjunctive, e.g. Without your instruction, we would be working now. I'm wondering if I can use subjunctive to express ...
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1answer
132 views

“I look for a place where I be free” — subjunctive or just bad English?

I'd like to know whether the phrase "where I be" is grammatically incorrect or whether it is correct if in the subjunctive mood. If it is in the subjunctive mood, what exactly would it mean? The ...