A: When you insist, I will reconsider the matter.

B: Since you insist, I will reconsider the matter.

Sentence A is incorrect (or to me, not natural) while B is correct.

I would parse the "Since" in sentence B as "Now that", which makes sense. What is wrong with sentence A from the grammatical point of view?

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    I'm not going to post this as an answer, since it does not really explain the content in English, but ‘when’ is purely a matter of time (你将坚持让我重新考虑的时候,我就/才给你复议), while ‘since’ here talks about reason (既然你坚持让我重新考虑,我就给你复议一下). The second is a much more likely thing to actually say to someone than the first. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Oct 19 '13 at 21:29
  • @JanusBahsJacquet I get your idea. 非常感谢。 – Frenzy Li Oct 20 '13 at 15:25

Both sentences are correct as WS2 has already stated.

The first sentence may feel unnatural to you because it is somewhat rude. It is saying that you have considered the matter, you know that the person will object, and when that happens you may change your mind. It suggests the person has to become upset as a condition for your proper consideration of the matter.

The second sentence acknowledges that an objection has been made and promises to take it into account.


Both sentences make grammatical sense but they mean different things.

A is saying that she will reconsider the matter, but only at the point when you insist she does.

B may be more difficult for you to understand because the meaning of the word 'since' is not its usual one. In this form it means 'as', or 'in view of the fact that'. So the sentence can be rewritten to say: 'As you insist, I will reconsider the matter.'

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    I'm curious. 1. What part of speech is "When" and "Since" respectively? – Frenzy Li Oct 19 '13 at 7:19
  • 2. in A, could I comprehend it as: She is going to insist, while at the same time I'm going to reconsider? – Frenzy Li Oct 19 '13 at 7:22
  • @FrenzY DT 1. I think both are prepositions, but I am willing to stand corrected on that by someone like Colin Fine or John Lawler. 2. No. It doesn't mean that. It means that she has insisted, and as she has done so I will reconsider the matter. – WS2 Oct 19 '13 at 7:29
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    (Subordinating) conjunctions. They introduce subordinate clauses. – Cerberus Oct 19 '13 at 20:47
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    In that example, ‘since’ is a preposition. As a preposition, it only has the temporal sense. As a conjunction, though, it can be either temporal (“I haven't eaten since I left home this morning”) or causal (“Since there's no more milk, I'm going to run to the store and get some”). Between those two uses, I feel the latter might actually be a bit more common than the former (quite unsubstantiatedly, of course), but they are certainly both common enough that we can't single out one over the other as the ‘usual’ meaning. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Oct 20 '13 at 3:17

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