1

Which is right:

Do you think it's a good idea to visit in mid August?

Or

Do you think if it's a good idea to visit in mid August?

On one hand, if viewed as indirect question, if should not be omitted for clarity. But on the other hand, if viewed as objective clause, it's a good idea ... is the object of think, which makes if redundant. What's the correct grammar here?

  • 2
    No, you can't have an if-clause complement after think. Wonder, yes, and also know, but wonder rarely takes a that-clause complement. WIth know, they both work: Do you know (that/if) it's a good idea to visit in mid-August? -- either that or if may be used, or neither. – John Lawler Jul 30 '15 at 15:24
  • What @John said. But note that that/if aren't always equivalent after know. For example, in So your wife's pregnant! Do you know that you're the father? it means whether (speaker doesn't know). But in Do you know that it's my birthday today? it means the fact that (obviously the speaker knows perfectly well if it's her birthday or not! :) – FumbleFingers Jul 30 '15 at 15:31
  • One thing I wanted to point out... isn't it bad english to say "On one hand" as qweruiop did in his question? Shouldn't he have said "On the one hand" ? – AKludges Jan 18 '17 at 13:50

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