0

When sombody tells us about their abilities, I know we can suggest them about the jobs. For example this sentence:

1.You would be a great artist.

I know it's a suggestion, but I want to know what exactly does would mean here? What fuction does the would have? I myself think that it suggests an unreal fact conveying "you could have been an artist till now." or "You could be an artist, but you are not." is it correct?

What about this sentence?

2. I wouldn't recommend becoming a teacher.

Isn't it originally conditional being "If you asked me, I wouldn't recommend becoming a teacher." ?

1
  • Yes, "If you asked me" or other similar ideas are always implied with this usage. – Lambie Feb 27 '19 at 20:00
1
  1. You would be a great artist.

When someone says this, it's like saying, "You should become an artist". It's usually because they've seen your work, liked it, and think you should pursue it professionally.


  1. I wouldn't recommend becoming a teacher.

This one usually depends on context. This could mean a few things, perhaps that you're not good at teaching other people, or they don't think you'd handle the stress well. It's best to say "Why not?" to understand the reason they don't think you would be good in a teaching role. It could also mean that they think that being a teacher doesn't pay enough, or it isn't rewarding for the amount of work. Follow up questions are key to understanding the meaning of this question.


In Summary: In the first part means that they think you should do it. In the second part it means that they think you shouldn't do it.

4
  • As for #2, it may have nothing to do with the person’s ability. (For example, it could be because the profession doesn’t pay very well.) – J.R. Apr 25 '17 at 18:54
  • Exactly, I forgot to add that. I'll edit! – SolarLunix Apr 25 '17 at 19:13
  • -1 this post does not address the crux of the question, stated twice: "...I want to know what exactly does would mean here? What fuction does the would have?" – green_ideas Apr 25 '17 at 19:42
  • @Clare I added a clarifier to make it more clear. – SolarLunix Apr 25 '17 at 19:44
0

Certainty. The would here stands for the speaker being certain about something (the listener becoming a great artist in future in first sentence and certain about not recommending being a teacher in second sentence)

1
  • Can you edit this to expand on how you see it as adding to the existing answers? – mdewey Dec 10 '20 at 13:59
0

Think of your first question like this

You would be a great artist if you only tried/if you gave it a go/if you were given a chance.

So grammatically would lets you know that being an artist could become a reality if a certain condition (that a more extended context can probably indicate) were fulfilled (second conditional ). In any case, would could mean here encouragement, but do not rule out the possibility of an irony.

As for

I wouldn't recommend becoming a teacher.

Yes, it may be meant to discourage someone from choosing this profession, but it can also be a compliment:

I wouldn't recommend becoming a teacher. It would be a waste of your talent (in this or that other field).

It is all about context. Now let's play:

You would be a great artist. I wouldn't recommend becoming a teacher.

If you put your two sentences together, it confirms my last point :)

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.