Tell me please if the following sentence is gramatically correct.

John, would not it be better to visit Rachel tommorow, if it would not, then could you please explain why?

What I am in doubt about is the use of would after if.

1 Answer 1


There is no problem using would after if.

But the construction would not it is most unusual. In fact, a quick Ngram check found no usages of it all. The usual construction is would it not.

That aside, you need either a semi-colon or a full-stop after tomorrow to break up your sentence.

John, would it not be better to visit Rachel tommorow? If it would not (be better), then could you please explain why?

Note that the use of be better in the second sentence is understood.

Alternatively you could simplify the sentence and omit the words it would and then altogether in the second sentence.

John, would it not be better to visit Rachel tommorow; if not, could you please explain why?

This is the form that most people would be likely to use. But you will often hear people saying things like:

If you would be kind enough.....


If you would consider going...

And there's no problem with this construction.

  • Great answer as always! Could I just point you to this because I've noticed that even though people have started using the tool, they have fallen under a couple of misapprehensions regarding the terminology used to describe it/the results it produces. In summary, the tool can be unambiguously referenced as Google Books Ngram Viewer (don't worry, I don't work for Google); it plots a chart of frequencies of n-grams over time.
    – user3395
    Jun 19, 2018 at 12:08
  • Also, see this and this. Would not it is unusual because it's ungrammatical.
    – user3395
    Jun 19, 2018 at 12:21
  • Whilst "would not it" is unusual, it's worth noting that "wouldn't it" is actually very common (at least in spoken English).
    – Phil
    Jun 19, 2018 at 14:17
  • @userr2684291 I wasn't certain whether there might be a legitimate construction that incorporated would not it. My several efforts to link a (Google Books) Ngram Viewer have come to naught. Quick guide source would be appreciated. Jun 19, 2018 at 14:52
  • @RonaldSole Both the answers I linked you to above answer that exact question (regarding why it's unusual).
    – user3395
    Jun 19, 2018 at 15:02

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