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As one may expect, Jim would not eat that if he know how seriously harmful it is.

As one would expect, Jim would not eat that if he know how seriously harmful it is.

Are the above both correct and meaningful? Which way is more idiomatic?

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Grammatically, the sentence should read, "As one may expect, Jim would not eat that if he knew how seriously harmful it is." or "As one would expect, Jim would not eat that if he knew how seriously harmful it is." In my opinion, it is more common to use 'would', i.e.

As one would expect, Jim would not eat that if he knew how seriously harmful it is.

implying that an existing hypothesis exists on the matter and anyone with knowledge of this would make the same assertion, which in this case is that whatever Jim is eating is known to be seriously harmful.

  • Jim has not eaten it. Neither is he eating now. I mean to say "Jim will eat that, but he would not if he knows how harmful it is." – Sasan May 31 '19 at 13:18
  • @Sasan you can’t say Jim will do something and then Jim would not. These contradict each other. Are you trying to say that Jim is planning to eat something since he does not realize how harmful it is? (I would probably phrase it the way I just did in that question, if this is what you mean.) – Mixolydian May 31 '19 at 13:46
  • @Mixolydian I want to say, Jim will eat it with his current knowledge. But if he gets to know how harmful it is, he .... . What should I say after he? will not? or would not? – Sasan Jun 1 '19 at 17:29

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