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What is the meaning of would in the sentence below or why we use would (grammaritically) in this situation?

“Wouldn’t this also be the perfect course for prospective arsonists to sign up for?”

I have checked

https://www.google.com.my/amp/s/dictionary.cambridge.org/amp/british-grammar/would

But I get confused to understand which case is related to this sentence.

1 Answer 1

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Using "Wouldn’t" here mark the question as 'rhetorical'.

"Wouldn’t this also be the perfect course for prospective arsonists to sign up for?" is actually a statement in question form, not a question seeking for an answer,

  • "Would this also be the perfect course for prospective arsonists to sign up for?" is a real question, asking "would this be?" or "would this not be?"

  • "Wouldn’t this also be the perfect course for prospective arsonists to sign up for?" is a rhetorical question that the answer (statement) is always "(of course) this would be"

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  • Thanks. The problem is that I want to understand why we use would here from grammatical point of view. It is not request, not conditional and not repeated action in the past... is it possibility that unlikely happened?
    – Question
    Commented Jul 2, 2020 at 4:29
  • 'would' imply 'have the potential of'
    – Tang Ho
    Commented Jul 2, 2020 at 4:31
  • "would it be..." means "does it has the potential of being..."
    – Tang Ho
    Commented Jul 2, 2020 at 4:41
  • Is the context related to the present or past grammatically?
    – Question
    Commented Jul 2, 2020 at 5:04
  • It is in the present
    – Tang Ho
    Commented Jul 2, 2020 at 5:05

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