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Does "wouldn't" work in the second sentence as 'do' works in the first one:

  • I hope you don't mind that I've opened the door.

  • I hope you wouldn't mind that I've opened the door.

I think it works and they mean the same here without any difference in formality or politeness degree.

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The first sentence, I hope you don't mind that I've opened the door, is clear. The door has already been opened, and the speaker expresses hope that the other person is not bothered by that fact.

The second sentence is problematic. Wouldn't and I've are inconsistent. Wouldn't expresses a future hypothetical situation, but I (have) indicates the door has already been opened.

  • What about this example: ( - I don’t mind if you use my car. - ) --- ( - I wouldn't mind if you use my car - ) I am guessing based on what you cited, they both should be natural and idiomatic. Do you agree? But I guess the sentence with 'would' should use the past verb; like this: ==> ( - I wouldn't mind if you "used" my car. - ) RIght? – A-friend Oct 23 '14 at 3:02
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    You can modify the second phrase to put it into the past. "I hoped you wouldn't mind that I've opened the door." could be said after the fact. – user3169 Oct 23 '14 at 3:10
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    I don't think there is anything hypothetical in the second sentence; the situation is true and factual. Is it hypothetical to hope? – Khan Oct 23 '14 at 3:42
  • What good would it do if we did, @user3169? Could you explain why please? As I see it, the speaker was not reporting but rather sort of checking. I'm okay with the first one. The second one that's tricky. A good question for us non-native speakers! – learner Oct 23 '14 at 17:15
  • @Khan: I believe hope is usually (always?) used with hypotheticals and possibilities. MW defines hope as to want something to happen or be true and think that it could happen or be true. Hope is for situations we are uncertain about, such as the future or a lack of information. Once we know something with certainty, hope no longer applies, although we may still wish for a different situation. – kevinbatchcom Oct 24 '14 at 4:08
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In the second sentence, would in "wouldn't mind" retains a volition meaning; it's not just a conditional (potentiality). It's the same volition meaning as in "would you kindly ...". So "you wouldn't mind" is typically followed by an imperative ("If you wouldn't mind, please introduce yourself") or a gerund ("I hope you wouldn't mind explaining this again"). In the construction "not mind that S", because the one not minding and the subject of S are different, volition doesn't make sense. So that sentence is definitely weird.

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