5

I wish it be Christmas every day.

I wish it would be Christmas every day.

What is the subtle difference here? Does the first sentence imply that the speaker's wish is more strong?

  • I'm pretty sure the first one isn't grammatical - if anything it should be "I wish it were" IMO. – Jez W Oct 19 '15 at 10:55
  • 1
    In the context of wishing something for the present, I'm afraid none is correct. So, I wish it was Christmas everyday. – Maulik V Oct 19 '15 at 11:04
  • 1
    @MaulikV Whoa?! Are we considering correct use of the subjunctive to be incorrect these days? "I wish it were Christmas" is subjunctive, although common usage has made it virtually archaic, these days. The simple present subjunctive form of the being verb is "be" (contrast with "is" for the indicative mood). So if you want to be super crazy purist, you should sound like a pirate and say "If this be correct grammar, I just don't know any more." Ref.: wordpower.ws/grammar/gramch09.html – Todd Wilcox Oct 19 '15 at 17:56
13

I wish it be Christmas everyday.

Your first example isn't common usage and isn't grammatical in most settings.

"be" here as a bare infinitive is wrong; it should be conjugated. You have a few options. All of the options are past tense, and only vary based on their grammatical mood

Subjunctive mood:
This is probably the one I would go for in most situations.

I wish it were Christmas every day.

"The subjunctive mood is used to express a wish or possible situation that is currently not true." [Source]

Indicative Mood:

I wish it was Christmas every day.

This is probably quite common among most native speakers. However it's technically incorrect, this is discussed in more detail in this question.

Conditional Mood:

I wish it would be Christmas every day.

This is what you have used in your second example. However, I'd consider substituting "would" for "could".

I wish it could be Christmas every day.


As an aside, there's also a difference between everyday and every day. – TRiG

"everyday" means commonplace, plain, unremarkable

Breathing and eating are just some of my everyday requirements.
The groom got some funny looks for turning up to his wedding in everyday clothes.

"every day" means that something happens... well... every day.

I like to go swimming every day.
Every day except Sunday the post is delivered at 8am.

| improve this answer | |
  • Neat answer but as far as I know there cannot be indicative mood for unreal situations. – Mrt Oct 19 '15 at 11:07
  • Yeah, my original edit indicated (pun, lol) that it was technically incorrect. I've edited that back in. – James Webster Oct 19 '15 at 11:09
  • 2
    Most uses of would after wish are actually the by-your-leave sort: “I wish my parents would let me stay up late on weekends.” That is not a conditional use, but a volitional one. It means he wishes his folks were willing to let him stay up. – tchrist Oct 19 '15 at 12:55
  • 1
    As an aside, there's also a difference between everyday and every day. – TRiG Oct 19 '15 at 14:18
  • @Trig, I wouldn't have noticed that distinction! I was just reading it as "every day" – James Webster Oct 19 '15 at 14:20
4

Maybe you heard the contraction "it'd" for "it would", making both sentences equal?

| improve this answer | |
1

In "Standard" English, "I wish it be Christmas every day" is considered ill-formed. It might be well-formed in AAVE, which has a distinctly different set of rules for be, but I do not know for sure, and I can't tell you for sure what it would mean in that dialect if it were acceptable.

Your other option, "I wish it would be Christmas every day", is acceptable in Standard English, but "I wish it was Christmas every day" is more idiomatic. Native speakers will not register a difference of meaning between these two options.

(Regardless, what a horrible thing to want. They would never stop playing all that saccharine music on the radio!)

| improve this answer | |

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.