I'm not familiar with English language. I want to know,

When we say:

I'd tell lie.

Does it mean a typical behavior or a past habit?
In other words, is it like used to or is a present typical behavior?

  • 2
    "I'd tell lie" is not idiomatic English. "I'd lie" or "I'd tell a lie", representing "I would tell a lie", might represent either a past habit (under specific circumstances, eg "Whenever I was questioned I'd lie") or the consequence clause of a present irrealis conditonal, eg "If I were questioned I'd tell a lie". Context will tell you which is meant. Dec 27, 2015 at 20:00

1 Answer 1


As StoneyB told you, would is not only used for conditional constructions. It depends of the given context if it's meant to be for repeated actions or habits in the past.

Note that for repeated actions in the past, you use would, but you can't use it for stative verbs.

Also, if you stress would, it means that we find the behaviour irritating. For instance

I hated when he would lie to me.

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