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My father and I we're discussing about the third conditional. The sentence is:

"If I didn't studied before, I wouldn't know anything of this".

The construction of the 3rd conditional is:

if + past simple + would/wouldn't + *infinitive

My father says the correct sentence is:

"If I hadn't studied before, I wouldn't know anything of this".

And I say the correct sentence is:

"If I didn't studied before, I wouldn't know anything of this".

What's the correct sentence?

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    "Have/has/had" as an auxiliary is always followed by the past participle (eg studied). "Be/is/am/are/was/were" as an auxiliary is always followed the by the present participle (eg studying) for the continuous, or the past participle (eg studied) for the passive. Every other auxiliary, (including all the parts of "do") is always followed by the bare infinitive (eg study). – Colin Fine Jan 31 '16 at 20:31
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Sorry, but your father is correct. The correct sentence is:

"If I hadn't studied before, I wouldn't know anything of this."

However, if you wrote the following, it would be correct:

"If I didn't study before, I wouldn't know anything of this."

Also, "I wouldn't know anything of this" sounds a little odd, although it is grammatically correct. "I wouldn't know anything about this" sounds more natural.

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    You are welcome. I respect and admire you for learning English; it is a difficult language to master, even for native speakers. – Mark Hubbard Jan 31 '16 at 19:05
  • This would be the second conditional, but the question is about the third... – laugh Jan 31 '16 at 23:56
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I'm afraid both are incorrect.

Your version, corrected to "if I didn't study", would make a correct second conditional sentence. To make a third conditional you should use perfect tense in both the condition and the result.

The distinction is easier with a positive condition, for example

If I had studied before the test, I would have known all the answers.

This is the third conditional; it suggests that you actually haven't studied, the test is over, and you didn't know all the answers. It's final, and the condition can never happen.

Compare it to the second conditional:

If I studied before the test, I would know all the answers.

This suggests that you haven't studied yet, but you could still do it; perhaps you will in the future, so the condition may become true!

For a longer (and very good) explanation on conditionals, see https://www.englishclub.com/grammar/verbs-conditional_4.htm.

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