Why is 'would' used in the following sentences instead of 'will'?

  1. It would be mistake to beat a child.
  2. I wouldn't care to do her job.
  3. Would it be easy to teach a child?

Can we use 'will' in place of 'would' above? And in which meaning 'would' is used in those examples? In which situation we can replace 'will' and put 'would' instead?

  • But my question is : In which meaning 'would 'is used in those examples ? Or in which situation we can replace
    – yubraj
    Apr 24, 2016 at 4:27
  • This might be helpful - learnenglish.britishcouncil.org/en/english-grammar/verbs/…
    – ColleenV
    Apr 24, 2016 at 13:24
  • I went through this site, i'm still in confusion, there aren't sufficient examples about would , it would be better if anyone could answer me with details.
    – yubraj
    Apr 24, 2016 at 13:51
  • @yubrajsharma No matter how many different ways you ask this question, the answers will be the same. The usage and significance of will and would have been explained, and copious examples given, a half dozen times or more. You will never understand these explanations unless your English fluency is sufficient to allow you to grasp the language in the explanations themselves! What do you not understand? Would is the past tense of the verb will. It also serves as a modal verb. Please tell us what is unclear to you about the difference between will and would. Aug 23, 2016 at 7:36

2 Answers 2


'Will' can be used in each of those examples, but it has a different meaning than 'would'.

'Will' means that the action is going to happen, regardless of it being a mistake (in example 1), or unwanted by the speaker (in example 2) or just because that's what is going to happen (example 3), whereas 'would' suggests that there is a choice, and as things are currently planned, they won't happen (example 3 and perhaps 2), or as things may be planned by someone, they will, but the speaker hopes they will not happen (example 1, and perhaps example 2).


would is the past tense form of will. Because it is a past tense it is used for referring to events in the past. Would is also use for to talking about hypotheses – things that are imagined but not necessarily true.

  • But my question is : In which meaning 'would 'is used in those examples ? Or in which situation we can replace 'will'and put 'would '?
    – yubraj
    Apr 24, 2016 at 4:25
  • Actually, this is RIGHT. would is the past tense of will in some cases: I will go. She said she would go. It is also used to talk about hypotheticals when one doesn't say the whole thing: It would be a mistake to beat a child (I am not beating one, it's hypothetical.). Will is also used for INTENTION: I will go tomorrow, not today.
    – Lambie
    May 24, 2016 at 19:48

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