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Questions tagged [conditional-constructions]

For questions about constructions which associate a hypothetical or imagined 'condition' with a 'consequence' which is inferred to be true if the 'condition' is true OR predicted to occur if the 'condition' occurs. "If John arrives tonight we will have a party."

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Which conditional if sentence should I use in this situation?

A: I can know the future. You better not to call the police. B: If you really knew the future, you would know that I've already called the police. After googling, For speaker (B), I excluded ...
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Conditional: I would be planning

Brief question: If I were a teacher, I would be planning a trip there twice a year. Is it ok to use a gerund in the main clause? Is the usage correct? Thanks in advance.
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Why sometimes it is correct not to put a comma after an if-clause?

There is a recommendation to put a comma after an if-clause which is placed at the beginning of a sentence. For example: If there was the time when songs like this were not needed, I would not live ...
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1answer
28 views

Explain this conditional sentence

If I were taller, I would not buy those heels. Does this mean I still have the opportunity to get tall and if I become tall in near future, I will not buy heels? Or have I already bought the heels ...
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Can you use 'were to' in if-clauses to freely represent a real situation?

It is often said (as here and here) that 'were to V' in if-clauses represents an unlikely future in a hypothetical world, and must be accompanied by a hypothetical main clause having 'would', 'could', ...
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30 views

Why I need to use `at` with games

I would like to understand why do I need to use at with games? For example, He would be better at tennis if he practiced well. Why I used at here and not in or on?
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2answers
52 views

“Had not gone” or “didn't go” and “every night” in conditional

You’re always tired. If you had not gone to bed so late every night, you wouldn’t be tired all the time. Or: If you didn’t go to bed so late every night, you wouldn’t be tired all the time. I'...
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3answers
118 views

Could/could've- which of the two indicates that something has no chance of happening?

If there's no chance of something happening in the future, what tense do we use to indicate that? Let's say I have a friend whom I'm not meeting tomorrow, and they call me and say "If you came over ...
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1answer
47 views

“I wouldn't have said anything”

In Desperate Housewives Season 1 Episode 1, Julie (the daughter) told Susan (the mother) to ask Mike out. Susan said she didn't know if she's ready to start dating. SUSAN: I don't wanna talk to you ...
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2answers
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“if at all” repeats main-clause subject and verb?

Is "if at all" of the following understood as "(even) if the new law helps new immigrants at all"? The new law will fail to help new immigrants significantly, if at all. I'd appreciate your help.
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Using Conditionals

To complete the following sentence with a suitable form of the verb in bracket, I used past perfect (hadn't come),** but the answer key says the correct tense is past simple (didn't come).** I ...
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1answer
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was or were in conditional clauses [duplicate]

I'd like to know whether "was" or "were" should be used in the main clause of the following: If there were a 200-story office building without an elevator, those whose office was / were on the ...
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is the following sentence grammatically incorrect - should conditional

I am seeking some clarity on the usage of "should" as a conditional verb. I saw the following sentence online and could not figure out what exactly the person was saying. scenario: a user posted this ...
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466 views

How to understand “…you like it the shape it is”

Fred and George looked at each other. Then Fred said abruptly, “I've told you before, Ron, keep your nose out if you like it the shape it is. Can't see why you would, but -” I don't know how to ...
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1answer
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'will' and 'be going to' which is correct?

I'm not a native-speaker, so sometimes future tense (be going to, will) is tricky to me. a. If it rains this weekend, I'm gonna stay home. b. If it rains this weekend, I will stay home. c. If this ...
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will … should they occur

I'd like to know whether the conditional clause "should they occur" requires an auxiliary like "will" in the main clause of the following: In general, governments [will?] act to prevent the ...
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3answers
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My dogs would have already barked, if it really HAD BEEN A BURGLAR

I know a bit how to use 3rd conditional, but not quite. Situation: You suddenly heard sound from the lower ground of your house, which made you nervous about a burglar might be sneaking into your ...
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Use of “could” for future event

Can we use "could" to express future events? How could we recover this much amount from him in future, if he will not earned any income? How we could manage our time for tomorrow's program? Without ...
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1answer
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“I'd ask if(=whether) ~ ” Do my examples make sense? Plz correct me

After listening to the audio file of two job interviews, my English teacher asked us, "If you were the interviewer, what additional questions would you say?" and then he wrote down some examples on ...
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1answer
93 views

Would been vs would have been

Having a hard time telling the difference between these, and which ones are wrong. 1) 0.5 seconds later and he would been dead. 2) 0.5 seconds later and he would have been dead. 3) 0.5 seconds ...
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1answer
21 views

Can I use a “would + was” structure in a conditional that refers to a real situation in the past?

I am trying to describe a protocol in the Methods section of my paper (protocol: refer the patient to hospital X if the test is positive). It is something that happened in the past and I consider it a ...
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2answers
50 views

Reporting a sentence with an 'if' condition

If someone said, for example, "I will not cry if I lose" how could I report their speech correctly? He said he wouldn't cry if he ... (loses or lost ?) The same question about another sentence: ...
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“If they hadn't found me, I'd be dead now”

While reading "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone", I came across the next line, said by Hermione Granger: 'If they hadn't found me, I'd be dead now. <..> But, according to the rules, the ...
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1answer
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Future in the past + adverbial clauses which indicate time or condition

I've seen the following examples in my textbook so far. He said that his son would graduate from college next spring. He said that he might come tomorrow. I wonder that if a clause which ...
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1answer
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If I had known you ARE/WERE coming along, I wouldn't have gotten here really

Let's your most hated person in the class suddenly popped up joining your group for a planned eating out. Now you are annoyed, and you said: If I had known you ARE coming along, I wouldn't have ...
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1answer
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Interpretation of adverbial clauses meaning time or condition, such as when, if

I'm learning English with text books, and one of them says tenses of adverbial clauses which means time or condition(such as when-clause or if-clause) depend on the main clauses to which they are ...
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Is it idiomatic to say “…this would have been equivalent to an increase from X to Y”?

I am seeking help with the construction of the part in bold. Act B replaced Act A. Act A was based on weeks, and Act B is based on hours. The entrance requirement was significantly increased [...
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1answer
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what would have been

In an email I received, the professor wrote: I am trying to decide how best to proceed with our content for this week. For now, I will post slides for what would have been today's lecture by this ...
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1answer
30 views

If he didn't have that Mustang

Jack: Oh, yes, principal Trugly is horrible. I got detention for a week just for skipping homeroom. No one can stand her. They call her Ugly Trugly Jack's mom: That is awful! - We used to ...
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1answer
20 views

“If I do that” vs “if I did that.”

When speaking in the present tense, should I use former or the latter? Should I leave? But if I do/did that, she will (would?) spend the rest of the night drinking alone I checked if I do that and ...
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1answer
43 views

That would be great if you have one or That would be great if you had one?

Which one is correct? That would be great if you have one or That would be great if you had one?
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1answer
37 views

Does “whether” need “or not” at the end here?

Should i add "or not" after this sentence ? I want to know whether you would publish the results today. I want to know whether you would publish the results today or not.
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if i carry enough money/ have carried enough money

If I carry enough money, I will definitely go and watch a movie on weekend. vs If I have carried enough money, I will definitely go and watch a movie on weekend. Which one is correct? situation: ...
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tense of the main clause with “if only”

Which tense should be used in the main clause of the following? We tend / would tend to view the earth as capable of regulating itself, if only humans would stop interfering with it. I'd ...
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1answer
28 views

Conditionals: WILL or WOULD -when it is happening, which one to use?

Let's say you and your girlfriend are dating. Suddenly, she asked you if you love her, then you immediately blushed. Girlfriend: Do you love me? You: (blushing) Of course I do, I won't be ...
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1answer
52 views

Are native speakers serious about using right conditionals?

After reading English Page’s Conditionals, I wonder how seriously natives speakers take the rules described in the articles. In the rules, there are 3 tenses: past, present, and future; 2 scenarios: ...
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1answer
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conditional sentence in the past

Suppose that I have a friend which I miss him very much and I am waiting for his call. 10 days later I see him in the university and I want to tell him that if he had known, how happy I would be by ...
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1answer
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2nd conditional and 3rd conditional flexibilty usage

Let's say your friend got into trouble yesterday because one of his co-workers was bullying him for no good reason, so your friend punched his co-worker on the face. A day has passed, then you just ...
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2answers
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You * think, they'd be here by now

I came across this question. Although I know the answer, I could not figure out why the other options cannot be used. The answer is "would". Other options are "could" and " might". Since "could" and "...
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Is the sentence “Could I smoke here?" ungrammatical?

The correct sentence is "Can I smoke here?", but I wonder why I can't use "could" in this question.
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1answer
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Subjunctive in if clause

I have a question about the use of the subjunctive in if clauses. I usually use grammarly as a grammar checker and ran into following problem: I wrote: If he stay at home, he would die. Grammarly ...
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2answers
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Why is “bought” used instead of “buy” when the main clause has “will”?

I just met a sentence, that is If someone bought it already, then that item will not show up. It obviously refers to future, but why is bought used instead of buy? I consider this same as AFTER,...
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1answer
273 views

Would you mind if I + past simple/base form (When you want to ask for permission to say something in the class)

My first question is: What are we talking about, Present or Future? Student: Excuse me sir, would you mind if I say something? Teacher: No, I wouldn't. What's the matter? ...
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608 views

Why do they say 'Why would I do that' instead of “'Why would I have done that?”

It is often said when someone accuses you of doing something that you haven't done For example: James: You stole my bank card! Ruth: No, I didn't. Why would I do that? (it won't work for me ...
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What does why would I do it mean in this context?

I've often heard people saying this. And even I say it when someone accuses me of doing something that I didn't do. I'd say: Why would I do that? But what's the grammar behind it? Is it future ...
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2answers
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Reduction of conditional adverb clauses

This would have been a lot easier taking her in the house. What could be the complete form of this sentence? Context: A few hired men are going to kidnap a girl from her school so one of them is ...
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2answers
250 views

If I knew him, I would say (would have said) hello

What is the difference between these 2 sentences: If I knew him, I would say hello. If I knew him, I would have said hello. I found the second sentence here : https://www.ego4u.com/en/cram-up/...
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2answers
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“If I knew what you want/wanted to eat tonight”

Context: I am talking to my friends, trying to find out what she wants to eat tonight. "What do you want to eat tonight?" "You know what I want to eat." "If I knew what you wanted to eat, I ...
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1answer
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Zero conditional vs first conditional

I have some problems with zero and first conditionals . Sometimes ı can't distinguish them. 1-I could see if anyone wanted to break in . About the context : The speaker has a shop and he says this ...
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1answer
213 views

What does “I'm not sure if I agree.” mean?

I, as a non-native speaker, used the sentence "I'm not sure if I agree." thinking it means that I have a level of uncertainty about where I stand, and apart from that I can lean anywhere, I can even ...