Questions tagged [subjunctives]

A traditional term for the use of finite verbs uninflected for number or person with commands, wishes, suggestions, and hypothetical or counterfactual propositions. The 'present subjunctive' is the plain/infinitive form of the verb; the 'past subjunctive' is the general past form of the verb.

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Subjunctive vs Infinitive usage

I want you to get me an orange. I want that you get me an orange. Which is correct? and What is the difference between these two sentences?
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Usage of subjunctive mood

1) I wish he were kinder to me. 2) I wish he would be kinder to me. What is the difference in meaning between these two sentences?
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If you are/were interested

I was thinking, if you are/were interested, you could come over for dinner tomorrow. What is the difference between using "are" and "were" here? Are they both natural?
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Which is the correct word to use: “I'll rather” or “I'd rather”?

I want to write a sentence to a friend indicating that instead of looking at the one thing, it's better to look at something else. Do I say, "I'd rather" or I'll rather" look?
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Help understanding “to have” in sentences like “I would have liked to have invited few people.”

Yes, I am still confused with the sentences like ' to have' but not all the sentences related 'to have'. I can understand the sentences below: I am happy to have been invited by him. He was ...
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Right form of verbs after certain verbs

I was taught that in English there is a rule that the subjunctive of verbs follows after verbs like suppose, assume, and so on. For examples, Suppose n be a number. Assume a fact be true. But I ...
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“If he comes” vs. “If he come” [closed]

(1). If he comes, I shall go. (2). If he come, I shall go. Here, the first sentence is in indicative mood, and the second one is in subjunctive mood. What's the difference in meaning between ...
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Difference between 'should do this' & 'should have to do this'

I am confused between You should do this and You should have to do this Can anyone explain difference between these sentences.
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136 views

Does “He thinks that one or two of the investigations would be good material for a novel or even for a suspense movie.” sound natural?

Text: Roger wants to write a book about some of the interesting investigations from his company’s past. He thinks that one or two of the investigations would be good material for a novel or even ...
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Subjunctive mood: “Be not” vs. “not be”

Which is correct? The Senate has decided that such students ...... [be not / not be] exempted from college. Please clarify it with grammatical rules, if any.
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Does this sentence lack an “if”?

I recently stumbled upon the following sentence (while taking an online english class): He sat there, as it were his office. I immediately thought that it's wrong, but after familiarizing myself ...
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Has vs. might not have been?

Here’s the two sentences: This has not always been the case. This might not have always been the case. Obviously, using "has" in the first and "have" in the second is correct. I know that. ...
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I wish “I had been born” or “I were born”

"Had been born" or "were born": Which one is correct in the following context? "Australia is a very nice country. I have always wanted to visit Australia. I wish I had been/were born in Australia." ...
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Will and would in conditionals

1) What is the difference in meaning of the two sentences given below What would you do, if you saw a ghost in your bedroom tonight? What will you do, if you see a ghost in your bedroom? 2)...
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Using “would” multiple times in a sentence?

Is it OK to use "would" this many times in a sentence? "I remember how I would always wish the creative writing class to end quickly so that I wouldn't have to show the teacher what I wrote."
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What are the grammatical facts of this 'Be it enacted by' structure?

Be it enacted by the King's Most Excellent Majesty, the Senate and the House of Assembly of the Union of South Africa, as follows:- I see the structure 'Be it enacted by...' in a lot of law-related ...
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would be + verb(ing) in the future prediction sentences

Is it OK to use "would + be+ verb(ing)" construction when we talk about future projections or predictions. like in this example: Over the 50-year period or By 2067, people aged 15 to 59 would ...
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Meaning of 'Would be'

How can I express the below Idea in a single sentence? Right now I have no driving license. Therefore I can't drive and I don't drive any vehicle. But I am thinking that, "if I had taken a driving ...
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The contextual meaning of “would” in the sentence

What is the meaning of 'would' in the following sentence? It's not what we would have expected from a professional service.
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“I would say I didn't/don't want to join his team if I were you.” - didn't or don't?

The bounty description should have been: Since the question has not been answered officially, I think it would be nice to have an answer for it. Enter the question of mine: I am wondering what ...
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“In order that” or “In order to”

I stumbled across this example sentence in Wikipedia: "I braked in order that the car stay on the road," and immediately thought what I would've said would be: "I braked so that the car would stay on ...
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Sequence of tenses and conditionals

This question is about my understanding of the nuances about sequence of tenses and conditionals. I provide some examples and my interpretations down below. If my interpretations are incorrect or ...
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Difference between subjunctive and conditional

I am a Spanish speaker. Recently I found the following sentence in linguee.com: I had never been married and I was sure that I would never find anyone who would love and accept me, especially... I ...
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1answer
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Why is “I wish you stopped smoking” incorrect?

As far as I remember, my grammar textbook states that we use 'wish + would' to show annoyance or express complaint about some situation. I wish you would stop smoking. (it makes me sick) It also ...
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Would and will in the context

I would like to know why is the would used in the following paragraph. If certain, we could have used will and if not may. It is from the editorial section of a newspaper. India's ease of doing ...
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I should have done this. VS I should have been to do this

I should have done this. I should have been done this. I should have been to do this. I have not too much idea about english but I want to know that, grammatically above sentences are correct ...
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Can you emphasize the present subjunctive with “do”?

The present subjunctive is seen in this example taken from the NYT: The country demanded that Boeing pay a $1 billion penalty for the manufacturing delays in India’s 27-plane order. The verb 'pay'...
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How to use subjunctive

Were I you I would reward you a little. Is this sentence correct or should we use Were I you I would reward myself a little. I can't give you context as it was asked in my exam.
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If I had more money!

Generally speaking, ellipsis of the resulting clause is required in the use of "if only...". For this reason, the sentence #1 below will be easily accepted. On the other hand, the sentence #2 is ...
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I'm unclear about why we use 'to be' in these expressions of preference:

In the phrase 'I would rather my computer be on the table' we see 'to be' being used in a very raw form. Why is that? In an alternative: 'I would rather it if my laptop were on the table' we see a ...
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I insisted that he {don’t/doesn’t/not) look out of the window

I insisted that he doesn’t look out of the window. I insisted that he don’t look out of the window. I insisted that he not look out of the window. Which is correct?
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subjunctive mood without 'would'?

I've seen the sentence below in The TV show Friends. If little Joey's dead, then I got no reason to live. But I think it should be If little Joey's dead, then I would/should/might get no reason to ...
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Short answers to questions with multiple auxiliary verbs

How would you give short answers to questions with multiple auxiliary verbs? Example 1 Have you been sleeping? a) Yes, I have. b) Yes, I have been. Example 2 Would you have left if you had ...
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What tense do I have to use in this sentence with 'whenever'?

When I use 'would' with 'whenever', What tense is used? For example, Whenever I went to my grama's house, I would play in the park. Can I use 'go to' instead of 'went to'? Or I would dance ...
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Subjunctive mood in the past tense

If I organise an event and allow only people who bought a ticket, how do I construct a sentence with "require" and the subjunctive mood to express the requirement? We require that everybody bought a ...
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“were” used as a subjunctive is present or past?

Given the 2 examples below: I wish you were here now If he were in the situation that you've been 2 weeks ago, we wouldn't have bothered about it now The word 'were' is used as a subjunctive and my ...
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How to distinguish subjunctive mood and common mood

Subjunctive mood usually starts with if. It seems: If you are happy/if you were happy (both are right) If you were me (right) / if you are me (wrong) If you want to learn English / if you wanted to ...
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'would' vs. 'would've'

No matter how many times I've studied this point of grammar, I am still struggling with using it properly. I was taught that I should use the unrealistic subjunctive (like 'would've written') for ...
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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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what do you mean by subjunctive style

The mayor ordered that appropriate measures would be taken to combat the problem of swine flu. In the answer, would was removed because sentence was in subjunctive style.
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Mixed conditionals sentences in english

Is below sentence construction correct? "If I had any idea that you worked/work here, I would have contacted you." After reading some articles regarding this sentences I read about Subordinate ...
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“What do you have me do?” or “What do you have me TO do?”

"What do you have me do?" or perhaps "What do you have me to do?" Which one is correct and could you please anyone tell me the meaning of the phrase? Thanks
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The usage of will and would

I came across several usage of would and will in a news article, but it is of pretty much confusing use. I picked a few sentences in the article with would or will in. According to No 10, the new ...
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difference between won't and wouldn't

I hoped you won't mind when I told you the truth. I hoped you wouldn't mind when I told you the truth. First of all, I would like to know what differences do the use of won't and wouldn't ...
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How to use “wish” in a sentence?

A friend of mine will organize an event in London. Because I am living in Paris, I would like to say that I wish this event was also in Paris. Do you think that my sentence is correct?
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how about (subjunctive?)

There's this construct in informal speech: How about + clause. When used in the affirmative, things are clear enough: - "How about you shut up?" - "How about we give them a hand, huh?" etc. ...
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“If There Are” versus “If There Be”

I have begun to understand the subjunctive mood, but I have one question whose answer eludes me notwithstanding the means of the Web: "why do people say 'if there is' and 'if there are' when the ...
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What “were to ” means in these sentences?

a : What time do you usually get off work? b : It depends, but If I were to get off work early, I can. If I were to be born again, I'd like to be born in the states. If I were to be a journalist when ...
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Using Past Simple in a past-subjunctive if-clause

When I refer to the past and use subjunctive-mood if-clause, do I have to use Past Perfect or using Past Simple is also fine? For example, should it be like: Do you remember what happened when I ...
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usage of subjunctive mood in the past

I learned if s+ past perfect, S would have done But I often encounter if s past verb, S would have done For example, If he wanted to kill us, he would've done it at the junkyard. (from TV ...

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