Difference between revisions of "Four conditionals"

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(0th conditional)
 
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==0th conditional==
 
==0th conditional==
  
With the /<span style="color:#060;">'zi roʊθ</span>/ conditional,  the condition is purely a logical link, not a temporal one.  <span style="font-size:78%;">hehe... not so simple, the zeroeth conditional, huh?</span>.  In other words ''if'' is equivalent to ''when'' or ''whenever''... <span style="font-size:78%;">''i.e. (à) chaque fois''</span>
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With the /<span style="color:#060;">'zi roʊθ</span>/ conditional,  the condition is purely a logical link, not a temporal one.  It is used to talk about general truths.  In other words ''if'' is equivalent to ''when'' or ''whenever''... <span style="font-size:78%;">''i.e. (à) chaque fois''</span>
  
 
*If you snooze, you lose.
 
*If you snooze, you lose.
 
*If she doesn't practice, she gets rusty.
 
*If she doesn't practice, she gets rusty.
 +
*If I sing, it rains.
  
 
Notice that the verbs are conjugated in the standard present tense. (3rd person <span style="font-variant:small-caps;color:#318;">-s</span>)  The present progressive (<span style="font-variant:small-caps;color:#318;">be + -ing</span>) is not common with the 0th conditional, because the 0th is outside of time.
 
Notice that the verbs are conjugated in the standard present tense. (3rd person <span style="font-variant:small-caps;color:#318;">-s</span>)  The present progressive (<span style="font-variant:small-caps;color:#318;">be + -ing</span>) is not common with the 0th conditional, because the 0th is outside of time.
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One of three principal modals (<strong style="color:#700;font-size:85%;">can</strong>, <strong style="color:#700;font-size:85%;">may</strong>, or <strong style="color:#700;font-size:85%;">will</strong>) is used in the other clause <span style="font-size:85%;">(called the <span style="color:#060;">''apodose''</span>)</span>.   
 
One of three principal modals (<strong style="color:#700;font-size:85%;">can</strong>, <strong style="color:#700;font-size:85%;">may</strong>, or <strong style="color:#700;font-size:85%;">will</strong>) is used in the other clause <span style="font-size:85%;">(called the <span style="color:#060;">''apodose''</span>)</span>.   
 +
*If you're coming to the dinner tonight, he <u>may</u> be there.
 +
*I'<u>ll</u> take the newspaper if you've finished with it.
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 +
<strong style="color:#700;font-size:85%;">must</strong>, <strong style="color:#700;font-size:85%;">shall</strong>, and <strong style="color:#700;font-size:85%;">should</strong> are rare in both the <span style="color:#060;font-size:85%;">''apodose''</span> and in the <span style="color:#060;font-size:85%;">''protase''</span>.
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Some liberty is allowed beyond those three modals of course:
 +
 +
*If you wait here, the zombies <u>should</u> be along shortly.
 +
*You <u>might</u> want to wait to buy it, if you think you can get a better deal elsewhere.
 +
*You <u>could</u> wait to change cars, if you think the price will come down.
 +
*You really <u>must</u> come to Vienne if you want to see some cool Roman relics.
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 +
<hr>
  
 
This is very similar to French.   
 
This is very similar to French.   
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In some circumstances it is also possible in English to substitute the <span style="color:#060;font-size:75%;">''futur proche''</span> <span style="font-variant:small-caps;color:#318;">be going to</span> for the future modal "will", but it is far less common:   
 
In some circumstances it is also possible in English to substitute the <span style="color:#060;font-size:75%;">''futur proche''</span> <span style="font-variant:small-caps;color:#318;">be going to</span> for the future modal "will", but it is far less common:   
 
:You know that if she plays, she'<u>s going to</u> win.
 
:You know that if she plays, she'<u>s going to</u> win.
 
<strong style="color:#700;font-size:85%;">must</strong>, <strong style="color:#700;font-size:85%;">shall</strong>, and <strong style="color:#700;font-size:85%;">should</strong> are rare in both the <span style="color:#060;font-size:85%;">''apodose''</span> and in the <span style="color:#060;font-size:85%;">''protase''</span>.
 
 
<hr>
 
 
 
*If you're coming to the dinner tonight, he <u>may</u> be there.
 
*I'<u>ll</u> take the newspaper if you've finished with it.
 
 
Some liberty is allowed beyond those three modals of course:
 
 
*If you wait here, the zombies <u>should</u> be along shortly.
 
*You <u>might</u> want to wait to buy it, if you think you can get a better deal elsewhere.
 
*You <u>could</u> wait to change cars, if you think the price will come down.
 
*You really <u>must</u> go to Vienne or Nîmes, if you want to see some cool Roman relics.
 
  
 
==2nd conditional==
 
==2nd conditional==
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The second conditional is counter-intuitive because you use the past to speak about a potential future:
 
The second conditional is counter-intuitive because you use the past to speak about a potential future:
  
* If she had a million dollars, she <u>would</u>n't buy a yacht.  
+
* If she '''had''' a million dollars, she <u>would</u>n't buy a yacht.  
* She <u>might</u> be more tempted, if she had a hundred million dollars.
+
* She <u>might</u> be more tempted, if she '''had''' a hundred million dollars.
* You <u>could</u> make bills, if you had a better-paying job.
+
* You <u>could</u> make bills, if you '''had''' a better-paying job.
* If I had his address, I <u>could</u> send him the photo.
+
* If I '''had''' his address, I <u>could</u> send him the photo.
  
 
The word most associated with the 2nd conditional is ''irrealis'', when you use the second conditional, you're saying what would or could happen under certain circumstances.  in the ''apodose'', you will find three principal modals: '''would''', '''could''', & '''might'''.
 
The word most associated with the 2nd conditional is ''irrealis'', when you use the second conditional, you're saying what would or could happen under certain circumstances.  in the ''apodose'', you will find three principal modals: '''would''', '''could''', & '''might'''.
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*If she was going to come, she <u>would</u> be here by now.
 
*If she was going to come, she <u>would</u> be here by now.
  
 +
Again, this is very much like French:
  
Again, this is just like French.
+
: ''Si elle all<u>ait</u> venir, elle se<u>rait</u> déjà là.''
 +
: ''Si je jou<u>ais</u>, je gagne<u>rais</u>.''
  
e.g. ''si je jouais, je gagnerais''
+
==3rd conditional==
 
 
==3rd conditionals==
 
  
 
In the ''apodose'' the three modals used in 2nd conditionals ('''would''', '''could''', & '''might''') are  followed by the perfect infinitive (<span style="font-variant:small-caps;color:#318;">have + -en</span>).  In the ''protase'' the verb is in the pluperfect (<span style="font-variant:small-caps;color:#318;">had + -en</span>)  
 
In the ''apodose'' the three modals used in 2nd conditionals ('''would''', '''could''', & '''might''') are  followed by the perfect infinitive (<span style="font-variant:small-caps;color:#318;">have + -en</span>).  In the ''protase'' the verb is in the pluperfect (<span style="font-variant:small-caps;color:#318;">had + -en</span>)  
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*:<span style="font-size:75%;color:#AAA;font-variant:italic;>J'aurais peut-être pu réparer le portable, si j'avais eu un moyen de l'ouvrir pour y regarder.</span>
 
*:<span style="font-size:75%;color:#AAA;font-variant:italic;>J'aurais peut-être pu réparer le portable, si j'avais eu un moyen de l'ouvrir pour y regarder.</span>
 
*If they'<u>d known</u> you were here, they <u>might have come</u> to say hello.  
 
*If they'<u>d known</u> you were here, they <u>might have come</u> to say hello.  
 +
 +
Semantics: the proposition in the protase in 3rd conditionals is not true or is not what happened. (It is said to be ''counterfactual.'')
  
 
Again, this is like French (just simpler, because you don't have to choose between ''avoir'' & ''être'')
 
Again, this is like French (just simpler, because you don't have to choose between ''avoir'' & ''être'')

Latest revision as of 19:42, 6 May 2021

There are four conditional patterns in English. Generally you learn about first and second conditionals at the pre-intermediate level. Sometimes teachers mention the zeroeth conditional. The third conditional is often saved for later because it seems complicated.

0th conditional

With the /'zi roʊθ/ conditional, the condition is purely a logical link, not a temporal one. It is used to talk about general truths. In other words if is equivalent to when or whenever... i.e. (à) chaque fois

  • If you snooze, you lose.
  • If she doesn't practice, she gets rusty.
  • If I sing, it rains.

Notice that the verbs are conjugated in the standard present tense. (3rd person -s) The present progressive (be + -ing) is not common with the 0th conditional, because the 0th is outside of time.

cf. Si je joue, je gagne.

1st conditional

The first conditional is very common and refers to specific and sometimes unforeseen events, not generalities:

  • If you wait here, I'll get the zombies for you.
  • If you don't wait here, the zombies'll get you for me.
  • Don't worry! They can't hear you or smell you if you stay right there.

Any present tense verb (simple, be + -ing, have + -en) can be used in the if-clause (called the protase).

One of three principal modals (can, may, or will) is used in the other clause (called the apodose).

  • If you're coming to the dinner tonight, he may be there.
  • I'll take the newspaper if you've finished with it.

must, shall, and should are rare in both the apodose and in the protase.

Some liberty is allowed beyond those three modals of course:

  • If you wait here, the zombies should be along shortly.
  • You might want to wait to buy it, if you think you can get a better deal elsewhere.
  • You could wait to change cars, if you think the price will come down.
  • You really must come to Vienne if you want to see some cool Roman relics.

This is very similar to French.

Moi, si je joue, je gagnerai.
Je vais gagner, si je joue.

In some circumstances it is also possible in English to substitute the futur proche be going to for the future modal "will", but it is far less common:

You know that if she plays, she's going to win.

2nd conditional

The second conditional is counter-intuitive because you use the past to speak about a potential future:

  • If she had a million dollars, she wouldn't buy a yacht.
  • She might be more tempted, if she had a hundred million dollars.
  • You could make bills, if you had a better-paying job.
  • If I had his address, I could send him the photo.

The word most associated with the 2nd conditional is irrealis, when you use the second conditional, you're saying what would or could happen under certain circumstances. in the apodose, you will find three principal modals: would, could, & might.

  • If she was going to come, she would be here by now.

Again, this is very much like French:

Si elle allait venir, elle serait déjà là.
Si je jouais, je gagnerais.

3rd conditional

In the apodose the three modals used in 2nd conditionals (would, could, & might) are followed by the perfect infinitive (have + -en). In the protase the verb is in the pluperfect (had + -en)

  • Trust me, if she had wanted eggs, she would have asked you for some.
  • Maybe I could have fixed the cellphone if I had had a way to open it up and look inside.
    J'aurais peut-être pu réparer le portable, si j'avais eu un moyen de l'ouvrir pour y regarder.
  • If they'd known you were here, they might have come to say hello.

Semantics: the proposition in the protase in 3rd conditionals is not true or is not what happened. (It is said to be counterfactual.)

Again, this is like French (just simpler, because you don't have to choose between avoir & être)

Si j'avais joué, j'aurais gagné!
Si j'aurais su, j'aurais pas venu.
Si j'avais été toi, je me serais tu.

other conditionals

simple past

  • If she was planning to come, she didn't tell me about it.

2nd-3rd hybrid

Conditionals with a second conditional protase and a third conditional apodose are called "hybrids" because it is really cool to have a name for everything.

  • If she was planning to come, she would have been here by now.