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An explanation of conditionals.

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  • Conditionals

    1. 1. CONDITIONALS A Primer Peter Mangiaracina 1
    2. 2. Contents of this Presentation Disclaimer Key to Formulae and Terms used in presentation Real Conditional Unreal Conditional Past Unreal Conditional Omitting IF Peter Mangiaracina 2
    3. 3. Disclaimer The slideshows in this series are not meant to be comprehensive, but rather are starting points for further study by Intermediate students of ESL (English as a Second Language). Peter Mangiaracina 3
    4. 4. Key to Formulae 1 Formulae are ways to structure a sentence. Below is an explanation of the elements of the formulae used in this presentation. Subject The doer of an action. Usually appears at the beginning of a main clause. In the sentence “Bob is taller than Jill,” Bob is the subject Verb The functional verb in the sentence (the one that gets conjugated). Root The stem of a verb, or the infinitive without “to.” The root of “to go” is go. Past Participle (PP) The conjugation used for the perfect tenses. In the clause, “If I had gone…,” gone is a past participle. Peter Mangiaracina 4
    5. 5. Key to Formulae 2 Object The receiver of an action. Usually appears after the verb. In the sentence, “The dog catches the ball,” ball is the object. When “object” appears in a formula, it is only for transitive verbs (verbs that take objects). Otherwise something else might go in its place, like a prepositional phrase, or even nothing. Adjective An adjective modifies a noun. In the sentence, “Bob throws the red ball,” red is an adjective. Clause Any collection of words that contains a subject and a verb. There are main clauses that stand on their own and dependent clauses which need a main clause to have meaning. Peter Mangiaracina 5
    6. 6. The Real Conditional True in the present/future The present real conditional is used when talking about what you might do in real life situations. It can happen: I sometimes go to the park. If I go to the park today, I will play Frisbee with my dog. I might go to Madrid next weekend. If I go to Madrid I can see a bullfight. Formula: If+subject+verb (present)+object, subject+will/can+verb (root) +object. Peter Mangiaracina 6
    7. 7. The Unreal Conditional 1 Untrue in the present/future The present unreal conditional is used to express a present or future condition. It tells us how things would be or what would happen if the situation were different: The truth: I don’t have a car. I don’t visit you often. The condition: If I had a car I would visit you often. Formula: If+subject+verb (past)+object, subject+would/could+verb (root) +object. Peter Mangiaracina 7
    8. 8. The Unreal Conditional 2 The unreal conditional is made up of an “IF”(If I had, If I could…) clause and a main “WOULD/COULD” (I would, I could…) clause. You can order the clauses as you like. You work so hard. You’re tired all the time. If you didn’t work so hard, you wouldn’t be tired all the time. You wouldn’t be tired all the time if you didn’t work so hard You don’t have money. You can’t buy a new car. If you had money, you could buy a new car. You can’t speak English. You can’t go to the conference If you could speak English, you could go to the congress Peter Mangiaracina 8
    9. 9. The Unreal Conditional 3 The form of the verb in the if-clause is the same as the past tense form of the verb: What time would we get to work if we took the subway? Why wouldn’t your friend complain if you never called her? What would you buy if you had a million dollars? There is one exception, though: the verb to be takes were for all persons: I am – If I were: If I were you, I’d be more careful He is – If he were: If he were rich, he’d never work. You are – If you were: If you weren’t my friend, I’d never see you. Peter Mangiaracina 9
    10. 10. The Past Unreal Conditional 1 Untrue in the past The past unreal conditional is used to express a regret or the avoidance of a regret about something in the past. It is about what you would have done if the situation were different. The truth: I didn’t go to the store yesterday. I missed a big sale. The conditional: If I had gone to the store yesterday I wouldn’t have missed the big sale. Formula: If + subject + had + past participle… Subject + would + have + past participle… Peter Mangiaracina 10
    11. 11. The Past Unreal Conditional 2 The past unreal conditional consists of two clauses, an if clause and a would clause. The if clause refers to an unreal past event or condition If I had arrived on time... (I didn't) If it hadn't rained yesterday... (it did) The would clause describes the consequence: ...I wouldn't have missed the train. ...we would have gone to the beach. It wasn't warm yesterday. We didn't go to the beach. If it had been warm yesterday, we would have gone to the beach. Peter Mangiaracina 11
    12. 12. The Past Unreal Conditional 3 An unreal past condition may have a consequence in either the present or the past. If you had listened to my advice, you wouldn't be in trouble now. (now) If I had eaten more eggs when I was younger, I would probably like them now. If it had rained an hour ago, the streets would be wet. (now) Formula: In this case the formula changes for the would clause: If + subject + had + past participle…, subject + would + root verb… Peter Mangiaracina 12
    13. 13. Omitting IF With were, had and should, sometimes the “if” in a conditional can be omitted: Were I you, I wouldn’t do that Had I known, I would have told you Should anyone call, please take a message 13