Conditionals

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    Present Unreal Conditional


    FORM
    [If ... SIMPLE PAST ..., ... would + VERB ...]
    or
    [... would + VERB ... if ... SIMPLE PAST ...]


    USE
    The Present Unreal Conditional is used to talk about what you would do in imaginary situations in general.

    EXAMPLES:

    If I had a car, I would drive to work. But I don't have a car.

    She would travel around the world if she had more money. But she doesn't have much money.

    I would read more if I didn't have a TV.

    Mary would move to Japan if she spoke Japanese.

    If they worked harder, they would earn more money.

    What would you do if you won the lottery?
    I would travel.

    Where would you live if you moved to the U.S.?
    I would live in Seattle.


    EXCEPTION If I were ...
    In the Present Unreal Conditional, the form "was" is not considered grammatically correct. In written English or in testing situations, you should always use "were." However, in everyday conversation, "was" is often used.

    EXAMPLES:

    If he were French, he would live in Paris.

    If she were rich, she would buy a yacht.

    I would play basketball if I were taller.

    I would buy that computer if it were cheaper.

    I would buy that computer if it was cheaper. NOT CORRECT (But often said in conversation.)


    EXCEPTION Conditional with Modal Verbs
    There are some special Conditional forms for modal verbs in English:

    would + can = could
    would + shall = should
    would + may = might

    The words "can," "shall" and "may" must be used in these special forms; they cannot be used with "would."

    EXAMPLES:

    If I went to Egypt, I would can learn Arabic. NOT CORRECT
    If I went to Egypt, I could learn Arabic. CORRECT

    If she had time, she would may go to the party. NOT CORRECT
    If she had time, she might go to the party. CORRECT



    The words "could," should," "might" and "ought to" include conditional, so you cannot combine them with "would."

    EXAMPLES:

    If I had more time, I would could exercise after work. NOT CORRECT
    If I had more time, I could exercise after work. CORRECT

    If he invited you, you really would should go. NOT CORRECT
    If he invited you, you really should go. CORRECT



    IMPORTANT : Only use "If"
    Only the word "if" is used with the Present Unreal Conditional because you are discussing imaginary situations. "When" cannot be used.

    EXAMPLES:

    I would buy that computer when it were cheaper. NOT CORRECT
    I would buy that computer if it were cheaper. CORRECT


    Present Real Conditional

    FORM
    [If / When ... SIMPLE PRESENT..., ... SIMPLE PRESENT ...]
    or
    [... SIMPLE PRESENT ... if / when ... SIMPLE PRESENT...]


    USE
    The Present Real Conditional is used to talk about what you normally do in real-life situations.

    EXAMPLES:

    If I go to a friend's house for dinner, I usually take a bottle of wine or some flowers.

    When I have a day off from work, I often go to the beach.

    If the weather is nice, she walks to work.

    Jerry helps me with my homework when he has time.

    I read if there is nothing on TV.

    What do you do when it rains?
    I stay at home.

    Where do you stay if you go to Sydney?
    I stay with my friends near the harbor.


    IMPORTANT : If / When
    Both "if" and "when" are used in the Present Real Conditional. Using "if" suggests that something happens less frequently. Using "when" suggests that something happens regularly.


    EXAMPLES:

    When I have a day off from work, I usually go to the beach.
    (I regularly have days off from work.)

    If I have a day off from work, I usually go to the beach.
    (I rarely have days off from work.)


    Zero Conditional: certainty

    We use the so-called zero conditional when the result of the condition is always true, like a scientific fact.

    Take some ice. Put it in a saucepan. Heat the saucepan. What happens? The ice melts (it becomes water). You would be surprised if it did not.

    IF condition result
    present simple present simple
    If you heat ice it melts.

    Notice that we are thinking about a result that is always true for this condition. The result of the condition is an absolute certainty. We are not thinking about the future or the past, or even the present. We are thinking about a simple fact. We use the present simple tense to talk about the condition. We also use the present simple tense to talk about the result. The important thing about the zero conditional is that the condition always has the same result.


    We can also use when instead of if, for example: When I get up late I miss my bus.


    Look at some more examples in the tables below:

    IF condition result
    present simple present simple
    If I miss the 8 o'clock bus I am late for work.
    If I am late for work my boss gets angry.
    If people don't eat they get hungry.
    If you heat ice does it melt?

    result IF condition
    present simple present simple
    I am late for work if I miss the 8 o'clock bus.
    My boss gets angry if I am late for work.
    People get hungry if they don't eat.
    Does ice melt if you heat it?
    Osqe58 bunu beğendi.
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    Third Conditional: no possibility

    The first conditional and second conditionals talk about the future. With the third conditional we talk about the past. We talk about a condition in the past that did not happen. That is why there is no possibility for this condition. The third conditional is also like a dream, but with no possibility of the dream coming true.

    Last week you bought a lottery ticket. But you did not win. :-(

    condition result
    Past Perfect WOULD HAVE + Past Participle
    If I had won the lottery I would have bought a car.

    Notice that we are thinking about an impossible past condition. You did not win the lottery. So the condition was not true, and that particular condition can never be true because it is finished. We use the past perfect tense to talk about the impossible past condition. We use WOULD HAVE + past participle to talk about the impossible past result. The important thing about the third conditional is that both the condition and result are impossible now.


    Sometimes, we use should have, could have, might have instead of would have, for example: If you had bought a lottery ticket, you might have won.


    Look at some more examples in the tables below:

    IF condition result
    past perfect WOULD HAVE + past participle
    If I had seen Mary I would have told her.
    If Tara had been free yesterday/ I would have invited her.
    If they had not passed their exam /their teacher would have been sad.
    If it had rained yesterday /would you have stayed at home?
    If it had rained yesterday /what would you have done?


    result IF condition
    WOULD HAVE + past participle past perfect
    I would have told Mary if I had seen her.
    I would have invited Tara if she had been free yesterday.
    Their teacher would have been sad if they had not passed their exam.
    Would you have stayed at home if it had rained yesterday?
    What would you have done if it had rained yesterday?
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    Second Conditional: unreal possibility or dream
    The second conditional is like the first conditional. We are still thinking about the future. We are thinking about a particular condition in the future, and the result of this condition. But there is not a real possibility that this condition will happen. For example, you do not have a lottery ticket. Is it possible to win? No! No lottery ticket, no win! But maybe you will buy a lottery ticket in the future. So you can think about winning in the future, like a dream. It's not very real, but it's still possible.

    IF condition result
    past simple WOULD + base verb
    If I won the lottery I would buy a car.

    Notice that we are thinking about a future condition. We use the past simple tense to talk about the future condition. We use WOULD + base verb to talk about the future result. The important thing about the second conditional is that there is an unreal possibility that the condition will happen.

    Here are some more examples:

    IF condition result
    past simple WOULD + base verb
    If I married Mary I would be happy.
    If Ram became rich she would marry him.
    If it snowed next July would you be surprised?
    If it snowed next July what would you do?

    result IF condition
    WOULD + base verb past simple
    I would be happy if I married Mary.
    She would marry Ram if he became rich.
    Would you be surprised if it snowed next July?
    What would you do if it snowed next July?

    Sometimes, we use should, could or might instead of would, for example: If I won a million dollars, I could stop working.
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    First Conditional: real possibility

    We are talking about the future. We are thinking about a particular condition or situation in the future, and the result of this condition. There is a real possibility that this condition will happen. For example, it is morning. You are at home. You plan to play tennis this afternoon. But there are some clouds in the sky. Imagine that it rains. What will you do?

    IF condition result
    present simple WILL + base verb
    If it rains I will stay at home.

    Notice that we are thinking about a future condition. It is not raining yet. But the sky is cloudy and you think that it could rain. We use the present simple tense to talk about the possible future condition. We use WILL + base verb to talk about the possible future result. The important thing about the first conditional is that there is a real possibility that the condition will happen. Here are some more examples (do you remember the two basic structures: [IF condition result] and [result IF condition]?):

    IF condition result
    present simple WILL + base verb
    If I see Mary I will tell her.
    If Tara is free tomorrow he will invite her.
    If they do not pass their exam their teacher will be sad.
    If it rains tomorrow w ill you stay at home?
    If it rains tomorrow what will you do?

    result IF condition
    WILL + base verb present simple
    I will tell Mary if I see her.
    He will invite Tara if she is free tomorrow.
    Their teacher will be sad if they do not pass their exam.
    Will you stay at home if it rains tomorrow?
    What will you do if it rains tomorrow?

    Sometimes, we use shall, can, or may instead of will, for example: If you are good today, you can watch TV tonight.

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