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If Steven had offered to give me a lift, I wouldn’t have had to take a taxi
Even if the sentence reads strange (would + have to), I don't feel like using "I shouldn't have taken a taxi" because should usually sounds as recommandation, obligation, probability etc, and this is not the case (compare with: " I should have warned Adam about Barbara: she’s such a gossip!")
But, it is correct? Is there a different way to express the same sentence?
Thank you in advance
BrE: I/we should have ...
AmE: I/we would have ...
To the OP: I'd suggest to buy Swan, Practical English Usage.
Diamondrg'wouldn’t have had to take' is OK. OR 'wouldn't have taken'These don't mean quite the same.
The first accentuates the fact that he was forced to take a taxi (see had).
Marius Hancuyeah they are not the same, but in such a situation both can be used depending on one's intended meaning.Diamondrg'wouldn’t have had to take' is OK. OR 'wouldn't have taken'These don't mean quite the same.
1. If Steven had offered to give me a lift, I wouldn’t have taken a taxi.
— You would say this if e.g. you wanted to give a reason for taking a taxi. The focus is on the 2nd clause.
2. If Steven had offered to give me a lift, I wouldn’t have had to take a taxi.
— You would say this if e.g. you wanted to point out that Steve should have offered you a lift. The focus is on the 1st clause.
3. If Steven had offered to give me a lift, I shouldn’t have had to take a taxi.
— Some BrE speakers might say this, with the meaning of #2 (i.e. with no sense of "ought to" in "should"); but it's increasingly rare.
How about using "should" at 1 too, in BrE?
I think it could be used, with the same obs you made at 3 (decreasing usage).
EDIT: OK, I realize now that "would" is the choice at 1 even in older BrE usage, because it involves my volition/will.
The "had" in the 2nd shows that I couldn't exercise my volition, because I was forced to do something. Thus the possible choice for "should."
Yes, "should" would be possible in #1 too, in older/less common BrE usage.
(I should have added: only in the 1st person, though.)
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