+0
Wouldn't the subjunctive have been this, not that.

The subjunctive would have been this, not that.

In the second conditional, the main/result clause uses the 'would have' construction, implying that the result is unlikely to happen.

1) In the two sentences below, I assume the construction is being used differently, as this sentence is not implying there is a low chance that the subjunctive would have been, as much as it is stating what it actually was.

2) Is there a passive voice conditional:

If I married, I would be so happy=second conditional

If I were married, I would be so happy=??

Please clarify. Thank you.

1 2
Comments  
Wouldn't the subjunctive have been this, not that.
The subjunctive would have been this, not that.

In the second conditional, the main/result clause uses the 'would have' construction, implying that the result is unlikely to happen. False. would have belongs to the third conditional.

1) In the two sentences below, I assume the construction is being used differently, Yes. It is different. Whereas the pattern above is the third conditional, the patterns below are the second conditional. as this sentence is not implying there is a low chance that the subjunctive would have been, as much as it is stating what it actually was.

2) Is there a passive voice conditional: You can certainly form conditionals with the passive voice, but the sentences below are not passives. married there is an adjective, not part of a passive verb phrase.

If I married, I would be so happy=second conditional

If I were married, I would be so happy=??

CJ
I would like to blame my incorrect classification of the second conditional on a mere sporadic (though quite regular) mind lapse.

That I write faster than I think is a burden you and I will have to endure--until I figure out how to subconciously change my tendency. Any ideas will be embraced with a smile.

Sorry to bore you further with the conditionals-of which I'm sure you are sick to death-but I must ensure I have this simple concept thoroughly engrained into my pea-sized brain, lest I lose my mind, my hair, and God knows what else (my ability to write conditionals, perhaps). Before I begin to ramble (that's a joke), I'll get right to it:

If we were still together, I would be so happy.

1) This is (I have it right this time) the second conditional. Am I correct to say then that this (both the condition and result) refers to the future?

2) Is above therefore synonymous with "If we were still together in the future, I would be so happy"

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

3) Is there a difference?

a. If I were funny, I would be happy = 2nd conditional

b. If I was funny, I would be happy =

4) Since b is the indicative (no longer subjunctive), there is a good chance I am funny, so what does this mean: is it still the 2nd conditional but with a slightly altered probabilitly?
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
English 1b3If we were still together, I would be so happy.

1) This is (I have it right this time) the second conditional. Am I correct to say then that this (both the condition and result) refers to the future?

2) Is above therefore synonymous with "If we were still together in the future, I would be so happy"

--
No. The whole situation is imagined as if taking place in the present. The meaning is

If we were still together now, I would be so happy now.

You need a different way of saying it if you want the future meaning:

If we are still together next year, I will be very happy.
English 1b33) Is there a difference?

a. If I were funny, I would be happy = 2nd conditional

b. If I was funny, I would be happy =

4) Since b is the indicative (no longer subjunctive), there is a good chance I am funny, so what does this mean: is it still the 2nd conditional but with a slightly altered probabilitly?
There is no difference in meaning between a and b. The difference is in style. a is the "proper way" to say it. b is the "casual way" to say it. I would call b the "Informal Version of the Second Conditional". That is, if you want to be formal, as when writing a report for a class, use a; if you want to be casual, as when conversing informally with your friends, use a OR b. Altered probability has nothing whatsoever to do with it. The tendency of English speakers to prefer the indicative over the subjunctive more and more as the years go by has everything to do with it. Emotion: smile

CJ
No. The whole situation is imagined as if taking place in the present. The meaning is

If we were still together now, I would be so happy now.

You need a different way of saying it if you want the future meaning:

If we are still together next year, I will be very happy.

The discussion I read on conditionals said that the second conditional is referring to the future and mentions nothing about it referring to the present. I will take your word for it.

So can the first conditional also refer to the present also then?

How is the present tense created with conditionals then? Always using the second conditional, or is there another way?

Thanks

No. The whole situation is imagined as if taking place in the present. The meaning is

If we were still together now, I would be so happy now.

You need a different way of saying it if you want the future meaning:

If we are still together next year, I will be very happy.

And what if I wanted it to be something that is unlikey to happen and in the future, because your future version shows there is a high chance it will happen.

Thanks

Teachers: We supply a list of EFL job vacancies
English 1b3The discussion I read on conditionals said that the second conditional is referring to the future and mentions nothing about it referring to the present.
It may express a situation that relates to future time, but it doesn't have to. (The use of still in your sentence points to a present situation.) The second conditional presents a situation in present or future time, but not in the past. It depends on the specific verb and the specific situation and common sense.

If I had $400 [now], I would get new brakes for my car [now (or in the future)].

If you were a little taller [now], you would be able to reach the top shelf [now (or in the future)].

If he won the race [whenever he participates, sooner or later in the future], he would receive an award of $1000 [after winning in the future].

If this box contained lead [now, at any time], it would weigh more than 100 pounds [now, at any time].

If we had another daughter [now (or in the future)], our daughter Karen would have a sister [now (or in the future)].

If wishes were horses [now, at any time], beggars would ride [now, at any time].

If I owned that house [now (or in the future)], I would have it remodeled [now, (or in the future)].

If I were still sick [now], I would still be taking cough medicine [now].

If I were really amused by that sick joke [now, after I've already heard it], I would be laughing [now].

CJ
English 1b3How is the present tense created with conditionals then? Always using the second conditional, or is there another way?
Both the first and the second conditional may relate to present time or future time. The Zero Conditional, with both clauses in the present tense, certainly relates to the present, usually in the form of a timeless or 'eternal' situation.

If I am late [in the future], they will start without me [in the future]. First Conditional.
If I am late [at any time], they always start without me [any time]. Zero Conditional.

If George lets the cat out, the cat wants to come in. If he lets the cat in, the cat wants to go out. ['present'; or 'any time'] Zero Conditionals.

CJ
And what if I wanted it to be something that is unlikely to happen and in the future ...?

Any of the conditionals can relate to unlikely situations. It's a matter of the meaning of the words.

If I win a dollar / If I won a dollar is about a much more likely situation than If I win a million dollars / If I won a million dollars.

You seem to want a separate grammatical structure -- that is, a separate conditional pattern -- for each of the following:

future, likely
future, unlikely
present, likely
present, unlikely
past, likely
past, unlikely

I'm sorry to disappoint you, but English does not make use of all that grammatical machinery! You have to go by the meanings of the words a great deal.

CJ
Site Hint: Check out our list of pronunciation videos.
Show more