+0
Hello,

This is a nice web site, I just discovered it and I might need it in the upcoming weeks.

I'm french, and I have a german friend with whom I speak both English and German. German is his mother tongue, so I cannot really say anything about the mistakes he makes, however we fight a lot about English grammatical rules.

I keep telling him, and I'm sure about it, that "If I would have known" is completely wrong, and that he should be saying "If I had known".

Other exemple:

" If i would speak Japanese, I'd move to Tokyo" for "If I spoke Japanese, I'd move to Tokyo"
That's a typical German mistake ( Wenn ich Japanisch späche,...)

He keeps telling me that in US/ Canada, everybody says so and it's acceptable. It does hurt my ears whenever I hear that and I try to correct by telling him "If + would = wrong!!!"

Then quite ironically, some days ago I told him "If you wouldn't accept my help when I offered it, why would I help you now?" or something like that... And of course, he didn't miss the "If you would"...

I would appreciate some help... What is correct, and what's not?

I know the rule:

If I eat, I will sleep.
If I ate, I would sleep.
If I had eaten, I would have slept.

How can I justify, explain him? What about other significations of would (past=> "I said I wanted to sleep but they wouldn't stop shouting") etc...

Thank you very much for your help, I hope I explained my problem clearly enough.

W.
+0
You are correct.

In the case of

Then quite ironically, some days ago I told him "If you wouldn't accept my help when I offered it, why would I help you now?" or something like that... And of course, he didn't miss the "If you would"...

that is not a case of conditional sentence. Here, 'if' means 'since'. So, you're still correct.
+0
AnonymousI keep telling him, and I'm sure about it, that "If I would have known" is completely wrong, and that he should be saying "If I had known".
True.
AnonymousHe keeps telling me that in US/ Canada, everybody says so and it's acceptable.
Not everybody makes that mistake. A few people do. In any case, it's not acceptable.
AnonymousI told him "If you wouldn't accept my help when I offered it, why would I help you now?" or something like that... And of course, he didn't miss the "If you would"...

I would appreciate some help... What is correct, and what's not?When used idiomatically to mean "refused to", "wouldn't" is treated in conditional sentences as if it were the main verb "refused to".

If you refused to accept my help = If you wouldn't accept my help.

So, because of the special case of the "wouldn't of refusal", no rules are violated in your sentence. They wouldn't stop shouting contains the same use of wouldn't.

CJ