+0
http://mthobby.pcperfect.com/ch601/chconstpages.htm

If these are not correct, why? What do they mean?
1. If my skills in estimating and managing IT projects had have been that bad, I would have fired myself a few times...
2. If my skills in estimating and managing IT projects would have been that bad, I would have fired myself a few times...

Thanks.
1 2 3 4 5
Comments  (Page 4) 
Hello Jack

I too would choose #2.

It's a 'type 2' conditional, rather than a 'mixed' conditional.

MrP
Are these correct? If not, why?
1. If the car breaks down on you-- you would have pay for the repair (if you didn't buy the warranty). (If this is incorrect, why?)
2. If the car breaks down on you, you would have pay for the repair. (Is this incorrect of how it is written?)

3. If the car breaks down on you, you will have to pay for the repair yourself. (Let's say I'm a salesperson and I'm trying to get someone to buy the warranty, is it better to use #1? #1 is more polite and less forceful? What would you use?)
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
Hello Jack

I'm assuming there's meant to be a 'to' before 'pay' in #1 and #2:

1. If the car breaks down on you, you would have to pay for the repair, if you didn't buy the warranty.

You can make this clearer by re-ordering it:

'If you didn't buy the warranty, you would have to pay for the repair / if the car breaks down on you.'

The first part of the sentence, up to the slash (/), is a type 2 conditional. The 'if' clause after the slash is the condition of the part of the sentence before the slash.

Since the sentence before the slash is a type 2, it would be more usual to say 'if the car broke down on you' (i.e. a type 2 'if' clause) in the last clause.

2. 'If the car breaks down on you, you would have to pay for the repair.'

This is a mixed conditional: type 1 in the 'if' clause, and type 2 in the main clause. (I would change 'breaks' to 'broke', and make it a type 2.)

3. 'If the car breaks down on you, you will have to pay for the repair yourself.'

This is a type 1 conditional.

If I were selling warranties, I would use #3, as it makes breaking down seem more likely.

If I were selling the car, and only selling the warranty as an extra, I would use #1, as it makes breaking down seem more remote.

MrP
Thanks.

1. If the car breaks down on you, you would have to pay for the repair, if you didn't buy the warranty. (For the first part of the sentence, the conditional is not completed 'If the car breaks down on you', what would it be if it was completed? I have thought about it and it sounds awkward if it is completed? For eg.:

2. If the car breaks down on you, you will be hard pressed, you would have to pay for the repair, if you didn't buy the warranty. )

In #2 the flow seems like it is a bit off. Is that why we omit it?
Hello Jack

If the car breaks down on you, you would have to pay for the repair, if you didn't buy the warranty.

Think of it like this (I've corrected it into a type 1 conditional, by the way, to make it clearer):

'If¹ you don't buy the warranty, (if² the car breaks down on you, you will have to pay for the repair).'

If¹ sets a condition. If that condition is true, we move on to the If² condition. So two conditions have to be met, before we get the main clause. (You could say that the whole If² statement serves as the main clause to the If¹ clause.)

Does that help? Let me know if it's still unclear.

MrP
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
'If¹ you don't buy the warranty, (if² the car breaks down on you, you will have to pay for the repair).'

If¹ sets a condition. If that condition is true, we move on to the If² condition. So two conditions have to be met, before we get the main clause. (You could say that the whole If² statement serves as the main clause to the If¹ clause.)


I understand your idea. You're saying 'if that is true, and if that is true too, we move on to the condition.' So the If¹ conditional doesn't need to be completed? Why so?

Or do you look at it like this:
1. If you don't buy the warranty, and if the car breaks down on you, you will have to pay for the repair.

Thanks for being so helpful.
That's it – 'if I buy a can of Coke and a can of Pepsi, I have to pay for two cans.'

You can string as many 'if' clauses together as you want. If they are all met, they are all simultaneously the condition of the main clause:

'If I wear shoes, and if I wear socks, and if I wear trousers, and if I wear underwear, and if I wear a belt, and if I wear a shirt, and if I wear a tie, and if I wear a jacket, I will be suitably dressed for work.'

8 conditions, 1 outcome.

MrP
1. If the car breaks down on you, you would have to pay for the repair, if you didn't buy the warranty.

If I were selling the car, and only selling the warranty as an extra, I would use #1, as it makes breaking down seem more remote.

1. If the car breaks down on you, you would have to pay for the repair, if you didn't buy the warranty. (So this is be a mixed conditional right? I have 'would' here, which makes it less lenient?)

2. If the car breaks down on you, and if you didn't buy the warranty, you will have to pay for the repair. (For this conditional, it is necessary to use 'didn't ' right? I cannot use 'don't ' because I'm expressing two different time frames?

Thanks.
Site Hint: Check out our list of pronunciation videos.
1. If the car breaks down on you, you would have to pay for the repair, if you didn't buy the warranty.


You can think of the conditional as a contraint. So in the above there are two conditions:

1) IF the proposition (the car breaks down on you)[constraint] is true, THEN this implies that (you would have to pay for the repair)[implication].

2) IF (you didn't buy warranty)[constraint], THEN this implies that (you would have to pay for repair)[implication].

Because you have two if-clauses in your sentence, it are what is called a semantic conjuntion, which basically means all your conditions need to be true for the outcome to be true:

if P & Q then R.

Where P is (the car breaking down), Q is (if you didn't buy warranty) and R is (you would have to pay for the repair).
...So this is be a mixed conditional right?...


That's right, in fact, both of the above (1. and 2.) are mixed conditionals, with a condition in the past: "if you didn't buy warranty" and a condition in the present "if the car breaks down on you".
...I have 'would' here, which makes it less lenient?)


You are right if you mean "lenient" to be obligation or neccesity. "Will" and "would" are modal verbs which express (usually) levels of obligation. You could substitute might/may in and it would still be fine.

So if you have will/would then: if P & Q then it is necessary that R.
If you have may/might then: if P & Q then it is possible that R.
2. If the car breaks down on you, and if you didn't buy the warranty, you will have to pay for the repair. (For this conditional, it is necessary to use 'didn't ' right? I cannot use 'don't ' because I'm expressing two different time frames?


Sentences 1 and 2 have the same meaning. Use of will/would makes no difference in my opinion. You are right againEmotion: smile You have to use 'didn't' because the act of "not buying the warranty" occured in past time. But remember that "if the car breaks down on you" does not just mean present-time, but all times from the present onwards. You can think of "breaks down on you" as being present with respect the time frame when the event occurs. In some languages the verb "break down" will be inflected in the future tense. English doesn't have the future tense inflection, so we can't do that.

eq
Show more