Conditionals 2

 

Third conditionals and mixed conditionals

Conditionals are sentences with two clauses – an ‘if clause and a main clause – that are closely related. Conditional sentences are often divided into different types.

Third conditional

Third conditional sentences describe the past. They describe something that didn’t happen.

  • If I’d studied harder at school I would have gone to university.

He didn’t study very hard and he didn’t go to university.

  • We wouldn’t have got lost if you hadn’t given me the wrong directions.

She wasn't given the correct directions and she didn't find her way.

  • She might have finished the exam if she’d had more time.

She didn't finish the exam and she didn't have more time.

In third conditional sentences, the structure is usually if + past perfect and would + perfect infinitive (e.g. have done). It’s not important which clause comes first.

Notice that other modal verbs can be used instead of ‘would’ (e.g. ‘could’, ‘might’ ‘may’)

Mixed conditionals

In mixed conditional sentences the time in the ‘if’ clause is not the same as the time in the main clause. There can be various combinations.

  • If he’d gone to university he might have a better job.

He didn’t go to university (past)
He doesn’t have a very good job. (present)
This sentence shows the present consequences of a past action.

  • If I’d won the competition I’d be going to Florida next week.

She didn’t win the competition (past)
She isn’t going to Florida (future)
This sentence shows the future consequences of a past action.

  • If he didn’t have to work tomorrow he wouldn’t be so miserable today.

He has to work tomorrow (future)
He’s miserable. (present)
This sentence shows the present consequence of a future event.

 

Exercise

Comments

Hello, I would like to ask about negative form of 'Had". We can normally use in the past perfect tense for EX:I hadn't seen him, he hadn't left...But had with noun or adjective ,how to form negative? You may say "didn't have"that is ok. But Can we also use hadn't? Ex:I hadn't enough time, I hadn't a car in 2013.I asked a british teacher about "hadn't" she said that we don't use it.I have noticed on the webpage of British council that says 'she hadn't any money".Could you provide some example of 'hadn't with noun.?Is there any difference between hadn't and didn't have?May I have the answer from a British Teacher please?

Hello Rasheed,

I think it would be helpful for you think about these different forms as 'have' used as an auxiliary verb (e.g. in 'have gone' or 'had gone') vs 'have' used as a main verb (e.g. 'We had a house in the country'), where usually it refers to possession.

Your teacher is right: when 'have' (or 'had') is used as a main verb, the negative form in the past simple tense is formed with the auxiliary verb 'did not' (not 'hadn't'), e.g. 'When I was young, I didn't have a car'. It is possible to find or hear 'hadn't' instead of 'didn't have', and this used to be common, but almost no one speaks or writes like this any more. It would strange for you to use it, though people would understand you.

I hope that clears it up for you!

Best wishes,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello,
In the following sentence both "would" and"could" can be used. Is it right?
You ____ run faster if you weren't so lazy.
Thank You

Hi shadyar,

Yes, that's correct.

Best wishes,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello kirk,
I look for a phrase or a word to define the following job, but I don't know the exact term . Please help me.
This is a service offered by post office . When you want to post a letter you call up the post office then the postman(usually drives his motorcycle) comes at your door and offers the service. In this way you don't need to go to the post office . Can we call this service for example "call post" or "postal motorcycle courier" or something else?
Best Wishes

Hello shadyar,

This is not a service that is offered in Britain as far as I know and so there is no 'official' name for it. That means you can invent whatever name seems to suit best. Perhaps something like 'door-to-door postal service'?

Best wishes,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Dear Sir,
I have read the questions of Roshank1988, by his last one : "He is completed his experiment successfully" that is wrong, so can I write this sentence with "He is complete his experiment successfully?" as this word " complete " can be an adjective, am I right?
Thank you in advance.

Hello chenlyfen60,

No, 'he is complete his experiment' doesn't make sense. If 'complete' means finished, it's not 'he' who is complete - it is the experiment that is complete. You could say 'He has completed his experiment', but the structure in this case is different: instead of 'be + adjective' it is the present perfect form of the verb 'complete'.

Best wishes,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello Roshank 1988,
I think both of the sentences are right. But there is a little difference in the meaning. With the first one it means the activity was completed and you observed it . Withe the second one it means the change has not been completed and you are waiting to observe the changes. Concerning the second question the first one is right , but the second one is not correct , because you use the passive form and it means "he" is not the subject.
Best Wishes.

sir i have some doubts please help me.

lets assume that i am conducting an experiment on temperature with the help of an assistant.i give him some instructions and leave for some other work.by the timei getback there he has just completed his work .now if i ask him a question which onewould be appropriate.
1.did you observe any change in temperature?
2.have you observed any change in temp?
if the second one is wrong in what situation we can frame a question using have.

and please correct these sentences
1he has completed his experiment successfully
2he is completed his exp successfully
if the second one is wrong in what situation we can use this kind of formation(is+past participle)
and

Pages