The basic unit of English grammar is the clause:

[An unlucky student almost lost a 17th century violin worth almost £200,000]

[when he left it in the waiting room of a London station.]

[William Brown inherited the 1698 Stradivarius violin from his mother]

[and had just had it valued by a London dealer at £180,000.]

Clauses are made up of phrases:

[An unlucky student] + [almost lost] + [a 17th century violin worth almost £200,000]

[when] + [he] + [left] + [it] + [in the waiting room of a London station.]

[William Brown] + [inherited] + [the 1698 Stradivarius violin] + [from his mother]

[and] [had just had it valued] + [by a London dealer] + [at £180,000.]

We can join two or more clauses together to make sentences.

An unlucky student almost lost a 17th century violin worth almost £200,000 when he left it in the waiting room of a London station.

William Brown inherited the 1698 Stradivarius violin from his mother and had just had it valued by a London dealer at £180,000.


 

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Comments

Hi there,
Will/can you pass me the salt?
What is the difference between these sentences?
Shall/should I call him tomorrow?
What shall/should we do with this?
Should is used when suggesting and advising something. What is the difference between the sentences and Is ''shall'' only used when asking for advise or suggestion, not negative or positive sentences?

Thank you in advance

Many thanks

Hello JakiGeh,

If you're sitting at the table eating, there is no difference between 'can' or 'will'. Both are used for requests, as is explained on the page I've linked to.

'shall' and 'should' both have several uses, and what they mean exactly depends on context. There's no context for your sentences, but, for example, 'shall I call him' can be an indirect way of offering to call. 'should I call him' can also have the same meaning. Both can also be requests for someone's opinion on the idea, i.e. their advice.

'shall' is used only in limited situations -- typically, only in questions.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello,

What is the difference between ''will'' and present simple when expressing a general truth? For example,

''A baby will recognize its mother's voice soon after the it's born''
''A baby recognizes its mother's voice soon after the it's born''

Could a difference be seen just when you have a context?

And what is the difference between these two?

''I will have been working for 20 years in this September''
''I am going to have been working for 20 years in this September''

I know the second sentence is rear, but I'd still like to know the difference.

Thank you very much.

Hello JamiMakav,

General truths are expressed with the present simple. We can use 'will' to express an expectation or prediction, and so in some cases we can use this to express something which is generally true - that which is generally true is also that which we would expect to happen, of course.

The second pair of sentences you quote are quite similar. We use 'will' to express expectations and 'going to' to describe future events or states based on present evidence. Often both are possible and it is up to the speaker to choose which is more appropriate.

You can read more about future forms on these pages:

Talking about the future

Future continuous and future perfect

Future plans

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello

''If you don't study, I believe that you will fail the exams''

The real result clause is within the that-clause. Shouldn't then the sentence be somehow separated; for example ''..., I believe that, you will fail the exams''

Thank you.

Hello JakiGeh,

There is no need to separate the sentences in that way. The word order here is quite flexible, so all of the following are possible:

I believe that if you don't study, you will fail the exams.

If you don't study, I believe that you will fail the exams

I believe that you will fail the exams if you don't study.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello,

''I want to have done something amazing by the end of this Summer''

Is this sentence correct?

We usually use that kind of object(have p. p.) when expressing actions that happen before something, for example

''She claimed to have met you before'' = ''She claimed that she has met you before''

But in the sentence, there's no action. There is just the adverbial phrase.

Thank you

Hello MCWSL,

Yes, that sentence is correct. The perfective infinitive can be used in many ways, but in general expresses a perfective meaning, i.e. that something has been done. In this case, it's done before a time period (the end of the summer).

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello
please help me clarify this:
In this sentence : (What time does this afternoon's meeting start? )
why do we use the possessive form? why we cant say "this afternoon meeting" as a noun modifier?

Hello Imenouaer,

There are several ways to say this. Either of these would be quite common:

What time does this afternoon's meeting start?

What time does the afternoon meeting start?

What time does the meeting start this afternoon?

We would say 'the afternoon meeting' (using 'afternoon' as an adjective). We would not use 'this afternoon meeting' unless were were discussing different afternoon meetings and wanted to say 'this one and not that one'.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

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