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  1. #1
    JarekSteliga is offline Member
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    Default Come when we will be ready / Come when we are ready

    Judging from this conditional, "I will come when you are ready", I tend to think that only the latter of the two forms given in the tread title is correct. Am I right?

    This is notoriously confusing for me since in my language in this type of conditional both the condition and the result are in Future.

  2. #2
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    bhaisahab is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: Come when we will be ready / Come when we are ready

    Quote Originally Posted by JarekSteliga View Post
    Judging from this conditional, "I will come when you are ready", I tend to think that only the latter of the two forms given in the tread title is correct. Am I right?

    This is notoriously confusing for me since in my language in this type of conditional both the condition and the result are in Future.
    "We will come when we are ready" is correct.

  3. #3
    5jj's Avatar
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    Default Re: Come when we will be ready / Come when we are ready

    Quote Originally Posted by JarekSteliga View Post
    Judging from this conditional, "I will come when you are ready", I tend to think that only the latter of the two forms given in the tread title is correct. Am I right?
    'This is not a conditional sentence. 'When you are ready' is a time clause.

  4. #4
    JarekSteliga is offline Member
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    Default Re: Come when we will be ready / Come when we are ready

    Quote Originally Posted by bhaisahab View Post
    "We will come when we are ready" is correct.
    But my question was regarding the imperative forms in the title of the thread. Which of them is correct?
    Last edited by JarekSteliga; 10-Jan-2013 at 21:43.

  5. #5
    JarekSteliga is offline Member
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    Default Re: Come when we will be ready / Come when we are ready

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    'This is not a conditional sentence. 'When you are ready' is a time clause.
    I had for some time thought that I had uderstood conditionals. Now it is back to square one. My understanding had been that "if" can always be replaced with "when" in a conditional describing a potential situation and that the resulting sentence remains a conditional. After reading your post and looking at some other reference I am beginning to realize that this is not true. A real conditional (one describing a potential situation as opposed to a hypothetical one) will still be a conditional after replacing "if" with "when" only when that conditional expresses a generalization or a habitual action.

    I hope I 've got that right.

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    Default Re: Come when we will be ready / Come when we are ready

    Quote Originally Posted by JarekSteliga View Post
    I had for some time thought that I had uderstood conditionals. Now it is back to square one. My understanding had been that "if" can always be replaced with "when" in a conditional describing a potential situation and that the resulting sentence remains a conditional. After reading your post and looking at some other reference I am beginning to realize that this is not true. A real conditional (one describing a potential situation as opposed to a hypothetical one) will still be a conditional after replacing "if" with "when" only when that conditional expresses a generalization or a habitual action.

    I hope I 've got that right.
    You are confusing conditional and temporal clauses. 'If' suggests as possible situation (the possibility may be real, hypothetical or counterfactual); 'when', or any other time word presents the situation as factual.

    If John retires next year, he will move to Rome
    . The speaker thinks it is possible that John will retire. His moving to Rome is conditional on that retirement.
    When John retires next year, he will move to Rome. The speaker accepts as a fact that John will retire. His moving to Rome is also seen as a (future) fact. There is no condition here.

  7. #7
    bhaisahab's Avatar
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    Default Re: Come when we will be ready / Come when we are ready

    Quote Originally Posted by JarekSteliga View Post
    But my question was regarding the imperative forms in the title of the thread. Which of them is correct?
    You could say to someone "Come when we are ready", but how are they going to know when you are ready?

  8. #8
    JarekSteliga is offline Member
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    Default Re: Come when we will be ready / Come when we are ready

    Quote Originally Posted by bhaisahab View Post
    You could say to someone "Come when we are ready", but how are they going to know when you are ready?
    To avoid the dilemma we can use a different example, "Come when you are ready". The main thing for me is that it is Simple Present rather than Simple Future that comes after the word, "come" or any other verb in imperative.

    Thank you for clearing it up.

  9. #9
    JarekSteliga is offline Member
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    Default Re: Come when we will be ready / Come when we are ready

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    You are confusing conditional and temporal clauses. 'If' suggests as possible situation (the possibility may be real, hypothetical or counterfactual); 'when', or any other time word presents the situation as factual.

    If John retires next year, he will move to Rome
    . The speaker thinks it is possible that John will retire. His moving to Rome is conditional on that retirement.
    When John retires next year, he will move to Rome. The speaker accepts as a fact that John will retire. His moving to Rome is also seen as a (future) fact. There is no condition here.
    Please bear with me a moment longer, because I would really like to get to the bottom of this once and for all.

    Am I to conclude that once "if" is replaced with "when" in a conditional sentence, this sentence ceases to be a conditional sentence full stop/no exceptions?

    I guess when I saw these examples:

    Examples of real conditional sentences expressing habitual activities:
    If he eats breakfast, he feels better all day.
    If he eats breakfast, he will feel better all day.
    If he ate breakfast, he felt better all day.
    These generalizations can also be expressed by using when or whenever instead of if:
    When water boils, it turns to steam.
    When he eats breakfast, he feels better all day.
    When he ate breakfast, he felt better all day.
    at this page http://faculty.deanza.edu/flemingjohn/stories/storyReader$18 I gathered that all of them were also conditional sentences and incorrectly incorporated temporal clauses into the family of conditional clauses.

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