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    #1

    Using simple past after ''wonder''

    ''Mrs. Dursley sipped her tea through pursed lips. Mr. Dursley wondered
    whether he dared tell her he'd heard the name "Potter." He decided he
    didn't dare. Instead he said, as casually as he could, "Their son --he'd be about Dudley's age now, wouldn't he?"''
    It wouldn't be correct to use ''whether he would dare'' rather than ''dared''?

    Thank you very much.

  1. probus's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Using simple past after ''wonder''

    Yes, definitely you could say "whether he would dare." I have a suspicion that "whether he dared" is more BrE and "whether he would dare" more AmE, but it's only a suspicion.
    Last edited by probus; 28-Apr-2013 at 04:53.

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    #3

    Re: Using simple past after ''wonder''

    Quote Originally Posted by probus View Post
    I have a suspicion that "whether he dared" is more BrE and "whether he would dare" more AmE, but it's only a suspicion.
    Your suspicion about the BrE preference is spot on.

    Rover

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Using simple past after ''wonder''

    I think that both are possible, depending on the thought on the speaker's mind:

    "Dare I tell her (now)?" = He wondered whether he dared tell her.
    "Will I (ever, in the future) dare tell her?" - He wondered whether he would dare tell her.

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    #5

    Re: Using simple past after ''wonder''

    So the next sentence ''he decided he didn't dare'' means a narrow future? Thank you for answering.

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