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Thread: "had better"

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    #21

    Re: don't know how....?

    a learner from bosnia

    Quote Originally Posted by Soup View Post
    I'd say you are both right. It's high time you started your political carier. You had better do it! You might work for United Nation Org, I dare to say.
    Ex: I'd better go to the dentist before my tooth gets worse.
    _____________________
    Present and past subjunctive

    The terms present subjunctive and past subjunctive can be misleading, as they describe forms rather than meanings: the past and present subjunctives are so called because they resemble the past and present indicatives, respectively, but the difference between them is a difference in modality, not a temporal one.
    Subjunctive mood - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    We'd better learn from the books which were written by professors from both University of Cambridge and University of Oxford than from such "all about" sites!
    _____________________

    Ex: It's high time (that) the children were in bed.
    Ex: It's about time (that) the children were in bed.
    Why to say It's about time? Isn't it enough to say It's time..

    It's about time looks like to me as though a cat is approaching to a hot milk but going round and round, and round and round, and round and round..


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    #22

    Re: don't know how....?

    It's about time - Gee, finaly! Let's do it!
    It's time - Let's do it!

    Somewhat graphically speaking.

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    #23

    Re: don't know how....?

    Quote Originally Posted by e2e4 View Post
    A learner from Bosnia. Why to say It's about time? Isn't it enough to say It's time..
    It's about time is a set phrase, and set phrases are often reduced--the efficiency principle and all that. About is inceptive, by the way, and it's time, the reduced form, still carries that meaning.

    Speaking of reduction, the terms "past subjunctive (form)" and "past (form)" mean one and the same thing when applied to a subjunctive construct. The reason being,
    ... the past and present subjunctives are so called because they resemble the past and present indicatives, respectively, but the difference between them is a difference in modality, not a temporal one.
    In other words, assuming that the term past implies tense when used to describe subjunctive were is counterintuitive. (More clearly, the subjunctive is not a tense as you know, and therefore its verbs' "past [forms]" cannot be interpreted as past tense--they'll also tell you that at Oxford and Cambridge. Semantics has its value, agreed, but arguing it at that scale (i.e., on the basis of reduction) surely doesn't. Wouldn't you agree?


    _________________________________
    Man is by nature a political animal.
    —Aristotle, 4th century BC

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