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    #51

    Re: Would you mind if I opened the window?

    Quote Originally Posted by engee30 View Post
    I've done some research and got baffled a bit. It took me some time, but I think it was worth it. The conclusion is that it is true that the construction Would you mind if... functions as a request, and actually it doesn't require the true conditional structure - would if + past tense.
    Not all if's imply condition. The sentence at hand is a case in point.
    How did you arrive at your conclusion, eng? What did you read? How did you conduct your research?

    If you will eat so much chocolate, it is hardly surprising you are so fat. -- is the situ in the matrix contingent on the situ in the protasis (if clause)? Surely not.

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    #52

    Unhappy Re: Would you mind if I opened the window?

    Quote Originally Posted by svartnik View Post
    How did you arrive at your conclusion, eng? What did you read? How did you conduct your research?
    I found the crucial information on the issue in Cambridge and Collins grammars, the former providing some good explanation of the usage.
    Sorry, but I was wrong all along, guys.

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    #53

    Re: Would you mind if I opened the window?

    Quote Originally Posted by Snappy View Post
    Are these both acceptable and the same in meaning?
    "Would you mind if I opened the window?"
    "Would you mind if I open the window?"
    Quote Originally Posted by svartnik View Post
    Both are possible.
    Quote Originally Posted by engee30 View Post
    I found the crucial information on the issue in Cambridge and Collins grammars, the former providing some good explanation of the usage.
    Sorry, but I was wrong all along, guys.
    Quote Originally Posted by bhaisahab View Post
    ... in AmE both are accepted by some, but are not necessarily acceptable to all.


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    #54

    Re: Would you mind if I opened the window?

    Sorry, but I was wrong all along, guys.


    I found the crucial information on the issue in Cambridge and Collins grammars, the former providing some good explanation of the usage.
    Excerpt the passages, eng, please.



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    #55

    Re: Would you mind if I opened the window?

    Quote Originally Posted by svartnik View Post
    Being a prescriptivist suggests having absolute authority in the English language to me, eng. No offence, but who are you?
    Okay, I rephrase my answer and say, both are commonly used by educated people.

    PS: and please ... do not ... underline ... my name, please. I can see very well. ;)
    Yes! Svartnik seems to be correct. But I think second one will be more appropriate.
    chellamuthu


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    #56

    Re: Would you mind if I opened the window?

    Quote Originally Posted by engee30 View Post
    I found the crucial information on the issue in Cambridge and Collins grammars, the former providing some good explanation of the usage.
    Sorry, but I was wrong all along, guys.
    Mr.NG30!

    If give website address to 'Cambridge and Coiilins grammars' it will be helpful to me. Please help me.
    with regards,
    chellamuthu

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    #57

    Cool Re: Would you mind if I opened the window?

    Quote Originally Posted by svartnik View Post

    Excerpt the passages, eng, please.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------
    Would you mind and do you mind

    Would you mind and do you mind are most commonly followed by if when permission is being requested. With would you mind the tense in the if-clause may be past (more formal) or present (more informal):

    A: Do you mind if I take my shoes off?
    B: No.

    Would you mind if one of our representatives comes and gives you a free demonstration?

    [referring to the tape-recorder being used to record the conversation]
    Would you mind if I turned this off just for a few minutes?

    Note that the appropriate reply to give permission is no, not yes. Mind means 'object', so saying no means 'I do not object to what you wish to do'.

    A: Do you mind if I sit here?
    B: No, not at all. Please do.


    Less frequently, an object pronoun or noun phrase and a verb in the -ing form may follow mind:

    Would you mind us coming too?
    Do you mind me sitting in on the interview?
    Do you mind this towel being used?


    In formal contexts, a possessive pronoun may be used instead of an object pronoun:
    'Do you mind my smoking?' he asked. 'Oh, not at all, sir.'

    The do-construction with object pronoun and -ing form may be used to check that something is permitted or acceptable which is already happening or has already happened:

    Do you mind me coming round?
    (could be spoken when the person is already at the place referred to)

    Cambridge® Grammar of English
    -------------------------------------------------------------------
    Asking Permission

    indirect ways

    [...] A more polite way is to say Do you mind if...? or Would you mind if...?

    Do you mind if we speak a bit of German?
    Would you mind if I just ask you some routine questions?


    Again, these expressions are shortened in very informal situations:
    Mind if I bring my bike in? [...]

    Collins® Cobuild Grammar Booster
    ----------------------------------------------------------------
    As you can read, Svartnik, it's more formal (and to me personally, more acceptable) when you use a past tense with the construction would you mind if. But I am no authority on English grammar, of course.


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    #58

    Re: Would you mind if I opened the window?

    Quote Originally Posted by engee30 View Post
    But I am no authority on English grammar, of course.
    Nobody is, eng. Still we are bickering here all the time.
    And now I will go and kick myself.

    The way I see the difference is:

    The present form is used to indicate that you are considering the possibility of opening, but could be dissuaded if there is an objection.


    The subjunctive past form indicates that you are more intent on opening the window. It gives the slight impression that you don't expect any objections to the idea.



    EDIT: Quite the contrary! I mean the use of subjunctive past and indicative forms.
    Last edited by svartnik; 04-Aug-2009 at 12:29.

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    #59

    Re: Would you mind if I opened the window?

    I have no difficulty at all in accepting that a sufficiently noticeable proportion of native speakers currently accept

    ? Would you mind if I open the window?

    as being at least as good as classically correct

    Would you mind if I opened the window?

    (if not, in terms of 'naturalness', perhaps even preferable even in some cases) as to warrant its inclusion in some guides to English usage, just as I have no difficulty in accepting - with however much distaste - that a sufficiently noticeable proportion of native speakers currently accept the hideously hypercorrect

    *Between you and I,...

    (I trust you'll forgive the asterisk!)

    in preference even to classically correct

    Between you and me,...

    as to warrant its inclusion (accompanied by a decidely dodgy attempt at formal justification) in no less "august" a publication than the Cambridge Grammar of the English Language - the same one, incidentally, that proposes the lunatic idea of reclassifying subordinating conjunctions as prepositions!

    But I simply refuse to believe, until such time as I am presented with overwhelming evidence to the contrary, that those who prefer the former constitute a majority in either case (and even then I reserve the right to balk a little!).

    To tolerate as a possible alternative is one thing. To advocate as the only correct form - when the construction is supported, not by analogy with any standard English sentence pattern, but rather by only the empty, arbitrary fiat that, when a sentence becomes functional, it ceases somehow to be subject to the normal laws of syntax - is quite another!

    I wonder who dreamed that one up...
    Last edited by philo2009; 05-Aug-2009 at 08:24.

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    #60

    Re: Would you mind if I opened the window?

    Quote Originally Posted by svartnik View Post
    Not all if's imply condition.
    You are quite correct, Svartnik, and I hope that I have nowhere argued otherwise. Whether an if-sentence constitutes a true conditional sentence is determined primarily by its structure.

    Some if-sentences indeed do not conform to any of the four standard conditional paradigms (zero, 1st, 2nd or 3rd conditionals - I'm sure you're sufficiently familiar with them that I may dispense with examples) or at least to one of a number of minor variations of them. One would be

    A: I tell you, Peter was smoking when I saw him.
    B: Well, if he was smoking, it was only because his nerves were so frayed. You shouldn't get angry with him for it!

    The if-clause here, rather than specifying a necessary condition for the truth of the main clause (the essential requirement, needless to say, of any conditional sentence), simply asserts the contents of the clause as a provisional assumption, one which, for the sake of argument at least, is implicitly accepted as factual for present purposes. (It is not, to extent whatever, being considered as a hypothetical basis for inference, unlike even the plain indicative zero conditional protasis of 'If water boils, it turns to steam').

    You will further note that it has a distinctive structure/phraseology

    [[If+S+past ind.VP], [it is (only) because S+past ind.VP]]

    that would enable us quite easily - even if context failed to permit this -to differentiate it from a true conditional.

    The sentence originally at issue here,

    Would you mind if I opened the door?

    on the other hand, as I believe I demonstrated beyond any reasonable doubt in my earlier post, most certainly does qualify, on both structural and semantic grounds, as a paradigmatic hypothetical conditional. It simply happens to be one that additionally serves a functional purpose.
    Last edited by philo2009; 05-Aug-2009 at 08:25.

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