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    • Join Date: Nov 2009
    • Posts: 9
    #1

    If... should

    Here's another question. I'm learning english and I'm so curious!
    In this sentence:
    If he should ask you don't tell him. or If that should happen it would be better to leave.
    What's the use of 'should'? If he asks you don't tell him. is the same?

  1. Barb_D's Avatar
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      • Native Language:
      • American English
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      • United States
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    • Join Date: Mar 2007
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    #2

    Re: If... should

    Hi,
    I split off your post because it was not related to your first question. It's a good idea to start a new thread when you have a new question.

    The "If you should X" makes the idea seem less likely that simply saying "If you X."
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.


    • Join Date: Nov 2009
    • Posts: 9
    #3

    Re: If... should

    Oh... I'm sorry. I didn't know about it. I've understood it. Thanks!


    • Join Date: Nov 2009
    • Posts: 143
    #4

    Re: If... should

    There is another construction with the same meaning in which should can be placed first and if omitted: Should he ask, don't tell him; Should that happen, we'd better leave.

  2. Barb_D's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Mar 2007
    • Posts: 19,215
    #5

    Re: If... should

    Same as "if" - but note the verb tense: that's in the subjunctive. So "If he falls" but "Should he fall."
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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