Results 1 to 4 of 4
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Hong Kong
      • Current Location:
      • Hong Kong

    • Join Date: Dec 2007
    • Posts: 468
    #1

    Use of the modal "would"

    "However, the Chief Executive and his officials have been saying that property prices are still 25% lower than they were in 1997 and that property price fluctuations would harm property owners' interests."

    "Government officials, especially those responsible for land policy, would do well to refer to those remarks."

    "No Hong Kongers would ever forget the bitter lesson. Therefore, we would again quote Norman X at this extraordinary juncture, when asset-price bubbles are inflating."

    Could any teachers advise me what the implications are on the use of "would" in the above sentences? What are the differences if "will" are used instead? Thank you.
    Last edited by Deepurple; 16-Dec-2009 at 14:39.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Oriya
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • India

    • Join Date: Mar 2008
    • Posts: 2,121
    #2

    Exclamation Re: Use of the modal "would"

    Quote Originally Posted by Deepurple View Post
    "However, the Chief Executive and his officials have been saying that property prices are still 25% lower than they were in 1997 and that property price fluctuations would harm property owners' interests." (= there is every probability of the price fluctuation being harmful to … without any counter effective measure)

    "Government officials, especially those responsible for land policy, would do well to refer to those remarks." (A sincere wish or appeal by those affected, to those who can help)

    "No Hong Kongers would ever forget the bitter lesson(= the possibility of forgetting any time is remote). Therefore, we would again quote Norman X at this extraordinary juncture, when asset-price bobbles are inflating."(repeatedly draw attention to…)
    Thank you.
    The underlined ewpressions have been interpreted in red.The following few points need to be borne in mind in interpretation of modal “Would”.
    § “Would” is hypothetical and indicative of possibility/probability.
    § “Would” was historically the past tense form of 'will'. So the effect of using a past form is to distance oneself from realty or subject oneself to a remote possibility.
    § “Would” is used for polite expressions.
    § “Would” is usually used with 'if'.
    'Will' is generally used when you want to indicate that something is certain.
    Last edited by sarat_106; 16-Dec-2009 at 08:27.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Hong Kong
      • Current Location:
      • Hong Kong

    • Join Date: Dec 2007
    • Posts: 468
    #3

    Re: Use of the modal "would"

    Quote Originally Posted by sarat_106 View Post
    The underlined expressions have been interpreted in red.The following few points need to be borne in mind in interpretation of modal “Would”.
    § “Would” is hypothetical and indicative of possibility/probability.
    § “Would” was historically the past tense form of 'will'. So the effect of using a past form is to distance oneself from realty or subject oneself to a remote possibility.
    § “Would” is used for polite expressions.
    § “Would” is usually used with 'if'.
    'Will' is generally used when you want to indicate that something is certain.
    Dear sarat, Thank you so much for your detailed explanation.
    May I ask one more question: What does the final modal "would"(we would again quote Norman X...) try to convey, possibility or a past form of will to distance oneself from realty or subject oneself to a remote possibility? It seems to me that all these do not fit into the sentence. Thanks again.
    Last edited by Deepurple; 16-Dec-2009 at 14:40.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Oriya
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • India

    • Join Date: Mar 2008
    • Posts: 2,121
    #4

    Exclamation Re: Use of the modal "would"

    Quote Originally Posted by Deepurple View Post
    Dear sarat, Thank you so much for your detailed explanation.
    May I ask one more question: What does the final modal "would"(we would again quote Norman X...) try to convey, possibility or a past form of will to distance oneself from realty or subject oneself to a remote possibility? It seems to me that all these do not fit into the sentence. Thanks again.
    What ever have been explained are all modal functions, yet, there is also an auxiliary function to express wish, desire, or intent. When we say: We would draw your attention. It simply means; We wish to draw your attention, otherwise you could say: We draw your attention. We would come= We wish to come.
    So in the last sentence, “would” does the auxiliary function and with the verb quote which means: to repeat words from (Norman X) and adverb again(once more), It expresses a wish or desire to emphasize or repeatedly draw attention to the sayings of Norman X.

Similar Threads

  1. Modals
    By Unregistered in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 07-Oct-2009, 13:28
  2. Modal Verbs of Certainty
    By anupumh in forum Teaching English
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 22-Aug-2009, 03:09
  3. [Grammar] using "would" modal
    By donaldo in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 03-Aug-2009, 17:58
  4. [Grammar] Few very confusing things about modal verbs
    By srubys in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 25-Jul-2008, 14:18
  5. Epistemic modal manner & Deontic modal manner
    By Deepurple in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 12-Mar-2008, 15:51

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •