# Thread: he unlikely or it unlikely

1. ## he unlikely or it unlikely

1)"He's unlikely to come at 5 o'clock."

OR

2)"It's unlikely that he comes at 5 o'clock."

OR

3)"It's unlikely that he come at 5 o'clock."

OR

4)"It's unlikely that he would come at 5 o'clock."

2. ## Re: he unlikely or it unlikely

I have a problem related to this. Could it be "it's unlikely that he come"?

I know that we can use the subjunctive when the deontic modality is present, as in:

It's required that he come.

Is it the same with the epistemic modality, like this in the OP's sentence?

3. ## Re: he unlikely or it unlikely

Originally Posted by birdeen's call
I have a problem related to this. Could it be "it's unlikely that he come"?

I know that we can use the subjunctive when the deontic modality is present, as in:

It's required that he come.

Is it the same with the epistemic modality, like this in the OP's sentence?
Initially I srewed up in the third one. It should be "that he come". I've added number 4.

4. ## Re: he unlikely or it unlikely

Originally Posted by ostap77
Initially I srewed up in the third one. It should be "that he come". I've added number 4.
I'd appreciate further comments on this one.

5. ## Re: he unlikely or it unlikely

Originally Posted by ostap77
1)"He's unlikely to come at 5 o'clock."

OR

2)"It's unlikely that he comes at 5 o'clock."

OR

3)"It's unlikely that he come at 5 o'clock."

OR

4)"It's unlikely that he would come at 5 o'clock."
I like N°1 best and would add another possibility:

• "It's unlikely that he'll come at 5 o'clock."

6. ## Re: he unlikely or it unlikely

Originally Posted by birdeen's call
I have a problem related to this. Could it be "it's unlikely that he come"?

I know that we can use the subjunctive when the deontic modality is present, as in:

It's required that he come.

Is it the same with the epistemic modality, like this in the OP's sentence?
My personal feeling is that the subjunctive in a case like this is not correct - it's rare enough anyway, even in examples such as yours in BrE, except in the most formal speech and writing. I'll see if I can find a writer who says it is possible and let you know. (Though even if I can I would never use it myself, and I would never pass this info on to a student.)

7. ## Re: he unlikely or it unlikely

Originally Posted by fivejedjon
My personal feeling is that the subjunctive in a case like this is not correct - it's rare enough anyway, even in examples such as yours in BrE, except in the most formal speech and writing. I'll see if I can find a writer who says it is possible and let you know. (Though even if I can I would never use it myself, and I would never pass this info on to a student.)
I would, and do, use "It's important that he should come".

8. ## Re: he unlikely or it unlikely

Originally Posted by bhaisahab
I would, and do, use "It's important that he should come".
So do I, but I don't consider that to be a subjunctive form. Do you?

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