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  1. keannu's Avatar
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      • Native Language:
      • Korean
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      • South Korea
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      • South Korea

    • Join Date: Dec 2010
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    #1

    would no longer cut well

    39) When we talk about becoming tired, we naturally think of a living creature becoming slower. ( ① ) We are aware that if we are tired, changes occur in the body and our performance suffers. ( ② ) This state is also known as fatigue. ( ③ ) This was first discovered when steel was sharpened and used to cut paper and other materials in factories. ( ④ ) After a while the razor-sharp blade would no longer cut well. ( ⑤ ) At first it was thought that resharpening the blade would bring back its former qualities, but this did not work and the blade was then pronounced “tired” or fatigued.

    What does this "would" mean? Does it mean past or present tense?
    1. a willingness in the past
    2. presumption in the present
    3. habitual action in the past
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 23-Oct-2014 at 07:47. Reason: Moved the quote to above the question

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: would no longer cut well

    Keannu, I don't know if you noticed but recently I edited a lot of your posts so that the quoted piece of writing appears above the question, as I have done to post #1 above. It makes much more sense to have it that way round. Please post these questions in that format from now on. It means that we read the piece of writing first and then have a question that refers back to it, rather than being faced with the opening words "What does XXX mean?" when we haven't even had the opportunity to read those words yet. Thanks.

    PS - In this particular post, I have put the word you are querying in bold. I initially looked at your post on my phone and the underlining of "would" is barely visible, making it hard to spot the relevant word.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

    • Member Info
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    #3

    Re: would no longer cut well

    The closest meaning of 'would' there is 'habitual action in the past'.

    The blade gradually lost its sharpness and was no longer able to cut well.

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