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    #1

    Is it compulsory to use subjunctive mode in the conditional sentences?

    Hello,

    As the title shows I'm going to know if it is compulsory to use subjunctive mode in the conditional sentences.

    1. She spoke in a very low voice as though everyone was asleep.

    2. She spoke in a very low voice as though everyone were asleep.

    Regards.

  1. Piscean's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Is it compulsory to use subjunctive mode in the conditional sentences?

    It is not obligatory, though some teachers and examining boards insist on it.

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    #3

    Re: Is it compulsory to use subjunctive mode in the conditional sentences?

    A very large number of native speakers don't use it. Some exam boards, like Cambridge ESOL, no longer insist on it. However, in formal contexts, playing safe and formal is always a good idea. You have nothing to lose from using it.

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    #4

    Re: Is it compulsory to use subjunctive mode in the conditional sentences?

    I've been told that the subjunctive is used much more in the U.S. than in other English-speaking countries.
    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.

  3. Piscean's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Is it compulsory to use subjunctive mode in the conditional sentences?

    It is certainly used less in the UK than in the USA.

    I use it, but I am well past my best-by date.

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    #6

    Re: Is it compulsory to use subjunctive mode in the conditional sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by Flogger View Post
    Hello,

    As the title shows I'm going to know if it is compulsory to use subjunctive mode in the conditional sentences.

    1. She spoke in a very low voice as though everyone was asleep.

    2. She spoke in a very low voice as though everyone were asleep.

    Regards.
    Sentence 1 sounds ungrammatical to my AmE ears. Large numbers of Americans might say it that way, though.
    I am not a teacher.

  4. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: Is it compulsory to use subjunctive mode in the conditional sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by Piscean View Post
    I am well past my best-by date.
    Horse feathers!
    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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    #8

    Re: Is it compulsory to use subjunctive mode in the conditional sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by Flogger View Post
    Hello,

    As the title shows I'm going to know if it is compulsory to use subjunctive mode in the conditional sentences.

    1. She spoke in a very low voice as though everyone was asleep.

    2. She spoke in a very low voice as though everyone were asleep.

    Regards.
    Why are you calling your examples 'conditional' sentences? I'd call them 'comparative' constructions.

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    #9

    Re: Is it compulsory to use subjunctive mode in the conditional sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by PaulMatthews View Post
    Why are you calling your examples 'conditional' sentences? I'd call them 'comparative' constructions.
    They were in the section of conditional structure in my Grammar book.

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    #10

    Re: Is it compulsory to use subjunctive mode in the conditional sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    I've been told that the subjunctive is used much more in the U.S. than in other English-speaking countries.
    That would be true with the present subjunctive in BrE, which mostly survives in fossilised phrases. The past subjunctive is still used by many.

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