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    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Italian
      • Home Country:
      • Italy
      • Current Location:
      • Italy

    • Join Date: Nov 2014
    • Posts: 32
    #1

    If/Whether

    Hi all,
    which is the difference between "IF" and "WHETHER"? When should I use one rather than the other?
    Thanks!

    -Fabio

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Great Britain
      • Current Location:
      • Great Britain

    • Join Date: Mar 2016
    • Posts: 237
    #2

    Re: If/Whether

    If you're thinking of their use in subordinate interrogative clauses, the answer is that typically they are interchangeable, but there are a few constructions where "if" is not permitted, for example:

    With certain conditionals: We're having liver and bacon for supper tonight, [whether/ *if you like it or not].
    With infinitival clauses: I'm not sure [whether / *if to go to the party].
    If the clause is subject: [Whether / *if it will rain] is anyone's guess.
    Following "or not": Ed doesn't care [whether / *if or not I'm interested in the project].
    After a preposition: It really depends on [whether / *if we can get tickets for the match].

    Other factors may be relevant, for example style: "if" is arguably a tad more informal than "whether", and some verbs favour "whether", such as "advise", "discuss", "consider", "investigate", "study" etc.

    Is that what you wanted to know?

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