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Thread: Using "know"

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    #1

    Using "know"

    What is present form of "I wish you knew!"?

    "I wish you would know!"?

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    #2

    Re: Using "know"

    'I wish you knew' is the present form.

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    #3

    Re: Using "know"

    I wish you knew does refer to present/general time.

    I wish you would know is not a possible utterance.

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    #4

    Re: Using "know"

    Thanks so far!
    So if Joe and Anna stands in front of the ATM, Joe not remembering his PIN code, Anna could say "I wish you knew your PIN code"?
    Would it be correct to say: "I wish you would remember"?
    And in refering to the past would it be correct to say: "I wish he had known his PIN code and then we could have gotten some money out"?

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    #5

    Re: Using "know"

    I wish you could remember your PIN. (Here, the speaker is expressing a desire for something to be true. It's clear that he can't remember his PIN.)
    I wish you would hurry up and remember your PIN. (Here, the speaker is expressing a desire for the other person to do something. The speaker obviously thinks the other person will remember it.)
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #6

    Re: Using "know"

    Quote Originally Posted by darri View Post
    What is present form of "I wish you knew!"?
    "Knew" is a past tense form here, but the meaning has to do with modality (non-factuality) rather than past time. The preterite (past tense) in your example suggests that x doesn't know, not that x didn't know.

    When a verb is used this way, it is sometimes called a "modal preterite".

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    #7

    Re: Using "know"

    The OP may google 'past subjunctive' if he is interested.
    I am not a teacher.

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    #8

    Re: Using "know"

    Given that only one verb in the language has a distinct past subjunctive form (and that many native speakers of BrE do not use it), I don't think learning about the subjunctive is of any real benefit to learners.

    I prefer to say that 'distancing in reality'is simply one of the three main functions of the past tense. Huddleston and Pullum prefer Paul's term modal preterite for what they call 'modal remoteness'.

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    #9

    Re: Using "know"

    Quote Originally Posted by Piscean View Post
    I don't think learning about the subjunctive is of any real benefit to learners.
    It is of use to this learner.

    Quote Originally Posted by Piscean View Post
    many native speakers of BrE do not use it
    AmE speakers do use it according to the following:
    Quote Originally Posted by GoesStation View Post
    We use the subjunctive more in AmE than the Brits do.
    I am not a teacher.

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