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  1. Junior Member
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    #1

    The subjunctive mood

    Hello.
    I have been taught that the clause following the expression "It is essential (that)" has to be in the subjunctive mood.
    Ex:
    1- It is essential that our pilots be given the best possible training.(Longman dict)

    However, I have seen these two sentences
    2- It is essential that Professor Van Helsing is met at the airport.(my exercisebook)
    3- It is essential that all equipment is properly maintained.(Macmillan dict)

    So is it essential to use the subjunctive mood in the clause coming after "It is essential (that)"? Could you please explain?

  2. Piscean's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: The subjunctive mood

    The use of the present subjunctive in such sentences is correct, but is not common in BrE.

  3. VIP Member
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    #3

    Re: The subjunctive mood

    In general, Americans use the subjunctive mood much more than Brits. Nevertheless I think many Americans would use the indicative in sentence 2 and most would use it in sentence 3.
    I am not a teacher.

  4. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: The subjunctive mood

    I'd use "be" in both of those instinctively, but probably would not notice if others used the indicative.
    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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