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Thread: leave or leaves

  1. Newbie
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    #1

    Question leave or leaves

    Hi there,
    I was wondering if someone could please explain to me why we use this phrase "necessitated that he leave the island" instead of "necessitated that he leaves the island"
    Many thanks,
    Jon

  2. Raymott's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: leave or leaves

    It would be better if you could post a whole sentence in future.
    "His behaviour necessitated that he leave the island." This has already occurred, but you couldn't use "left the island", and you can't use "leaves the island" because he's already left.
    "Leave" is the subjunctive. "I demand that he leave the island."

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/English_subjunctive

  3. Piscean's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: leave or leaves

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    I but you couldn't use "left the island",
    Most speakers of BrE could. The use of the subjunctive in such sentences is pretty uncommon these days in BrE.

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    #4

    Re: leave or leaves

    "His behaviour necessitated that he left the island"?
    OK, if you say so. It sounds weird to me.

  5. Piscean's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: leave or leaves

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    t sounds weird to me.
    I would use only the subjunctive, but I am in a minority of speakers of BrE. Whether we like it or not, the present subjunctive is dead for most speakers of BrE today, except in what we might call 'fossilized expressions' such as God/Heaven forbid. Rule Britannia, so be it, suffice it to say.

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