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  1. Newbie
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    #1

    Question is this a true 3rd conditional?

    In this case, is the following third conditional correct: I would have gone to New York if I could have afforded it.

    My question is: Can, "could have afforded " be substituted for the past perfect.

    Thanks

  2. Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    #2

    Re: is this a true 3rd conditional?

    The sentence works fpr me.

  3. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: is this a true 3rd conditional?

    Where's the version in the past perfect that you referred to?
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  4. Piscean's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: is this a true 3rd conditional?

    I would have gone to New York if I could have afforded it.
    I would have gone to New York if I had been able to afford it.

    These two mean effectively the same.
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 09-Mar-2019 at 08:33. Reason: Fixed typo

  5. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: is this a true 3rd conditional?

    Quote Originally Posted by Piscean View Post
    I would have gone to New York if I could have afforded it.
    I would have gone to New York if I had been able to afford it.

    These two mean effectively the same.
    They both make sense, but the first one seems a little awkward, the second more natural.

    I like: I would have gone to New York if I'd had the money.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

  6. Newbie
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    #6

    Re: is this a true 3rd conditional?

    Re: I wanted to know if the following sentence could be regarded as a true 3rd conditional as it doesn't contain the past perfect.

    e.g. I would have gone to New York if I could have afforded it.

    As there is no past perfect in this sentence, can it be said to be a 3rd conditional?

    This sentence was deemed correct in a Cambridge FCE exam,

  7. jutfrank's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: is this a true 3rd conditional?

    Quote Originally Posted by marcap16* View Post
    As there is no past perfect in this sentence, can it be said to be a 3rd conditional?
    Then this is obviously a question of definition. How are you defining '3rd conditional'? If purely by its containing a past perfect form, then obviously not.

    Try not to get too hung up on grouping conditional sentences by form. I'm not saying you shouldn't do this, but that it's usually more appropriate to focus first on meaning and use.

  8. Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    #8

    Re: is this a true 3rd conditional?

    Quote Originally Posted by marcap16* View Post
    As there is no past perfect in this sentence, can it be said to be a 3rd conditional?

    This sentence was deemed correct in a Cambridge FCE exam,
    Did the question state that the answer had to be a true 3rd conditional or was it looking for answers that worked?

  9. Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    #9

    Re: is this a true 3rd conditional?

    PS I ask because Cambridge accept various forms in use that purists might not like- they are OK with if I was you, for example.

  10. jutfrank's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: is this a true 3rd conditional?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    Did the question state that the answer had to be a true 3rd conditional or was it looking for answers that worked?
    No. The Cambridge First doesn't do that. In fact, it makes no mention of any terminology.

    I imagine the sentence in question is from the Use of English transformations part.

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