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  1. Key Member
    Student or Learner
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      • Chinese
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      • Taiwan
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    • Join Date: Mar 2017
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    #11

    Re: If I said something to offend your sister, I apologize.

    a. If I said something to offend your sister, I will apologize.
    b. If I said something to offend your sister, I apologize.
    ---------

    1. (a) has "will", whereas (b) doesn't. What does that mean?
    2. Do both sentences have the same effect?
    Last edited by kadioguy; 22-Oct-2019 at 08:15. Reason: fixed a typo
    I am not a teacher. If there is anything ungrammatical in my post, please correct it. I am grateful for your help.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
    Moderator
    English Teacher
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    #12

    Re: If I said something to offend your sister, I apologize.

    The difference, for me, is this: in sentence 2 you're simply apologising to the listener (the offended person's brother/sister); in sentence 1, you are saying you will apologise later and the assumption is that you are going to apologise directly to the listener's sister.
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 23-Oct-2019 at 19:33. Reason: Fixed typo
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  3. jutfrank's Avatar
    VIP Member
    English Teacher
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    #13

    Re: If I said something to offend your sister, I apologize.

    There is a very important and significant difference of effect between a and b.

    Linguists would say that b. is a speech act, whereas a. is just a statement of intent. Another way to say this is that with sentence b. you are doing something whereas with sentence a. you are merely saying something.

    Sentence a. merely informs the hearer that an apology will come whereas sentence b. is the apology. That's a big difference, in terms of effect.

  4. Tarheel's Avatar
    VIP Member
    Interested in Language
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    #14

    Re: If I said something to offend your sister, I apologize.

    If I said something to offend your sister. I will apologize.

    I don't think I said anything to offend your sister. However, if I did an apology is forthcoming.
    Not a professional teacher

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