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Thread: type 2 or 3

    • Join Date: Nov 2006
    • Posts: 319

    type 2 or 3

    I would like to ask native speakers of English the following thing.

    Imagine a situation in which they visit the home of an American for dinner and their hosts offer them a very special dish prepared in their honor, saying, “You must try some of this.” The foreign speakers who know their English grammar but not their speech situations might consider this statement rude, because they think you must is a direct order for them to do something. The American hosts would know, of course, that if they had said, “You should try some of this,” they would be speaking with less rather than more politeness,

    I understand would is type 2 subjunctive mood,and had said type 3, but why is type 2 would be speaking used? Would you please teach me the reason, I thought it should be would have been speaking. Is it also correct?

    Thank you very much.
    Last edited by Progress; 01-Feb-2008 at 15:31. Reason: typo

    • Join Date: Jul 2007
    • Posts: 554

    Re: type 2 or 3

    Because the situation is hypothetical but not in the past.

    • Join Date: Nov 2006
    • Posts: 319

    Re: type 2 or 3

    Thanks Horsa.

    I konw the combination of type 3 and 2 as If I had studied hard in high school, I might be a lawyer now. But the speakers above first used "type 3 if they had said" of a past thing. So naturally, in the main clause type 3 should be used, I think.

  1. Editor,
    English Teacher
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    • Join Date: Nov 2002
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    Re: type 2 or 3

    You could use a type 3 there, but the second works because it is a statement of fact and relevant to all such occasions and not just that one.

    • Join Date: Nov 2006
    • Posts: 319

    Re: type 2 or 3

    Thank you very much, Tdol. I understand that

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