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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    will vs would

    The following sentence is from East of Eden where james Dean says when he borrowed the money from his mother:
    I don't think he will know where I got it.
    first shouldn't be would instead of will since think suggests some uncertainty.Also I am wondering if he can jump from the future tense "will know" to the past "got" in this way. How this sentence should look like to be without any flaw.

  2. #2
    engee30's Avatar
    engee30 is offline Key Member
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    Re: will vs would

    Quote Originally Posted by thomasRavenelli View Post
    The following sentence is from East of Eden where james Dean says when he borrowed the money from his mother:
    I don't think he will know where I got it.
    first shouldn't be would instead of will since think suggests some uncertainty.Also I am wondering if he can jump from the future tense "will know" to the past "got" in this way. How this sentence should look like to be without any flaw.
    I don't think [(that in the future) he will know] [where I got it (in the past)].

    I didn't think [(that in the future in the past) he would know] [where I had got it (in the past)].

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Re: will vs would

    Quote Originally Posted by thomasRavenelli View Post
    The following sentence is from East of Eden where james Dean says when he borrowed the money from his mother:
    I don't think he will know where I got it.
    first shouldn't be would instead of will since think suggests some uncertainty.Also I am wondering if he can jump from the future tense "will know" to the past "got" in this way. How this sentence should look like to be without any flaw.
    Your sentence from East of Eden is perfectly correct. You could substitute "would" for "will" without much change in meaning.

    Yes, of course you can jump from the future "will know" to the past "got" in this way. Language has to reflect the reality of the situation. Try translating it into your own language. Doesn't it work the same way?

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