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  1. #1

    If it so wishes

    Hi,

    Concerning the following paragraph, I have two questions:


    1. Why was "can" not used in the second sentence?
    2. Why was "if it wishes so" or "if it wishes that" not used?


    "China has been working on its space programme since the 1970s but in 2003 it sent an astronaut into space, becoming only the third country to launch a person into orbit. Since then, the country's ambitions and capability have grown to the point where the US space agency now thinks China could put people on the Moon within the next decade, if it so wishes."

    Looking forward to hearing from you

    Thanks.

  2. IvanV's Avatar

    • Join Date: Oct 2007
    • Posts: 576
    #2

    Re: If it so wishes

    1. Could is here used as an alternative to can suggesting less force or certainty.
    2. Author's choice, but it's a wee bit odd.

    I.


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 19,434
    #3

    Re: If it so wishes

    "If it/he so wishes" is a collocation meaning If it/he wishes this to happen in the way indicated/described.

  3. #4

    Re: If it so wishes

    Thank you very much, IvanV and Anglika

    More ideas are welcome

  4. Raymott's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
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      • Australia

    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 24,091
    #5

    Re: If it so wishes

    Quote Originally Posted by LeUyenHoc View Post
    China could put people on the Moon within the next decade, if it so wishes."
    This is uncommon usage. Normally we'd say:
    China can do something if it so wishes. or
    China could do something if it so wished.
    He can do that if he wants to. or
    He could do that if he wanted to.

    Or so it appears to me.

  5. #6

    Re: If it so wishes

    Hi Raymott,

    Thanks for your valuable suggestions

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