subjunctive mood

Mike12345

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1 If I should go abroad, I would bring you a gift.
2 If I were to marry you, I would be kind to you all my life.
3 If you were to fail in the test, I would feel sad.

Teachers, Are these three sentences correct? In my opinion, I think the first one is wrong, considering that emsr2d2 told me that the first "should" shouldn't be there at all in the sentence " If you should go to Italy to study next year, you should have started learning Italian three years ago." As for No.2; No.3, I think they are right.
 

GoesStation

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You could use number 1 if you emphasize should. This would follow a statement that expressed doubt about the plan. "Were to" would be more typical in American English.
 

PaulMatthews

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None of your examples contains a subjunctive clause.
 

Mike12345

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You could use number 1 if you emphasize should. This would follow a statement that expressed doubt about the plan. "Were to" would be more typical in American English.

Thanks for answering! But why can't “should" be used in the sentence "If you should go to Italy to study next year, you should have started learning Italian three years ago."?
 

probus

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Thanks for answering! But why can't “should" be used in the sentence "If you should go to Italy to study next year, you should have started learning Italian three years ago."?

That sentence is nonsense. "If you should go next year..." is a future condition. In other words, it means the same as "In the event that you go" or "In case you go" or simply "If you go".

Obviously, therefore, it can say nothing about the past. A future condition can only be a prelude to a statement about the future.
 

PaulMatthews

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Thanks for answering! But 'Were' in the second sentence is the subjunctive form.

Not true. The "were" in the second sentence is 'irrealis mood'.

A subjunctive clause is headed by a plain form verb, as in It is vital that I be kept informed.
 

tzfujimino

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It's very informative for me at least.
I agree that it's a bit technical, though.
:)
 

Tdol

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Paul, the overwhelming majority of English grammars published in the last 431 years would say that the verb form in Mike's second sentence and that in your sentence in post #9 were subjunctive mood forms.

Huddleston & Pullum (2002) and other grammarians in recent decades may not agree but, outside the world of academic linguistics. the word 'irrealis' is hardly known.

If Mike is studying linguistics at university level, then he will need to learn about 'irrealis'. If he is trying to learn how to communicate effectively in English at any level from complete beginner to the highest IELTS level, then he does not.

There are many terms and views that linguists prefer, and I would prefer to see many of them in place, but we have to accept the world we live in and deal with the realities of what is taught in many places, with good intentions, even when we disagree.
 
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