English Grammar


First and second conditional

Can someone please explain to me the difference between the following:


'If I see my ex boyfriend again, I'll hit him'


'If I saw my ex boyfriend again, I'd hit him'


What are the rules for these contructions, and is it sometimes ambiguous? Thanks!

1 comments

  • Hi Simone!
    It seems that the nine people coming over to your thread before me couldn't answer you either for personal reasons or were not experts on grammar. Neither do I. As you've been left stranded for two days, I'm so bold as to give you my opinion.


    If I see my ex-boyfriend again, I'll hit him.
    Isn't that called a First conditional type 2?
    The conditional clause states a condition that is possible in the future.
    (conditional clause: present) (main clause in the future)


    If I press that widget of the dispenser, I get a candy bar.
    I wonder if that is not called a First conditional type 1 or Zero conditional.
    The condition clause states a fact that always or generally involves the truth of the main clause.
    (both clauses in the present tense)


    If I saw my boyfriend again, I would hit him.
    Second conditional.
    It handles with things that not possible, or if possible, unlikely to happen, or things that are untrue.
    (cond. cl. preterit) (main cl. conditional)


    If I were enough concerned by that issue, I'd search for the rules on the internet.
    (I'm not in fact. Not enough concerned right now. It is not true right now that I am concerned even if it could be one day.)
    I guess a quite more extended explanation would be useful.


    http://web2.uvcs.uvic.ca/elc/studyzone/330/grammar/1cond.htm
    www.englishgrammarsecrets.com
    and so on ... according to what your goggles make you see on the Google...
    Between you and me, Simone, there are great experts hanging about through this forum. May my answer trigger their statement.
    [CW]

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