Unit 38. If I knew … I wish I knew …
(использование оборотов If I knew… и I wish I knew…)
Study this example situation:
When you imagine a situation like this, you use if + past (if I knew / if you were / if we didn't etc.). But the meaning is present, not past:
- Tom would read more if he had more time. (but he doesn't have much time)
- If I didn't want to go to the party, I wouldn't go. (but I want to go)
- We wouldn't have any money if we didn't work. (but we work)
- If you were in my position, what would you do?
- It's a pity you can't drive. It would be useful if you could.
We use the past in the same way after wish (I wish I knew /I wish you were etc.). We use wish to say that we regret something, that something is not as we would like it to be:
After if and wish, you can use were instead of was (if I were /I wish it were etc.). So you can say:
- If I were you, I wouldn't buy that coat. or If I was you…
- I'd go out if it weren't raining. or … if it wasn't raining.
- I wish it were possible. or I wish it was possible.
We do not normally use would in the if-part of the sentence or after wish:
- If I were rich, I would have a yacht. (not ‘If I would be rich’)
- I wish I had something to read. (not ‘I wish I would have’)
Sometimes wish … would is possible (‘I wish you would listen’). See Unit 40 Would I wish … would
(использование данных оборотов).
Note that could sometimes means ‘would be able to’ and sometimes ‘was/were able to’:
- You could get a job more easily (you could get = you would be able to get)
- if you could speak a foreign language. (you could speak = you were able to speak)
See Unit 37 If I do … and If I did …
(использование оборотов If I do … и If I did …)
See Unit 39 If I had known … I wish I had known …
(использование оборотов If I had known … и I wish I had known …)
See Unit 40 Would I wish … would
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