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The term conditional refers to any sentence which contains an if clause and a main / result clause. There are four conditionals in English. The table below shows the four types of conditionals, conditional sentences, form and uses.


Conditional typeExamplesFormUse
Type zeroIf you heat ice, it melts.If + present simple, present simpleGeneral or scientific facts
Type 1If you don't go to bed now, you will be tired in the morning.If + present simple, will + bare infinitiveReal or likely situations in the present or future. It can be used to express a variety of functions,e.g. a threat, an offer, a warning,etc.
Type 2If I were you, I would eat less chocolate.If + past simple, would + bare infinitiveimpossible or unreal situations
Type 3If I had gone to the meeting, I would have met Tim.If + past perfect, would/ wouldn't + have + past participleEvents in the past that cannot be changed. Conditional type 3 is especially used to express "regret"
Mixed ConditionalIf I had taken my friend's advice, I wouldn't have this serious problem at work.Conditional type 3 structure, conditional type 2 stuctureA past condition with a present result

Exercises on conditionals

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