USING THE WORD “IF”
|(Past) = past tense, (Present) = present tense, (Future) = future tense.|
When something is true. (Present + Future)
1. If we take(Present) this road, we will go past (Future) the hospital.
The hospital is on this road.
2. If we continue(Present) working, we will finish(Future) the lesson today.
We will be able to finish the lesson today if we do not stop working.
When something depends on something else (Present + Future)
1. If you study(Present) the lessons, you will learn(Future) to speak English quickly.
If you study, you will learn to speak English quickly.
But if you don’t study, you will not learn to speak English.
2. If we walk(Present) quickly, we will arrive(Future) on time.
If we walk quickly, we will not be late.
If we walk slowly, we will be late.
An unlikely possibility (Past + Future)
1. If I had(Past) the time, I would go(Future) home.
But I don’t have the time, so I probably will not go home.
2. If we had(Past) enough money, we would build(Future) a new house.
But we don’t have enough money, so we will not build a house.
An event that did not happen (Past + Past)
1. If they had had(Past) the time, they would have gone(Past) home.
But they did not have the time, so they did not go home.
2. If I had fixed(Past) my car yesterday, I would have arrived(Past) on time.
But I did not fix my car yesterday, so I was late.
Something that is contrary to what is happening (Past + would, could, or might)
1. If we were driving(Past) the car, we could take the other road.
But we are not driving the car, so we cannot take the other road.
2. If we had worked(Past) more quickly, we would already be finished.
But we worked slowly, so we are not finished.
3. If I had read(Past) the book, I might have understood the lesson.
But I did not read the book, so I do not understand the lesson.