Second Conditional

Second Conditional

31. 5. 2020

Definition of the second conditional

The second  conditional is used to describe an imaginary or highly improbable situation and its imaginary result in the present or future.

How to form the second conditional

Main clause
If + past simple
Would + Infinitive

Examples of the second conditional

If clause

Main clause
If + past simpleWould + Infinitive
If I had a million euros,
I would buy a big yacht.
If I had more time,
I would clean my flat.

More example and explanations of the second conditional

If I had her number, I would call her - An imaginary situation as I don’t have her number.
If I wasn’t doing my homework now, I would be watching TV - I am doing my homework, but I am imagining an alternative activity that I would be doing if I wasn’t doing my homework (watch TV).- This example is using the past continuous tense

As with all conditional sentences, the order of the clauses can be changed. However you may have to rearrange the pronouns and correct the punctuation..

Main clause

If clause
Would + InfinitiveIf + past simple
I would buy an Island
if I were rich.
I would travel the world

if I had time.

What is a conditional sentence.

Conditional sentences are sentences that discuss  known factors or hypothetical situations and their consequences.

A conditional sentence consists of two clauses: the condition or if-clause and the main or result clause.

Overview conditional sentences.

There are five main types of conditional sentences.

  • The Zero Conditional: (if + present simple, ... present simple)
  • The First Conditional: (if + present simple, ... will + infinitive)
  • The Second Conditional: (if + past simple, ... would + infinitive)
  • The Third Conditional. (if + past perfect, ... would + have + past participle)
  • Mixed Conditional. (if + Present conditional… Past perfect)