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(PCA4 UNIT - 11B) INVERSION IN

CONDITIONALS.
In formal speaking and writing, the inversion can be made in conditional
statements.

Auxiliary words like should, were and had are used to create the
inversion in conditionals.
Example:

If we had known there were tickets left, we'd have bought some.

The statement above would be this way with the inversion.

• Had we known there were tickets left, we'd have bought some.
*Notice how the word "if" is taken out of the statement when the inversion takes place.

should (first and zero conditionals)


The inversion form with the modal "should" can be created while using the zero or first conditional.

Examples:

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me. (zero conditional)

= Should you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me.

If you need a place to stay, you'll always be welcome here. (first conditional)

= Should you ever need a place to stay, you'll always be welcome here.

If she doesn't study for that exam, she will have to repeat the level. (first conditional)

= Should she not study for that exam, she will have to repeat the level.

second conditional and mixed conditional (second&third)


Example:

If we were in a stronger financial position, we'd offer to lend you the money.

= Were we in a stronger financial position, we'd offer to lend you the money.

*Notice that this form of inversion can only be used when the verb "to be" is used in the condition.

We can use were + subject + to to talk about future possibilities, but not
about unreal situations.
There's a future possiblity they approve the permission.

= Were my parents to approve, I'd be able to go.

If we were to have kids, we would need a bigger house.

= Were we to have kids, we would need a bigger house.


Examples:

• Were I to lose my job next year, I would probably not find a new one quickly.

• Were he to fail his driving test tomorrow, he would have to take it again.

• Were Sarah to show up late to the birthday party, it would ruin the surprise.

We can use the structure were it not for (the fact that) to say that
without something, things would be different.
Examples:

• Were it not for her help, I wouldn't be a doctor. = She always helps me and that is the reason
why I am a doctor.

• Were it not for the fact that my friends live here, I would move to a different town. = My
friends live here and for that reason, I wouldn't live anywhere else.

*This form still applies to second, and mixed conditional second&third.

*We use this structure in more formal speech.

third and mixed conditional (third&second)


Examples:

Had I read the reviews, I wouldn't have bought the book.

= If I'd read the reviews, I wouldn't have bought the book.

Had I not had the operation, I'd still be in a lot of pain.

= If I hadn't had the operation, I'd still be in a lot of pain.

*This form can apply to third, and mixed conditional third&second.

*We use this structure in more formal speech.


We can use the structure had it not been for (the fact that) to say that
without something, things would have been different.
If she hand't been so persistent, she wouldn't have found such a good job.

= Had it not been for her persistence, she wouldn't have found such a good job.

Note that negative auxiliares are not contracted in inversion sentences:

• Had it not been for her persistence, she wouldn't have found such a good job.

• Had it not been for that fact that they left early, the party would have been the greatest.

Let's not forget...


1. We use inversion in more formal speech or writing.

2. The were it not for/were it not for the fact that and had it not been for/had it not been for the fact
that structure are quite more common in second and third conditional inversions and mixed conditionals:
second&third; third&second.

3. We use the were to form only to talk about future possibilities not unreal present situations.