Teachers tell students that there are four kinds of conditional sentence: zero, first, second and third. (Click the links to see the posts.) These cover most conditionals but of course there are some that don't fit the pattern! This post will show you how to make mixed conditionals and what they mean.
Remember that a second conditional is about the present or the future and is made like this:
If + past simple ... would + infinitive
If I had time, I would help you.
A third conditional is about the past and is made like this:
If + past perfect ... would + have + verb 3
If I had had time time, I would have helped you.
A mixed conditional is half second and half third conditional.
If I had gone to bed earlier, I wouldn't be so tired this morning.
You would be rich if you had taken that job.
The if-clause is like the third conditional (past perfect) and the other half is like the second conditional (would + infinitive).
It describes a past condition and a probable present result.
It could also be the other way round.
If I didn't love him, I wouldn't have married him .
I would have gone to Australia if I wasn't so afraid of flying.
This time, the if-clause is like the second conditional (past simple) and the other half is like the third conditional (would + have + verb 3).
It describes a past result of a continuing present condition.
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