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Learn English > English lessons and exercises > English test #5471: Conditional (first and second)
 > Other English exercises on the same topic: Conditional and hypothesis [Change theme] > Similar tests: - Conditional - Conditional clauses - Hypothetical sentences: tenses - Third conditional - Conditional Sentences - Will and Would: a little further - Future and Conditional - How to make wishes... > Double-click on words you don't understand

# Conditional (first and second)

First and Second Conditionals.

Conditional clauses begin with if (or a word such as when which means the same as if) and follow basic patterns. This Section deals with patterns which form the First, Second and Zero Conditionals:

First Conditionals

We use First Conditionals to talk about events which are possible. The Conditional clause can refer to the present or the future.

Conditional clause      main clause

If+ Present Simple      - will + bare infinitive

If it rains, we will stay at home.

• The Conditional clause can come before or
after the main clause. We use a comma at the
end of the Conditional clause when it comes
first:

If you don't try harder, you will fail.
You
will fail if you don't try harder.

• Other structures are possible, depending on what you want to say:

Conditional clause                      main clause

If+ Present Simple                      - modal verb

If you behave yourself,              you can come.

If+ Present Simple                      - be going to (future)

If you don't work,                      you're going to fail.

If+ Present Simple                      - imperative

If you need anything,                  ask.

If+ Present Continuous                        - will + bare infinitive

If we're leaving soon,                  I'll get my coat.

If+ Present Perfect                      - will + bare infinitive.

If I've finished,                          I'll be able to come.

If+ Present Perfect                      - modal verb

If you've finished,                      you can go out.

Imperative                                 - and /or + will

Eat less                                     and you’ll get slim.

Second Conditional

We use the Second Conditional for unlikely 'situations in the present or future:

Conditional clause                      main clause

If+ Past Simple                            -would

If I had enough money,               I’d retire.

• Instead of would we can use other modal verbs:

If I lost my job, I might go abroad for a while.

• Compare First and Second Conditionals:

If I lose my job, I’ll find life very difficult.

(= there is a possibility - First Conditional)

If I lost my job, I'd find life very difficult.

(= there is no evidence - Second Conditional)

Zero Conditional

We use the Zero Conditional to show that one action, result, etc. always follows another. We often use when for if:

Conditional clause                      main clause

Present Simple                            -   Present Simple

If/ when water freezes,             it turns to ice.

When I travel by boat,                I'm always sick.

(Just) in case

This means 'because it is possible that...' and usually comes after the main clause:

·        Paul will bring you a sweater in case it gets cold.

Provided (that); as long as

These phrases suggest that there is one vital condition

·        Provided you rest, you'll make a full recovery.

Unless

We can use unless to replace if... not in Conditionals After unless, we use a Present tense to talk about the future:

·        Unless you leave now, you will be late.

·        You will be late unless you go now.

Write two sentences using the information. The first should express a likely event and the second a less likely but still possible event.

Example: we leave at eight/we arrive on time

a) likely: If we leave at eight o'clock, we'll arrive on time.

b) less likely: If we left at eight o'clock, we'd arrive on time.

Attention, use the contractions !!

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- 1a) I am not busy / come and pick you up.=» Likely= .
- 1b) =»Less likely =.
- 2a) You fall / break your leg. =» Likely =.
- 2b) =»Less likely = .
- 3a) I drink too much wine /I feel sleepy. =»Likely= .
- 3b) =»Less likely= .
- 4a)You get the job /you have more freedom.=» Likely = .
- 4b) =»Less likely =.
- 5a) The questions be easy enough / everyone pass the test. =» Likely =
.
- 5b) =»Less likely=
.

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