Although, even though, even if, though

matar0

Senior Member
Italian, Italy
Although, even though, even if, though.
Usually we use this conjunctions in sentences like:
don’t play chess now, although I did learn the rules when I was young
but can we use them also as synonyms of "if" in a conditional sentence?
Can we say for instance:
Although you bought her a present she wouldn’t forgive you.
Even though you bought her a present she wouldn’t forgive you.
Even if you bought her a present she wouldn’t forgive you.

Maybe only "even if" is suitable for this usage. Isn't it?

Thanks
 
  • river

    Senior Member
    U.S. English
    Although means the action is complete - you bought her a present.
    Even if means that you haven't bought the present yet.
     

    Tante

    Member
    USA, English
    You're right--only "Even if" is correct to indicate "if" the usage you're describing.

    "Although/Though/Even though you bought her a present, she still wouldn't forgive you" conveys that this happened: you bought her a present (past tense), but she did not forgive you.

    "Even if you bought her a present, she still wouldn't forgive you" states the conditional: Even if you were to buy her a present, she would not forgive you. (The event has not take place; it is speculative.)

    Hope this helps. :)
     

    bartonig

    Senior Member
    UK English
    I don’t play chess (now), although I did learn the rules when I was young

    As although I did learn the rules when I was young is a concessive clause it should realize a meaning similar to that in the main clause. As learning is a rather different experience to playing the clauses are realizing dissimilar meanings - hence the strike-through. I am not saying that your sentence is wrong, but rather that if the subject is the rules the sentence

    I don’t play chess, although I did when I was young

    is more likely, and if the subject is playing the sentence

    I don’t know the rules (of chess), although I did when I was young OR I can't play (chess), even though I learnt the rules when I was young

    is more likely (in which even introduces a sense of unexpectedness).


    Although you bought her a present she wouldn’t forgive you. Again concessive. Even though is better than although (unexpectedness).
    Even though you bought her a present she wouldn’t forgive you.
    Even if you bought her a present she wouldn’t forgive you. Conditional.
     
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