Conditional sentence type?

طالب علم

Member
العربية
Hi
In Einsteine's "If the bee disappears from the surface of the earth, man would have no more than four years to live" and similar sentences, why do we have "would" instead of "will" , and which type of conditionals is this?

thanks
 
  • Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Hi طالب علم,

    If Einsteine really said or wrote this, he was muddling:

    If the bee disappears from the surface of the earth, man will have no more than four years to live - Type I

    with

    If the bee disappeared from the surface of the earth, man would have no more than four years to live - Type II

    It seems as though he became more optimistic as the sentence evolved.
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    That's quite a tough question. It's used in speech, because, as I suggested, people do become more optimistic sometimes as sentences evolve. It's not correct English, in my view, so I would never write it.
     
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