Does "what if" clause use subjunctive ?

ticcota

Senior Member
Japanese
Q: Where did you get your hair cut?

A: What if I were to tell you that I cut my own hair?
or:What if I tell you that I cut my own hair?

Is it correct to use subjunctive or are they both correct? A million thanks.
 
  • spodulike

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Q: Where did you get your hair cut?

    A: What if I were to tell you that I cut my own hair? (cut is probably present tense) :tick:
    or:What if I tell you that I cut my own hair? (cut is probaly past perfect) :tick:

    Is it correct to use subjunctive or are they both correct? A million thanks.
    This is a difficult question because "cut" is the same in present and past tense. There are two possible meanings.


    What if I were to tell you that I always cut my own hair?
    What if I were to tell you that I cut my own hair yesterday?


    What if I told you that I cut my own hair yesterday?
    What if I tell you that I cut my own hair yesterday?

    In answer to your main question: Yes they both take the subjunctive.
     
    Last edited:

    ticcota

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    This is an interesting question because "cut" is the same in present and past tense. There are two possible meanings.


    What if I were to tell you that I cut my own hair?

    What if I told you that I cut my own hair?
    :D Hi, spodulike, I guess you didn't read the question through? Sorry, but thank you anyway.

    Now that you changed the post again, I have to do that too. :D I got your update answer, thanks.
     
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