I love her as I would (love) my own daughter.

zhshy

Senior Member
Mandarin
Hi all,

I saw this sentence in a grammar book:

I love her as I would my own daughter.

But I'm wondering whether it's also acceptable if I insert "love" after "would" (actually the original sentence sounds strange to me, given that "love" is a transitive verb), i.e.

I love her as I would love my own daughter.

And if the answer is yes, is there any difference between these two expressions?

Thanks in advance.
 
  • S1m0n

    Senior Member
    English
    I would leave out the 'would'. Alone, would stands in for the initial verb, but if you include both would and the verb, it makes the verb conditional, which is exactly the opposite of the unconditional love you are trying to express.
     

    zhshy

    Senior Member
    Mandarin
    Thanks for your replies, S1m0n and sdgraham.
    I would leave out the 'would'.
    Do you mean you would leave out the "love"?
    which is exactly the opposite of the unconditional love you are trying to express.
    I'm sorry but I fail to get your point. As I understand the original sentence, it expresses that the girl is not my daughter but I love her as if she was. So do you mean the addition of "love" would change this meaning?
     

    S1m0n

    Senior Member
    English
    I love her as I would my own daughter. :tick:
    I love her as I love my own daughter. :tick:
    I love her as I do my own daughter. :tick:
    I love her as I would love my own daughter. :cross:
    The third implies that the speaker's love for their daughter is conditional. It should not be.
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    I don't understand S1m0n's point, I'm afraid.
    I love her as I would my own daughter is an abbreviated version of
    I love her as I would love my own daughter.

    The difference between the two is, as sdg says, that the second is wordy: the repetition of "love" is unnecessary.
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    I think the conditional simply implies that the speaker doesn't have a daughter, so omitting "would" changes the meaning.

    I agree with Loob.
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    I'm not sure who you're asking, S1m0n.

    I read the original sentence like veli: I love her as I would my own daughter [if I had a daughter].
    But your if-clause would work too.
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Since the use of “would” automatically implies a condition (a daughter, if I had one), even the original version — I love her as I would my own daughter — is a little strange. It implies that you have a daughter but don’t love her, for some reason.

    These are the versions I would see as valid:


    I love her as I would [love] a daughter
    I love her like a daughter
    I love her as I love my own daughter
    I love her as I do my own daughter
     

    zhshy

    Senior Member
    Mandarin
    Thank you all very much.
    even the original version — I love her as I would my own daughter — is a little strange.
    Does the original version work against the following context?
    The man was separated from his daughter shortly after she was born and don't even know whether she is still alive now. He adopted another girl and has been treating her like his own daughter.
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    That’s just another possible scenario to justify the construction, but yes, it would make sense.

    I love her as I would my own daughter, if she were here.
     
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