If I didn’t know you were/are telling the truth I’d think you were lying

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Fbohn21

Senior Member
Deutsch
Hello.

My friend tells me something and I know it is true but she sometimes lies, so could I say:

If I didnt know you were telling the truth I’d think you were lying.

Is that correct?

Or should it be if I didn’t know you are telling the truth.
 
  • lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Grammatically, it’s fine.

    But it’s a weird thing to say. If your point was simply to give an example of that construction, there are much more plausible scenarios you could have chosen. And it’s probably also worth pointing out that in this sort of situation we often just say “If I didn’t know better, I’d think…”.
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    If I didn't know [that] you were telling the truth [at the time that you said that] :thumbsup:
    If I didn’t [already] know [that] you are telling the truth. :thumbsup:
    (Compare with
    If I had not [already] known [that] you are telling the truth. :thumbsup: which conveys the same meaning.)
     

    DonnyB

    Sixties Mod
    English UK Southern Standard English
    I think that if it's going to work at all, you need the past tense and not the present for "... telling".

    But even then, I can't imagine anyone actually saying it. :(
     
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