Learn about the subjunctive mood and how it is used for hypothetical situations and the clues that a sentence is written in the subjunctive.

 

The Subjunctive Form

 

sentences written in the subjunctive mood are about things that are not actually happening

 and are not likely to happen

 

dog-bite

If the dog were better behaved, he could easily win the best behaved prize in a dog competition.

 

☑️ this is not actually happening and it is not likely to happen

 

learn-club-page-break

 

the subjective mood is used for hypothetical situations

the word hypothetical means imagined or not real

 

sea-life-centre

 

If Hallie were to swim inside the aquarium, she would swim with the turtle.

 

☑️ this is not actually happening and it is not likely to happen

 

learn-club-page-break

 

the subjunctive mood always uses the verb were

 

spaceship

 

If I were to become an astronaut, I would fly around the entire universe.

 ☑️ the subjunctive mood often uses if + were

 

learn-club-page-break

 

the subjunctive mood always uses were

were is often used with if + would, could or might

 

snowman

 

If it were to snow tomorrow, I could make a huge snowman.

 

learn-club-page-break

 

the subjunctive mood often uses if + were

+ would, could or might

 

office

If Ewan were the headteacher of his school, he would ban all homework.

 

☑️ if + were always describe something hypothetical

 

learn-club-question

subjunctive mood REVISION question

 learn-club-question

 

 

In the SATs you need to spot the subjunctive mood when you see it

 

broken-bike

 

If there were a magic spell to fix his bike, Max would use it.

 

the words if + were + would are clues that

this sentence is written in the subjunctive mood

 

learn-club-page-break

 

clues that a sentence is written in the subjective mood include

 

the use of were plus the words if + would

 

goalkeeper

 

If Lewis were to play for Liverpool he would be on television.

 

clue | clue | clue

 

learn-club-question

subjunctive mood REVISION question

 learn-club-question

 

 

clues that a sentence is written in the subjective mood include

the use of were plus the words if + could

 

boys-bedroom

 

If Max were inside the game he could rule space world.

 

clue | clue | clue

 

learn-club-page-break

 

clues that a sentence is written in the subjective mood include

the use of were plus the words if + might

 

cinema

 

If they were to fall asleep during the film they might miss the end.

 

clue | clue | clue

 

learn-club-page-break

 

 

most verbs tell us about real events

campsite

this is actually happening

The campers were asleep in their tent.

☑️ real - uses were but not if

the subjunctive tells us about hypothetical events

campsite

this is not actually happening

If the river were to overflow tonight it would flood the tent.

☑️ not real - uses were + if

 

learn-club-question

subjunctive mood REVISION question

 learn-club-question

 

 

if without were is used for factual situations

 

digging

 

If the pirate finds the treasure, he will go home rich.

 

this is not the subjunctive because it might happen - there is a chance that the pirate will find the treasure and then he will go home rich

 

☑️ if and were = the subjunctive

☑️ if without were = not the subjunctive

 

learn-club-page-break

 

the subjunctive mood is also used for

unreal wishes

 

superhero

 

Lewis wishes that he were Superman.

 

the subjunctive uses wish + were for wishes that do not have any chance of coming true

 

 

 

learn-club-page-break

 

 

wishes in the subjunctive uses wish + were it might also use if

 

 

If Patch were to have one wish, it would be for his parrot to talk.

 

pirate

if + were + wish + would = subjunctive

 

Patch wishes that his parrot were able to talk.

 

pirate

wishes + were = subjunctive

 

 

learn-club-question

subjunctive mood REVISION question

 learn-club-question

 

 

 

was is used for real situations so was is never used in the subjunctive

 

 

He was on a world tour.

 

penguin-band

this is talking about something real so it uses was

was is always used for real situations

 

If he was a better singer he could be famous.

 

penguin-band

this is talking about something something hypothetical

were should been used instead of was

 

 

learn-club-page-break

 

 

the subjunctive mood describes something hypothetical

 

student

 

In the middle of the SATs test, Alfie wishes that the test were over.

☑️ the SATs test is not over

 

If the SATs test were not today, Alfie could revise more.

☑️ the SATs test is today

 

If Alfie were the teacher, he would cancel the SATs test.

☑️ Alfie is not the teacher

 

 

learn-club-page-break

 

Now take the The Subjunctive Mood Quiz to find out what you have learned...

 

learn-club-page-break

 

learn-club-english-grammar-download-menu

 

- DOWNLOAD SAMPLE WORD RESOURCES -

 

Download The Subjunctive Form Word Lesson Pack

Download The Subjunctive Form Word Question Pack

Download The Subjunctive Form Answer Pack

- DOWNLOAD SAMPLE PDF RESOURCES -

 

Download The Subjunctive Form PDF Lesson Pack

Download The Subjunctive Form PDF Question Pack

Download The Subjunctive Form PDF Answer Pack

learn-or-quiz-online-menu

- ONLINE SAMPLE LESSON -

The Subjunctive Form Online Lesson 

- ONLINE SAMPLE QUIZ -

The Subjunctive Form Online Quiz

 

back to top    grammar menu    home

 

learn-club-information