Davyne DeSye: Grammar Tips
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Which of the following is the correct phraseology?

-- "If Ted were here, I could ask him."
-- "If Ted was here, I could ask him."

Answer: Both, depending on the meaning of the speaker.

In the first statement, the subjunctive form of the verb is used, which indicates that the speaker wishes Ted could be there, but that this is not possible. (Ted is dead, or Ted is in Africa and won't be back for a month.)

In the second statement, the indicative form of the verb is used, which indicates that it is quite possible for Ted to be there. (Ted is late, or Ted is usually there.)

 Other examples:
"If I were Jane, I would never forgive Bill." (I can't be Jane, so we use the subjunctive.)
"If he was late, he could have missed the phone call. (It is quite possible he was late, so we use the indicative.)
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December 2015
"I recommend this book to all fans of Phantom of the Opera and to those who believe in unbridled true love."
-- Readers' Favorite Five-Star Review
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June 2016
"Great collection of stories - very eclectic themes; genres and perspectives... Fabulous!"
-- Amazon Five-Star Review
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December 2016
Phantom Rising Series
Coming June 30, 2017
Available for Pre-Order now!