Elles auraient eu un chien si elles avaient pu. Why is it "elles avaient pu " and not " elles auraient pu " Is this not a 'Past conditional "

LeeC1Kwiziq community member

Elles auraient eu un chien si elles avaient pu. Why is it "elles avaient pu " and not " elles auraient pu " Is this not a 'Past conditional "

 Is this phrase  not a   'Past conditional " structure?

Asked 3 years ago
ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor Correct answer

In a standard "si"-clause, the conditional is in the main clause of the sentence.

The three versions of the conditional clause are:

If I can, I'll buy a car. -- Si je peux, j'achèterai une voiture. Si clause: present tense -- main clause: future tense (or present tense)

If I were rich, I would by a car. -- Si j'étais riche, j'acheterais une voiture.Si clause: imparfait -- main clause: present conditional

If I had been rich, I would have bought a car. -- Si j'avais été riche, j'aurais acheté une voiture.Si clause: plusqueparfait -- main clause: past conditional

If you look at the English versions, they actually follow the French!

CécileKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Hi Lee,

Si j'avais vu votre question, j'aurais répondu !

If I had seen your question, I would have answered!

elles auraient eu un chien 

is the past conditional 

 

AndreyC1Kwiziq community member

Hi Chris! Isn't it "Si je pourrai, j'achèterai une voiture" rather than "Si je peux, j'achèterai une voiture" if we are talking about a situation in the future? Thank you in advance!

CécileKwiziq team member

Hi Andrey, 

The car example with a wish is not a good one for the future, here is a better one -

Si je reviens à temps, j'achèterai la voiture = If I come back in time, I'll buy the car

Si je peux, je viendrai vous voir = If I can, I'll come and see you

p.s.

You cannot say 'si je pourrais' in French it will be - 

Si je pouvais, je viendrais vous voir If I could, I would come and see you

In this case 'I could' is a past tense, meaning, if I was able to

Si + present ----> future 

Si + imperfect ----> conditional

Hope this helps! 

CécileKwiziq team member

Hi Andrey, 

 

It can only be -

si je peux, j'achèterai une voiture 

si je pouvais, j'achèterais une voiture 

si j'avais pu , j'aurais acheté une voiture 

TonyC1Kwiziq community member

i have same quesion

TonyC1Kwiziq community member

i have same quesion

Elles auraient eu un chien si elles avaient pu. Why is it "elles avaient pu " and not " elles auraient pu " Is this not a 'Past conditional "

 Is this phrase  not a   'Past conditional " structure?

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