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English writing: main verb


Two men who recently spent five days on a coral island wished they had stayed there longer.

S.+ wish + (that) + S.+

had done(过去)
would/should/could /might +do(将来)

  • I wish (that) I met my uncle now.
    I wish (that) I had met my uncle yesterday.
    I wish (that) I could meet my uncle tomorrow.

would rather/sooner (that)… / if only … + S. + 

had done(过去)
would/should/could /might +do(将来)

  • I’d rather you started off now.
    I’d rather you had been present yesterday.
    If only Tessa were here now!
    If only I had listened to my parents at that time.
    I’d rather (that) Susan were here now.



“should do”型的虚拟语气

1.下列动词后的宾语从句中用 (should) do

order, ask, decide, demand, require, advise, recommend, suggest, insist …
He suggested that we (should) help them with English.
The teacher ordered that the homework (should) be finished within half an hour.
Even though the noble was expected to read the letter at each performance, he always insisted that it should be written out in full.

2.下列名词后的同位语从句中用 (should) do
suggestion, order, request, demand, proposal …
He made a suggestion that we (should) have a fancy dress party.
The proposal that John (should) be dismissed is unacceptable.

3.下列形容词后的主语从句中用(should) do
important, necessary, natural, essential, advisable, strange, surprising ……
It’s strange that you (should) say such a thing.
It was important that you (should) tell me all the information.

When I was a teenager, I felt that I was just young and uncertain — that I was a new boy in a huge school, and I would have been very pleased to be regarded as something so interesting as a problem.

as if/though

It’s as if they were, in some sense, cosmic beings in violent and lovely contrast with us suburban creatures.

Don’t act as if you were the only pebble on the beach. 

He may be conceited, ill-mannered, presumptuous or fatuous, but I do not turn for protection to dreary cliches about respect for elders — as if mere age were a reason for respect.

Insects would make it impossible for us to live in the world, they would devour our crops and kill our flocks and herds, if it were not for the protection we get from insect-eating animals. 

  • If it were not for the sun, all the living things would die. 
  • If it had not been for the help we got from you, we would never succeed. 
  • Computer viruses would make it impossible for us to surf the Internet safely; they would destroy all the data in the computer and steal our personal information, if it were not for the protection we get from the anti-virus software.  

Were if not for + NP

Had it not been for + NP

Should it not been for + NP

But/except for + NP

  • But for the sun, …
  • But for the help we got from you, …
  • But for the flood, the ship would have reached its destination on time. 
  • He might have been killed except for the arrival of the police. 

except / but (that) …

  • I would buy a Mercedes except / but that I am poor. 
  • I would buy a Mercedes if I were rich. 

regrets & criticizing

  • If you hadn’t eaten so much, you wouldn’t have been sick. (But you DID eat too much, so you were sick.)
  • She would have gotten the job if she had prepared for the interview. (But she didn’t prepare well for the interview, so she didn’t get the job.)
  • I wouldn’t have used this paint color if I had known how dark it would look! (But I didn’t know and now I’m disappointed.)
  • If I hadn’t lost my wallet, I would have had much more fun on my vacation. (In reality, I regret that I lost my wallet because I had a terrible vacation.)
  • If I had gone to a better university, I would have had better career opportunities. (I wish I could have, but I didn’t have the option)
  • If I had studied abroad when I was younger, my English would have been better.
  • If I could start all over again, I would have become a physician.
  • If you hadn’t missed the catch, we would have won the game! (But you did miss the catch so we lost the game and I’m upset!)
  • We wouldn’t have been late to the meeting if you had remembered to put gas in the car this morning! (But you did forget to put gas in the car, so we were late.)

Do you mind if … / Would you mind if …

Do you mind unlocking this case please?

只把助动词,be 动词(之前没有其他助动词)或情态动词置于主语之前。

1、否定词位于句首(如:not only, not until, neither, nor, never, hardly, barely, scarcely, few, little, rarely, seldom, under no circumstances, in no way, …)。

Not only had the poor man been arrested, but he had been sent to prison as well.
Nor is the city without its moments of beauty.
Neither was I surprised when the train stopped at Widley, a tiny station a few miles along the line.
Never have I seen such a good movie.
Not until yesterday did little John change his mind.
Under no circumstances should you lend Paul any money.

2、“only + 状语” 位于句首。

Only then did he realize that he was mistaken.
Only by working hard can we succeed in doing anything.
Only after a baby seal is pushed into the sea by its mother will it learn how to swim.
Only when he saw that the man was actually telephoning the police did he realize that they had all been the victims of a hoax.

3、such, so, well, often, many a time 等表示程度、频率的副词位于句首。

Such is human nature that …

Human nature is such that …

It is human nature that …

  • Such is human nature that we all love to get something for nothing. 
  • It is human nature that we don’t treasure what we have until we lose it. 
  • Such are the conditions of society that skills have to be paid for in the same way that goods are paid for at a shop. 

Such is human nature, that a great many people are often willing to sacrifice higher pay for the privilege of becoming white-collar workers.
So great is our passion for doing things for ourselves, that we are becoming increasingly less dependent on specialized labour.
Well did I know him and well did he know me.
Often did it snow there.
Many a time has he given me good advice.


Not only did you give me a surprise, but you’ve probably woken up everyone in the village as well.

造句:不但有几个人抱怨说在夜里听见了“像猫一样的噪音”,而且一位钓鱼途中的商人还 看见那只美洲狮在树上。

Not only did several people complain of ‘cat-like noises’ at night, but a businessman on a fishing trip saw the puma up a tree as well.

Insects would make it impossible for us to live in the world, they would devour our crops and kill our flocks and herds, if it were not for the protection we get from insect eating animals.

头重脚轻, 为了制造悬念

  • That all great art has this power of suggesting a world beyond is undeniable. 
  • Although Tchaikovsky himself thought of the Pathetic Symphony as his crowning masterpiece, the premiere on October 28th 1893 in St. Petersburg proved a disappointment


句子开始和最后重要, 尤其最后。 


do harm to …

do no harm to …

Never / not / no / without + slightest / remotest / faintest,….

I have not the least idea where she is. 

I do not know where she is. 

never do the least harm to … 

  • I have no idea what to do next. 
  • I don’t have the foggiest idea what to do next. 
  • I have no interest in boxing
  • I don’t have the slightest interest in boxing. 
  • Your school may have done away with winners and losers, but life was not. In some schools they have abolished failing grades they’ll give you as many times as you want to get the right answer. This doesn’t bear the slightest resemblances to anything in real life. 


  • All of us are influenced by …
  • No one can avoid being influenced by …
  • All of admit that …
  • No one can deny that …
  • All of us are attracted by …
  • No one can resist … 

dress/disguise sb. up as …, 

face/confront | be faced / confronted with …

concern | be concerned with 

is used to:

  • Make a promise
  • – Give a warning
  • – Talk about probabilities:  
    • we can’t tell the future with 100% certainty 
    • something is likely in the future or very likely in the future based on a present situation or event.
    • this is a REAL situation or event. 
  • Highlight consequences


  • If I’m too tired to cook tonight, I’ll order some take-out. (first conditional)
  • If it snows a lot tomorrow (present situation), the city will cancel school (future probability).
  • If it rains tomorrow, I will not go on my hike.
  • If we complete this project under budget, the customer will be thrilled.


  • Pizza sounds amazing for dinner! But if I eat it, I’ll feel terrible about it in the morning. → the future, negative consequence is I’ll feel terrible about it
  • Sure, salads seem boring sometimes. But if I eat something healthy, I’ll sleep better. → a future, positive consequence.
  • If you develop an effective self-care routine, you will be able to manage stress and anxiety better.
  • If we don’t complete this project on time, the boss will be furious. → no one likes to make her boss angry… definitely a future, negative consequence.
  • If you cook dinner tonight, I will do the dishes. (promise)
  • I will do all my homework now if you let me stay up late. (promise – imagine a child saying this to a parent)
  • If you do that one more time, I won’t let you go to the party tomorrow night! (warning — imagine a parent upset with her child about something)
  • If you don’t pay your invoice immediately, we will cancel your subscription. (warning)

The First Conditional is great for making promises to others or giving a warning.

Above I used the example warning: 

  • If you don’t pay your invoice immediately, we will cancel your subscription. This is warning to a client or customer. It is also a much more professional way to say: Pay now!

Here are more workplace examples:

  • If the apartment becomes vacant, the owner will (likely) lose 2-3 months of payment. (warning)
  • If we don’t complete this project on time, we will lose our client to our competition. (warning)
  • If you reduce your price by 7%, we will sign the contract. (promise – could be used in bargaining or negotiating)
  • We will compromise on the costs if you agree to our terms of service. (promise – again this could be used in bargaining or negotiating)

to show or express a general truth. To do this, we use the Present Simple in both clauses.


  • When I’m too tired to cook, I order take-out. (zero conditional)
  • If you heat ice, it melts.

Tip: With the Zero Conditional, we often replace “if” with “when.” For example:

  • When/If I drink too much coffee, I get a headache.

Talking About Routines

  • When I wake up, I always drink coffee first.
  • When he goes to work, he rides his bicycle.
  • When I arrive in the morning, I check my email first.

Talk about what is unlikely/impossible

imagine a different present time or imagine a possible future time

express that we regret or wish for a different reality

  • If you completed this project by next week, we would pay 3% more. = it does not seem possible or likely that the company can complete the project by next week, so we won’t pay 3% more.
  • I would exercise a lot more if I had time. (= I would like time to exercise more, but it isn’t likely that my schedule will change)
  • If their company had a better reputation, we would consider them for the contract. Their creative marketing proposal was great, but I never hear anything good about working with them. (= but it is unlikely we will consider them for a contract)
  • If I could, I would make conditional tenses disappear. (= but I can’t, it isn’t possible)
  • My commute to work would be so much shorter if I didn’t live outside the city limits! (= but I don’t live in the city so a shorter commute is impossible)

For the workplace, let’s imagine a negotiation: Two sides are negotiating but one side is unable to compromise:

We would have to cut some of our staff if we reduced our costs by 10%. I’m sorry but we just can’t do that. (= Perhaps the company would like to reduce their costs but it is not possible unless they want to lose some of their staff.)


Using the Second Conditional to Give Advice

We often use this form to give advice, especially if we want to be polite or professional.

If I were you, I would …*

*Do you notice the use of were with I, not was? This is the correct form of the Second Conditional when giving advice!

  • If I were you, I would be honest about what happened.
  • If I were you, I would study a little bit every day. You’ll be more likely to succeed on the exam if you do.
  • If I were you, I would tell them that we cannot negotiate on the costs – it just isn’t possible.

Using the Second Conditional for Conversation

Sometimes we use conditionals just for fun. No! I’m not joking.

We use conditionals to imagine something different. Maybe it’s a different future or something that is impossible. We even use these questions to get to know each other.

Here are some examples:

  • If you were president, what is one law you would change?
  • If you could go back to university, what would study?
  • If you could change your career, what would you be?
  • If you could travel anywhere in the world for a two-week vacation, where would you go?

Fun, right? 🙂


Grammar Structure Alternatives: Using Might and Could in the Second Conditional

Might or could can replace “would” in the second conditional. When these words are used, it can have a slight change of meaning:

  • would = impossible or unlikely
  • might = unlikely but possible
  • could = ability (would be able to)

Let’s look at some examples: Let’s imagine a company. Perhaps they provide a service but customers usually have to wait a very long time to receive the service. Some people are having a discussion about the company and this problem of response times:

  • If the company reduced its response times, they would have more customers. (= but it is unlikely that this will happen)
  • If the company reduced its response times, they might have more customers. (= it is unlikely but possible)
  • If the company reduced its response times, they could have more customers. (= they would be able to have more customers – this could be considered a suggestion or an idea to a problem. It still has the feeling that it is unlikely for anything to change, but it’s an option.)

纯使动词类: “使、令、让、帮、叫” 

leave.get.keep.make(使,令), let(让), help(帮助), have(有;让;从事;允许;拿)等。

使动词+O.(sb\sth)+O.C(a, ad,介词短语, do,doing,done)





(4)get—-to do,done


(6)leave sb./sth. doing sth 使处于某种状态


1.have +宾语+done   


例I’ll have my bike repaired this afternoon.今天下午我要请人修自行车.   


例He had his wallet stolen at the station.他的钱包在火车站不幸遭窃.   

2.have +宾语+do让……做某事,动作执行者为宾语   例He had her go there.他让她去那儿.>   

3.have +宾语+doing让……做某事,动作执行者为句子宾语,但动词必须为持续性动词,后面常接时间段.   例He had her standing in the rain for two hours.他让她在雨中站了两个小时.   


4.have +宾语+adj./adv./prep.促使某一动作发生   例Please have your money ready.请准备好钱.

(二)make 使……,有轻微强迫之意   

1.make +宾语+do,迫使某人做某事,被动语态为be made to do   

例The boy made the girl cry.男孩把女孩惹哭了.


  例His illness made him very weak.他的病使他很虚弱.   

3.make +宾语+doing使……处于某种状态,并强调动作的主动性   

例The story made him feeling sad.这个故事使他很难受.   

4.make +宾语+done使处于某种状态,并强调动作的被动性   

例Please speak louder to make yourself heard.请讲大声一点以便让别人听到你.   

(三)leave让,使,带走 既可用于主动语态也可用于被动语态   

1.leave +宾语+to do sth.让某人做某事,强调未来动作   例Leave him to do it himself.让他自个儿去做这件事吧.   

2.leave +宾语+doing让某人做某事,强调当时正在发生的动作   例What he said left me thinking deeply.他的话使我陷入了沉思.   

3.leave +宾语+done 使……处于某种被动状态,强调动作的被动性   例We can’t leave such an important matter unfinished.我们不能让这样一件重要的事半途而废.   

4.leave+ 宾语+adj./adv./prep.使……处于某一特定状态   例Who left the door open?谁让门开着?


1.get +宾语+to do 让……做某事,强调未来性动作   例He got his brother to help him.他让他的兄弟帮助他.   

2.get +宾语+done让……被做,强调被动性动作   例He got the car started.他发动了小汽车.   

3.get +宾语+doing 让……做某事,强调正在进行的动作   例She got her bike running very fast.她把自行车骑得飞快.   


Modern sculpture rarely surprises us any more. 

1. 使……高兴/兴奋/产生兴趣/笑/放松

delight- delighted- delighting(= delightful)

please- pleased-pleasing(=pleasant) – pleasure

excite-excited- exciting -excitement

interest- interested- interesting

amuse- amused-amusing- amusement

relax-relaxed- relaxing



amaze- amazed- amazing- amazement

astonish- astonished- astonishin -astonishment

shock-shocked- shocking

3. 使……失望/沮丧/压抑

disappoint-disappointed-disappointing -disappointment

depress- depressed -depressing-depression

frustrate- frustrated-frustrating-frustration




terrify- terrified- terrifying


tire- tired- tiring

exhaust- exhausted-exhausting

6. 使……困惑/迷惑


puzzle-puzzled- puzzling

7. 使……担心/烦恼/不安

worry- worried- worrying

upset- upset- upsetting

8. 使……感动

move- moved-moving



satisfy- satisfied- satisfying-satisfaction

convince- convinced- convincing

fascinate-fascinated- fascinating

10. 使…….尴尬

embarrass- embarrassed – embarrassing- embarrassment


S: 那“-ed形容人,-ing形容物”的说法不对吧?

T: 此说法是不够精确。

确切地讲:-ing形容人或物具有的某种品质; -ed形容人或与人相关的名词,如微笑、表情、外貌、声音、感情等。

例:He is interesting .

The book is interesting.

She had depressed feelings.

She felt depressed.

S: 那这些形容词可以加ly变为副词吗?


另外,注意短语:to one’s +情感类名词


to one’s surprise


= It surprises sb. that…令某人惊奇的是


类型1:表示状态和状态的持续,如:   be(是), seem(似乎), look(看起来), appear(似乎), feel(觉得), sound(听起来), smell(闻起来), taste(尝起 来), keep(保持), remain(保持), stand(站立), lie(躺), stay(停留)等。

类型2:表示从一种状态转变为另一种状态,如:   become(变成), go(变得), get(变得), turn(变成), grow(变成), fall(变成某种状态), come(成为), run(变成) 等。