Here's a hypothetical situation in English:
If we won the lottery, we would buy a Ferrari.
If we were to win the lottery, we would buy a Ferrari.
Here you can see that if is followed by a verb in the Simple Past (won) or in the English subjunctive (were to win), while the second clause uses the Conditional Present (would buy).
Now look at the Spanish:
Si ganásemos la lotería, compraríamos un Ferrari.
Here you see that in Spanish, si is followed by a verb in El Pretérito Imperfecto Subjuntivo (ganásemos), while the second clause uses El Condicional Simple (compraríamos).
Here are more examples:
Si ganásemos la lotería, compraríamos un Ferrari.If we won the lottery, we would buy a Ferrari.
Si yo tuviera más dinero, iría de vacaciones a Cuba.If I had more money, I would go on holiday to Cuba.
Si tú fueses más simpático, tendrías más amigos.If you were nicer, you would have more friends.
Si ella viniera ahora, comeríamos en ese restaurante.If she came now, we would eat in that restaurant.
Si nosotros estudiáramos para los exámenes, sacaríamos buenas notas.If we studied for the exams, we would get good grades.
Si vosotros trabajaseis allí, ganaríais mucho dinero.If you worked there, you would earn lot of money.
Si ellos vivieran más cerca, les visitaríamos cada semana.If they lived closer, we would visit them every week.
Si ustedes nos escucharan, entenderían mejor nuestra situación.If you listened to us, you'd understand our situation better.
To express hypotheses
followed by El Pretérito Imperfecto Subjuntivo
, then use El Condicional Simple
in the second part of the sentence.
You can never use El Presente de Subjuntivo
for hypothesis after "si". It would be incorrect
to say: "Si sea rico, compraría muchas cosas" (If I were rich I'd buy lots of things.)
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