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sábado, 10 de novembro de 2012

The 'zero' conditional

1. Form
In 'zero' conditional sentences, the tense in both parts of the sentences is the simple present:

If + simple present                                        Simple present
If you heat ice                                                it melts.
If it rains                                                         you get wet.

Note: The order of the clauses is not fixed - the 'if' clause can be first or second:
- Ice melts if you heat it.
- You get wet if it rains.

2. Function
In these sentences, the time is now or always and the situation real and possible. They are used to make statements about the real world, and often refer to general truths, such as scientific facts.


a. If you freeze water, it becomes a solid.
b. Plants die if they don´t get enough water.
c. If my husband has a cold, I usually catch it.
d. If public transport is efficient, people stop using their cars.
e. If you mix red and blue, you get purple.

This structure is often used to give instructions, using the imperative in the main clause:

- If Bill phones, tell him o meet me at the cinema.
- Ask Pete if you´re not sure what to do.

Por hoje é só. Amanhã tem mais. See you.

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