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July 08, 2012

Use of I wish / if Only in Sentences


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In this post we shall discuss about the usage of I wish / If Only in sentences. There are three types of  I wish / if only  sentences:

1.      Wish, wanting change for the present or future with the simple past.
2.      Regret with the past perfect.
3.      Complaints with would + verb.

To express a wish :

The form of the sentence :

 If only / I wish + simple past 

Ex :

If only I knew how to speak Spanish. (I don’t know how to speak Spanish and I would like to learn how to speak)

Usage :

·         To express a wish in the present or in the future.
·         The simple past here is an unreal past.

·         When you use the verb to be the form is “were”.

I wish I were a millionaire!

To express regret :

The form of the sentence :

 If only / I wish + past perfect 

Ex :

If only I had woken up early. (I didn’t wake up early and I missed the train.)

Usage :
·         To express a regret.
·         The action is past.

Complaining :

The form of the sentence :

 I wish / if only  + would  +  verb 

Ex :

I wish you wouldn't arrive so late all the time (I'm annoyed because you always come late and I want you to arrive on time)

Usage :
·         To complain about a behavior that you disapprove.
·         Expressing impatience, annoyance or dissatisfaction with a present action.

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