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Thread: Если бы я ..., я бы

  1. #1
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    Если бы я ..., я бы

    Are all the combinations correct? I think that only the second one is 100% correct, right?

    Если бы я был писателем, я написал бы много книг.
    Если бы я был писателем, я бы написал много книг.

    Если я бы был писателем, написал бы я много книг.
    Если я бы был писателем, я бы написал много книг.

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    Завсегдатай Antonio1986's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by George1992 View Post
    Are all the combinations correct? I think that only the second one is 100% correct, right?

    Если бы я был писателем, я написал бы много книг.
    Если бы я был писателем, я бы написал много книг.

    Если я бы был писателем, написал бы я много книг.
    Если я бы был писателем, я бы написал много книг.
    Yes!
    But what is the most commonly used I don't know.
    Чем больше слов, тем меньше они стоят.

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    Почтенный гражданин Soft sign's Avatar
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    Every sentence is formally correct.
    The word бы tends to the second place in the clause (according to Wackernagel law). So the most natural variant is Если бы я был писателем, я бы написал много книг.
    Please correct my English

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    Властелин iCake's Avatar
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    All is good. I'd most likely go with:

    Если б(ы) я был..., я б(ы) blah blah blah.
    I do not claim that my opinion is absolutely true.
    If you've spotted any mistake in my English, please, correct it. I want to be aware of any mistakes to efficiently eliminate them before they become a habit.

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    Если я бы был писателем, написал бы я много книг.
    This one is a little different from others. This order of words (написал бы я) is more typical for question. As a statement it is probably used with some accent, for example, expression of bravado or sarcasm. "написал бы я" is much more rare in usage in this context.

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    Завсегдатай Antonio1986's Avatar
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    Why in my grammar textbooks they used the following version as the basic one:
    Eсли бы я был писателем, я написал бы много книг.
    Is it because it is easier to memorize the advice: "insert the бы after Eсли and the second verb". It is perhaps more symmetrical?
    Чем больше слов, тем меньше они стоят.

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    Is it because it is easier to memorize the advice: "insert the бы after Eсли and the second verb". It is perhaps more symmetrical?
    In fact "бы" is placed after affected word. At least in this context.
    However it is difficult to me to express slightest difference in meanings... At the top level they all express subjunctive.
    I try to explain, but I may be wrong in translation:
    Если бы я был писателем = IF ONLY I was a writer... ("if" is stressed)
    Если я бы был писателем = If it was ME who was a writer... ("I/me" is stressed)
    Если я был бы писателем = If I had a chance to BE a writer... ("be" is stressed)
    Если я был писателем бы = sounds not good. but sounds as "If WRITER was my profession..." ("writer" is stressed).
    RedFox likes this.

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    alexsms likes this.
    "Невозможно передать смысл иностранной фразы, не разрушив при этом её первоначальную структуру."

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    Завсегдатай Antonio1986's Avatar
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    George also we shouldn't forget the "то" in some versions. We foreigners usually don't use it but Russians do.
    Eсли бы я был писателем, то я написал бы много книг.
    Чем больше слов, тем меньше они стоят.

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    Властелин iCake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Antonio1986 View Post
    George also we should forget the "то" in some versions. We foreigners usually don't use it but Russians do.
    Eсли бы я был писателем, то я написал бы много книг.
    Yep, but it's better to get rid of the second я in this case:

    Eсли бы я был писателем, то написал бы много книг.
    I do not claim that my opinion is absolutely true.
    If you've spotted any mistake in my English, please, correct it. I want to be aware of any mistakes to efficiently eliminate them before they become a habit.

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    Почтенный гражданин Serge_spb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by George1992 View Post
    Are all the combinations correct? I think that only the second one is 100% correct, right?

    Если бы я был писателем, я написал бы много книг.
    Если бы я был писателем, я бы написал много книг.
    Correct.
    Если я бы был писателем, написал бы я много книг.
    Correct, but sounds kinda poetically (second part in such sentences should normally begin with "я".

    Если я бы был писателем, я бы написал много книг.
    Correct.


    Good alternative: Будь я писателем, написал бы много книг.
    George1992 likes this.

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