Third conditional/Conditional Type III

Conditional Type III is used to express conditions in the past that didn't happen and can never be fulfilled.It is often used to express regret or criticism.

Like the other conditionals, a third conditional sentence consists of two clauses, an "if" clause and a main clause.


(IF Clause)

(Main Clause)

If I had saved my money,

I would have built a house.

If I had worked harder,

I could have passed my exam.

If Aicha hadn’t been raped,

She shouldn’t have fled her village.


(Main Clause)

(IF Clause)

I would have escaped

if she had warned me.

Barcelona could have won the match

if Etoo had returned to full fitness.

He should have played against Real

if he had resumed team training.

Wish/If Only

Wish/If only are used to express regret,wanting change or complaint.

The table below lists the changes that occur when we use wish/If only :

Tenses Change
Simple Present Simple past
Simple Past Past Perfect
Will Would
can Could
may Might
is/are was/were
was/were had been
have/has had
had had had
must must or had to


I am sorry i was rude to you.I wish hadn't been rude to you.

He is shy and clumsy.The teacher wishes he wasn't shy and clumsy.

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