We use the imperfect subjunctive form mainly in subordinate clauses and to show that the action depends on a condition.
Vorrei che le parlassi con gentilezza. I wish that he would speak more politely.
Desidererei che tu fossi meno arrogante. I wish that you were less arrogant.
The imperfect subjunctive of first, second and third conjugation verbs:
When it is quite sure that something will happen if something else happens we use the real conditional. If it is a general fact we use the present tense:
SE + PRESENT + PRESENT
Se non metto la sciarpa, ho freddo. If I don't wear a scarf, I'm cold.
If we are making a prediction we use the future form:
SE + FUTURO + FUTURO
Se ci impegneremo, avremo ciò che vogliamo. If we work hard, we will get what we want.
If we are talking about an imaginary situation we use the unreal conditional:
SE + IMPERFECT SUBJUNCTIVE + PRESENT CONDITIONAL
Se facessi più sport, starei meglio. If I did more sport, I'd feel better.
Se mi ascoltasse, non farebbe tanti errori. If he listened to me, he wouldn't make so many mistakes.
Se fossi in te, le comprerei un regalo. If I were you, I'd buy her a present.
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