Si Clauses: Third Conditional

Oraciones condicionales: situaciones irreales

The third conditional is an if-then proposition that expresses an impossible situation: if something had happened (the condition), then something else would have happened (the result). The condition is expressed with the pluperfect subjunctive and the impossible result is indicated with the pluperfect subjunctive or else the conditional perfect.

The order of the clauses makes no difference as long as si / "if" stays in front of the correct verb form:

  • si + pluperfect subjunctive, then + conditional perfect or pluperfect subjunctive
  • conditional perfect or pluperfect subjunctive, si + pluperfect subjunctive

Por ejemplo …

Si hubiera sabido, hubiera ido (or habría ido) contigo.   If I had known, I would have gone with you.
Hubiera ido (or Habría ido) contigo si hubiera sabido.   I would have gone with you if I had known.
(I hadn’t known, so I didn’t go with you, but if I had [impossible], I would have.)
¿Hubieras (or habrías) comprado el libro si te hubiera dicho?   Would you have bought the book if I had told you?
¿Si te hubiera dicho, hubieras (or habrías) comprado el libro?   If I had told you, would you have bought the book?
(I hadn’t told you, so you didn’t buy the book, but if I had [impossible], would you have?)

Test: Si clauses

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