WOULD in English grammar (part 4), plus the Royal Wedding | DailyStep English

WOULD in English grammar (part 4), plus the Royal Wedding

This is Jane Lawson's Audio Blog #026 at DailyStep English


Hello, I’m Jane at DailyStep English and welcome to my audio blog!

In Britain, we have just had the hottest April since records began – it was lovely! May is also very sunny so far. It has given us all a taste of summer, the parks and beaches are full of people - but also, unfortunately, many wildfires are burning all over the UK, destroying some beautiful and ancient woodland, so I really hope it starts raining soon.

In this blog, we are going to take a look at the biggest event to take place in London for many years – the Royal Wedding! In the audio word study, we will finish looking at how use the modal verb WOULD.

So, let’s start off with a look at the Royal Wedding.

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The Royal Wedding

by Jane Lawson at DailyStep.com

What were you doing on Friday 29th April at 11 a.m.? Like around 2 billion people worldwide, maybe you were watching the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton in London. On the Big Day, British people were encouraged to hold street parties, and a special public holiday was given in honour of the occasion.

I watched some of the wedding on TV. I thought it was a very romantic day, and a happy occasion for our country. I mean, the newspapers and TV are usually so full of bad news so it was nice to have a day of celebration for a change. The wedding took place in Westminster Abbey, which was specially decorated with trees for the day. You can see a picture of Kate walking down the aisle in her beautiful wedding dress through the avenue of trees in the top left hand picture. Thousands of people lined the route to watch the newly-married couple in an open-topped horse-drawn carriage on the way back from the Abbey, and the crowds were still waiting for another glimpse of them several hours later, when William and Kate emerged from Buckingham Palace in an old Aston Martin car with balloons tied to the back. You can see the car in the top right hand picture.

Some journalists compared the wedding to that of Prince William’s parents, Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer, which as we know, ended in bitterness and divorce – but I think that is unfair. William and Kate have been in a relationship for 10 years, whereas his parents had only met 13 times before they got married, and he was already in love with someone else! That is not exactly a recipe for married bliss, is it?

In the bottom pictures, you can see two street parties that took place on the day of the wedding. The one on the left is a celebration of the Royal wedding, and the one on the right is an anti-Royal wedding party. No matter how people felt about the wedding, everyone enjoyed a day off work and the chance to have a party!

There are mixed views in Britain about the Royal Family and the institution of the Monarchy. Some people love the fact that the British head of state is the Queen, who is not elected and therefore does not have to play the game that politicians have to play in order to get to the top. Some people like the sense of national identity and continuity that comes with having the same head of state for many years. Other people would prefer an alternative system, in which we would elect a President as our head of state every five years or so. These people are called Republicans (no connection to the American Republican party!), because they want Britain to be a Republic, instead of a Constitutional Monarchy, as it is now. 

Let’s move on now to our audio word study, where we will finish looking at how to use the modal verb, WOULD.

Here is Audio Word Study #026 from Jane Lawson at DailyStep.com

WOULD (modal verb) Part 4


In this word study, we finish looking at meanings of WOULD. You can see part 1, part 2 and part 3 of the meanings of WOULD in some of my other recent audio blogs.

Remember that in English grammar, ‘would’ is a modal verb, or modal. Modals give a special meaning to a verb, and they are always followed by the bare infinitive form of the verb, in other words, the infinitive without ‘to’. So, for example, it is wrong to say ‘I would to like a cup of coffee’, and it is correct to say ‘I would like a cup of coffee.’


Meaning 12: We use WOULD to refer to future time from the point of view of the past.

Examples: He said he would finish it the next day. (note: His actual words, at some time in the past, were “I will finish it tomorrow.”)

I knew it would be difficult to persuade her to marry me.


Meaning 13: We use WOULD HAVE to refer back to a time in the past from a point of view in the future.

Example: We thought they would have arrived by midnight, but they were delayed by traffic. (note: In this example, before midnight on the day that they were due to arrive, our actual thoughts were “They will have arrived by midnight”, meaning “They will be here at or before midnight.”)


Meaning 14: We use WOULD to refer to a situation that we can imagine happening.

Examples: I would hate to be late for my appointment. (note: This means “If I imagine the idea of being late for my appointment, I hate that idea!”)

I would do it myself, but I’m afraid I haven’t got time. (note: This means “I do not have time to do it, but if I had time, I would do it myself.”)

It would have been very exciting to see the football match live instead of on TV. (note: In this sentence, I did not see the football match live, but if I had seen it, it would have been very exciting.)

That’s all for today’s word study! Please try to write your own sentences using WOULD, as this will help you to remember its meanings.

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Well, that is it for today! I’ll be in touch again soon. Thank you for your many requests about subjects you would like me to cover in my blogs. I will cover as many of them as I can!


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