Conditional tense.

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Which is correct? "If God was one of us" or "If God were one of us"

asked Jan 18 '13 at 17:10 maria MacMinn Varvos New member

2 answers


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If God were one of us.

This is called the subjunctive mood, and a singlular subject will take a plural verb when the possibility of the situation is remote.

link comment answered Jan 18 '13 at 17:26 Lewis Neidhardt Grammarly Fellow
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The subjunctive were in this conditional sentence is certainly correct, but also very very formal; in spoken English and casual writing (and Joan Osbourne's song, which I assume gave rise to this question) was instead of the subjunctive were is becoming more and more common.

link comment answered Jan 19 '13 at 00:54 Shawn Mooney Expert

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