A clause is a part of a sentence with a conjugated verb. There can be either 1 or 2 clauses in a sentence. My mother listens to Jazz. This is a main clause because there is no other conjugated verb. My mother feels that I need to practice more. The underlined phrase represents the main clause. The second phrase, in red, represents the dependant clause (the second conjugated verb).
1. The main clause cannot have a subjunctive conjugation. 2. The verb can be in any tense. 3. The tense of the main clause verb will dictate the tense of the dependant clause verb.
Just as it sounds the dependant clause “depends” on the main clause situation. If the main clause verb sequence is not a subjunctive indicator then the dependant clause verb (if there is one) will be an indicative “regular” verb conjugation. If the main clause verb sequence is a subjunctive indicator then the dependant clause verb must be subjunctive.
MAIN CLAUSEDEPENDANT CLAUSE Present Regular Present Present Progressive Present Perfect Commands Past Imperfect Preterit Past Perfect Future Conditional Present / Present Subjunctive Past / Past Subjunctive Present / Present Subjunctive Past / Past Subjunctive
These are the main clause verb indicators. 1. Wishing / wanting 2. Emotion 3. Impersonal expressions 4. Request 5. Doubt 6. Orders / Ojalá
Mi hermano espera que me vaya. Espera – Emotion = Subjunctive Indicator Vaya = subjunctive conjugation. Mi hermano sabe que me voy. Sabe – Not in WEIRDO = Indicative “Regular” verb conjugation.
1. Write verb in yo form of present tense. Drop the –o. Add the opposite vowel. -ar – eer/ir – a Add the correct ending (if necessary)
Uncertainty, things that may not exist, refutable statements
An adjective clause simply means that there is a noun after the verb in the main clause. Example: Tengo un perro que come pizza. In a noun clause, you have the verb + que + verb. Example: Quiero que tú vayas a la tienda. You will almost never see past subjunctive with these!
Typically these words or phrases will require subjunctive in an adjective clause. 1. indefinite articles – un, una, unos, unas 2. Verbs that indicate actions that haven’t happened yet. Necesitar, Querer, Buscar 3. No verb negatives – refutable statements. No hay nadie, no hay nada, no conocer a, etc Example: no hay nadie en esta clase que hable inglés. This is subjunctive because it can be refuted. There may actually be someone in the class who can speak English.
1. If you see Tener (even if it is with an indefinite article) Example: Tengo un perro que come mucho. The dog exists because you stated that you have one. 2. Hay (again even if it is with an indefinite article). Hay un hombre que le conoce a Sra. Lorena. There is a man. He exists. 3. Conocer – Same reason as above. Conozco a una mujer que quiere casarse conmigo. If you know her, she exists.
A conjunction is simply a word or set of words that link the main clause to the dependant clause. Some are always subjunctive while others depend on the main clause verb. You can have both present and past subjunctive.
Para que – so that A fin de que – in order that / so that A menos que – unless Antes de que – before Con tal de que – provided that En caso de que – in case Sin que - without
A menos que and con tal de que are followed by the present subjunctive if the action of the dependent clause occurs at the same time as the action in the main clause. He’ll study math provided that you return his book to him. Estudiará las matematicas con tal de que devuelves su libro. They are followed by the present perfect subjunctive if the dependent action occurs before the action of the main clause. He’ll study math provided that you have returned his book to him. Estudiará las matematicas con tal de que hayas devuelto su libro.
Como – how Aunque – although / even though Según – according to Donde – where Mientras – while De manera que – so that De modo que – so that If you have subjunctive, the English translation will be “ever”. However, wherever
Después de que – after Cuando – when (whenever) Hasta que – until Tan pronto como – as soon as En cuanto – as soon as Luego que – as soon as Así que – as soon as
1. If the main clause verb is in the future tense. Future formation: Infinitive plus é, ás, á, emos, án Can also be ir + a 2. If the verb is in present tense but represents an impending action. Querer, pensar, etc 3. All commands
Ella me dirá la verdad cuando regrese. She will tell me the truth whenever she returns. Since we don’t know if she will return, subjunctive is used. Quiero irme tan pronto como él llegue. I want to leave as soon as he arrives. If he never arrives, you may not want to leave. Explíqueles la situación después de que entren. Explain the situation to them after they enter. If they never enter, you can’t explain it to them.
This one is easy. You can only have Past subjunctive after the word “si” if a conditional tense verb is present. Otherwise you must use regular tenses.
Si yo tuviera mucho dinero, compraría una casa grande. If I had a lot of money, I would buy a big house. Yo te prestaría el DVD si supiera donde estaba. I would lend you the DVD if I knew where it was. Si ella hubiera comprendido el subjuntivo, habría recibido una buena nota. If she had understood the subjunctive, she would have received a good grade.
Si puedo ir, iré. If I can go, I will. Voy a la tienda si tengo tiempo suficiente. I’ll go to the store if I have enough time. Haga la tarea si quieres. Do the homework if you want. You must have a past tense sentence to use an If clause in subjunctive.