Other uses of the auxiliary would
English grammar (See all our English grammar tips)
Other uses of the auxiliary WOULDWould not only expresses condition, but can also express:
• willingness, choice, acceptance (in a past context):
We warned Philip, but he wouldn't listen to us. We warned Philip, but he chose not to listen to us or he refused to listen to us.
The test monkeys wouldn't wear certain perfumes. The test monkeys were not willing to wear certain perfumes.
• desire, potential, after the verb to wish:
I wish my husband would cook once in a while. I wish my husband would choose to cook once in a while.
I wish this new product would be successful. I really want this new product to be successful.
• an action in the past, with the emphasis on repetition or obstinacy:
My father would always take me to the zoo. My father always used to take me to the zoo.
Every time Bruno left the Montmartre shop, Stink would follow him. Every time Bruno left the Montmartre shop, Stink insisted on following him.
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