Difference between Will and Would | Would vs Will

Grammar is an important part of English. Not only does it affect how we speak, but it also affects the way words are used. Without the correct grammar, incorrect meanings can be made. In this article, we shall explore the differences between ‘will’ and ‘would’.

What is the Difference between Will and Would

The word ‘will’ is generally used as a modal verb, but it can also be used as a noun. ‘Would’ is also a modal verb and is the past tense of will.

Table of Contents

Another difference between ‘will’ and ‘would’ is that ‘will’ is used in statements that refer to the future while ‘would’ is used to refer events to the past. However, ‘would’ can also be used to refer to a future event only if that event occurs under specific circumstances.

Table Summarising the Difference between Will and Would

Will

Would

Usage

Can be used as a modal verb and as a noun

‘Would’ is used as a modal verb

Meaning

As a verb:

  1. Expressing future tense
  2. Refers to inevitable situations or events
  3. A request
  4. Stating facts about capacity or ability

As a noun:

  1. A legal document that contains instructions with respect to money / property after one’s death
  2. Will power
  1. Past of will
  2. Refers to the consequence of a hypothetical situation or event
  3. Indicates an inclination or desire
  4. Indicates a polite request

The Meaning of Will and Would

  • Will meaning – As summarised in the table, ‘will’ can be used either as a verb or a noun, and hence, the meaning changes with usage.
  • Would meaning – ‘Would’ is used as a modal verb. It is also the past of ‘will.’ Moreover, the meaning of the word changes with context or usage.

Examples for Would and Will:

We shall explore some examples for the words ‘will’ and ‘would’:

  • Will example:
  • As a verb:

    • Expressing future tense – You will understand when you are older
    • Refers to inevitable situations or events – Lives will be lost during wars.
    • A requestWill you pass me that dish, please?
    • Stating facts about capacity or ability – A beacon so bright that it will shine through the thickest fog

    As a noun:

    • A legal document that contains instructions with respect to money / property after one’s death John’s wife was left out of his will.
    • Will power – He had an iron will.
  • Would example:
    • Past of will – He said he would be doing the dishes.
    • Refers to the consequence of a hypothetical situation or event – His life would be at risk if he turned whistleblower.
    • Indicates an inclination or desire – I would love to own a car.
    • Indicates a polite request – Would you like some cake?

Will vs. Would – Conclusion

English grammar is known for its complex rules, but it’s also a language that allows for great flexibility of expression. However, grammar is not quite easy as there are many rules, and an equally perplexing number of exceptions to those rules. Regardless, learning concepts one step at a time can be an effective way to become proficient in English grammar. In this article, we have explored the difference between ‘will’ and ‘would’, their meaning, usage as well as examples. Explore other important English difference between articles, only on BYJU’S.

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