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Quiz: It and there.

We use both 'there' and 'it' similarly. Feel free to review the grammar explanation below before you begin this brief quiz.

jeudi 20 oct., Il y a 15 mois
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• there + be + noun

Use and meaning

-We use there as some kind of preparatory subject to say that something exists somewhere. We put the real subject after the verb be.

There are lots of people in the waiting room.
There used to be a fancy restaurant in this street.

Different tenses

-We can use there + be with be in any verb tense, in active or passive voice, and with or without modal verbs.

There will be a storm on Saturday.
There has been some tension between the participants.
There must be something wrong here.
There’s going to be conflict between the two parties.

Different structures

-We can also use the structures there seem(s) to be, there tend(s) to be or we can use there + be before expressions of probability such as sure, likely, bound, etc.

There seem to be no consequences for his actions.
Unfortunately, there seems to be no possible solution for the problem.
There used to be a library at the end of this street.

Note that the negative form is there didn’t use to be.

• it' as preparatory subject

-Time, weather, temperature, distance

It’s 5 o’clock
It’s Saturday tomorrow.
It’s snowing.
It's far away

-Something already mentioned

We use it to refer to something that we have already mentioned.

‘What is that?’ ‘It seems like an old piece of metal.’ (it= that)
I read a good book last week. It was my second book this month. (it= the book)

-It + be + adjective + to + infinitive

We use it + be/seem as a preparatory subject before adjectives + to-infinitive. The infinitive clause is the real subject of the sentence, but we put it at the end because it’s long.

It seems impossible to get out of here unharmed.
It’s has been quite hard to go through all the difficulties we have encountered.

-it + be + adjective + that clause

We also use it as preparatory subject when the real subject of the sentence is a that clause.

It’s unlikely that they will ever agree.
It’s surprising that the paramedics could save that woman’s life.

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