"When" means a lot of time or always?

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"When" means a lot of time or always?

Postby dotku » Thu, 21 Oct 2010 03:36:44 -0500

I'm using "when" to make a sentence, for example:

A lot of time, when I see him, he will yell on me.

My tutor told me that, it should not use "A lot of time" over here, because "when" means "a lot of time."
I think "when" means "always." I googled around, and can't find anything, so I post here for help.
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Re: "When" means a lot of time or always?

Postby stuartmillenglish » Tue, 22 Mar 2011 11:50:34 -0500

Your sentence is basically OK. It should read:

A lot of the time, when I see him, he yells at me. (Yells not will yell because its a habitual action, so you use the present simple. And the preposition that follows yell is at, not on.)

"When" can refer to any time you want. All of these sentences are OK.

When I see him, he yells at me. (Every time I see him, he yells at me.)
When I see him on Tuesdays, we eat lunch. (If I see him on Tuesdays, we eat lunch.)
Don't forget to call when you arrive. (At the one time you arrive, you should call.)
When she eats too much, she often gets sick. (Not every time, but often. Any frequency adverb is OK.)

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Re: "When" means a lot of time or always?

Postby Greg85 » Fri, 06 Jun 2014 01:56:03 -0500

If you say when something happens, you imply it definitely will happen, even if the precise timing is unknown. You use if when there's uncertainty about whether the event will happen at all.

It's quite common — especially in informal contexts — to use when/if as a shorthand way of signifying when, but allowing for the possibility that the event in question may not in fact occur.

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Re: "When" means a lot of time or always?

Postby Greg85 » Mon, 16 Jun 2014 08:42:30 -0500

According to many dictioanaries, when and while are interchangeable when they are used to refer to something that happens at the same time or during the time that something is happening. But recently I've been bothered by several exercises.

a. While they were driving along breezily, they passed a farmer on a mule.

b. When the emperor was playing the football, a high fast spinning ball was shot beyond the huge compound.

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