Children's, Intermediate and Advanced Online English Dictionary & Thesaurus

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would

 
pronunciation:
wUd
phrases:
would like
features:
Note, Homophone Note
part of speech: auxiliary verb
definition 1: used as a past form of "will"1 after verbs in the past tense that report speech or thoughts.
She said she would help us.They decided they would go to the movies after dinner.
definition 2: used with the same meaning as "will"1 but showing that the action or state being talked about is not real.
I would fly to the moon, if I could fly.If I had a dog, I would name him "Max."
definition 3: used to form polite requests.
Would you turn on the light, please?
phrase: would like
would like or want?
Want is used to express, in an informal manner, a desire or need for something. Would like is a more formal or polite way to express a desire or need for something. We also use would like when we have a desire for something that we think is not likely to happen or is not planned. We use want when we are more certain that something will happen.
Compare:
  • Do you want some coffee? (informal)
  • Would you like a cup of coffee? (formal, polite)
  • I would like to go to Spain someday. (It's a wish that I have, but I don't know if it will ever happen.)
  • Where do you want to go for your vacation? I want to go to Florida. (I will go somewhere, probably to Florida.)
Homophone Note
The words would and wood (a hard material from trees) sound alike but have different meanings.