The Subjunctive/Conditional Mood
The functions of the conditional mood in Russian generally correspond to those of the subjunctive in English. However, in contrast to English, the same Russian conditional verbal forms are used both in the main and subordinate conditional clauses, as the following examples illustrate. The conditional mood is formed with the particle “6bl” plus the verb in the past tense.
(conditional).If he had had the money, he would have bought her a present.
(conditional).If we had not hurried, we would have been late.
In the first example, the implication is that he didn't have the money to buy a present for her, and, thus, no present was bought. In the second example, the implication is that they had to hurry so they would not be late. Thus, both sentences describe hypothetical situations that could have happened but did not.
that can be loosely translated as “to attract, pull toward, magnetize.”
The Russian conditional mood does not make references to time, and the past tense forms used to form conditional constructions are not past in their meaning. References to present, past, and future are not achieved through verbal forms but via the context. Also note that negative conditional forms are constructed by adding the particle “6He” in front of the verb. At the same time, the place of the particle “6Bl” that marks the sentence as conditional is relatively flexible; it can either go before the verb or after the verb without any change in the meaning of the sentence. Compare the following sentences in Russian and English: