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About about a year ago I had a violent conflict with my neighbour's tenants. Now, in the present time I'm talking about it to somebody. Can I say "The next day I called my parents and told them what had happened because they should know it in case they killed me later."

Can I use 'should have known it' instead of 'should know it'?

And another way of Expressing it:

"The next day I called my parents and told them what had happened so that they would  know it in case they killed me"

Similarly, can I use 'would have known it' instead of 'would know it'?

Thanks

Last edited by David Toklikishvili
Original Post

Hi, David,

About about a year ago I had a violent conflict with my neighbour's tenants. Now, in the present time I'm talking about it to somebody. Can I say "The next day I called my parents and told them what had happened because they should know it in case they killed me later."

I understand you made up that sentence, right? I think the sentence would sound better by adding "I thought/believed" before "they should know." That way, "they should know" will express your thought at the time. "Should have known" would not work in that context. Compare with:

- The next day I called my parents and told them what had happened so they should have known I was in danger. I can't understand why they insisted that I should stay. ("should have known" sounds like a reproach.)

And another way of Expressing it:

"The next day I called my parents and told them what had happened so that they would  know it in case they killed me"

Similarly, can I use 'would have known it' instead of 'would know it'?

Only "would know" works there. It is the backshifted version of:

- I'll tell my parents what has happened so that they will know it in case they kill me.

Last edited by Gustavo, Co-Moderator

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