as if

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as if

1. In the same way that it would be if: looked as if she were made of ice.
2. That: It seemed as if the meeting would never end.

as if

1. 'as if' and 'as though'

You can use as if or as though at the beginning of a clause when you are describing how someone or something looks, or how someone behaves.

It's a wonderful item and in such good condition that it looks as though it was bought yesterday.
He lunged towards me as if he expected me to aim a gun at him.

Many people think it is incorrect to use 'was' in clauses of this type. They say you should use were instead.

He looked at me as if I were mad.
She remembered it all as if it were yesterday.

However, in conversation people usually use was.

The secretary spoke as though it was some kind of password.
He gave his orders as if this was only another training exercise.

You can use was or were in conversation, but in formal writing you should use were.

2. 'like'

Some people say like instead of 'as if' or 'as though'.

He looked like he felt sorry for me.
Shaerl put up balloons all over the house like it was a six-year-old's party.

This use is generally regarded as incorrect.

References in classic literature ?
They found a woman in the front dooryard moaning and groaning as if in great pain.
It came to her naturally, so her family said, and perhaps for this reason she, like Tom Tulliver's clergyman tutor, "set about it with that uniformity of method and independence of circumstances which distinguish the actions of animals understood to be under the immediate teaching of Nature." You remember the beaver which a naturalist tells us "busied himself as earnestly in constructing a dam in a room up three pair of stairs in London as if he had been laying his foundation in a lake in Upper Canada.
When this expression was upon him, he looked as if he were old; but when it was stirred and broken up--as it was now, in a moment, on his speaking to his daughter--he became a handsome man, not past the prime of life.