Does I’d mean “I had” or “I would”?
The contraction I’d can mean either ‘I would’ or ‘I had’.
If you’re unable to understand the meaning of I’d (or he’d, she’d, we’d, etc.) from the context of a sentence, try looking at the verb form that follows it:
- would is followed by the bare infinitive (infinitive without to)
- would can also be followed by the perfect infinitive (have + past participle)
- had is followed by a past participle.
Watch out for sentences containing ‘d better!
Here’s the explanation in the form of an infographic:
For more examples sentences and a full explanation of the rule see: grammar explanation of ‘d = ‘had’ or ‘would’.
If you want to test yourself, try this exercise: practice exercise ‘d = ‘had’ or ‘would’.