could or allowed to

Are both examples acceptable? As I had to go to the dentist, I was allowed to leave work early As I had to go to the dentist, I could leave work early. Does the implied permission legitimise the grammar? Answer The commenter below shot down a lot of my grammatical points 😉 But the answer … Read more

Can I use the verb ‘to do’ to emphasize the verb ‘can’?

The verb ‘to do’ can be used to emphasize things, e.g.: I do understand it. Can it be used to emphasize a sentence that uses the verb ‘can’? E.g.: I do can play football. If not, how could I achieve the above? Answer The matter is one of grammar. In the context you are talking … Read more

“can give” or “could give” as second verb in a past sentence

I have the following 2 sentences: “what Pablo said can give you a hint” “what Pablo said could give you a hint” Are they both correct? if no, which one and why? Thank you very much Answer Usually it is clear from the context what is the difference between ‘can’ and ‘could’, but use of … Read more

Why is it “could” and not “can” in the famous line: “If a face could launch a thousand ships”?

This is from a song lyric If a picture paints a thousand words, Then why can’t I paint you? The words will never show the you I’ve come to know. If a face could launch a thousand ships, Then where am I to go? There’s no one home but you, You’re all that’s left me … Read more

Can I use ‘could’ instead of ‘might’ in this unreal situation?

Are might and could exchangeable in this unreal situation? If I were in Tom’s position, I think I might look for another job. Answer It is perfectly acceptable to use “might” in this context. The alternative would probably be “would” rather than “could”. Use of “could” implies you would only be able to look for … Read more

Which sentence is wrong?

Take a look at this part of a conversation: A: I got very wet walking home in the rain last night. |1. You could have taken a taxi. B: Why did you walk? |2. You could take a taxi. |3. You was were able to take a taxi. Which one of the numbered sentences is … Read more

could and might to talk about future possibility

I have problem with using could in the future possibilities for example: They have the technology, but unless the government makes stricter laws, car companies ____ do it. With which one should I fill the blank of….. Might not or Couldn’t and why ? Thank you 🙂 Answer ‘Could’ discusses fundamental possibility; whether or not … Read more