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Modal - 'can'



 
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Modal - 'can' #1 (permalink) Thu Nov 14, 2013 7:15 am   Modal - 'can'
 

1. He can open the window.
2. He could open the window.
3. He can have opened the window.
4. He could have opened the window.
Are both correct?
5. They can't have arrived already, surely!
Is this sentence OK?
Allifathima
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Modal - 'can' #2 (permalink) Thu Nov 14, 2013 7:38 am   Modal - 'can'
 

The 3 and 5 are incorrect.
The rest is fine but has different meanings.
Can always goes with bare infinitive verb (without to).

4. - He did not open the window in the past. Hypothetically, he should do it.
1. he has the ability to open the window
2. Not sure, It's hard to explain the meaning, But the grammar is correct.

I'm just a member, so do not take it for granted that my reply is all correct. I just try to help. Cheer !
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Modal - 'can' #3 (permalink) Thu Nov 14, 2013 8:39 am   Modal - 'can'
 

5 is correct.
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Modal - 'can' #4 (permalink) Fri Nov 15, 2013 5:31 am   Modal - 'can'
 

Beeesneees,
Is it not possible to use 'can have opened' ?
Is it grammatically incorrect?
In sentence #5, "can't have arrived" is found used.
Please explain the grammar nuance involved in it.
Thanks.
Allifathima
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Modal - 'can' #5 (permalink) Fri Nov 15, 2013 8:45 am   Modal - 'can'
 

Context is everything.
'He can have opened the window' doesn't make sense.
I can't think of a situation where 'can have opened' or 'can have arrived' would be useful.

'He can't have opened the window', on the other hand, does make sense. This appears to be one of those incidences of something only appearing in the negative form.
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