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  1. #1
    Mensu is offline Newbie
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    Default Would "Kate can't have lost her way, for she has come here several times."be correct?

    Hi,

    I came across an old thread and saw these two sentences which perplexed me but I don't know whether teachers would notice my questions or not if I just replied to the threat. So I decided to post a new one. Please inform me of it if it's prohibited.

    1. Kate couldn't lose her way, for she has come here several times.
    Q: Does it mean ""Kate can't lose her way" and "It's talking about future or present rather than the past"?

    2. Kate can't have lost her way, for she has come here several times.
    Q: Would this sentence make sense?
    I think it's talking about a past event which happened long ago and means "It was impossible that Kate lost her way at that time" so the second part should be "for she HAD come here several times". But the sentence seems correct to you.

    Could you please help me?

    Thank you in advance.

  2. #2
    bwkcaj_ca is offline Member
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    Default Re: Would "Kate can't have lost her way, for she has come here several times."be corr

    Let me see if I can clarify this for you. Both sentences could be correct in certain situations.

    1. This is a speculation on the part of the speaker. He (or she) is guessing what would happen if Kate tried to come here. Perhaps our house is difficult to find or perhaps Kate doesn't know our city very well. But the speaker is certain that Kate wouldn't lose her way if she decided to come to visit us because she's been here before.

    2. I think the second sentence is a response to someone having said, "I think Kate has lost her way." But the speaker doesn't agree because Kate has come here before so she should know the way.

    I hope this helps. If you are still not clear on it, feel free to send me a private message and we can discuss it further.

  3. #3
    Mensu is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: Would "Kate can't have lost her way, for she has come here several times."be corr

    Quote Originally Posted by bwkcaj_ca View Post
    Let me see if I can clarify this for you. Both sentences could be correct in certain situations.

    1. This is a speculation on the part of the speaker. He (or she) is guessing what would happen if Kate tried to come here. Perhaps our house is difficult to find or perhaps Kate doesn't know our city very well. But the speaker is certain that Kate wouldn't lose her way if she decided to come to visit us because she's been here before.

    2. I think the second sentence is a response to someone having said, "I think Kate has lost her way." But the speaker doesn't agree because Kate has come here before so she should know the way.

    I hope this helps. If you are still not clear on it, feel free to send me a private message and we can discuss it further.
    Thank you very much! It's very kind of you. I think I'm getting your sense. Could you help me check out if my understanding is correct or not:

    1. Kate couldn't lose her way, for she has come here several times.
    →In the speaker's opinion, if Kate wants to come, there is no chance that Kate will lose her way.

    2. Kate can't have lost her way, for she has come here several times.
    →(Suppose Kate is called to come here but hasn't shown up.) In spite of that, in the speaker's opinion there is no chance that Kate has lost her way (and Kate may get caught in a traffic jam or something, but Kate is sure to know the way here.)

    I am sorry but it seems that I don't have sufficient privileges to use the function "private message".

  4. #4
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: Would "Kate can't have lost her way, for she has come here several times."be corr

    Quote Originally Posted by bwkcaj_ca View Post

    I hope this helps. If you are still not clear on it, feel free to send me a private message and we can discuss it further.
    Bwkcaj_ca, please don't invite users to send PMs regarding language questions. It might lead others to think that it is an acceptable use of the private message facility. All language questions should be asked here in the public forum so that everyone can have the opportunity to answer and to learn.
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

  5. #5
    bwkcaj_ca is offline Member
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    Default Re: Would "Kate can't have lost her way, for she has come here several times."be corr

    Yes, I think your understanding is correct. Bear in mind there may be other situations in which one or both of these sentences would be appropriate as well. Since private messaging doesn't seem to be available I'd invite you, and any one else who's interested, to see if you can develop other circumstances in which these sentences could be used.

  6. #6
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: Would "Kate can't have lost her way, for she has come here several times."be corr

    Quote Originally Posted by Mensu View Post
    I am sorry but it seems that I don't have sufficient privileges to use the function "private message".
    You will when you've posted 10 times- it's to stop advertisers and spammers. Also, if you post in an old thread, it will reappear in the recent posts section so people will see it.

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