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Thread: question tag


    • Join Date: Apr 2008
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    #1

    question tag

    Dear Friends,

    What is the question tag of the following:

    He can't have bought a house, ...?

    If the question tag for He must have bought a house, can't he?, then the tag for He can't have bought a house - is 'must he'?

    Thanks for your help.

    Palinkasocsi

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    #2

    Re: question tag

    can he


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    #3

    Re: question tag

    Where are you getting this grammatical advice from?

    He can't have bought a house, can he?

    He must have bought a house, mustn't he?
    (This is not a good construction. A native speaker would be satisfied with saying:

    "He must have bought a house?" stressing 'must' and with a facial look that reads "I'm going to have a hard time believing otherwise!"
    Last edited by David L.; 08-Dec-2008 at 16:44.


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    #4

    Re: question tag

    Thanks RonBee and David L.!

    Does it mean that the tag in -

    He must have bought a house, can't he?

    is incorrect? A textbook key suggested 'can't he'.

    Palinkasocsi
    Last edited by palinkasocsi; 08-Dec-2008 at 17:11.


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    #5

    Re: question tag

    Quote Originally Posted by palinkasocsi View Post
    Thanks RonBee and David L.!

    Does it mean that tag in -

    He must have bought a house, can't he?

    is incorrect?
    A textbook key suggested 'can't he'.

    Palinkasocsi
    Have a look at this page and you will be able to find your answer by yourself.

    English Grammar: Tag Questions | EnglishClub.com


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    #6

    Re: question tag

    Totally incorrect.
    What book is it you are reading this in?


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    #7

    Re: question tag

    Quote Originally Posted by David L. View Post
    Totally incorrect.
    What book is it you are reading this in?
    Dear David:
    Your question: What book is it you are reading this in?

    As a non-native English speaker I think that your question is not natural.
    Is this sentence natural for a native one? If not, help me to rephrase it please.
    Thanks.
    Last edited by inorderto; 08-Dec-2008 at 17:11.


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    #8

    Re: question tag

    It is a Hungarian textbook, preparing students for language exams. There are textbook editors who think they speak good English. In most cases it is true. This seems to be an exception.

    Palinkasocsi


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    #9

    Re: question tag

    Dear Inorderto,

    To find out whether my question is "natural" for a native or not, please ask a native.

    Palinkasocsi


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    #10

    Re: question tag

    Inorderto:
    Dear David:
    Your question: What book is it you are reading this in?

    As a non-native English speaker I think that your question is not natural.
    Is this sentence natural for a native one? If not, help me to rephrase it please.
    Thanks.


    How would you have phrased the question?
    (I think I know; but then we will have something specific to discuss.!

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