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  1. keannu's Avatar
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    #1

    "could" can't be used for past achievements?

    Is it true that "could" can't be used for past achievements like in the following?

    I could get a scholarship last year.(x) - according to a grammar book.
    I was ablt to get a scholarship last year.(0)

    I never knew "could" can't be used for past achievements, Is it so strict or flexible?

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: "could" can't be used for past achievements?

    We can use could for a general ability: I could speak French and German before I was four.

    We can't use could for something that was done on a single occasion: I could finish the report yesterday.

    We would use another verb, such as manage to or be able to.

    Could
    can be used in the negative for both:

    I couldn't speak Russian until I was ten.
    I couldn't finish the report yesterday.

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