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    #1

    May / Can

    When may is used for permission i.e.

    You may leave the table when you finish your dinner.

    How to say in the past tense?

    Or is it correct? You may have left the table when you have finished your dinner.

    Regards

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    #2

    Re: May / Can

    NOT A TEACHER

    You may leave the table when you finish your dinner.


    The past tense is: 'You were allowed to leave the table when you had finished your dinner.'

    Last edited by tom3m; 06-Oct-2012 at 20:32. Reason: correction of the explanation - mistake

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    #3

    Re: May / Can

    Not quite, Tom.

    Quote Originally Posted by tom3m View Post

    The past tense is: 'You were allowed to leave the table when you
    had finished your dinner.'

    Rover

  1. bhaisahab's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: May / Can

    You could also say: "You might have left the table when you had finished your dinner." Although, "might" is not used in that way by many people in modern English.


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    #5

    Re: May / Can

    Quote Originally Posted by Rover_KE View Post
    Not quite, Tom.
    Rover
    I am sorry. I completely ignored the other part of the sentence.

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    #6

    Re: May / Can

    Happens to all of us, Tom. We focus on the point of the question and miss other parts.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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