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      • Native Language:
      • Armenian
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      • Iran
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    #1

    might not have

    Which are correct:

    1-We did not use his method because it might not have worked. We used another method which we knew would work and it did.


    2-We did not use his method because it could have not worked. We used another method which we knew would work and it did.


    3-We did not use his method because we knew it might not work. We used another method which we knew would work and it did.

    4-We did not use his method because we knew it might not have worked. We used another method which we knew would work and it did.


    They are all supposed to mean more or less the same. The second sentence in all of them is the same.

    I think '2' is off. It might be outdated. I am not sure it is incorrect.

    I think '4' is incorrect. To me 'it might not have worked' refers to a time in the past of the time of 'our knowing'. It is backward-looking, so to speak.

    Gratefully,
    Navi.

  1. probus's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: might not have

    They are all correct in my opinion, and I agree they all mean pretty much the same thing. The best choice depends on context, mostly the tense of the preceding or following sentences. 2 differs from the others in that "could not" excludes the possibility of successful use, whereas "might not" allows it.

    • Member Info
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    #3

    Re: might not have

    Could not have worked would exclude the possibility of success, but could have not worked does not IMO.

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