Know about Modal Verbs of Probability Present – Can’t

What Alva said can’t be true

Modal Verbs are statements of probability. Modal Verbs express a belief in an outcome. The Modal Verb “can’t,” the topic of today’s lesson, expresses that something is most likely untrue.

When it comes to the Modal Verbs, “can’t” is usually used with “be” to speak of disbelief.

For example: 

When Alva said he had invented electric light, nobody believed him. The people said, “this can’t be true, it’s the fire that lights the home.”

Those who heard Alva speak believed that he was lying and so they showed their disbelief by saying “this can’t be true.” Yet, it was true, Thomas Alva Edison invented the light bulb.

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Know Modal Verbs of Probability Present

Cinderella May Find Her Prince

Modal Verbs are Verbs of probability. They express a guess at outcomes. Modal Verbs include:

“must, might, may, could” and “can’t”

For example: 

“Cinderella may find her prince.” 

Is a guess at the likelihood of Cinderella, the mistreated stepdaughter, meeting and marrying Prince Charming. 

The Modal Verb “may” expresses a greater degree of certainty than “might,” although neither are quantified into exact numbers. 

Alternatively, someone may say:

“Cinderella might find her prince.” 


“Cinderella could find her prince.” 

which expresses little belief in a positive outcome. 

And finally, you may hear someone say:

“Cinderella can’t find her prince.”

This means that there’s no likelihood of her meeting and marrying Prince Charming. 

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Gerunds after Prepositions

Mowing the lawn is no fun

Interestingly, Gerund is pronounced JEH-ruhnd. It’s like GIF or Giraffe. I know there’s a debate about the pronunciation of GIF, but the creator, Steve Wilhite, says that it’s said with a soft j

Simply, a Gerund is a Noun acting as a Verb. A few examples include “going, hearing,” and “having.” We make a Gerund by adding ing to the end of a Verb. 

Gerunds may be alone or with other words to form a Gerund Phrase. Altogether, this phrase behaves like a single Noun.

Much like Nouns and Noun Phrases, Gerunds and Gerund Phrases can be found in the Object, Subject, or Predicate Nominative portions of a sentence (In regards to SVO). And so, Gerunds can act in any way an ordinary Noun can. 

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