Modals in Past

Number 3 of 71 in C1/2 - ADVANCED+

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Modals in Past

 

 ‘Tenia que (haber)..’?

John had to go to the dentist= He had the obligation to go.

John should have gone to the dentist= It was a good idea, but he didn’t go.

John must have gone to the dentist= I suppose he went, but I don’t know

What would you say:

Your watch was stolen at a party at your house….

I ………………………………. (hide) my watch

It ……………………………… (be) David- he was missing for 20 minutes!

Mary and James……………………..(help) me look for it

 

(should have hidden/must have been/had to help)

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NOTE: To suppose something, the negative of ‘must have + pp’ is ‘can’t have + pp’

Example: David can’t have stolen your watch- He was with me. You must have lost it!

NOTE 2: Might is for ‘perhaps/maybe’. If you want to say ‘I’m 70% sure’ (sin pruebas)  use it instead of ‘must’. in the past ‘might have’ means ‘I think that happened..’, and ‘must have’ means ‘I’m sure it happened’.
Try these sentences with ‘must have’ ‘can’t have’ and ‘might have’:
1. Seguro que hubo 50 personas en esa fiesta
2.Tal vez hubo 200 invitados en la boda
3.Quizás llegaron ya
4. Un huracán? Tuvo que ser horrible!
5. Tan mal no pudo ser ¡Estais bronceados y felices!
6. Aprobó? Tal vez hizo trampa…

Comments? Questions? Leave a message below…..

1. There must have been 50 people in that party  2. There might have been 200 guests at the wedding  3. They might have arrived by now  4. A hurricaine? It must have been awful!  5. It can’t (or ‘couldn’t) have been so bad – you’re tanned and happy! 6.He passed? He might have cheated….


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