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Curso de Inglés Intermedio: Gramática Clase 21

Past modals: should have

Introductions constructions with should + present perfect forms to express changes in past actions.

Would you like to change something you did? Using the structure learned today name the things you regret or the things you should have done differently in your life.

Explanation: You can express recommendations in the past or regrets.

Structure: Subject + should + have + Past Participle

  • When I was in high school, I should have studied harder.
  • You shouldn't have waited so long to talk about your plans with your family.
  • Bob should have prepared better for the exam, he failed.

Modals in Past

Modals Concept Example
Would have Past unreal action If I had guessed the future, I would have taken some precautions against what would happen.
Could have Past unreal ability He could have taken the flight
May have Past unreal posibility We may have passed the math exam, but it was in Spanish
Might have Past unreal small probability You might have sold the car, if you really needed the money
Should have Past unreal recommendation You should have listened to the teacher
Must have Past unreal assumption We must have been crazy!