LINGUISTICS & CULTURE
|Autor:||Thomas - USA|
|Data:||18/SET/2013 10:44 PM|
Thomaz, you probably already know this. I just want to point out that "could" usually refers to ability and sometimes possibility.
I could not go. I had house guests.
I could not finish the book because the electricity went out in our part of the city.
I am so hungry I could eat a horse!
With "would", however, the meaning is less restrictive and more general, often it is used in "contrary to fact" sentences, etc.
I would not go if I were you. The house is haunted. (contrary to fact)
I would read every night before going to sleep. (repetitive action in the past)
Note that sometimes the difference in meaning is very slight and either form could be used without any problem.
He asked if I would go. (The past form of "He asks if I will go.")
He asked if I could go. (if I was capable of going, if I had no problems or restrictions, etc.)
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