should have/could have/would have

Discussion in 'Grammar & Pronunciation' started by 1500, Jul 19, 2008.

  1. 1500

    1500 Member

    Jak se reknou ta slovesa?

    "could have": He could have bought a car. (he was able to, but he didn't)
    "should have": He should have bought a car. (he was supposed to, but he didn't)
    "would have": He would have bought a car, but... (he wanted to, but for some reason he didn't or couldn't)
    "might have": He might have bought a car. =Maybe he bought a car. (it's possible, but I don't know whether he did or not)

    Pekny den!
  2. hribecek

    hribecek Well-Known Member

    He could have bought a car - mohl (si) koupit auto.
    He should have bought a car - mel (si) koupit auto.
    He would have bought a car - koupil by (si) auto.
    He might have bought a car - mozna (si) koupil auto. (I think)
  3. 1500

    1500 Member

    Ja rozumim, ale jak se reknou "would" and "would have"?
    Koupil by auto: He would buy a car (kdyby mel penize--v pritomnosti)?
    He would have bought a car (ale nekoupil auto--v minulosti): ?

  4. scrimshaw

    scrimshaw Well-Known Member

    'would' and 'would have' are incorporated in the verb.

    Koupil bych si auto, ale neměl jsem dost peněz.

    My understanding.
  5. phi11ip

    phi11ip Well-Known Member

    My understanding
    Conditional - I would buy a car
    koupil bych si auto.

    Past conditional - I would have bought a car
    Byl bych si (býval) koupil auto. - býval is optional
  6. hribecek

    hribecek Well-Known Member

    Usually 'I would buy a car' and 'I would have bought a car' are said in the same way in Czech - koupil bych si auto and the difference is expressed through context. The bych byl byval stuff is generally only used in older written Czech and even most Czechs (at least in Litomerice) have to concentrate and think it through a little to say it correctly.
    Correct me if I'm wrong.
  7. Troll

    Troll Well-Known Member


    Kdyby měl peníze, koupil by si automobil.


    Kdyby byl měl peníze, byl by si koupil automobil. (rather bookish)

    Past (with býval):

    Kdyby byl býval měl (v mládí) peníze, byl by si koupil automobil.
  8. Troll

    Troll Well-Known Member

    Better (at least in Literary Czech):

    Koupil bych si auto, ale nemám dost peněz. (present)
    Byl bych si koupil auto, ale neměl jsem dost peněz. (past)
  9. 1500

    1500 Member

    Thanks, I appreciate the help. Does "byl" always come first? "Byl bych si koupil auto" instead of "Koupil bych byl si auto"?
  10. Karel_lerak

    Karel_lerak Well-Known Member

    In these cases no other word order possible:
    Koupil bych si auto ...
    Byl bych si koupil auto ...
    Kdybych si koupil auto ...
    Kdybych si byl koupil auto ...
    in 2nd person
    Koupil by sis auto ...
    Byl by sis koupil auto ...
    Kdyby sis koupil auto
    Kdyby sis byl koupil auto ...
    3rd person
    Koupil by si auto ....
    Byl by si koupil auto ...
    Kdyby si koupil auto ...
    Kdyby si byl koupil auto ...
  11. Ctyri koruny

    Ctyri koruny Well-Known Member

    Am I right in thinking there are no modal verbs in Czech?

    Bare in mind I haven't even got past the present tense yet! I'm no where near conditionals!
  12. KiwiCroat

    KiwiCroat Member

    Hey Ctyri Koruny.

    There definitely are modal verbs in Czech... kinda hard to escape 'em generally (is it possible to not have modal verbs??)

    Anyway, the main ones are:

    Moct/moci - Can
    Muset - To be able to
    Chtit - To want
    Umět - To know how to
    Smět - May


    -Můžu si vzít ten malý kousek? (Can I take that small piece.)
    -Ano, můžete. (Yes, you can.)

    -Musím si koupit jízdenku do telče. Musíte si taky koupit jízdenku? (I have to buy myself a ticket to Telč. Do you have to buy a ticket also?)

    -Chci něco k jídlu. (I want something to eat.)
    -Chcete slyšet nějakou zprávu? (Do you want to hear some news.)

    -Umíte dobře Česky! (You Czech well.)

    -Smíme tady kouřit? (May I smoke here.)
    -Ne, nesmíte. (No you may not.)

    You will notice that since you can use two verbs in a sentence using modal verbs, you must use the infinitive of the verb following the modal verb.

    Also, to learn Czech properly (you ound really keen) make sure you are using correct Czech at all times. Go here:

    Hope this helps.
  13. Ctyri koruny

    Ctyri koruny Well-Known Member

    Korean only has three modal verbs, I forget which three, but I know it causes them extreme difficulty using the others in English. Irish doesn't have any really, well I suppose... it's more about how you arrange the sentence and the verb endings you use, there arn't any actually "words" you trow in there just because a sentence starts with If (Dá mbeach, Mná) or is otherwise hypothetical.

    If I remember right in my limited understanding of Korean grammar when you want to say someone "can" do something you say they have it, "He has run" "He has English" same with Irish, but in Irish you could also say "has the ability to" .
    "Tá Bearla agam."
    (There is English I have) / I have Enligsh
    "Táim abalta caint as Bearla"
    I am able to talk in English.
    (im is the "I" ending of Tá, same as in Czech!, Tá means lots of different things, you might already have noticed)

    I find the similarities between Czech and Irish fascinating, I think I'll write a short essay on it next year, when I have enough information about Czech!
    It would be better written by someone who was fluent in both languages, maybe some day!

    That does help! Thanks so much, I'll make a note of it. And the Czech keyboard too!

    One question, Muset, it has two functions? or it is "must"?
  14. KiwiCroat

    KiwiCroat Member

    Hi again,

    'Muset' is kinda tricky in that it doesn't directly translate into english as must and must not:

    Musím jít do samoobsluhy. (I have to/must go to the supermarket)

    Nemusíte jít do obchodu. (You don't have to go to the shop)

    To say "You must not" use smět:

    Nesmíte jít ven. (You must not go out).

    So it is useful to say 'muset' means necessity (have to/don't have to) rather than must.

    One other modal verb is to use 'mít' with an infinitive verb to mean 'ought to/should'. Note the difference:

    Mám velký problém. (I have a big problem).

    Mám si koupit ten modrý svetr? (Should I buy that blue sweater?)

    Or a more expanded question: Co si mám dneska vybrat k obědu? (What should I choose for lunch today?)

    Of course, you can use the same mechanisms in he past tense and conditional.

    Hopes this helps.
  15. Ctyri koruny

    Ctyri koruny Well-Known Member

    That's great thanks!

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