22 – Can – able to… – có thể… được


Also see # 28 “Permission: is it ok to do something?…. được không?”

Here’s how to say you can/are able to do something

(1) Subject + có thể + verb + object (+ được)

có thể translate straight into the word “can” in English.

(2) subject + verb + object + được 

this is used to talk about an ability that you have

Tôi có thể chạy ma ra tông
I can run marathon
Chị ấy nhảy tango được
She dance tango can/ is able to

She can/is able to dance the tango.


And how to say you cannot/are not able to do something:

Subject + không thể + verb + object (+được)

Subject + không + verb + được

Hellen Keller không thể nghe, nói, nhìn
Hellen Keller cannot hear, speak, and see
không ăn cay được
I (female) not eat spicy

I cannot eat spicy food.

Question form: Can … do something? Are you able to do something?

Question: Subject + có thể + verb (+ object) + không?

Answer: (yes), Không (no)

Anh có thể đi Canada tháng sau không?
You (male) can go to Canada next month or not?

Can you go to Canada next month?


2 responses »

  1. Pingback: Basic Lesson Directory | seahorseviet

  2. Pingback: Look But Don’t See, Listen but Don’t Hear « seahorse viet

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