"Can't" to talk about the future probability

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Luluw0ngs

Member
Singlish
I wonder if It is correct to say " it can't rain tomorrow".

Grammar books stated that "Can" is not used to talk about the future probability.

For example, one can't say" It can rain tomorrow".

but a book shows an example " it can't possibly rain tomorrow".

Is "Can't" used to talk about "future impossibility" ( I mean what will 100%,certainly not happen in the future) ?
 
  • dadane

    Senior Member
    English-London
    I read "It can't rain tomorrow" as more of a rhetorical question than a statement of fact: "It can't rain tomorrow, can it"? = "It won't rain tomorrow, will it"? "It can't rain tomorrow" as a statement rather than a question, does take on the tone of a edict rather than an observation.

    Edit: I have also heard it used in the sense "It mustn't rain tomorrow" = "I am really banking on the fact that it wont rain tomorrow, so it had better not".
     
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