Could that have <had> something to do with...

JJXR

Senior Member
Russian
Hello to all,

Thanks for reading my post.


Source:

Youtube video [Name: 'DARK SIDE OF THE MOON The Universe, Space, Science, Mysteries Documentary'; < --- > ]

Sample sentence:

Could planet-sized objects have ever collided? And could that have something to do with the formation of the Moon?

Question:

Is it possible to use "could that have had" instead of "could that have" Do I understand the difference in meaning correctly?

[Could planet-sized objects have ever collided? And could that have something to do with the formation of the Moon? = Is it possible that planet-sized objects have ever collided? And is it possible that that has something to do with the formation of the Moon?]

[Could planet-sized objects have ever collided? And could that have had something to do with the formation of the Moon? = Was it possible that planet-sized objects had ever collided? And was it possible that that had something to do with the formation of the Moon?]


Thanks a lot for any comments, corrections or suggestions!

Regards,
JJXR

< Edited to remove directions to time marker in video. Cagey, moderator >
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Yes, backshifting the tense of "have" would work fine, if you replaced the "And" at the beginning of the sentence with "If so,". (The same applies to the sentence as it stands!)
     

    JJXR

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Thanks lingobingo and PaulQ.
    [Could planet-sized objects have ever collided? And could that have something to do with the formation of the Moon? = Is it possible that planet-sized objects have ever collided? And is it possible that that has something to do with the formation of the Moon?]

    [Could planet-sized objects have ever collided? And could that have had something to do with the formation of the Moon? = Was it possible that planet-sized objects had ever collided? And was it possible that that had something to do with the formation of the Moon?]
    Is my interpretation of the blue part correct in both cases?
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I'm not sure what you mean. The blue part Could planet-sized objects have ever collided? is the same in both instances. It doesn't suddenly mean something else if you change the following sentence.
     

    JJXR

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Thanks lingobingo.
    I'm not sure what you mean. The blue part Could planet-sized objects have ever collided? is the same in both instances. It doesn't suddenly mean something else if you change the following sentence.
    What does it mean? How can I paraphrase it?
     

    JJXR

    Senior Member
    Russian
    I'm not sure what you mean. The blue part Could planet-sized objects have ever collided? is the same in both instances. It doesn't suddenly mean something else if you change the following sentence.
    Hi lingobingo. In this thread, the construction "could have done" can be interpreted in two different ways depending on what follows further in the sentence.
    [Could planet-sized objects have ever collided? And could that have something to do with the formation of the Moon? = Is it possible that planet-sized objects have ever collided? And is it possible that that has something to do with the formation of the Moon?]
    In this case, the timeframe of the blue part is the present.
    [Could planet-sized objects have ever collided? And could that have had something to do with the formation of the Moon? = Was it possible that planet-sized objects had ever collided? And was it possible that that had something to do with the formation of the Moon?]
    In this case, the timeframe of the blue part is the past.

    Why do you think that the blue part can not be interpreted in two ways?
     
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