Common mistake inflected form of 'be'

The Common Mistake with the Inflected Form of 'Be'

When it comes to using the inflected form of the verb 'be', there is a common mistake that many people make. This mistake often occurs when trying to determine whether to use 'is' or 'can be' in a sentence. Let's explore this issue and understand the correct usage.

Understanding the Difference between 'Is' and 'Can Be'

'Is' is the present tense third-person singular inflected form of the verb 'be.' It is commonly used to describe a state of being or to indicate that something exists in the present. For example:

  • The cat is hungry.
  • She is a doctor.
  • The flowers are beautiful.

'Can be,' on the other hand, is a phrase that combines the modal verb 'can' with the base form of the verb 'be.' It is used to indicate the potential or possibility of something being true. For example:

  • The cat can be mischievous at times.
  • She can be a bit shy in social situations.
  • The weather can be unpredictable.

The Common Mistake

The mistake often occurs when people confuse the use of 'is' and 'can be' in sentences where they are discussing potential or hypothetical situations. They erroneously use 'is' instead of 'can be.' Let's look at an example:

  • Incorrect: If I work hard enough, I know I is successful.
  • Correct: If I work hard enough, I know I can be successful.

In the incorrect example above, the speaker should have used 'can be' to indicate the potential for success. Using 'is' implies a certainty that doesn't align with the context of the sentence.

It's important to note that 'can be' implies possibility or potential, while 'is' implies certainty or a factual statement.

Linguix Grammar Checker

If you want to avoid common grammatical mistakes like confusing 'is' and 'can be,' you can use the Linguix grammar checker. It is an excellent tool that detects and corrects grammar errors, ensuring that your writing is accurate and error-free.

inflected form of 'be' mistake examples

  • Incorrect:
    Grammar checking be difficult.

    Grammar checking is|can be difficult.

  • Correct:
    Can the meeting be finished within two hours?
  • Correct:
    Could nitroglycerine poisoning be the cause of Alfred Nobel's anginal pains?
Linguix Browser extension
Fix your writing
on millions of websites
Linguix pencil
This website uses cookies to make Linguix work for you. By using this site, you agree to our cookie policy