Monday 10 March 2008

AAE Q133: 'able' vs 'capable' +


I have some questions about differences between:

1) 'be able to' and 'be capable of'

  • Able is followed by an infinitive. If someone is able to do something, they can do it and it is not unusual or surprising if they do it: 'The doctor said that after a few years I'd be able to get out of bed'. 'Will you be able to play on Saturday?'
  • Capable is followed by the preposition of and a gerund/participle. If someone is capable of (doing) something, they do not usually do it, but it is possible for them to do it if they want to: 'I'm sure he's quite capable of getting here on time, but he can't be bothered'. 'The power station is capable of generating enough electricity for the whole region'

2) 'remainder' and 'rest' - What should be used in maths: 5/3=1 remainder or
rest 2?

  • In Maths it should be 'remainder'

3) dish and bowl - I have soup in a dish or in a bowl ?

  • dish: a flat shallow container for cooking food in or serving it from: a glass dish: an ovenproof dish ; a baking / serving dish ; They helped themselves from a large dish of pasta.
  • bowl: (especially in compounds) a deep round dish with a wide open top, used especially for holding food or liquid: a salad / fruit / sugar, etc. bowl ; a washing-up bowl

Basically a dish is shallower than a bowl. I would normally eat soup from a soup-bowl.

Thank you

Hope this helps



Anonymous said...



Warren-Alex said...

I like this, thanks .. to add to your sentence you could use it as follows. --

The power station is capable of producing enough power for the whole region. However, it is not able to operate at this time.


Warren-Alex said...

In addition, you are correct with the distinction between 'dish' and 'bowl'. However, pasta can also be served in a bowl, and is often more euphemistically used, as such, in the southern USA.

The difference between 'glass' and 'cup' is capable of being two distinctly separate liquid containers, although you are more than able to use them interchangeably.

Have yourselves a good day d;-)

Anonymous said...

nice work..........