Meaning of CAN in English

CAN

I. modal verb

COLLOCATIONS FROM OTHER ENTRIES

a beer bottle/can (= a bottle/can for beer )

Empty beer cans littered the ground.

a bottle/can of beer (= containing beer )

The fridge was full of cans of beer.

a can of soup ( also a tin of soup British English )

I opened a can of mushroom soup.

a can/tin/pot of paint

He had spilt a can of paint on the floor.

appearances can be deceptive

Gwen’s students may look angelic, but appearances can be deceptive .

As far as I can make out

As far as I can make out , he has never been married.

as far as the eye could see (= all the distance you could see )

The plains stretched for as far as the eye could see .

as fast as...legs could carry (= running as quickly as he could )

Johnny ran off as fast as his legs could carry him .

as long as...could

She tried to stay awake for as long as she could .

as much as...possibly can

We shall be contributing as much as we possibly can to the campaign.

As you can see

As you can see , the house needs some work doing on it.

be more than sb can bear

He sometimes felt the grief was more than he could bear.

can be excused (= his lack of interest is reasonable )

Smith can be excused for his lack of interest in the course .

can easily imagine

I can easily imagine how frightening the accident must have been.

can hardly bear sth (= find sth very difficult or upsetting to do )

He was so ashamed that he could hardly bear to look at her.

can hardly breathe

It was so hot that I felt as though I could hardly breathe.

can hardly

I can hardly believe it.

can hardly

You can hardly blame Tom for not waiting.

can hardly/scarcely believe sth

I could scarcely believe my luck.

can hardly/scarcely imagine (= find it difficult to imagine )

He could scarcely imagine what living in such poor conditions must have been like.

Can I offer you

Can I offer you something to drink?

can opener

can opener

a can opener

can stomach

A 26% water rate increase is more than most residents can stomach .

can tell/see the difference (= can recognize how two things are different )

I can’t really see the difference between these two colours.

(can) understand sb doing sth

I can understand her wanting to live alone and be independent.

can well imagine (= can easily imagine )

I can well imagine how delighted you were with the news.

can/bottle/glass etc of lager

a pint of lager

can/can't cope

Older people can't cope so well with the heat.

can/can't cope

Older people can't cope so well with the heat.

can/can’t see

From the tower, you can see for miles.

I can’t see a thing without my glasses.

can/can’t see

You can see the Houses of Parliament from here.

Can...manage

Can you manage dinner tonight?

can/may I suggest (= used to politely suggest a different idea )

May I suggest that you think carefully before rushing into this?

canned ( also tinned British English )

She heated up some tinned soup.

could barely

She could barely understand English.

could hardly move

The bar was so crowded you could hardly move .

could hardly

The children were so excited they could hardly speak.

could hardly

My boss could hardly be described as handsome.

could have...pick of

Sarah could have her pick of any university in the country.

Could I interest you in a drink/dessert etc? (= used as a polite way of offering someone a drink etc )

could manage

‘Is there any chance you could work late?’ ‘I think I could manage an hour.’

could name

They’re a lot better than some airlines I could name .

could take...pick of

He knew he could take his pick of any of the girls in the office.

everything you could...desire

The hotel has everything you could possibly desire .

everything...possibly could

Doctors did everything they possibly could to save his life.

from what I can gather/as far as I can gather (= this is what I believe to be true )

She’s his niece, from what I can gather.

from what I can gather/as far as I can gather (= this is what I believe to be true )

She’s his niece, from what I can gather.

garbage can

How could...possibly

How could anyone possibly do such a thing?

I can assure you

The document is genuine, I can assure you .

I can take a hint (= used when you understand someone's hint )

All right, I can take a hint. I'm leaving.

I can truly say

I can truly say I’ve never enjoyed myself so much.

I could use a laugh (= I want to hear something funny to cheer me up )

Tell me what she said - I could use a laugh.

if anything can go wrong, it will

I’m sure that if anything can go wrong, it will.

it can be seen that/we can see that

From this graph, it can be seen that some people are more susceptible to the disease.

it can be seen that/we can see that

From this graph, it can be seen that some people are more susceptible to the disease.

It could be argued that

It could be argued that a dam might actually increase the risk of flooding.

neither does/can/will etc sb

‘I don’t have any money.’ ‘Neither do I.’

Tom didn’t believe a word she said, and neither did the police.

not only do/will/can etc

Not only do the nurses want a pay increase, they want reduced hours as well.

not trust sb an inch/not trust sb as far as you can throw them (= not trust someone at all )

only then did/would/could etc sb do sth (= at that moment and not before )

Only then did she tell him about the attack.

sb can do no wrong (= they are perfect )

Nathan adored her, and she could do no wrong in his eyes.

sb can hardly refuse (= it would be unreasonable or very difficult to refuse )

Going out was the last thing I wanted to do, but I could hardly refuse.

spray can

sth could be worse

Cheer up – things could be worse.

sth to call your own/which you can call your own (= something that belongs to you )

She just wanted a place to call her own.

tinned/canned

Do canned vegetables have as many vitamins as fresh ones?

trash can

watering can

we can safely assume (= it is almost certain )

I think we can safely assume that interest rates will go up again soon.

with as much...as he could muster

‘It’s going to be fine,’ replied David, with as much confidence as he could muster .

you can see sth in sb’s face (= you know what someone is feeling from the expression on their face )

She could see the despair in his face.

PHRASES FROM OTHER ENTRIES

(I/you/he etc) can't complain

I can only think/suppose/assume (that)

As for an Iguana Air, I can only assume it's a tropical airline.

Now if I can only think of their name.

I can tell you/I'm telling you

I can't be doing with sth

I can't be fagged

I can't promise (anything)

I can't rightly say/don't rightly know

I can't say (that)

I can't tell you

"So is Maggie really pregnant?" "I can't tell you."

I can't tell you how grateful I am for your help.

I can't work sb out

I could eat a horse

I could have wept

Without knowing what he'd got. I could have wept thinking what I'd missed.

I could murder a beer/pizza etc

I could/would go for sth

I could really go for a taco right now.

But at first I would go for a holiday.

You always told me that if I worked hard, one day, I would go for Secondary.

I don't blame you/you can hardly blame him etc

I nearly died/I could have died

I would be grateful if you could/would ...

I would be grateful if you could tell me anything about the guitar.

I would be grateful if you could tell me where I can get hold of such posters.

I would be grateful if you would examine Exhibit A. Do you recognise it?

If you will be attending the site visit, I would be grateful if you could complete the tear-off slip below.

This will take place at the above address on and I would be grateful if you could attend at.

I'll see what I can do

"I really need it by tomorrow." "I can't make any promises, but I'll see what I can do."

I/you can count sb/sth on (the fingers of) one hand

I/you can't/couldn't ask for a better sth

a leopard can't change its spots

any fool can do sth

Any fool can make a baby, but it takes a real man to raise his children.

But it is for you already, any fool can see you're in no shape to continue.

Conversely, any fool can sit down at a slot machine.

Of course any fool can write down 1,2,3,4 and even 5,6,7,8 opposite the names of candidates on a ballot paper.

as best you can

I'll deal with the problem as best I can.

I cleaned the car up as best I could, but it still looked a mess.

We'll have to manage as best we can without you.

And her reaction to her illness was, as best I can glean, fraught with fear, discouragement, and depression.

I would therefore be grateful if you could refer back to the letter I wrote and respond as best you can.

It is therefore necessary to locate as best we can the final resting place or incidence of the major types of taxes.

Only a proportion of them are successful and the rest must struggle as best they can to obtain mates.

Our culture has no Obon ready-made, but we are filling in as best we can.

Then you gently and gradually work the new feather on, positioning it to match the original plumage as best you can.

We must also imagine our way into myth, as best we can, like actors in a play.

You just have to wait and catch your moment or piece things together as best you can.

as far as I can judge

as fast as his/her legs could carry him/her

She ran to her mother as fast as her legs could carry her.

as/so far as I know/I can remember/I can tell/I can see etc

be sick of/can't stand/hate the sight of sb/sth

before you can say Jack Robinson

before you could blink

beggars can't be choosers

It would be nice to have a suit with a better fit, but as they say, beggars can't be choosers.

bite off more than you can chew

Many kids who leave home to live alone find they have bitten off more than they can chew.

can do sth blindfold

can do sth with one hand (tied) behind your back

can do sth with your eyes shut/closed

can do without sth

And this you can do without a wall.

Can you suggest anything I can do without making him feel unhappy or threatened?

Neither can do without some comfort and support in your life.

Oh, I think you can do without that.

The hunt can do without a report like that in the local press.

This is a job you can do without too much difficulty.

We, the volunteers, can do without this hassle.

can hold your drink/liquor/alcohol etc

can look after yourself

But now she can look after herself.

It is generally assumed that at postgraduate level and above users can look after themselves.

can only hope/wait etc

Dagenham's employees can only hope that Ford does not resurrect the phrase in the 1990s.

Hamilton can only hope he improves as much as Benes has since the Padres traded him.

Like the steeplechase where Vronsky breaks his mare's back with reckless riding, you can only wait for the pistol shot.

The scientists can only wait and hope.

Users can only hope the vendors will apply the same effort to other unresolved technology issues.

We can only hope Gilstrap won't push to have any of that text deleted.

We can only wait and help each other and watch this dreadful plague spread.

You can only hope they learned from their mistakes.

can read sb like a book

I can read you like a book - some book I've read six times already.

can see/spot/tell sth a mile off

But I think he's lovely, and you can tell a mile off that he likes you.

He's a hawkeye, and can spot one a mile off, like that faraway kestrel.

Our sportsdesk can spot from a mile off a person who can not tell an in-swinger from a bouncer.

can you beat that/it?

All I can remember of her as a baby is how much she loved butter. Can you beat that?

Agricultural machinery, can you beat that?

But can they beat it consistently?

Can you beat that man, Senna?

can't answer for sb

can't bear sth

can't begin to understand/imagine etc

can't believe your eyes/ears

I couldn't believe my ears when she told me the cheapest flight was $1,100.

can't do sth for toffee

can't face

can't get enough of sth/sb

can't hack sth

can't hold a candle to sb/sth

Basketball stars today can't hold a candle to Michael Jordan.

can't make head or/nor tail of sth

can't place sb

can't say fairer than that

can't stand

Don't invite Alice. Mum can't stand the sight of her.

Europeans never stay there for long. They can't stand the heat.

Her father can't stand liver and onions.

I can't stand the way he's always telling people what they should do.

If there's one thing I can't stand , it's hypocrisy.

She couldn't stand the thought of losing her children.

We used to be quite good friends but now I can't stand her.

can't take your eyes off sb/sth

can't very well (do sth)

can't/couldn't be arsed (to do sth)

can't/couldn't get over sth

can't/couldn't seem to do sth

I just can't seem to come up with lyrics for this song.

can't/don't believe sth

I can't believe you lied to me!

When I saw the video, I was like, I don't believe it!

can/could afford

He can afford to argue with the local hierarchy when the interests of his order require it.

If you can afford to do so, buying your home outright usually makes sense.

Jeremy Taylor is some one who can afford to put his principles into practice.

More men would take leave if they could afford to, but taking leave usually means sacrificing income.

Pip will simply be a gentleman because he can afford it.

The Otis family house in Atchison had finally been sold that February, so Amy could afford to splurge a little.

Two courses were probably all she could afford .

You must be careful not to borrow more money that you can afford to repay.

can/could always do sth

can/could/may I have

Are you saying that you're refusing to do that? ... Could I have your number?

How can I have a death certificate?

How could I have been anything but evil to her?

How could I have been such a fool as to take him seriously?

How else could I have known about it unless I was your son?

It seemed a dream come true-what more could I have asked for?

My question is, how can I have problems like other fishkeepers?

What could I have paid for it?

canned music/laughter

Some hotels programme their canned music in twenty-four hour cycles, varying by location and the hour.

You do not warm to this lady, who delivers her lines to camera as if waiting for the canned laughter.

cannot/could not bring yourself to do sth

But I just couldn't bring myself to do it.

He had died somewhere on the way to his next case, and Quinn could not bring himself to feel sorry.

I debated with myself but in the end, I could not bring myself to pack up and leave.

Rain could not bring herself to put this to the test.

She could not bring herself to fall down the house stairs.

The New-York Historical Society couldn't bring itself to do that.

The teakettle made a brisk whistling sound, but John Wade could not bring himself to move.

This little subterfuge the guard put into motion somehow he could not bring himself to do it.

carry the can (for sb/sth)

He carried the can with him into the bathroom where he stripped off his clothes and turned on the shower.

In the Army some one has to carry the can.

In the unlikely event of trouble they would understandably not want to carry the can alone.

It wasn't their fault, usually, that the firm was doing badly, but they had to carry the can.

Just her to carry the can, the prerogative of natural leaders of men.

Only I had to carry the can for it.

could do with sth

And Katherine could do with all the comfort she could get for the illness was slowly and inexorably taking its toll.

But the Olympic gold medal was so far away from what I thought I could do with my life.

He could do with a warm bed.

I could do with a change of scenery.

Just imagine what we could do with this idea.

That was nice, she could do with settling.

The governor said he could do with something to eat.

We could do with another girl in the chorus.

could do with sth

And Katherine could do with all the comfort she could get for the illness was slowly and inexorably taking its toll.

But the Olympic gold medal was so far away from what I thought I could do with my life.

He could do with a warm bed.

I could do with a change of scenery.

Just imagine what we could do with this idea.

That was nice, she could do with settling.

The governor said he could do with something to eat.

We could do with another girl in the chorus.

could go either way

It could go either way, as we have seen in previous months of March.

M., still could go either way.

The latest opinion poll suggests the vote could go either way.

could use sth

could/can you possibly

But what else could she possibly hope to see? she wondered miserably.

But what on earth can he possibly have been trying to prove?

How can they possibly control such success?

How could she possibly know, since he had not set eyes on the girl?

What can I possibly say now?

What conversation could we possibly have had there, then?

What could she possibly tell him, that he would want to hear?

could/can/might easily

A high-resolution image, by contrast, could easily run as large as 15 million to 20 million bytes.

A single mutational step can easily be reversed.

But a small error in the procedure could easily leave her inoperable, or at least changed beyond recognition.

Governments can easily guarantee their employees a job, without guaranteeing the job they currently hold.

If you are writing on a complex topic a reader can easily become confused.

This was his hobby, sketching vertical monstrosities, though he might easily have been a spy.

Yet the world champion is so unpredictably gifted that one on-song display could easily enable her to sweep aside the opposition.

Young minds can easily assimilate and embrace all kinds of musical styles.

could/may/might yet do sth

don't know/can't tell etc which is which

how can/could sb do sth?

how do/can you expect ...?

if looks could kill

if you can't beat 'em, join 'em

if you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen

it can't be helped

It's not an ideal solution, but it can't be helped .

it cannot be otherwise/how can it be otherwise?

it was all I could do to do sth

I followed one up the motorway just yesterday and it was all I could do to not retch.

When pro golfer Tiger Woods won the Masters two weeks ago, it was all I could do to suppress a yawn.

it was as much as sb could do to do sth

it's the least I can do

may/might/could (just) as well

And if you have to plough the field anyway, you might as well plant it at the same time.

And we might as well get used to it and resolve to cope.

Besides, they cost so much, you might as well get some fun out of them.

I thought I might just as well come down to the point.

If the traveler expects the high way to be safe and well-graded, he might as well stay at home.

It might as well be now.

She might as well see how the enemy behaved themselves in a place like this.

While she was there, they might as well have added the charge of breaching the Trades Description Act.

may/might/could well

As we have already noted, he may well have been a militant nationalist who did not shrink from violence.

But the women whom they find may well not match their feminist consciousness.

By and large Alex and I think these developments are likely to give tangible gains and could well become a priority for implementation.

In addition, the clarification of such issues could well provide the initial stimulus for a whole school language policy.

It is too early to be entirely sure, but it looks as though the tide may well have turned.

The requirements may well be modified as detailed work and discussion proceed.

mustn't/can't grumble

nice work if you can get it

no amount of sth can/will etc do sth

But no amount of bashful cuteness can disguise its humourless narcissism.

But no amount of money can buy what Nakamatsu really wants -- lasting fame.

It is due to the inefficiency of the Government which no amount of Budget bribery can possibly erase.

So implausible, so achingly out of touch are they, no amount of Toytown trickery can disguise their ancient irrelevance.

The key is in the cooking; no amount of marinating will tenderize a tough cut of meat.

Therefore, no amount of personality can compensate for mediocre chili. o Judging chili is very personal and subjective.

Translation here must be indeterminate because no amount of evidence will guarantee that the translation we offer will be uniquely correct.

Voice over April's pursuing compensation though no amount of mony can make up for what she's lost.

not if I can help it

"Are you going to stay very long?" "Not if I can help it."

nothing could be further from the truth

A lot of people think soufflés are hard to make. Nothing could be further from the truth.

They say he is a spy, but nothing could be further from the truth.

nothing could be further from the truth

nothing could be/is further from sb's mind/thoughts

nothing/no one can touch sb/sth

run before you can walk

I think too that she wants to run before she can walk.

Just don't try to run before you can walk.

Try to be honest with your use of the table and don't attempt to run before you can walk.

sb can be forgiven for thinking/believing/feeling etc sth

sb can breathe easy/easily

sb can dish it out but they can't take it

sb can do sth in their sleep

sb can do sth standing on their head

sb can ill afford (to do) sth

The senator can ill afford another scandal.

If land is not suitable for efficient farming, we can ill afford it being used for inefficient agriculture.

It does not make sense to squander important resources that the nation can ill afford to lose.

Many of them are in fact very poor and can ill afford their habit.

Often it is something they can ill afford.

Sotheby's can ill afford to have its auction prices called into question.

Surely it would be a drain on Party resources that it can ill afford.

There may be no alternative to leave of absence, even though the nurse can ill afford the loss of income.

Yet it is an area which practitioners can ill afford to ignore.

sb can keep sth

sb can sleep easy

sb can stick sth

sb can stuff sth

sb can take a joke

sb can take it or leave it

As for the moody magnetism Method actors devote all their energy trying to perfect, Allen can take it or leave it.

To others, they can take it or leave it.

sb can whistle for sth

You belong on your own block, where I can whistle for you.

sb can't abide sb/sth

I can't abide the idea of them getting married.

sb can't do sth to save his/her life

sb can't get it into their (thick) skull

sb can't have it both ways

sb can't help (doing) sth

I can't help it. I hear that song and I have to dance.

I can't help wondering what happened to that little girl.

Ron can't help the way he feels about her.

You talk to the guy for five minutes, and you can't help but like him.

sb can't help noticing sth

sb can't wait/can hardly wait

sb can't/couldn't be bothered (to do sth)

sb can/could do sth for England

sb could do worse than do sth

A woman could do worse than be a nurse.

He could do worse than spend his evening keeping an eye on her.

In groping for useful precedents, one could do worse than heed the tale of a man named Sherwood Rowland.

The West could do worse than to base its policy towards the Middle East on that aspiration.

You could do worse than take a leaf out of the health economists' book.

sb could have sworn (that) ...

All of which is very curious we could have sworn Colin Milburn went to good old Greencroft comprehensive.

Athelstan could have sworn he was acting as if there was some one else there.

Corbett could have sworn that momentarily he glimpsed another figure, shadow-like, but fled on.

He could have sworn the pile of letters had been deeper, that there had been many more.

No, he recalled other sightings, so real you could have sworn they were alive ... until they vanished.

She could have sworn the light had been yellow - pure yellow.

The friar could have sworn that Sir John was singing a hymn or a song under his breath.

The Myrcans looked on with what he could have sworn was approval.

sb/sth can't compete with sb/sth

Melinda knew she couldn't compete with her sister when it came to boys.

sb/sth could stand sth

see what sb/sth can do

But I don't see what you can do about it.

I hardly see what I can do that the consul can't.

I will go into the streets and see what I can do.

Perdita saw what they can do.

The depth on this team -- you saw what Ship can do.

Why not see what you can do?

Will he see what he can do to persuade the public sector to follow the private sector's practice in this case?

sth can't be bad

The kids get a multicultural education, and that can't be bad .

sth can/can't wait

Go home - the report can wait until tomorrow.

sth doesn't/can't compare (with sth)

two can play at that game

what can I do you for?

Good morning, Mitch! What can I do you for today?

what can/do you expect?

Nothing spectacular but what do you expect from beginners?!!!

Sad about the Derwent but what can we expect ?

Sure, what do you expect for that kind of money?

What can we expect in the future?

What can you expect from those young people in the small towns.

What do you expect from an also-ran business publication like Fortune?

what else can sb do/say?

I told her it looked good. What else could I say?

I do about three hundred sit-ups a day and it still refuses to firm up, but what else can I do?

P.S. Awful - but what else can one do?

So what else can Florida do?

What else can a sinner say?

What else can he realistically do?

What else can I do for you Jim?

What else can I do to improve things?

who can say?

It's unlikely that we'll find anything of value there. Still, who can say ?

And who can say what will be going on by the time you read these words?

Anyone who can say so clearly just what Derrida is saying, or doing, immediately puts the reader in his debt.

Beyond that, who can say ?

But where such stories originated, who can say .

Once the traffic starts to move, who can say what beauty and what truth such people may not bring us?

We're the only ones who can say that and know it's true.

Whether this is ultimately a good or a bad thing, who can say ?

wild horses would/could not ...

won't/can't have sth

would/could kill for sth

But Katrinka is sustained by her search for her long-lost son, and a wardrobe a Vegas showgirl could kill for.

I could kill for him, easily and without thought.

Most retailers would kill for that kind of performance.

Some of the lasses would kill for tab-ends and that.

you (can) bet your life/your bottom dollar

you can say that again!

you can tell him from me

you can't be too careful

You can't be too careful where computer viruses are concerned.

you can't go wrong (with sth)

You can't go wrong with a dark gray suit.

you can't have it both ways

It's either me or her. You can't have it both ways !

you can't hear yourself think

you can't make an omelette without breaking eggs

you can't mistake sb/sth

Their lies are so obvious, you can't mistake them.

you can't say fairer than that

you can't teach an old dog new tricks

you can't win

you can't win them all

you can/can't imagine sth

you could cut the atmosphere with a knife

you could cut the atmosphere/air/tension with a knife

you could have fooled me

"Look, we're doing our best to fix it." "Well, you could have fooled me."

you could hear a pin drop

After he finished telling the story you could have heard a pin drop.

It was so quiet in the hall you could hear a pin drop.

You could hear a pin drop in the auditorium during Norvell's speech.

you could hear a pin drop

you never can tell/you can never tell

your heart's desire/everything your heart could desire

EXAMPLES FROM OTHER ENTRIES

Can I have the check, please?

Can we turn the air conditioner on?

Can you hear all right in the back row?

He can be such a jerk sometimes.

I'm sure we can finish in time.

I can 't swim.

I told her she can watch TV till bedtime.

If you don't want to learn, you can leave right now.

If you have a complaint, you can talk to the manager.

In soccer, you can 't touch the ball with your hands.

Jean can speak French fluently.

Oh, I can taste the lemon grass!

Sure she's mad, can you blame her?

That's really nice of you, but I really can 't accept it.

That can 't be right.

That kind of plastic can be molded into any shape.

The police still haven't found her but they're doing all they can .

The word "bill" can have several different meanings.

There's hardly any traffic and you can really go fast.

II. noun

COLLOCATIONS FROM CORPUS

■ ADJECTIVE

big

They should make a bit more profit than they used to with the old, oversized pans they made from bigger oil cans .

And looking like a big tin can , about to be crumpled up.

empty

Curtis settled himself behind the wheel and laid the empty can on the passenger seat.

The walls and ceilings were black, and the sole illumination was provided by black candles set in empty cat food cans .

The Mayor with a local school girl, handing her empty cans over to Alcan mascot, Ali Can.

Some recipes in the book require other containers such as empty food cans for a tubular effect.

Joey said of the cases of empty cans and bottles next to his stand.

A plate of chicken leftovers and an empty can of Magnum malt liquor are on the floor.

Football fans came crowding up the hill toward the football ground, singing and shouting and throwing empty beer cans .

■ NOUN

aluminium

Aluminium Cans Huge savings of energy are made through recycling aluminium cans .

Oil is needed to make plastics, for example, bauxite for aluminium cans , and wood for paper.

beer

Football fans came crowding up the hill toward the football ground, singing and shouting and throwing empty beer cans .

It fires beer cans stuffed with concrete and dynamite detonators.

His dock was strewn with beer cans , oil drums, fishing nets.

I took the subway home at two in the morning, the car littered with beer cans and streamers.

Beyond the gazebo was a pond fringed with willows; dead leaves and beer cans floated on the surface of the water.

Check the graveyard for beer cans and butts from the teenagers.

A trolley was heaped with beer cans and plates of half-eaten burgers.

The area around his home was littered with beer cans .

garbage

Several doors had been propped open with garbage cans , and footage from the security cameras was missing.

Dumping Viola Angotti in the garbage can was a way of re-establishing his pride - of making himself feel big and important.

How about the rattling of metal, not plastic, garbage cans ?

He laid it on top of one of the garbage cans lined up in front of his building.

For a while her favorite subject was garbage cans .

Anyway, I went downstairs to investigate and discovered the noise was coming from outside by the garbage cans .

opener

They were there because the can opener that came with the caravan was worn out.

A hat, a pot holder, a can opener .

When they had their breakfast Tam asked me if he could possibly have a lend of my can opener for their beans.

She pulled out a can of soup, but the can opener was dead.

Earlier this evening he asked to borrow my new can opener .

Is a car bumper, but see this part is a removable can opener .

I realized I would have to stand firm about the can opener or risk losing my authority over Tam and Richie.

Just tear open and eat-no need to find a can opener or drain the tuna.

spray

One example demonstrated at a news conference would require spray cans to be plugged in.

tin

The fence was sheltered on three sides by a screen of scrap lumber and flattened tin cans .

He recalls building himself private altars of chocolate wrappers and tin cans .

And the coffee is terrible, always being reheated from the bottom of a tin can .

Bottle tops, silver paper and tin cans are the last things you should throw away.

And looking like a big tin can , about to be crumpled up.

In this bin is placed tin cans , washed and flattened, hard plastics and glass bottles.

Another little group lines up with empty tin cans by the single water truck, waiting for the daily ration.

trash

I could scour the trash cans!

It apparently started in a trash can and spread to the attic area of an 80-room wing of the motel.

He carried the bag outside and dumped it in one of the trash cans at the rear of the cottage.

Nathanson was also concerned that the trash cans on the platform were not emptied as often as needed.

We recently replaced some large plastic barrels used as trash cans with more attractive station furnishings.

Accompanying the maps are two benches, two pay phones, a pair of trash cans and 10 parking spaces.

■ VERB

carry

It wasn't their fault, usually, that the firm was doing badly, but they had to carry the can .

In the Army some one has to carry the can .

In the unlikely event of trouble they would understandably not want to carry the can alone.

drink

I never drink anything out of a can and hardly ever eat anything tinned, either.

He gave himself up to police later that night and said he had drunk two cans of lager.

Stalin sat at the table, drinking a can of beer.

Roberts told the police that he had drunk five cans of beer.

The rest of us tried to accompany him as we drank from cans of beer.

throw

Football fans came crowding up the hill toward the football ground, singing and shouting and throwing empty beer cans .

Somebody yelled and threw a can at the cab, hitting it on the rear bumper.

EXAMPLES FROM OTHER ENTRIES

a can of deodorant

soft drink cans

You'll need three large cans of paint.

EXAMPLES FROM CORPUS

Four pilots, each holding an unopened can of beer, marched around the bunker.

He ostentatiously orders a can of Worthington with his lunch, to show where his sympathies lie.

I could scour the trash cans!

Rachaela put the portions into a dish and upended a can of Heinz tomato soup over them to make a casserole.

She was carrying an armful of cat-food cans and smirking to herself.

We are conserving our resources for we are down to our last few candles and have only one can of paraffin left.

III. verb

COLLOCATIONS FROM CORPUS

■ ADVERB

but

But can violence alter the structure of discontent in a culture of desire?

just

Restoring culture can just as easily lead to a new and virulent form of fundamentalism as to a revival of cultural diversity.

no

They can no longer hunt properly and so are utterly dependent on us.

Since corporations can no longer demand or offer loyalty, corporate loyalty can not motivate people.

I can no longer sleep at night, or live with myself, or whatever.

possibly

You should make it as happy as you possibly can .

Get as many intelligent citizens as you possibly can to write urgently upon this subject to their representatives and Senators in Congress.

You can not blame him for trying to cram as much into 90 minutes as he possibly can.

We all want to put the best team on the ice as we possibly can .

As for crime and robberies, that is carrying just as heavy a burden now as it possibly can .

Memphis Archives has made these 24 recorded relics sound as good as primitive recordings possibly can .

probably

If you want to take it as real, you probably can .

If you want to suspend disbelief, you probably can .

The implication follows: If a zoologist can deduce which parasite is present, a female roach probably can as well.

Most people around here can probably skipper better drunk than sober.

still

Those with borrowings higher than their savings can still gain.

The harbor could be mistaken for open sea; it still can.

He thinks they still can if we let them.

■ NOUN

things

In doing this I found the second step: The courage to change the things I can .

■ VERB

mean

This means that the censors can access frequently used pages quickly, without having to check their suitability each time.

Here being a success means you can hunt, you can fish, you can take care of yourself.

I mean , what can I tell you: I survived it.

PHRASES FROM OTHER ENTRIES

I can only think/suppose/assume (that)

As for an Iguana Air, I can only assume it's a tropical airline.

Now if I can only think of their name.

I can't be fagged

I can't rightly say/don't rightly know

I would be grateful if you could/would ...

I would be grateful if you could tell me anything about the guitar.

I would be grateful if you could tell me where I can get hold of such posters.

I would be grateful if you would examine Exhibit A. Do you recognise it?

If you will be attending the site visit, I would be grateful if you could complete the tear-off slip below.

This will take place at the above address on and I would be grateful if you could attend at.

a leopard can't change its spots

any fool can do sth

Any fool can make a baby, but it takes a real man to raise his children.

But it is for you already, any fool can see you're in no shape to continue.

Conversely, any fool can sit down at a slot machine.

Of course any fool can write down 1,2,3,4 and even 5,6,7,8 opposite the names of candidates on a ballot paper.

as best you can

I'll deal with the problem as best I can.

I cleaned the car up as best I could, but it still looked a mess.

We'll have to manage as best we can without you.

And her reaction to her illness was, as best I can glean, fraught with fear, discouragement, and depression.

I would therefore be grateful if you could refer back to the letter I wrote and respond as best you can.

It is therefore necessary to locate as best we can the final resting place or incidence of the major types of taxes.

Only a proportion of them are successful and the rest must struggle as best they can to obtain mates.

Our culture has no Obon ready-made, but we are filling in as best we can.

Then you gently and gradually work the new feather on, positioning it to match the original plumage as best you can.

We must also imagine our way into myth, as best we can, like actors in a play.

You just have to wait and catch your moment or piece things together as best you can.

as/so far as I know/I can remember/I can tell/I can see etc

be sick of/can't stand/hate the sight of sb/sth

before you can say Jack Robinson

beggars can't be choosers

It would be nice to have a suit with a better fit, but as they say, beggars can't be choosers.

can do sth blindfold

can do sth with one hand (tied) behind your back

can do sth with your eyes shut/closed

can only hope/wait etc

Dagenham's employees can only hope that Ford does not resurrect the phrase in the 1990s.

Hamilton can only hope he improves as much as Benes has since the Padres traded him.

Like the steeplechase where Vronsky breaks his mare's back with reckless riding, you can only wait for the pistol shot.

The scientists can only wait and hope.

Users can only hope the vendors will apply the same effort to other unresolved technology issues.

We can only hope Gilstrap won't push to have any of that text deleted.

We can only wait and help each other and watch this dreadful plague spread.

You can only hope they learned from their mistakes.

can see/spot/tell sth a mile off

But I think he's lovely, and you can tell a mile off that he likes you.

He's a hawkeye, and can spot one a mile off, like that faraway kestrel.

Our sportsdesk can spot from a mile off a person who can not tell an in-swinger from a bouncer.

can't do sth for toffee

can't get enough of sth/sb

can't hold a candle to sb/sth

Basketball stars today can't hold a candle to Michael Jordan.

can't make head or/nor tail of sth

can't take your eyes off sb/sth

can't very well (do sth)

can/could always do sth

canned music/laughter

Some hotels programme their canned music in twenty-four hour cycles, varying by location and the hour.

You do not warm to this lady, who delivers her lines to camera as if waiting for the canned laughter.

could do with sth

And Katherine could do with all the comfort she could get for the illness was slowly and inexorably taking its toll.

But the Olympic gold medal was so far away from what I thought I could do with my life.

He could do with a warm bed.

I could do with a change of scenery.

Just imagine what we could do with this idea.

That was nice, she could do with settling.

The governor said he could do with something to eat.

We could do with another girl in the chorus.

could go either way

It could go either way, as we have seen in previous months of March.

M., still could go either way.

The latest opinion poll suggests the vote could go either way.

could/can you possibly

But what else could she possibly hope to see? she wondered miserably.

But what on earth can he possibly have been trying to prove?

How can they possibly control such success?

How could she possibly know, since he had not set eyes on the girl?

What can I possibly say now?

What conversation could we possibly have had there, then?

What could she possibly tell him, that he would want to hear?

could/can/might easily

A high-resolution image, by contrast, could easily run as large as 15 million to 20 million bytes.

A single mutational step can easily be reversed.

But a small error in the procedure could easily leave her inoperable, or at least changed beyond recognition.

Governments can easily guarantee their employees a job, without guaranteeing the job they currently hold.

If you are writing on a complex topic a reader can easily become confused.

This was his hobby, sketching vertical monstrosities, though he might easily have been a spy.

Yet the world champion is so unpredictably gifted that one on-song display could easily enable her to sweep aside the opposition.

Young minds can easily assimilate and embrace all kinds of musical styles.

could/may/might yet do sth

don't know/can't tell etc which is which

how can/could sb do sth?

if looks could kill

it cannot be otherwise/how can it be otherwise?

it was all I could do to do sth

I followed one up the motorway just yesterday and it was all I could do to not retch.

When pro golfer Tiger Woods won the Masters two weeks ago, it was all I could do to suppress a yawn.

it was as much as sb could do to do sth

it's the least I can do

may/might/could (just) as well

And if you have to plough the field anyway, you might as well plant it at the same time.

And we might as well get used to it and resolve to cope.

Besides, they cost so much, you might as well get some fun out of them.

I thought I might just as well come down to the point.

If the traveler expects the high way to be safe and well-graded, he might as well stay at home.

It might as well be now.

She might as well see how the enemy behaved themselves in a place like this.

While she was there, they might as well have added the charge of breaching the Trades Description Act.

may/might/could well

As we have already noted, he may well have been a militant nationalist who did not shrink from violence.

But the women whom they find may well not match their feminist consciousness.

By and large Alex and I think these developments are likely to give tangible gains and could well become a priority for implementation.

In addition, the clarification of such issues could well provide the initial stimulus for a whole school language policy.

It is too early to be entirely sure, but it looks as though the tide may well have turned.

The requirements may well be modified as detailed work and discussion proceed.

nice work if you can get it

no amount of sth can/will etc do sth

But no amount of bashful cuteness can disguise its humourless narcissism.

But no amount of money can buy what Nakamatsu really wants -- lasting fame.

It is due to the inefficiency of the Government which no amount of Budget bribery can possibly erase.

So implausible, so achingly out of touch are they, no amount of Toytown trickery can disguise their ancient irrelevance.

The key is in the cooking; no amount of marinating will tenderize a tough cut of meat.

Therefore, no amount of personality can compensate for mediocre chili. o Judging chili is very personal and subjective.

Translation here must be indeterminate because no amount of evidence will guarantee that the translation we offer will be uniquely correct.

Voice over April's pursuing compensation though no amount of mony can make up for what she's lost.

nothing could be further from the truth

A lot of people think soufflés are hard to make. Nothing could be further from the truth.

They say he is a spy, but nothing could be further from the truth.

nothing could be further from the truth

nothing could be/is further from sb's mind/thoughts

sb can do sth in their sleep

sb can ill afford (to do) sth

The senator can ill afford another scandal.

If land is not suitable for efficient farming, we can ill afford it being used for inefficient agriculture.

It does not make sense to squander important resources that the nation can ill afford to lose.

Many of them are in fact very poor and can ill afford their habit.

Often it is something they can ill afford.

Sotheby's can ill afford to have its auction prices called into question.

Surely it would be a drain on Party resources that it can ill afford.

There may be no alternative to leave of absence, even though the nurse can ill afford the loss of income.

Yet it is an area which practitioners can ill afford to ignore.

sb can take a joke

sb can't get it into their (thick) skull

sb can't have it both ways

sb can/could do sth for England

sb could do worse than do sth

A woman could do worse than be a nurse.

He could do worse than spend his evening keeping an eye on her.

In groping for useful precedents, one could do worse than heed the tale of a man named Sherwood Rowland.

The West could do worse than to base its policy towards the Middle East on that aspiration.

You could do worse than take a leaf out of the health economists' book.

sth can't be bad

The kids get a multicultural education, and that can't be bad .

two can play at that game

what else can sb do/say?

I told her it looked good. What else could I say?

I do about three hundred sit-ups a day and it still refuses to firm up, but what else can I do?

P.S. Awful - but what else can one do?

So what else can Florida do?

What else can a sinner say?

What else can he realistically do?

What else can I do for you Jim?

What else can I do to improve things?

wild horses would/could not ...

you can't be too careful

You can't be too careful where computer viruses are concerned.

you can't go wrong (with sth)

You can't go wrong with a dark gray suit.

you can't have it both ways

It's either me or her. You can't have it both ways !

you can't make an omelette without breaking eggs

you can't say fairer than that

you could cut the atmosphere/air/tension with a knife

you could hear a pin drop

your heart's desire/everything your heart could desire

EXAMPLES FROM OTHER ENTRIES

Did you hear that they canned Linda?

EXAMPLES FROM CORPUS

And cable operators are doing all they can to get the government to prevent phone companies from carrying video programming.

As long as you live in my house I can .

I kept saying, ` I think I can .

It is in our vital interest to do it as properly and as thoroughly as we can .

Only after long and painful work on oneself can that chief feature be at last revealed.

Scripts in different windows, meanwhile, can access each others' variables and objects, and even call remote functions.

These parents want to do all they can to help, so they develop schemes to ensure that homework is completed.

Thus many Great Groups are fueled by an invigorating, completely unrealistic view of what they can accomplish.

Longman DOCE5 Extras English vocabulary.      Дополнительный английский словарь Longman DOCE5.