"Can dogs dream?"


March 13, 2018



Why is this 会? I thought it should be 能 .

March 13, 2018


For innate abilities you use 会. 能 (or 可以) is used to say that something is (im)possible due to outside factors (可以 has a somewhat greater tendency to imply permission/prohibition specifically). For example:

  • 我不会开车。"I can't (= don't have the ability to) drive."
  • 这里不能开车。"[You] can't drive here (maybe it's prohibited or maybe there is not enough space)."
  • 这里不可以开车。"It's not allowed to drive here."
March 20, 2018

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Both fine, but most of the time people use 会 for this topic (“dreaming”).

Here “会” is most likely to be interpreted as “be likely/possible to”. Dreaming is more of an uncontrollable instinct than a learnable ability. 能 is more for chance about feasible matters, though colloquially it can be used for very uncertain things too. However, people just prefer 会.

March 13, 2018
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