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What are Modal Verbs

What is a Modal Verb?

A modal verb is a type of auxiliary verb that is used to express ability, possibility, intention and necessity.

The following are some modal verbs:

  • can

  • could

  • may

  • might

  • must

  • will

  • shall

  • should

1. Can:

It is used to give permission, ability to do something, and request.

For ability:

  • Can he drive a car?

    Modal Verb
  • She can make a dress.

  • Holly can speak French.

For Permission:

  • Can I use your pencil?

  • Can I sit here?

  • Can I go now?

For Request:

  • Can you give me this pencil?

  • Can I have some juice please?

  • Can you help me please?

2. Could:

For Request:

  • Could I sit here please?

  • Could you give me a eraser please?

For Past ability:

  • I could play tennis when i was young.

  • She could make chocolate in her young age.

3. May:

It is used for possibility, permission, and wishes.

For Possibility:

  • It may cold tomorrow.

  • Alice may be tired.

  • She may be late for school.

For Permission:

  • May I use your pen?

  • May I go now?

  • May I sit here?

For Expressing Wishes:

  • May god bless you.

  • May all your dreams come true.

  • May you live long.

4. Must:

It is used for necessity and recommendation.

For Necessity:

  • I must go to the market today.

    Modal Verb
  • You must finish this work now.

  • Children must do their homework.

For Recommendation:

  • You must see this film.

  • You must eat this cake.

5. Might:

It is used for possibility.

  • She might go to meet her friend.

  • He might have finished his work now.

  • You might have lost that paper.

6. Should:

It is used to give advice or recommendation.

  • You should focus more on your study.

  • She should eat healthy food.

  • He should not drive so fast.

7. Shall:

For offer:

  • Shall we start the game?

  • Shall I pick you up from office?

See Also:

Mixed Worksheets: