A Review of Fine Tune Your English: Chapter 9 Auxiliary verbs Part 2 notes

Chapter 9.
Auxiliary verbs -Part II.

Now let us discuss each of the modal auxiliary verbs in detail .

1)Can/ can't .
It is derived from an  old English that has the meaning “to know”.
it expresses capability for doing something. example : He can speak French fluently.( this sentence expresses the meaning that he has the capability for speaking French

Could /couldn't
it is the past tense of can. it shows ability in the past ,possibility, request ,permission etc.
example:  he could answer all the questions  but he didn't.( he had the ability to answer the questions but he didn't)
he could to tide over the difficulties in the end .(he was able to tide over the difficulties in the end).
you could have won the game.(there was possibility for you to have won the game)
could you please shut the window?( request).

May might
it expresses possibility permission factual possibility. it is more for me when compared to Can.
example: There is a political rally in the afternoon vehicular traffic may be affected .
(here in the sentence might expresses a factual  possibility  purely based on a fact.).

Might can also express possibility that is more distant
ex: I don't think it will rain tonight but it might.

May  can also show  permission
example :may I come in sir?

Must /mustn't .
it express obligation ,determination, inference etc. example : we must help the poor .
he must have got help from outside .

mustn't shows prohibition.
Example: you must not stay outside

Ought to .
it express moral obligation, desirability etc. example: you ought to consult a doctor.
you ought not let down your people

Shall ,will ,should ,would .

shall expresses a future action, command, a threat, promise and suggestion.
example : I shall meet him tomorrow( promise) shall we go out for a walk?( suggestion ).

will, like and shall are used to show a future action .
will express  a threat or a promise .
Will is also  used to frame a request or to show determination .
example : Peter will  take over as the new CEO. (future action).
you  will pay for it (threat).
We will reward you if you stand by us (promise).
Will you please shut the window for me( request).
They will fight to the bitter end( determination).

Should is used to indicate :
1)what is right or the best thing to do .
2)to give or ask for advice .
3)to make a polite request.
4) to show what is likely.
5) to show that something that is expected but didn't happen .
you should consult your parents before you take a decision about it (what is right or the best thing ).
should I attend that wedding ?(seeking advice).
I should be grateful if you accept our invitation.( polite request).
today is Sunday so the roads should be less crowded (expectation)

Would is sometimes used in a similar way that of will. The use of would in conditional clauses is very common.
example :if you work hard you will pass the examination .
would is also used to express future in the past example : in 1990 John met Mary whom he would marry the next year .

The negative form of would can show refusal in the past .
example : I asked him to try yoga but he wouldn't hear about it.( refusal in past).

Need, Dare, used to.

need is used as a regular verb
example : he needs to be told that we do not encourage it .
need as an auxiliary verb is used only in interrogative  and negative sentences and also in assertive sentences.
need I come?( interrogative)
you need not come (negative)
you need come only if you are sent for(assertive).

It can be used as i)a regular verb.
ii) as an auxiliary verb.
As a regular verb it can mean” to challenge”,”to have the impudence to”, “to be  bold enough”. example:
I dare you to a fight (challenge)
He dared  to call me a liar( to have the impudence to ).
I dare not say what I feel about him( to be bold enough)
* Dare is very rare in English and only used in exclamatory sentences that shows probability, discouragement, to challenge etc.
example :how dare you!( angry exclamation).

Used to.
used to generally shows a past habit .
example: when I was a student I used to write poems.
it also shows negative and the interrogative forms.
example : did you use to go there?.

Reference: Joseph, Mathew. Fine Tune Your English. Orient Blackswan Pvt.Ltd. 2010. Print.