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Learn English > English lessons and exercises > English test #108301: May, Might, Should... what they mean...
May, Might, Should... what they mean...
For beginners in English, it's always difficult to be able to choose the right modal auxiliaries spontaneously ...
First, you have to understand that they are not ordinary verbs but auxiliaries enabling the speaker to give an opinion or a judgement about the action expressed by the main verb. Each one of these auxiliaries brings a special nuance to the verb it precedes.
ex : He can swim= he knows how to swim; he may swim/be swimming= he's allowed to swim/Perhaps he's swimming ; he might swim = I'm not sure at all, but perhaps, he's swimming; he must swim = he's certainly swimming (since he's not drowning) ; he should swim = it would be a good idea for him to swim ; He could swim if he wanted to= He would be able to swim; he didn't swim ... = negative form.
In this lesson, we'll concentrate on the auxiliaries giving information about the degree of certainty, or uncertainty of an action.
In the sentences of part 1, give 'the value' or 'nuance' of the modals which are used. In the following part, the 'value' or 'nuance' is given and you must choose the appropriate form of the modal form.
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