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    Learn English > English lessons and exercises > English test #112773: Ambiguous modal auxiliary: must
    > Other English exercises on the same topics: Speaking | Tales | Modals [Change theme]
    > Similar tests: - Vocabulary: greeting people - Vocabulary: on the phone - On the phone - Interacting with someone - Dialogue : What time...? - Conditional clauses - Differences between Like and As - Eating out-Vocabulary
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    Ambiguous modal auxiliary: must

    Ambiguous  modal auxiliaries ...


    1) MUST/ MUSTN'T: OBLIGATION or INTERDICTION: In both cases, the FREEDOM OF ACTION is denied. 

    - I must go now, as I still have a lot of homework to do. You mustn't prevent me from leaving...

    2) But we may express a different meaning with the same modal: MUST / MUSTN'T = NEAR-CERTAINTY= I'm almost sure that...

    - He must be sick because he never misses a class and hasn't arrived yet. 




    3) Now, WHAT if the sentence is in the PAST?

    -  Connie was obliged to open the door!  (the modal here expresses an obligation in the past) 

    In the past, when MUST expresses a PAST OBLIGATION, you must use HAD TO:

    In that case, the sentence would be: => - Connie had to open the door because the dog was barking to come in! 

    OR: This sentence may mean: Most certainly, Connie opened the door => NEAR-CERTAINTY in the PAST:

    - In this case, the near-certainty in the past will be expressed with: MUST + HAVE + PAST PARTICIPLE 

    => - Connie must have opened the door, because she was the only one to have the key. (no obligation, here.)

    Only the context will enable you to make a good choice of the modal auxiliary.




    Here we are !  I hope you'll never mistake those two different nuances of the same modal!  I hope you'll do well! 

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    1. When she was little, playing with her sister Anna, Elsa her magic powers to create Olaf, the magical snowman.
    Elsa guilty when she unwillingly hurt her young sister's head.
    - Elsa up in her parents' castle not to be able to use her powers against her sister Anna and against other people.
    - Anna's sacrifice to save Elsa from evil Hans the necessary act of true love in order to warm up and thaw Elsa' s heart.
    Elsa when, knowing that Anna was happy, she decided to let go and be the Frozen Queen openly.

    2. Really, Ratchet when he thought he couldn't become a Ranger to defend the galaxy.
    Ratchet then a lot to realize his dream and become a space Ranger.
    Clank, (the robot) by Ratchet because he had been damaged when his spaceship had crashed.
    - Ratchet very proud when he became a Space Ranger.
    - Clank and Ratchet a lot to prevent the destruction of a Planet and save its inhabitants.
    Ratchet and Clank that friendship mattered most and came back to work together as expert space mechanics.


     Olaf, the magical snowman.Characters de FROZENRatchet, a Space Ranger or mechanics?Clank

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