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  #21  
Old Tuesday, September 25, 2007
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Modal Verbs (modal auxiliaries)



Can, Could, Be able to


Can and could are modal auxiliary verbs. Be able to is NOT an auxiliary verb (it uses the verb be as a main verb). We include be able to here for convenience.




Can

Can is an auxiliary verb, a modal auxiliary verb. We use can to:
  • talk about possibility and ability
  • make requests
  • ask for or give permission


Structure of Can



Quote:
subject + can + main verb
The main verb is always the bare infinitive (infinitive without "to").


subject ________ auxiliary verb _________ main verb

+ ___ I _____________ can __________________ play tennis.
- __ He ___________cannot / can't ___________ play tennis.
? __ Can you _____________________________ play tennis?





Notice that:

Can is invariable. There is only one form of can.
The main verb is always the bare infinitive.





Use of Can

can: Possibility and Ability

We use can to talk about what is possible, what we are able or free to do:

She can drive a car.
John can speak Spanish.
I cannot hear you. (I can't hear you.)
Can you hear me?


Normally, we use can for the present. But it is possible to use can when we make present decisions about future ability.

Can you help me with my homework? (present)
Sorry. I'm busy today. But I can help you tomorrow. (future)




can: Requests and Orders

We often use can in a question to ask somebody to do something. This is not a real question - we do not really want to know if the person is able to do something, we want them to do it! The use of can in this way is informal (mainly between friends and family):

Can you make a cup of coffee, please.
Can you put the TV on.
Can you come here a minute.
Can you be quiet!




can: Permission

We sometimes use can to ask or give permission for something:

Can I smoke in this room?
You can't smoke here, but you can smoke in the garden.



(Note that we also use could, may, might for permission. The use of can for permission is informal.)









to be continued
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  #22  
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Could

Could is an auxiliary verb, a modal auxiliary verb. We use could to:
  • talk about past possibility or ability
  • make requests



Structure of Could

Quote:
subject + could + main verb

The main verb is always the bare infinitive (infinitive without "to").


subject ___________ auxiliary verb ____________ main verb

+ ___ His grandmother _____ could _________________ swim.
- ____ She ____________ could not / couldn't ________ walk.
? ___ Could his grandmother _______________________ swim?





Notice that:

Could is invariable. There is only one form of could.
The main verb is always the bare infinitive.




Use of Could



could: Past Possibility or Ability


We use could to talk about what was possible in the past, what we were able or free to do:

I could swim when I was 5 years old.
My grandmother could speak seven languages.
When we arrived home, we could not open the door. (...couldn't open the door.)
Could you understand what he was saying?


We use could (positive) and couldn't (negative) for general ability in the past. But when we talk about one special occasion in the past, we use be able to (positive) and couldn't (negative). Look at these examples:



General :

My grandmother could speak Spanish.
My grandmother couldn't speak Spanish.



Specific Occasion :

A man fell into the river yesterday. The police were able to save him.
A man fell into the river yesterday. The police couldn't save him.




could: Requests


We often use could in a question to ask somebody to do something. The use of could in this way is fairly polite (formal):

Could you tell me where the bank is, please?
Could you send me a catalogue, please?









to be continued
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sureshlasi
Simple Future Tense


The simple future tense is often called will, because we make the simple future tense with the modal auxiliary will.



How do we make the Simple Future Tense?





For negative sentences in the simple future tense, we insert not between the auxiliary verb and main verb. For question sentences, we exchange the subject and auxiliary verb. Look at these example sentences with the simple future tense:




subject ______ auxiliary verb _______ main verb

+ ______ I ____________will ____________ open the door.
+ _____ You __________ will ____________ finish before me.
- _____ She _________ will not ___________ be at school tomorrow.
- ______ We ________ will not ______________ leave yet.
? _____ Will you ________________________ arrive on time?
? _____ Will they ________________________ want dinner?




When we use the simple future tense in speaking, we often contract the subject and auxiliary verb:

I will _____ I'll
you will _____ you'll
he will _____ he'll
she will _____ she'll
it will _____ it'll
we will _____ we'll
they will _____ they'll



For negative sentences in the simple future tense, we contract with won't, like this:

I will not _____ I won't
you will not _____ you won't
he will not _____ he won't
she will not _____ she won't
it will not _____ it won't
we will not _____ we won't
they will not _____ they won't






How do we use the Simple Future Tense?

No Plan

We use the simple future tense when there is no plan or decision to do something before we speak. We make the decision spontaneously at the time of speaking. Look at these examples:

Hold on. I'll get a pen.
We will see what we can do to help you.
Maybe we'll stay in and watch television tonight.

In these examples, we had no firm plan before speaking. The decision is made at the time of speaking.



We often use the simple future tense with the verb to think before it:

I think I'll go to the gym tomorrow.
I think I will have a holiday next year.
I don't think I'll buy that car.



Prediction


We often use the simple future tense to make a prediction about the future. Again, there is no firm plan. We are saying what we think will happen. Here are some examples:

It will rain tomorrow.
People won't go to Jupiter before the 22nd century.
Who do you think will get the job?



Be


When the main verb is be, we can use the simple future tense even if we have a firm plan or decision before speaking. Examples:

I'll be in London tomorrow.
I'm going shopping. I won't be very long.
Will you be at work tomorrow?




Note that when we have a plan or intention to do something in the future, we usually use other tenses or expressions, such as the present continuous tense or going to.









to be continued (Future Continuous Tense).
i have readed in the book of grammer.i saw that i have been using shall what is the diffrence because u are attaching with will.
i asked a teacher about that auxiliary verb he was told me when we attempt stress in a sentence then we are using will with i,you,we
but i have readed about (shall) we are using in future tense ,but here i m seeing some changes can you explain about it
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@ Waqar



Shall versus Will



People may sometimes tell you that there is no difference between shall and will, or even that today nobody uses shall (except in offers such as "Shall I call a taxi?"). This is not really true. The difference between shall and will is often hidden by the fact that we usually contract them in speaking with 'll. But the difference does exist.

The truth is that there are two conjugations for the verb will:

1st Conjugation (objective, simple statement of fact)


Person ____ Verb _____ Example _________________ Contraction

Singular :

I ______ shall _________ I shall be in London tomorrow.__________ I'll
you ____ will _________ You will see a large building on the left.____ You'll
he, she, it ___ will ________ He will be wearing blue. _________ He'll


Plural :

we ______ shall _____ We shall not be there when you arrive. ___ We shan't
you _____ will ______ You will find his office on the 7th floor. ______ You'll
they _____ will ________ They will arrive late. ___________________ They'll


2nd Conjugation (subjective, strong assertion, promise or command)


Person _____ Verb ______ Example __________________ Contraction

Singular :

I _______ will ___________ I will do everything possible to help. _________ I'll
you _____ shall _________ You shall be sorry for this. ________________ You'll
he, she, it ____ shall ________ It shall be done._______________________ It'll



Plural :

we _____ will ___________ We will not interfere. __________ We won't
you _____ shall __________ You shall do as you're told. ______ You'll
they ____ shall __________They shall give one month's notice. ____ They'll

It is true that this difference is not universally recognized. However, let those who make assertions such as "People in the USA never use 'shall'" peruse a good US English dictionary, or many US legal documents which often contain phrases such as:

Each party shall give one month's notice in writing in the event of termination.


Note that exactly the same rule applies in the case of should and would. It is perfectly normal, and somewhat more elegant, to write, for example:

I should be grateful if you would kindly send me your latest catalogue.
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Be able to

Although we look at be able to here, it is not a modal verb. It is simply the verb be plus an adjective (able) followed by the infinitive. We look at be able to here because we sometimes use it instead of can and could.

We use be able to:
  • to talk about ability




Structure of Be able to

Quote:
The structure of be able to is:

subject + be + able + infinitive


subject ______ be (main verb) ________ able (adjective) _______ infinitive


+ ___ I ________ am _____________ able __________ to drive.
- ___ She ___ is not / isn't ______ able __________ to drive.

? _______ Are you _____________ able ___________ to drive?



Notice that be able to is possible in all tenses, for example:

I was able to drive...
I will be able to drive...
I have been able to drive...


Notice too that be able to has an infinitive form:

I would like to be able to speak Chinese.



Use of Be able to

Be able to is not a modal auxiliary verb. We include it here for convenience, because it is often used like "can" and "could", which are modal auxiliary verbs.

be able to: ability

We use be able to to express ability. "Able" is an adjective meaning: having the power, skill or means to do something. If we say "I am able to swim", it is like saying "I can swim". We sometimes use "be able to" instead of "can" or "could" for ability. "Be able to" is possible in all tenses—but "can" is possible only in the present and "could" is possible only in the past for ability. In addition, "can" and "could" have no infinitive form. So we use "be able to" when we want to use other tenses or the infinitive. Look at these examples:



I have been able to swim since I was five. (present perfect)
You will be able to speak perfect English very soon. (future simple)
I would like to be able to fly an airplane. (infinitive)





Note: Be able to is not a modal auxiliary verb. We include it here for convenience, because it is often used like "can" and "could", which are modal auxiliary verbs.

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Have to, Must, Must not/Mustn't


Must is a modal auxiliary verb.

Have to is NOT an auxiliary verb (it uses the verb have as a main verb). We include have to here for convenience.



Have to (objective obligation)


We often use have to to say that something is obligatory, for example:
  • Children have to go to school.


Structure of Have to


Have to is often grouped with modal auxiliary verbs for convenience, but in fact it is not a modal verb. It is not even an auxiliary verb. In the have to structure, "have" is a main verb. The structure is:

Quote:
subject + auxiliary verb + have + infinitive (with to)
Look at these examples in the simple tense:


subject _____ auxiliary verb _____ main verb have ________ infinitive (with to)


She _____________________________ has _____________ to work.
I ______________do not ____________ have __________ to see the doctor.
____ Did you __________________________have __________to go to school?





Use of Have to

In general, have to expresses impersonal obligation. The subject of have to is obliged or forced to act by a separate, external power (for example, the Law or school rules). Have to is objective. Look at these examples:
  • In France, you have to drive on the right.
  • In England, most schoolchildren have to wear a uniform.
  • John has to wear a tie at work.


In each of the above cases, the obligation is not the subject's opinion or idea. The obligation is imposed from outside.

We can use have to in all tenses, and also with modal auxiliaries. We conjugate it just like any other main verb. Here are some examples:



past simple ~ I had to work yesterday.
present simple ~ I have to work today.
future simple ~ I will have to work tomorrow.
present continuous ~ She is having to wait.
present perfect ~ We have had to change the time.
modal (may) ~ They may have to do it again.












Must (subjective obligation)

We often use must to say that something is essential or necessary, for example:
  • I must go.


Structure of Must

Quote:
Must is a modal auxiliary verb. It is followed by a main verb. The structure is:

subject + must + main verb
The main verb is the base verb (infinitive without "to").

Look at these examples:


subject _____ auxiliary must ________ main verb

I ___________ must _______________go home.
You _________ must ______________visit us.
We _________ must _____________stop now.


Like all auxiliary verbs, must CANNOT be followed by to. So, we say:

I must go now. (not *I must to go now.)




Use of Must

In general, must expresses personal obligation. Must expresses what the speaker thinks is necessary. Must is subjective. Look at these examples:

I must stop smoking.
You must visit us soon.
He must work harder.

In each of the above cases, the "obligation" is the opinion or idea of the person speaking. In fact, it is not a real obligation. It is not imposed from outside.

We can use must to talk about the present or the future. Look at these examples:

I must go now. (present)
I must call my mother tomorrow. (future)



We cannot use must to talk about the past. We use have to to talk about the past.
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Old Friday, October 26, 2007
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Level # 3



Conditionals



There are several structures in English that are called conditionals.

"Condition" means "situation or circumstance". If a particular condition is true, then a particular result happens.
  • If y = 10 then 2y = 20
  • If y = 3 then 2y = 6

There are three basic conditionals that we use very often. There are some more conditionals that we do not use so often.

In this lesson, we will look at the three basic conditionals as well as the so-called zero conditional.




Structure of Conditional Sentences


The structure of most conditionals is very simple. There are two basic possibilities. Of course, we add many words and can use various tenses, but the basic structure is usually like this:


IF condition result

IF y = 10 2y = 20

or like this:


result IF condition

2y = 20 IF y = 10





First Conditional: real possibility


We are talking about the future. We are thinking about a particular condition or situation in the future, and the result of this condition. There is a real possibility that this condition will happen. For example, it is morning. You are at home. You plan to play tennis this afternoon. But there are some clouds in the sky. Imagine that it rains. What will you do?

IF condition result

present simple + WILL + base verb

If it rains I will stay at home.

Notice that we are thinking about a future condition. It is not raining yet. But the sky is cloudy and you think that it could rain. We use the present simple tense to talk about the possible future condition. We use WILL + base verb to talk about the possible future result. The important thing about the first conditional is that there is a real possibility that the condition will happen. Here are some more examples (do you remember the two basic structures: [IF condition result] and [result IF condition]?):


IF + condition (present simple) + result (WILL + base verb )

If I see Mary I will tell her.
If Tara is free tomorrow he will invite her.
If they do not pass their exam their teacher will be sad.
If it rains tomorrow will you stay at home?
If it rains tomorrow what will you do?



OR


result (WILL + base verb) + IF + condition (present simple )

I will tell Mary if I see her.
He will invite Tara if she is free tomorrow.
Their teacher will be sad if they do not pass their exam.
Will you stay at home if it rains tomorrow?
What will you do if it rains tomorrow?






Second Conditional: unreal possibility or dream

The second conditional is like the first conditional. We are still thinking about the future. We are thinking about a particular condition in the future, and the result of this condition. But there is not a real possibility that this condition will happen. For example, you do not have a lottery ticket. Is it possible to win? No! No lottery ticket, no win! But maybe you will buy a lottery ticket in the future. So you can think about winning in the future, like a dream. It's not very real, but it's still possible.



IF + condition (past simple) + result (WOULD + base verb)



If I won the lottery I would buy a car.


OR


result (WOULD + base verb) + IF + condition (past simple)


I would be happy if I married Mary.




Notice that we are thinking about a future condition. We use the past simple tense to talk about the future condition. We use WOULD + base verb to talk about the future result. The important thing about the second conditional is that there is an unreal possibility that the condition will happen.

Here are some more examples:

If I married Mary I would be happy.
If Ram became rich she would marry him.
If it snowed next July would you be surprised?
If it snowed next July what would you do?


OR



She would marry Ram if he became rich.
Would you be surprised if it snowed next July?
What would you do if it snowed next July?

Quote:
Sometimes, we use should, could or might instead of would, for example: If I won a million dollars, I could stop working.







to be continued
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Third Conditional :no possibility


The first conditional and second conditionals talk about the future. With the third conditional we talk about the past. We talk about a condition in the past that did not happen. That is why there is no possibility for this condition. The third conditional is also like a dream, but with no possibility of the dream coming true.

Last week you bought a lottery ticket. But you did not win. :-(


Quote:
condition (Past Perfect) + result (WOULD HAVE + Past Participle)
If I had won the lottery I would have bought a car.

Notice that we are thinking about an impossible past condition. You did not win the lottery. So the condition was not true, and that particular condition can never be true because it is finished. We use the past perfect tense to talk about the impossible past condition. We use WOULD HAVE + past participle to talk about the impossible past result. The important thing about the third conditional is that both the condition and result are impossible now.



Sometimes, we use should have, could have, might have instead of would have, for example: If you had bought a lottery ticket, you might have won.



Examples :

If I had seen Mary I would have told her.
If Tara had been free yesterday I would have invited her.
If they had not passed their exam their teacher would have been sad.
If it had rained yesterday would you have stayed at home?
If it had rained yesterday what would you have done?

OR

I would have told Mary if I had seen her.
I would have invited Tara if she had been free yesterday.
Their teacher would have been sad if they had not passed their exam.
Would you have stayed at home if it had rained yesterday?
What would you have done if it had rained yesterday?










Zero Conditional: certainty

We use the so-called zero conditional when the result of the condition is always true, like a scientific fact.

Take some ice. Put it in a saucepan. Heat the saucepan. What happens? The ice melts (it becomes water). You would be surprised if it did not.


Quote:
IF + condition (present simple) + result (present simple)

If I miss the 8 o'clock bus I am late for work.
If I am late for work my boss gets angry.
If people don't eat they get hungry.
If you heat ice does it melt?


OR

I am late for work if I miss the 8 o'clock bus.
My boss gets angry if I am late for work.
People get hungry if they don't eat.
Does ice melt if you heat it?
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Questions


What is a question?

A statement is a sentence that gives information. A question is a sentence that asks for information.


Quote:
Statement: I like CSS Forum.
Question: Do you like CSS Forum ?


A written question in English always ends with a question mark: ?





Basic Question Structure


Quote:
The basic structure of a question in English is very simple:

auxiliary verb + subject + main verb

Examples:

Do you like Mary?
Are they playing football?
Will Anthony go to Tokyo?
Have you seen ET?


Exception!
For the verb be in simple present and simple past, we do not use an auxiliary verb. We simply reverse the positions of be and subject:


Quote:
Statement: He is German.
Question: Is he German?








Basic Question Types

There are 3 basic types of question:

1. Yes/No Questions (the answer to the question is "Yes" or "No")
2. Question Word Questions (the answer to the question is "Information")
3. Choice Questions (the answer to the question is "in the question")



1. Yes/No Questions


Q. Do you want dinner?
A.Yes, I do.

Q. Can you drive?
A. No, I can't.

Q. Has she finished her work?
A. Yes, she has.

Q. Did they go home?
A. No, they didn't.



Exception! verb be simple present and simple past

Q. Is Anne French?
A. Yes, she is.

Q. Was Ram at home?
A. No, he wasn't.





2. Question Word Questions

Q. Where do you live?
A. In Paris.

Q. When will we have lunch?
A. At 1pm.

Q. Who did she meet?
A. She met Ram.

Q. Why hasn't Tara done it?
A. Because she can't.

Exception! verb be simple present and simple past

Q. Where is Bombay?
A. In India.

Q. How was she?
A. Very well.








3. Choice Questions

Q. Do you want tea or coffee?
Coffee, please.

Q. Will we meet John or James?
John.

Q. Did she go to London or New York?
She went to London.


Exception! verb be simple present and simple past

Q. Is your car white or black?
It's black.

Q. Were they $15 or $50?
$15.
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  #30  
Old Tuesday, November 27, 2007
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Tag Questions


You speak English, don't you?


A tag question is a special construction in English. It is a statement followed by a mini-question. The whole sentence is a "tag question", and the mini-question at the end is called a "question tag".

We use tag questions at the end of statements to ask for confirmation. They mean something like: "Am I right?" or "Do you agree?" They are very common in English.

The basic structure is:


Quote:
+Positive statement, -negative tag?

Example : Snow is white, isn't it?

-Negative statement, +positive tag?

Example : You don't like me, do you?

Look at these examples with positive statements:


You are coming, are n't you?
We have finished, have n't we?
You do like coffee, do n't you?
You like coffee, do n't you? -------- You (do) like...
They will help, wo n't they? -------- won't = will not
I can come, can 't I?
We must go, must n't we?
He should try harder, should n't he?
You are English, are n't you? (no auxiliary for main verb be present & past)
John was there, was n't he? (no auxiliary for main verb be present & past)



Look at these examples with negative statements:

It is n't raining, is it?
We have never seen that, have we?
You do n't like coffee, do you?
They will not help, will they?
They wo n't report us, will they?
I can never do it right, can I?
We must n't tell her, must we?
He should n't drive so fast, should he?
You are n't English, are you?
John was not there, was he?




Some special cases:

I am right, aren't I? aren't I -------- (not amn't I)
You have to go, don't you? --------- you (do) have to go...
I have been answering, haven't I? -------- use first auxiliary
Nothing came in the post, did it? --------- treat statements with nothing, nobody etc like negative statements
Let's go, shall we? -------------- let's = let us
He'd better do it, hadn't he? ---------- he had better (no auxiliary)






Here are some mixed examples:

But you don't really love her, do you?
This will work, won't it?
Well, I couldn't help it, could I?
But you'll tell me if she calls, won't you?
We'd never have known, would we?
The weather's bad, isn't it?
You won't be late, will you?
Nobody knows, do they?





Notice that we often use tag questions to ask for information or help, starting with a negative statement. This is quite a friendly/polite way of making a request. For example, instead of saying "Where is the police station?" (not very polite), or "Do you know where the police station is?" (slightly more polite), we could say: "You wouldn't know where the police station is, would you?" Here are some more examples:



You don't know of any good jobs, do you?
You couldn't help me with my homework, could you?
You haven't got $10 to lend me, have you?










Intonation

We can change the meaning of a tag question with the musical pitch of our voice. With rising intonation, it sounds like a real question. But if our intonation falls, it sounds more like a statement that doesn't require a real answer:



You don't know where my wallet is, do you? / rising real question
It's a beatiful view, isn't it? \ falling not a real question




Answers to tag questions

How do we answer a tag question? Often, we just say Yes or No. Sometimes we may repeat the tag and reverse it (..., do they? Yes, they do). Be very careful about answering tag questions. In some languages, an oposite system of answering is used, and non-native English speakers sometimes answer in the wrong way. This can lead to a lot of confusion!




Quote:
Answer a tag question according to the truth of the situation. Your answer reflects the real facts, not (necessarily) the question.
For example, everyone knows that snow is white. Look at these questions, and the correct answers:



Snow is white, isn't it? Yes (it is).
Snow isn't white, is it? Yes it is!

The answer is the same in both cases - because snow IS WHITE!

Snow is black, isn't it?
Snow isn't black, is it? No (it isn't).

No it isn't! the answer is the same in both cases - because snow IS NOT BLACK!


but notice the change of stress when the answerer does not agree with the questioner




In some languages, people answer a question like "Snow isn't black, is it?" with "Yes" (meaning "Yes, I agree with you"). This is the wrong answer in English!

Here are some more examples, with correct answers:

The moon goes round the earth, doesn't it? Yes, it does.
The earth is bigger than the moon, isn't it? Yes.
The earth is bigger than the sun, isn't it? No, it isn't!
Asian people don't like rice, do they? Yes, they do!
Elephants live in Europe, don't they? No, they don't!
Men don't have babies, do they? No.
The English alphabet doesn't have 40 letters, does it? No, it doesn't.




Question tags with imperatives

Sometimes we use question tags with imperatives (invitations, orders), but the sentence remains an imperative and does not require a direct answer. We use won't for invitations. We use can, can't, will, would for orders.


invitation:

Take a seat, won't you? ------------------polite
order Help me, can you? ----------------quite friendly
Help me, can't you? ----------------- quite friendly (some irritation?)
Close the door, would you? ------------- quite polite
Do it now, will you? ---------------------- less polite


Same-way question tags


Although the basic structure of tag questions is positive-negative or negative-positive, it is sometime possible to use a positive-positive or negative-negative structure. We use same-way question tags to express interest, surprise, anger etc, and not to make real questions.

So you're having a baby, are you? That's wonderful!
She wants to marry him, does she? Some chance!
So you think that's amusing, do you? Think again.

Negative-negative tag questions usually sound rather hostile:

So you don't like my looks, don't you?


Don't forget, will you? with negative imperatives only will is possible.












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