Modals Class 10

Modals Class 10

What are Modals?

The verbs like can, could, may, might, will, would, shall, should, must, used to, and ought to are called modals or modal verbs.


In grammar, a modal verb is a type of auxiliary verb that expresses modality, indicating the attitude or mood of the speaker towards the action or state described by the main verb. Examples of modal verbs include “can,” “could,” “may,” “might,” “must,” “shall,” “should,” “will,” and “would.” They are used to convey ability, possibility, necessity, permission, obligation, and other similar meanings

Use of Modals

They are used before ordinary verbs and express meanings such as certainty, possibility, permission, and necessity.

‘Modal verbs’ are used with ‘Lexical verbs’.

What are ‘Lexical Verbs?’

Lexical Verbs are action and linking verbs. They typically express state, action, or other predicate meaning.

Types of Lexical verbs:

1. Action verbs

2. Linking verbs

Action verbs: they express physical or mental expression. 

ex. drink, kick, hit, walk, swim, etc.

Linking verbs: verbs that serve as a connection between a subject. They represent mental activities.

ex. love, think, hate, etc.


1. Shall is used in the first person to express the future.

2. Shall is also used with the 2nd and 3rd person to express promise, threat, command, and determination.


1. Will is used in all persons to express the future.

2. Will is also used with the 2nd and 3rd person to express promise, threat, command, and determination.


1. Should is used as the past equivalent of shall.

2. Should is used to express obligation, duty, advice, surprise, request, etc.


1. Would is the past equivalent of will.

2. Would is used to express willingness, determination, suggestion, polite request, etc.


1. Can usually be used to express capacity or ability.


1. Could is the past equivalent of Can.

2. Could be used to express only the ability to do an act.


1. Need can be conjugated with or without do.

2. Need denotes necessity, weakness, or obligation.


1. May is used to express possibility.

2. May can also be used to express permission, wish and purpose.


1. Might is the past form of May.

2. Might is used to express possibility, purpose, degree of dissatisfaction.


1. Must is used to express compulsion, necessity, obligation, etc 

2. Must express logical certainty and refers to the present or near future.

Ought to

1. Ought to express moral obligation or moral duty, probability, advice.

Used to

1. Used to express a discontinued/past habit.

Has to/Have to/Had to

1. represents forced action of past or future.


Modals MCQ Class 10

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