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Learn About Verbs: Chapter 1 – Auxiliary Verbs

An auxiliary adds functional or grammatical meaning to the clause in which it appears. It is used to express tense, aspect, modality, voice, and apply emphasis.

Auxillary Verbs

What’s the difference?

The difference pertains to the role played in the formation of verb phrases.

Understand By Example:

Main Verb: Simple Verb Phrases which convey basic meaning of the phrase.

Example: They Go to the office together.

Auxiliary Verb: Complex Verb Phrases which convey the grammatical and modal meaning of phrase.

Example: They Will go to the office together

The Auxiliary Verbs are further categorized as follow:

  1. Modal Auxiliaries: can/could, may/might, will/would, shall/ should, must, ought to, dare, need, used to
  2. Semi-Auxiliaries: have to , seem to, happen to, chance to, appear to, come to, fail to, get to, tend to, turn out to, be to, be sure to, be about to, be apt to, be certain to, be bound to, be going to,

Features of Primary Auxiliary Verbs:

  1. Has no lexical meaning

Some Examples:

  1. The application doesn‘t have remote login feature.
  2. The software has a built in license key
  3. The users were logged in to the system.
  4. The administrator disconnected us from the machine.

Features of Modal Auxiliary Verbs:

  1. They express modal meanings.
  2. Using a past tense forms does not necessarily mean past-time reference.
  3. While using finite verb phrase, only one modal auxiliary can be used which invariably follows a bare infinitive or the base form.

Some Examples:

  1. The system will auto-generate the reports.
  2. If too many users connect to the server, the connection speed might get affected.

Features of Semi Auxiliary Verbs:

  1. Help the main verb to form the complex verb phrase and express the modal meaning.
  2. When preceded by other auxiliaries, function as main verbs

Some Examples:

  1. To read the log reports you need to log in to the administrator’s console.

Final Word:

Incorrect and improper usage of verbs in construction of sentences can lead to in-appropriate meaning being conveyed.

Beating our own bugle:

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