Uses of modals





Can and Could


Can is used :

  • To express ability; as,

    1. I can play.
    2. She can write.
  • To express permission; as,

    1. You can go now.
    2. You can use my mobile.
  • To express request; as,

    1. Can you help me?
    2. Can you tell me the way to the police station?

Could is used :

  • To make polite request; as,

    1. Could you help me?
    2. Could you lend me some money?


May and Might


May is used :

  • To express permission; as,

    1. May I come in?
    2. May I go now?
  • To express possibility; as,

    1. He may win a scholarship.
    2. It may rain today.
  • To express wish; as,

    1. May you live long !
    2. May God bless you !

Use of might :

  • Might is used when more politeness is to be shown; as,

    1. Might I use your mobile?
    2. Might I ask you a question?



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Parts of Speech