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MODALS

ABILITY
CAN / CANT (present)
COULD / COULDNT (past)
WILL BE ABLE TO /
WONT BE ABLE (future)
John can play tennis.
My daughter could play the clarinet when she was nine.
After lots of practice, I will be able to play the piano.
OBLIGATION
MUST (present)
+ rules and laws
+ talk about something the speaker feels
necessary.
HAVE TO / HAD TO
+ rules and laws
+ talk about obligation imposed on the
speaker by others or circunstance.

You must wear a seatbelt
I must write a letter to my grandparents.


All passengers have to wear a seat belt
I have to read this book if I want to pass the exam.
We had to memorize a whole unit for a Science exam.
ADVICE
SHOULD / SHOULDNT

OUGHT TO / OUGHT NOT TO
You look really ill. You should stay in bed for a few days.
Children shouldnt play here.
You ought not to go.
PROHIBITION
MUSTNT You mustnt drink and drive.
You mustnt smoke in the restaurant.
NO OBLIGATION DONT HAVE TO / DOESNT HAVE TO
DIDNT HAVE TO
You dont have to wash the dishes now.
Yesterday evening we didnt have to go training.
POSSIBILITY
COULD
MAY / MAY NOT
MIGHT / MIGHT NOT
Someones coming. It could be Sally.
Many people may not return alive
Its sunny. It might be warm outside.
CERTAINTY
MUST
CANT
Hes got a broken leg. That must be painful.
This cant be Marys car. She hasnt got a driving licence.