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Related to modal: Modal verb, Modal music

modal auxiliary verb

A modal auxiliary verb, often simply called a modal verb or even just a modal, is used to change the meaning of other verbs (commonly known as main verbs) by expressing modality—that is, asserting (or denying) possibility, likelihood, ability, permission, obligation, or future intention.
Modal verbs are defined by their inability to conjugate for tense and the third person singular (i.e., they do not take an “-s” at the end when he, she, or it is the subject), and they cannot form infinitives, past participles, or present participles. All modal auxiliary verbs are followed by a main verb in its base form (the infinitive without to); they can never be followed by other modal verbs, lone auxiliary verbs, or nouns.
As with the primary auxiliary verbs, modal verbs can be used with not to create negative sentences, and they can all invert with the subject to create interrogative sentences.
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pertaining to mode, manner, or form; in music, based on a scale other than major or minor
Not to be confused with:
model – a standard or example for imitation; exemplary: a model prisoner; a miniature representation of something: a model train; a person or thing that serves as a subject for an artist
module – a separable component or self-contained segment of something else: an office module; a standard unit for measuring; in computers, a program or part that performs a distinct function
Abused, Confused, & Misused Words by Mary Embree Copyright © 2007, 2013 by Mary Embree


1. Of, relating to, or characteristic of a mode.
2. Grammar Of, relating to, or expressing the mood of a verb.
3. Music Of, relating to, characteristic of, or composed in any of the modes typical of medieval church music.
4. Philosophy Of or relating to mode without referring to substance.
5. Logic Expressing or characterized by modality.
6. Statistics Of or relating to a statistical mode or modes.

[Medieval Latin modālis, from Latin modus, measure; see med- in Indo-European roots.]

mod′al·ly adv.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


1. of, relating to, or characteristic of mode or manner
2. (Grammar) grammar (of a verb form or auxiliary verb) expressing a distinction of mood, such as that between possibility and actuality. The modal auxiliaries in English include can, could, may, must, need, ought, shall, should, will, and would
3. (Philosophy) philosophy logic
a. qualifying or expressing a qualification of the truth of some statement, for example, as necessary or contingent
b. relating to analogous qualifications such as that of rules as obligatory or permissive
4. (Logic) philosophy logic
a. qualifying or expressing a qualification of the truth of some statement, for example, as necessary or contingent
b. relating to analogous qualifications such as that of rules as obligatory or permissive
5. (Philosophy) metaphysics of or relating to the form of a thing as opposed to its attributes, substance, etc
6. (Music, other) music of or relating to a mode
7. (Statistics) of or relating to a statistical mode
ˈmodally adv
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈmoʊd l)

1. of or pertaining to mode, manner, or form.
2. of or pertaining to a musical mode.
3. of, pertaining to, or expressing the mood of a verb.
4. exhibiting or expressing some phase of logical modality.
[1560–70; < Medieval Latin]
mod′al•ly, adv.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.modal - an auxiliary verb (such as `can' or `will') that is used to express modality
auxiliary verb - a verb that combines with another verb in a verb phrase to help form tense, mood, voice, or condition of the verb it combines with
Adj.1.modal - relating to or constituting the most frequent value in a distribution; "the modal age at which American novelists reach their peak is 30"
statistics - a branch of applied mathematics concerned with the collection and interpretation of quantitative data and the use of probability theory to estimate population parameters
normal - conforming with or constituting a norm or standard or level or type or social norm; not abnormal; "serve wine at normal room temperature"; "normal diplomatic relations"; "normal working hours"; "normal word order"; "normal curiosity"; "the normal course of events"
2.modal - of or relating to a musical modemodal - of or relating to a musical mode; especially written in an ecclesiastical mode
3.modal - relating to or expressing the mood of a verb; "modal auxiliary"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.


[ˈməʊdl] ADJmodal
Collins Spanish Dictionary - Complete and Unabridged 8th Edition 2005 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1971, 1988 © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2005


adjmodal; modal verbModalverb nt
Collins German Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 7th Edition 2005. © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1980 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2007


[ˈməʊdl] adjmodale
Collins Italian Dictionary 1st Edition © HarperCollins Publishers 1995
References in periodicals archive ?
ISLAMABAD -- Litigants facing civil trail for generations have termed Chief Justice Asif Saeed Khosa's announcement of formation of Modal Civil Trial Courts (MCTC), as a big step of relief for aggrieved persons.
Invited by the Pyrinas Artist Collective and the Embassy of Spain, the musician will lead a seminar on composing, arranging and improvising in modal music of the east.
Corpus Linguistics and Sociolinguistics: A Study of Variation and Change in the Modal Systems of World Englishes
The new Multi Modal Facility (MMF) directs rental car operations, public parking and other modes of ground transit into one centralized location to improve connectivity for travelers at O'Hare.
The Multi Modal Terminals (MMTs) are built under the government's Jal Marg Vikas project.
Revisi Outlook mencerminkan ekspektasi Fitch tentang deleveraging yang lebih bertahap selama satu atau dua tahun berikutnya karena kebutuhan modal kerja yang semakin intensif, penundaan penambahan kapasitas yang dapat mempengaruhi skala operasi perusahaan, dan daya tawar di antara pemegang merek global.
Based on the latest BSP Senior Bank Loan Officers' Survey (SLOS) for the fourth quarter, it said most banks surveyed maintained their credit standards for loans to both enterprises or businesses, and households using the modal approach.
In this paper, through modal coupling analysis on the fluid-structural vibration of the water-filled enclosure with elastic boundaries, an efficient computational method is deduced to determine the vibratory power flow generated by exterior excitations on the outside surface of the elastic structure, including the total power flow entering into the fluid-structural coupled system and the net power flow transmitted into the hydroacoustic field.
Despite years of research, reidentification is still a challenging problem as the data space in Re-ID is multimodal (modal in our work is defined as the space which is formed by the joint combination of different changes a given pair images of the same person undergo in different camera views) and the observed images in different views undergo various different changes in poses [2], viewpoints [3], lighting [4], background clutter, and also experience occlusion.
Following this alternative modal classification for resonant modes, this paper further classifies all capacitive modes into two categories intrinsically capacitive modes and nonintrinsically capacitive modes and further classifies all inductive modes into two categories intrinsically inductive modes and nonintrinsically inductive modes.
Modal tests are usually used to investigate the modal characteristics (natural frequencies and mode shapes) of launch vehicles, but they are inefficient in terms of time and manpower.