Don't Commit this Modal Slip
Posted by Issa and Published on Nov 09, 2012
Verbs bring life to a sentence so use them with care. We recall that verbs are classified into three: modals (can, may, will, could, etc.) always function as auxiliaries; full verbs (buy, live, work, etc.) always function as main verbs; and primary verbs (be,have, and do) can function either as auxiliaries or as main verbs.
Scrolling through fashion blogs, I found a sentence that made me cringe. Can you spot the unfashionable slip?
'This blog will serves as your daily dose of inspiring photos...'
I bet you found it. Modals are followed by the base form of verbs - verbs that are neither in singular nor past form.
- Examples: will serve, will guide, can live, may love, could rejoice, would stumble
Once and for all, remember this simple formula while proofreading for verb errors: Modal + Base Form of primary or full verb.