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Hi,

I have to identify whether or not each of the following sentences has a modal verb, a primary auxiliary verb, both a modal and a primary auxiliary verb, or no auxiliary verb. I have triple-checked each answer but would really appreciate a "fresh" pair of eyes to have a look over as well! Thanks!

Katie

1. I can do magic card tricks. MODAL
2. Is LOST the greatest show ever created for television? PRIMARY
3. I have eaten squid. PRIMARY
4. I'll help you if I can. MODAL
5. Amy must be doing well. I've heard nothing but good things about her. BOTH
6. Many people believe that watching television is not good for you. PRIMARY
7. Would you mind telling me all about it? MODAL
8. Martin has been driving since he was seventeen years old. PRIMARY
9. David Mitchell's book Cloud Atlas is my favourite piece of literature written this century. PRIMARY
10. I could bench press 100 kilos when I was younger. BOTH
11. I think that Catherine wants to leave her husband. NONE
12. I sometimes feel that I'm getting old. PRIMARY
13. What time is it? I must be getting on. BOTH
14. Chloë is very intelligent. NONE
15. I would have done much better in life had I worked harder. BOTH
16. Could you come over here? MODAL
17. My friend Maki is from Japan and lived in the UK for a year. PRIMARY
18. I'm watching another episode of LOST tonight on Television. PRIMARY
19. I ought to have been kinder to my last girlfriend. BOTH
20. I should tell her that I am sorry. BOTH
1 2
Comments  
I'm not expert on these definitions by any means.
What would be an example of an auxilliary verb which is not primary?

So is the idea that all auxilliary verbs are either "primary" or "modal"?

"Yes, I can!" would be missing a finite verb?? (Do you recognize modal verbs which are not auxilliaries?)

In #6, what do you consider to be the primary auxilliary?

In my opinion, #9 is like #6, in that neither has any auxilliary at all.

What is your thinking on #10? Are you considering "was" a primary auxilliary?
The verb "to be" is used in forming certain tenses, eg, the progressive tenses: I was thinking about going.
But in this case, "when I was younger" uses "was" as a finite verb. "Younger" is an adjective complement.

In #12, "I am getting old" is present progressive tense. Are you calling "am" a primary auxilliary?
If so, you're probably right, although I personally haven't formed the habit of calling "to be" an auxilliary in these cases. The error is probably mine.

#13 would be the same. You're probably right. "Must be getting" is present progressive, using "be" as a primary auxillary, and "must" as a modal auxilliary.

I find no auxilliary in #17. I believe it's like #6 and #9 in that "is" is used as a finite verb, not as an auxilliary.

Good luck! - A.

Edit. By the way, we have a magic box to strip all the Microsoft code from your imported text.
But, pasting must be the very first thing you do in a new post.
(You'll need to execute "Ctrl-V" twice in succession.)

If you type even a single period before pasting, the magic box is disabled!
I can do magic card tricks. MODAL
2.
Is LOST the greatest show ever created for television? PRIMARY ???
3.
I have eaten squid. PRIMARY
4.
I'll help you if I can. MODAL
5.
Amy must be doing well. I've heard nothing but good things about her. BOTH
6.
Many people believe that watching television is not good for you. PRIMARY ???
7.
Would you mind telling me all about it? MODAL
8.
Martin has been driving since he was seventeen years old. PRIMARY ???
9.
David Mitchell's book Cloud Atlas is my favourite piece of literature written this century. PRIMARY ???
10.
I could bench press 100 kilos when I was younger. BOTH ???
11.
I think that Catherine wants to leave her husband. NONE
12.
I sometimes feel that I'm getting old. PRIMARY ???
13.
What time is it? I must be getting on. BOTH ???
14.
Chloë is very intelligent. NONE
15.
I would have done much better in life had I worked harder. BOTH
16.
Could you come over here? MODAL
17.
My friend Maki is from Japan and lived in the UK for a year. PRIMARY ???
18.
I'm watching another episode of LOST tonight on Television. PRIMARY
19.
I ought to have been kinder to my last girlfriend. BOTH
20.
I should tell her that I am sorry. BOTH ???

You seem to consider the verb to be a primary auxiliary even when it's not an auxiliary to any other verb but simply the main verb of the clause. Can that be correct?

CJ

I have no idea what you're doing with the formatting but it's messing everything up.
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Hi, thanks for the replies, I really appreciate your time. I am unsure whether I am just supposed to identify any aux verbs in the sentence. For example number 6, I know that 'believe' and 'watching' are the verbs, but is 'is' not a primary aux as it is the present form of 'be' (which is a primary aux verb)? Is it only a primary aux if it is in a particular place in the sentence or can it be found anywhere? I am not fully understanding this, I have re-read the very basic notes I have been given and have borrowed 4 different grammar books from the library but just can't get my head around it.

P.S. sorry about the formatting, no idea what I did there!!
"I have to identify whether or not each of the following sentences has a modal verb, a primary auxiliary verb, both a modal and a primary auxiliary verb, or no auxiliary verb."

6. Many people believe that watching television is not good for you.

watching doesn't count as a verb. It's a gerund and the subject of the clause.

There are no auxiliaries in this sentence, neither primary nor modal -- only two main verbs.

Modals: none
Primary auxiliaries: none

CJ
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Thanks, I've looked it over it all again and changed some of them. It just isn't "going in" like grammar normally does for me, I am having to triple-check each sentence against my notes, books, websites, etc. just to be able to answer. I don't know why I'm finding it so difficult. Again, a second opinion would be greatly appreciated - thanks. (I hope the formatting is ok this time!!)

Katie

1. I can do magic card tricks. MODAL

2. Is LOST the greatest show ever created for television? PRIMARY

3. I have eaten squid. PRIMARY

4. I'll help you if I can. BOTH

5. Amy must be doing well. I've heard nothing but good things about her. BOTH

6. Many people believe that watching television is not good for you. NONE

7. Would you mind telling me all about it? MODAL

8. Martin has been driving since he was seventeen years old. PRIMARY

9. David Mitchell's book Cloud Atlas is my favourite piece of literature written this century. NONE

10. I could bench press 100 kilos when I was younger. MODAL

11. I think that Catherine wants to leave her husband. NONE

12. I sometimes feel that I'm getting old. PRIMARY

13. What time is it? I must be getting on. BOTH

14. Chloë is very intelligent. NONE

15. I would have done much better in life had I worked harder. BOTH

16. Could you come over here? MODAL

17. My friend Maki is from Japan and lived in the UK for a year. NONE

18. I'm watching another episode of LOST tonight on Television. PRIMARY

19. I ought to have been kinder to my last girlfriend. MODAL

20. I should tell her that I am sorry. MODAL
1. I can do magic card tricks. MODAL

2. Is LOST the greatest show ever created for television? PRIMARY NONE

3. I have eaten squid. PRIMARY

4. I'll help you if I can. BOTH MODAL (No be, have, or do.)

5. Amy must be doing well. I've heard nothing but good things about her. BOTH

6. Many people believe that watching television is not good for you. NONE

7. Would you mind telling me all about it? MODAL

8. Martin has been driving since he was seventeen years old. PRIMARY

9. David Mitchell's book Cloud Atlas is my favourite piece of literature written this century. NONE

10. I could bench press 100 kilos when I was younger. MODAL

11. I think that Catherine wants to leave her husband. NONE

12. I sometimes feel that I'm getting old. PRIMARY

13. What time is it? I must be getting on. BOTH

14. Chloë is very intelligent. NONE

15. I would have done much better in life had I worked harder. BOTH

16. Could you come over here? MODAL

17. My friend Maki is from Japan and lived in the UK for a year. NONE

18. I'm watching another episode of LOST tonight on Television. PRIMARY

19. I ought to have been kinder to my last girlfriend. MODAL / BOTH

Ask your teacher how he or she wants ought to be classified. If modal, then you're right on this one. Also, does your teacher want you to find the auxiliaries in infinitives? If so, then you have both here because you have the perfect infinitive to have been.

20. I should tell her that I am sorry. MODAL

All correct except where commented in blue.

CJ
kates2787 For example number 6, I know that 'believe' and 'watching' are the verbs, but is 'is' not a primary aux as it is the present form of 'be' (which is a primary aux verb)? Is it only a primary aux if it is in a particular place in the sentence or can it be found anywhere?
You have to address this question on a clause-by-clause basis.
If a sentence has two clauses, each one needs a main finite verb - at least in traditional grammar.
If the only verb you can find is one which may serve as an auxilliary (is, have, do, etc.), then the chances are very good that it's not an auxilliary.

My brother is helping me with my homework, but he is very short on patience.
The first "is" is an auxilliary, and the second one is a main verb.

I didn't like the way you asked, but I'll do your laundry for you.
The first "do" is an auxilliary, and the second one is a main verb. (The future "will" is also an auxilliary.)

I've tried very hard to solve this problem, but I just don't have the brains for it.
The first "have" is an auxilliary, and the second one is a main verb. ("Do" is an auxilliary.)

I like algebra, but this example is too hard! (This is something like #6. The "is" goes with the second clause.)

Edit.Ouch! I just realized that "watching" was what threw you off, which is actually in the same clause with "is." (Jim straightened that out nicely.) Emotion: nodding Sorry about that.

I discovered that my son is watching porn on the internet.
In this case, the verb in the "that" clause (the second clause) is "is watching" (present progressive tense),
and "is" is certainly an auxilliary.
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