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Auxiliary Verbs - Glossary of Terms

Auxiliary Verbs

An auxiliary verb (or helping verb) accompanies another verb in order to help express its tense, mood or voice.  The verbs to have, to be, to do, can, may and shall are commonly used auxiliary verbs.


Do you have to leave at six o'clock?
I can help you.

Interactive example:

You could have been killed. [show me the auxiliary verb]
Remember, can denotes capability; whereas, may denotes permission.

Can I listen to your CDs?

(Nowadays, this ruling is only for the grammatically pure!)
Associated pages:
What are verbs?
Glossary of grammatical terms

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