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testament, volonté

Modal verb

Marks the future, and is very often reduced to the sound / əl / or just / l / in speech.

e.g. it'll, I'll, she'll, etc..

syntax & semantics

  • invariable
  • cannot be combined with (preceded or followed by) other modal verbs or "to"
  • can be followed by the verbal base / bare infinitive (or nothing)
  • has at least two main meanings (one "radical" (volition / future), one "epistemic" (certainty))
can could capability / possibility
will would future / certainty / volonté
shall should value judgement / necessity
may might authorization / probability
must logical necessity / certainty

In the 19th century, shall was used with the 1st person singular or plural rather than will. This is no longer the case.