|Home Grammar Lessons > Introduction I 1 2 3 4 5 6 II 1 2 3 4 5 6 III 1 2 3 4 5 6 IV 1 2 3 4 5 6 V 1 2 3 4 5 6 VI 1 2 3 4 5 6 Select Unit|
Using modal auxiliary verbs in Tamil, part I: -கூடாது, -அட்டும், -லாம்The Tamil modal verbs are used by attaching them to an infinitive verb (e.g., போக-கூடாது, 'Should not go'; வர-முடியும், 'able to come', etc.). They are unlike other verbs in that they do not have the full range of conjugation: they are always in the neuter singular, they have limited tense inflection. Some of them also require that the subject of the sentence be in a case other than the nominative (e.g., வேண்டு, முடி). Below we go over the modals கூடாது, அட்டும், லாம். None of these modals take tense, and none require the subject to be in a case other than the nominative.
Asking and giving for permission: அட்டும் and லாம்To request or give permission ('let', 'may'), அட்டும் or லாம் is added to an infinitive verb. அட்டும் can only be used with the third person or with the first person in interrogative sentences. It may not be used with the second person or with the first person (sing. or plural) in declarative sentences.
லாம் may also be used to ask for permission:
லாம் is also used as the hortative, to mean ‘let's’ or ‘shall we’:
'Should not': using கூடாதுThe auxiliary verb for expressing ‘should/ought not’, கூடாது, is used by attaching it to an infinitive verb. The subject is in the nominative.
Dialogue: Shall we go for a movie? http://www.thetamillanguage.com/unit_02/section_C/lesson02.html
Dialogue: Send a parcel to Americahttp://www.thetamillanguage.com/unit_04/section_B/lesson02.html
© South Asia Language Resource Center (SALRC)