More on Modals

So, after many a minute of research, I found this website listing modal verbs in Norwegian:

They list kan, vil, skal, må, bør (can, want, will, must, and should). Now, Duolingo, on the other hand, uses vil as want and will.

Q1: So, is skal ever used?

Q2: When is skal more appropriate to use, if ever, rather than vil?

Later on, Duolingo uses får/ å få as a modal verb, meaning "shall". So, I took a gander at Wiktionary, and:

(as an auxiliary verb) will; have to; better Det får vente. It will have to wait.

(as an auxiliary verb) may, can, be allowed Pasienten får ikke ta imot besøk. The patient is not allowed to have visits.

(as an auxiliary verb) shall, will Vi får se hva som skjer. We'll see what happens.

Q3: When should får/ å få be used, as opposed to vil, skal, må, or bør?

Tusen takk til hvem som helst svarer meg! (Does that make sense?)

August 1, 2015


When to use the correct modal verb is quite a challenge, and not easy if you want to be correct 100 % of the time. That said, there are some very rough guidelines you can use, which might make you choose the correct one some of the times, but probably just going to make you more confused as there are some subtle differences between some of them depending on what exactly you want to express.

If you want to be correct all the time you need to read a proper grammar book, and/or get a lot of experience reading and listening to Norwegian.

A1: A lot.


A3: See the beginning text. For me it is too much to answer here, at least for now. But you can/might get some rough guidelines by looking up the words up in the official Norwegian dictionary (provided you understand the Norwegian text :)

(sigh duolingo messes up the links because of the &)


(Tusen) takk på forhånd -or- På forhånd takk
(Tusen) takk til alle som svarer (meg)
(Tusen) takk til de/den som svarer (meg)

There is a lesson on Modal verbs about midway between the third and fourth checkpoints where skal and vil are described this way:

vil want to, will (willing to) skal shall, will (regardless of willingness)

They are also covered in the lesson on Future verbs right after the fourth checkpoint.

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