verbal auxiliary \kəd, ˈkd\

Definition of COULD

past of can
—used in auxiliary function in the past <we found we could go>, in the past conditional <we said we would go if we could>, and as an alternative to can suggesting less force or certainty or as a polite form in the present <if you could come we would be pleased>

Origin of COULD

Middle English couthe, coude, from Old English cūthe; akin to Old High German konda could
First Known Use: 13th century

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms

ablaut, allusion, anacoluthon, diacritic, gerund, idiom, infinitive, metaphor, semiotics, simile


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