Faculté des lettres et sciences humaines

Möchten ist nicht mögen: ein siebtes Modalverb im Deutschen

Näf, Anton

In: Revue Tranel (Travaux neuchâtelois de linguistique), 2011, vol. 55, p. 111-137

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    This paper argues that in present-day German, the form möchten should no longer be considered and classified as the conjunctive II-form of mögen, but rather as the infinitive of a distinct modal verb möchten. With evidence taken from corpus linguistic investigations, it is shown that the two modal verbs have split in contemporary German on the morphological, semantic and pragmatic levels. In German grammars, möchten should therefore figure as a distinct seventh modal verb, and monolingual and bilingual dictionaries should provide two separate entries for mögen and möchten.