ought


ought
ought MODAL VERB (3rd sing. present and past ought) 1) used to indicate duty or correctness. 2) used to indicate something that is probable. 3) used to indicate a desirable or expected state. 4) used to give or ask advice.
USAGE The standard construction for the negative is he ought not to have gone . The constructions he didn't ought to have gone and he hadn't ought to have gone are found in dialect but are not acceptable in standard modern English. The reason for this is that the verb ought is a modal verb and therefore behaves differently from ordinary verbs in certain constructions, such as the formation of a negative.
ORIGIN Old English.

English terms dictionary. 2015.

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  • ought — [ ɔt ] modal verb *** Ought is usually followed by to and an infinitive: You ought to tell the truth. Sometimes it is used without to or a following infinitive in a formal way: I don t practice as often as I ought. It is also used in an informal… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • ought to — W2S1 [ˈo:t tu: US ˈo:t ] modal v [: Old English; Origin: ahte, past tense of agan; OWE] 1.) used to say that someone should do something because it is the best or most sensible thing to do = ↑should ▪ You really ought to quit smoking. ▪ The… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Ought — Ought, imp., p. p., or auxiliary. [Orig. the preterit of the verb to owe. OE. oughte, aughte, ahte, AS. [=a]hte. [root]110. See {Owe}.] 1. Was or were under obligation to pay; owed. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] This due obedience which they ought to the …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Ought To Go — Breed Quarter Horse Discipline Racing Sire Go Man Go Grandsire …   Wikipedia

  • ought — In current use the verb ought is followed by a to infinitive: • You ought to have a cooked breakfast, these cold mornings David Lodge, 1988. Since it is a modal verb, it forms a negative directly with not and forms a question by plain inversion:… …   Modern English usage

  • ought — ought1 [ôt] v.aux. used with infinitives and meaning: 1. to be compelled by obligation or duty [he ought to pay his debts ] or by desirability [you ought to eat more] 2. to be expected or likely [it ought to be over soon]: Past time is expressed… …   English World dictionary

  • ought — ought·lins; ought·ness; ought; …   English syllables

  • Ought — ([add]t), n. & adv. See {Aught}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • ought|n't — «AWT uhnt», ought not …   Useful english dictionary

  • ought — [[t]ɔ͟ːt[/t]] ♦♦♦ (Ought to is a phrasal modal verb. It is used with the base form of a verb. The negative form of ought to is ought not to, which is sometimes shortened to oughtn t to in spoken English.) 1) PHR MODAL You use ought to to mean… …   English dictionary