Epistemic Modal Verbs in the Field of Linguistics and Literature: A Corpus-Based Study


  • Ayesha Bashir Lecturer in English, Higher Education Department.
  • Irfan Ullah Assistant Professor, Department of English, Abdul Wali Khan University, Mardan, KP, Pakistan.
  • Liaqat Iqbal Associate Professor, Department of English, Abdul Wali Khan University, Mardan, KP, Pakistan.




Modal Verbs, Epistemic Modality, Corpus-based, Linguistics, Literature


Epistemic modality, a linguistic category, particularly deals with the interactive dimensions of various discourses. Epistemic modality in broad terms can be defined as any modal system that indicates the degree of assurance of what a speaker says. The present study identifies and analyzes the epistemic modal verbs EMVs in the dissertations of linguistics and literature. For this purpose, two sub-corpora of Ph.D. dissertations from the fields of linguistics and literature were constructed. The concordance tool AntConc3.5.8 was used to analyse the selected modal verbs. The most frequent epistemic modal auxiliaries used in both disciplines were found to be may, would and could. Interestingly, the EMVs were deployed by the researchers of linguistics more than twice as much used by the researchers of literature.


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How to Cite

Bashir, A., Ullah, I., & Iqbal, L. (2023). Epistemic Modal Verbs in the Field of Linguistics and Literature: A Corpus-Based Study. Journal of Social Sciences Review, 3(2), 736–744. https://doi.org/10.54183/jssr.v3i2.310