I've found around the web sentences of this form, which are using model verb "would" as a main/conjugated verb.

I would to be ...


I would to eat this food.

I think those are ungrammatical. However for making sure I am asking this question.


  • Are those in English grammatical?

  • If not, how about in casual writings and speakings?

  • Would that they were.
    – Dan
    Nov 24, 2015 at 19:59

1 Answer 1


When using the verb will in its volitional sense, its past tense is willed. The archaic past tense "would" is only used as a modal in modern English, expressing either the conditional aspect or the future in the past. So no, none of those examples are grammatical.

Either way, this usage is all but obsolete, and you shouldn't use it if you want to be understood.

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