"pertaining to or affected by a mode," 1560s, originally a term in logic, from French modal and directly from Medieval Latin modalis "of or pertaining to a mode," from Latin modus "measure, extent, quantity; proper measure, rhythm, song; a way, manner, fashion, style" (in Late Latin also "mood" in grammar and logic), from PIE root *med- "take appropriate measures." Musical sense is from 1590s; In grammar from 1798.
"fact of being a mode," 1610s, from French modalité or directly from Medieval Latin modalitatem (nominative modalitas) "a being modal," from modalis (see modal). Related: Modalities.
Proto-Indo-European root meaning "take appropriate measures."
It forms all or part of: accommodate; accommodation; commode; commodious; commodity; empty; immoderate; immodest; Medea; medical; medicament; medicaster; medicate; medication; medicine; medico; medico-; meditate; meditation; Medusa; meet (adj.) "proper, fitting;" mete (v.) "to allot;" modal; mode; model; moderate; modern; modest; modicum; modify; modular; modulate; module; modulation; mold (n.1) "hollow shape;" mood (n.2) "grammatical form indicating the function of a verb;" must (v.); premeditate; premeditation; remedial; remediation; remedy.
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit midiur "I judge, estimate;" Avestan vi-mad- "physician;" Greek mēdomai "be mindful of," medesthai "think about," medein "to rule," medon "ruler;" Latin meditari "think or reflect on, consider," modus "measure, manner," modestus "moderate," modernus "modern," mederi "to heal, give medical attention to, cure;" Irish miduir "judge;" Welsh meddwl "mind, thinking;" Gothic miton, Old English metan "to measure out."