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Thread: question tags

  1. #1
    Lenka is offline Senior Member
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    Default question tags

    So Charlene's that rather plump fair-haired woman, is she?

    I don't understand why "is she?" was used there instead of something like "isn't she?". If the sentence is affirmative, the question should be negative, shouldn't it?

    Are there some other question tags that can be used?

  2. #2
    Philly is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: question tags

    Hi Lenka
    .
    That sort of a tag question is often used to express interest or surprise.
    .
    Yes, tag questions have a variety of uses and formats. I don't have a link other than Wikipedia handy, though. But take a look here for starters.
    .

  3. #3
    Lenka is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: question tags

    Quote Originally Posted by Philly View Post
    Hi Lenka
    .
    That sort of a tag question is often used to express interest or surprise.
    .
    Yes, tag questions have a variety of uses and formats. I don't have a link other than Wikipedia handy, though. But take a look here for starters.
    .
    Thanks, Philly .

    I am just going through the article at Wikipedia and I've already come across a sentence which I don't understand:
    Oh I must, must I?
    What does it mean?

  4. #4
    Lenka is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: question tags

    Another one which I don't understand:

    Take care, won't you?

  5. #5
    Philly is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: question tags

    Oh I must, must I?
    Hi Lenka
    .
    I'd interpret that one as challenging what the other person has just said:
    "Oh, really? That's what you say, but I have serious doubts that I must."

  6. #6
    Philly is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: question tags

    Take care, won't you?
    I think Wiki has the interpretation for this one right. Adding the tag adds affectionate concern to "Take care" (an expression often used instead of "Goodbye").
    .
    With tags, it's also important to get the intonation right. And that can be a bit difficult if you've never heard such a tag question spoken (and in context).
    .

  7. #7
    Lenka is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: question tags

    Quote Originally Posted by Philly View Post
    I think Wiki has the interpretation for this one right. Adding the tag adds affectionate concern to "Take care" (an expression often used instead of "Goodbye").
    .
    With tags, it's also important to get the intonation right. And that can be a bit difficult if you've never heard such a tag question spoken (and in context).
    .
    Well, it's explained as "affection" I think. Anyway, I don't understand how such a question tag can show you the other person likes you. However, I should not think of it that much, probably. It's all about learning from listening and reading (especially from the context), so if I hear I quite bare (right now), I won't remember it, probably.

    I understand it may sound quite "presumptuos" (I am not sure whether it's the right word here), but I believe I can imagine the intonation quite well... I was trying to say it to myself and I understand the difference (at least I hope so! :)).

  8. #8
    Philly is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: question tags

    Hi Lenka
    .
    I only mentioned the intonation since I have trouble getting it right myself sometimes in an "artificial" situation -- even though these less often used tags come out of my mouth just fine in a real life situation.
    .
    (I don't expect to ever make it big in Hollywood. )

  9. #9
    Lenka is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: question tags

    Quote Originally Posted by Philly View Post
    (I don't expect to ever make it big in Hollywood. )

    Ahhhh... What do you mean?? I didn't pick it up, apparently .

  10. #10
    Philly is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: question tags

    Hi Lenka
    .
    I just meant that I'm not a particularly good actor. So if I try to act out a conversation, it doesn't always exactly sound the same as a real life conversation. And that's one reason I will never become a big movie star.
    .

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