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Thread: Will and Shall

  1. #1
    englishpunster Guest

    Default Will and Shall

    Dear Sir,

    I would like to know what are the differences between "will" and "shall"?
    How should I use them?

    Thanks,

    englishpunster

  2. #2
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default

    In British English, 'shall' is mainly used in questions:

    What shall I do? (asking for advice)
    Shall we we eat out? (suggestion)

    It can be used instead of 'will' with 'I' and 'we', but this is less common nowadays. It can also replace 'will' with the second and third person to show strong volition.

  3. #3
    Natalie27 Guest

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    In British English, 'shall' is mainly used in questions:

    What shall I do? (asking for advice)
    Shall we we eat out? (suggestion)

    It can be used instead of 'will' with 'I' and 'we', but this is less common nowadays. It can also replace 'will' with the second and third person to show strong volition.
    The only way I hear it used is when a guy is asking you to dance on the floor with him, reaches out for your hand and says "Shall we?" Otherwise we don't use "shall" that much in Canada.

  4. #4
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default

    It's getting less common here in the UK too. Few people say 'I shall'. It's fairly common in formal writing, though.

  5. #5
    Natalie27 Guest

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    It's getting less common here in the UK too. Few people say 'I shall'. It's fairly common in formal writing, though.
    Thanks TDOL. It's interesting and it's funny how it can be the same language and yet so different in so many ways....

    hey, what's tdol stand for...anything at all?

  6. #6
    englishpunster Guest

    Default

    Okay, now.
    Firstly, How does American English use "Shall"?
    Secondly, suppose I wanna be a writer. As a writer, how should I use "Shall" in the formal way?

    englishpunster

  7. #7
    Natalie27 Guest

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by englishpunster
    Okay, now.
    Firstly, How does American English use "Shall"?
    Secondly, suppose I wanna be a writer. As a writer, how should I use "Shall" in the formal way?

    englishpunster
    We don't. You don't really hear "shall" at all in North Ametrica. It's like the word doesn't really exist here and we are fine with that.

  8. #8
    welldone Guest

    Default

    I've read this book, "Element and Style". Interestingly the author presents two examples regarding "shall" and "will":

    1 I shall drown. Nobody will save me!

    This is when somebody is desperate for help when he is drowning.

    2 I will drown. Nobody shall save me!

    This is what a people who is seeking death would say.

  9. #9
    Natalie27 Guest

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by welldone
    I've read this book, "Element and Style". Interestingly the author presents two examples regarding "shall" and "will":

    1 I shall drown. Nobody will save me!

    This is when somebody is desperate for help when he is drowning.

    2 I will drown. Nobody shall save me!

    This is what a people who is seeking death would say.
    If that was up to me I would say:

    I will drown. Nobody should save me.

    same thing? I think so....

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Will and Shall

    Quote Originally Posted by englishpunster
    Dear Sir,

    I would like to know what are the differences between "will" and "shall"?
    How should I use them?

    Thanks,

    englishpunster
    Uses of shall and will and should in both American English and British English: Click here.

    Server: Shall I bring you the main course, now?

    All the best, :D

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