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    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • French
      • Home Country:
      • France
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Mar 2008
    • Posts: 1,189
    #1

    Wink help!

    Hello there!

    I regularly see sentences like the following:

    -Please can you fax me a map of the city centre.
    -Please can you make the modifications.
    -Could you please reserve 2 single rooms.

    I'm rather surprised because there is no question mark at the end,is this a correct structure?

    thanks
    W

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Oriya
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • India

    • Join Date: Mar 2008
    • Posts: 2,121
    #2

    Exclamation Re: help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Will17 View Post
    Hello there!

    I regularly see sentences like the following:

    -Please can you fax me a map of the city centre.
    -Please can you make the modifications.
    -Could you please reserve 2 single rooms.

    I'm rather surprised because there is no question mark at the end,is this a correct structure?

    thanks
    W
    All the three are interrogative setences which need to be followd by ? mark. Besides, in first two setences, the word 'please' which is used as an adverb should preferably be placed after the modal verb 'can' as in the third sentece.

  1. jackolantern's Avatar

    • Join Date: Jun 2009
    • Posts: 94
    #3

    Re: help!

    I am not a teacher, but I am a native speaker.

    These are very common mistakes made by native speakers. Many people are only used to putting "?" at the end of questions beginning with "What", "Who", "Where", "Why and "How. People just forget to put question marks at the end of these sentences. You will probably always see this mistake every once in a while.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • French
      • Home Country:
      • France
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Mar 2008
    • Posts: 1,189
    #4

    Cool Re: help!

    Quote Originally Posted by jackolantern View Post
    I am not a teacher, but I am a native speaker.

    These are very common mistakes made by native speakers. Many people are only used to putting "?" at the end of questions beginning with "What", "Who", "Where", "Why and "How. People just forget to put question marks at the end of these sentences. You will probably always see this mistake every once in a while.

    Thanks a lot. the worst is that I ve seen these sentences in a course book....


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 19,434
    #5

    Re: help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Will17 View Post
    Hello there!

    I regularly see sentences like the following:

    -Please can you fax me a map of the city centre.
    -Please can you make the modifications.
    -Could you please reserve 2 single rooms.

    I'm rather surprised because there is no question mark at the end,is this a correct structure?

    thanks
    W

    These are not questions, but requests/instructions for actions to be carried out. They do not require a question mark.

    Is it possible that you can fax me a map of the city centre? is a question asking for an answer.

    Can you make the modifications?
    is also a question which can be answered rather than an instruction.

  2. jackolantern's Avatar

    • Join Date: Jun 2009
    • Posts: 94
    #6

    Re: help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Anglika View Post
    These are not questions, but requests/instructions for actions to be carried out. They do not require a question mark.

    Is it possible that you can fax me a map of the city centre? is a question asking for an answer.

    Can you make the modifications?
    is also a question which can be answered rather than an instruction.
    Ahhh, you are correct that they do not require a question mark, as these are considered polite requests. Everything I can find on them seem to be somewhat ambiguous. It says that they usually don't require a question mark, particularly as the sentence gets longer and more complex. One page gives this example:

    "Would everyone in the room who hasn't received an ID card please move to the front of the line."

    I would not assume this sentence to have a question mark. But what is the changing point? Including the word "please"?

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