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Unit 11.2

Questions with Shall…?

Syntax

Shall is a modal verb used in question forms to ask for instructions or formulating requests in a polite way.

We form questions using shall by using this structure:
Shall + subject* + verb + …?

*It is used only in the first person singular and plural.

  1. Offers services
    • Shall I bring you an aperitif?
    • Shall I bring you a glass?
    • Shall we do it for you?
  2. Suggestions
    • Shall I ask for the bill now?
    • Shall I book a table?
    • Shall we go to an Italian restaurant?
  3. Asking for instructions
    • My guests are vegetarians, what shall I cook?
    • I’m allergic to onion so what shall I do if I accidentally eat some?
    • What shall we do if the baby doesn’t drink the milk?

Shall is used in the first person singular and plural to ask questions or make requests in a more polite way. We can use it also for:

  1. Offer services;
  2. Make suggestions;
  3. Ask for instructions.

The modal verb shall is used to ask for services, suggestions and instructions.

The structure is:
Shall + subject + verb + …?

For example:
— “Shall we help them?” = Shall is considered to be more formal and it is not commonly used.
♦ “Will we help them?” = Will is less formal and it is more commonly used.

NOTE: Will and shall have the same meaning, but shall is used only in the first person singular and plural.

Let’s revise this content within the {Form} section. Take a look at the {Example} section that shows its use within a context.

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