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 The future/ Form and Use

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تاريخ التسجيل : 25/02/2008

مُساهمةموضوع: The future/ Form and Use   الجمعة مارس 21, 2008 11:56 am

a. Use
The Simple Future tense is used to express non-continuous actions which will take place in the future. In the following examples, the verbs in the Simple Future tense are underlined.
e.g. They will finish the work tomorrow.
We will go back to school next Saturday.

b. Formation
The Simple Future of any verb is formed from the auxiliary will or shall, followed by the bare infinitive of the verb.

In informal English, particularly in American English, the Simple Future is usually conjugated entirely with the auxiliary will. The auxiliary will is a modal auxiliary. Modal auxiliaries do not modify, but have the same form, regardless of the subject.

The auxiliary will is often contracted to 'll. Thus, in informal English, the Simple Future of the verb to work is usually conjugated as follows:

Without ContractionsWith Contractions
I will work I'll work
you will work you'll work
he will work he'll work
she will work she'll work
it will work it'll work
we will work we'll work
they will work they'll work
Verbs used with the subjects I and we are generally referred to as being in the first person; verbs used with the subject you are generally referred to as being in the second person; and verbs used with the subjects he, she, it and they are generally referred to as being in the third person.

For formal English, there is a rule which states that in the Simple Future, the auxiliary shall should be used in the first person, and the auxiliary will should be used in the second person and third person. Like the auxiliary will, the auxiliary shall is a modal auxiliary.

Thus, in formal English, the Simple Future of the verb to work may be conjugated as follows:



I shall work
you will work
he will work
she will work
it will work
we shall work
they will work
Even in informal English, the auxiliary shall is usually used in the first person for questions in which a request for permission is implied.
e.g. Shall I call the office?
Shall we go to the library?

However, the use of will for the first person of the Simple Future is beginning to be considered acceptable in formal English. Thus, except for questions where a request for permission is implied, either will or shall may be used for the first person of the Simple Future. In this chapter, the alternative use of the auxiliary shall in the first person will be indicated by the word shall in brackets.

The rules for the use of will and shall which apply to the Simple Future tense, also apply to the other future tenses.



c. Questions and negative statements
As is the case with other English tenses, questions and negative statements in the Simple Future are formed using the auxiliary.

Questions are formed by placing the auxiliary before the subject. For example:

Affirmative StatementQuestion
It will work. Will it work?
They will work. Will they work?
Negative statements are formed by placing the word not after the auxiliary. For example:

Affirmative StatementNegative Statement
It will work. It will not work.
They will work. They will not work.
In spoken English, the following contraction is often used:

Without ContractionWith Contraction
will not won't
The contracted form of will not is unusual, since it is not only the o of not which is omitted. In addition, the ll of will is omitted, and the i of will is changed to o. The contracted form, won't, is pronounced to rhyme with don't.

In addition, shall not is sometimes contracted to shan't. However, the word shan't is rarely used in modern American English.

Negative questions are formed by placing the auxiliary before the subject, and the word not after the subject. However, when contractions are used, the contracted form of not immediately follows the auxiliary. The following are examples of negative questions with and without contractions:

Without ContractionsWith Contractions
Will it not work? Won't it work?
Will they not work? Won't they work?
Tag questions are formed using the auxiliary. In the following examples, the negative tag questions are underlined. Contractions are usually used in negative tag questions.

Affirmative StatementAffirmative Statement with Tag Question
It will work. It will work, won't it?
They will work. They will work, won't they?



2. The conjugation expressing determination and compulsion
In formal English, there is a rule which states that, in order to express determination and compulsion, the auxiliary will is to be used in the first person, and the auxiliary shall is to be used in the second person and third person. This is the reverse of the use of will and shall found in the Simple Future. The use of will in the first person is supposed to express determination, and the use of shall in the second person and third person is supposed to express compulsion.

For instance, for the verb to work, the Simple conjugation which expresses determination and compulsion is as follows:


I will work
you shall work
he shall work
she shall work
it shall work
we will work
they shall work
In this conjugation, the expressions I will work, and we will work, have the meaning I am determined to work, and we are determined to work. In contrast, the expressions you shall work, and they shall work, for instance, have the meaning you will be compelled to work, and they will be compelled to work.


The rule for expressing determination and compulsion which applies to the Simple conjugation, also applies to the Continuous, Perfect, and Perfect Continuous conjugations.

However, particularly in American English, the use of the conjugations expressing determination and compulsion is beginning to be considered old-fashioned.


3. The present continuous of To Go followed by an infinitive
The Present Continuous tense of to go, followed by an infinitive, is often used to refer to an event which is about to happen, or to refer to an action which someone intends to carry out in the future.

The Present Continuous tense of the verb to go is conjugated as follows:


I am going
you are going
he is going
she is going
it is going
we are going
they are going
The examples below illustrate the use of the Present Continuous tense of to go, followed by an infinitive, to refer to a future event. In each of these examples, the Present Continuous of to go is printed in bold type, and the infinitive which follows it is underlined.
e.g. It is going to rain.
I am going to write a letter tonight.
They are going to study in France next year.
In the first example, the use of the Present Continuous of to go followed by the infinitive to rain indicates that it is about to rain. In the second and third examples, the use of the Present Continuous of to go followed by the infinitives to write and to study indicates that the actions of writing and studying are intended to be carried out in the future.


It should also be noted that the Past Continuous tense of to go can be used to express actions which were about to happen in the past.
e.g. I was going to write a letter last night.
In this example, the use of the Past Continuous of to go followed by the infinitive to write indicates that the action of writing was intended to be carried out in the past.

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The future/ Form and Use
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