Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “shall”

See all translations

shall

modal verb uk   strong /ʃæl/ weak /ʃəl/ us  

shall modal verb (FUTURE)

B1 old-fashioned used instead of "will" when the subject is "I" or "we": If you do that one more time, I shall be very cross. I shall never forget you. I'm afraid I shall not/shan't be able to come to your party. formal I shall look forward to meeting you next week. So we'll see you at the weekend, shall we (= is that right)? We shall (= intend to) let you know as soon as there's any news.
More examples

shall modal verb (SUGGEST)

A2 used, with "I" or "we", to make a suggestion: "I'm cold." "Shall I close this window?" Shall we go out for dinner tonight? Shall I pick the children up from school today?
More examples

shall modal verb (CERTAINLY WILL)

used to say that something certainly will or must happen, or that you are determined that something will happen: Don't worry, I shall be there to meet the train. formal The school rules state that no child shall be allowed out of the school during the day, unless accompanied by an adult. You shall go to the ball, Cinderella.
More examples
  • Don't worry - I shall make sure he comes!
  • I shall make sure she knows.
  • Very well then, I shall do it myself!
  • If he won't do it, I shall do it and then there'll be trouble!
  • I shall speak to her later.
(Definition of shall from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of shall?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “shall” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

luck out

to be very lucky

Word of the Day

Think long and hard; the language of decisions

by Liz Walter,
January 28, 2015
One of the best ways (perhaps the best way) to improve your English is to learn how words go together in phrases, idioms, or other patterns such as verb/noun or adjective/noun pairs (often called ‘collocations’). This blog looks at some useful phrases and collocations connected with the subject of decisions, something we

Read More 

micro pig noun

January 26, 2015
an extremely small pig, bred to be a pet Micro pigs have become popular pets recently, with famous owners including Victoria Beckham, Paris Hilton and Olympic diver, Tom Daley.

Read More