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Definition of “shall” - English Dictionary

"shall" in American English

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shallmodal verb

 us   /ʃæl, ʃəl/ fml
used when referring to the ​futureinstead of "will," esp. in ​questions: Shall we go? law Nothing in this ​letter shall be ​construed as a ​license to use ​ourproperty. Note: In the past, as taught in schools, the future tense in English was formed with "shall" in the first person – I shall go, we shall go – and "will" in the second and third persons – you will go, Mary will go, they will go. In modern American English, "will" is commonly used in speech and writing for all three persons – I will go, etc. "Shall" is used mainly in formal situations with the first person – We shall be ​pleased to ​acceptyourinvitation – and in legal documents.
(Definition of shall from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)







"shall" in British English

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shallmodal verb

uk   us   strong /ʃæl/ weak /ʃəl/
  • 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 ​angry. I shall never ​forget you. I'm ​afraid I shall not/shan't be ​able to come to ​yourparty.formal I shall ​lookforward 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.

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  • shall modal verb (SUGGEST)

A2 formal in US used, with "I" or "we", to make a ​suggestion: "I'm ​cold." "Shall I ​close this ​window?" Shall we go out for ​dinnertonight? Shall I ​call him ​tomorrow?

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  • shall modal verb (CERTAINLY WILL)

formal or old-fashioned 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. The ​schoolrulesstate that no ​child shall be ​allowed out of the ​school during the ​day, ​unlessaccompanied by an ​adult. You shall go to the ​ball, ​Cinderella.

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  • 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)
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