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Lookup English Definition:

shall    : [ʃ'æl]
Shall \Shall\, v. i. & auxiliary. [imp. {Should}.] [OE. shal,
schal, imp. sholde, scholde, AS. scal, sceal, I am obliged,
imp. scolde, sceolde, inf. sculan; akin to OS. skulan, pres.
skal, imp. skolda, D. zullen, pres. zal, imp. zoude, zou,
OHG. solan, scolan, pres. scal, sol. imp. scolta, solta, G.
sollen, pres. soll, imp. sollte, Icel. skulu, pres. skal,
imp. skyldi, SW. skola, pres. skall, imp. skulle, Dan.
skulle, pres. skal, imp. skulde, Goth. skulan, pres. skal,
imp. skulda, and to AS. scyld guilt, G. schuld guilt, fault,
debt, and perhaps to L. scelus crime.]

Note: [Shall is defective, having no infinitive, imperative,
or participle.]
1. To owe; to be under obligation for. [Obs.] "By the faith I
shall to God" --Court of Love.
[1913 Webster]

2. To be obliged; must. [Obs.] "Me athinketh [I am sorry]
that I shall rehearse it her." --Chaucer.
[1913 Webster]

3. As an auxiliary, shall indicates a duty or necessity whose
obligation is derived from the person speaking; as, you
shall go; he shall go; that is, I order or promise your
going. It thus ordinarily expresses, in the second and
third persons, a command, a threat, or a promise. If the
auxillary be emphasized, the command is made more
imperative, the promise or that more positive and sure. It
is also employed in the language of prophecy; as, "the day
shall come when . . ., " since a promise or threat and an
authoritative prophecy nearly coincide in significance. In
shall with the first person, the necessity of the action
is sometimes implied as residing elsewhere than in the
speaker; as, I shall suffer; we shall see; and there is
always a less distinct and positive assertion of his
volition than is indicated by will. "I shall go" implies
nearly a simple futurity; more exactly, a foretelling or
an expectation of my going, in which, naturally enough, a
certain degree of plan or intention may be included;
emphasize the shall, and the event is described as certain
to occur, and the expression approximates in meaning to
our emphatic "I will go." In a question, the relation of
speaker and source of obligation is of course transferred
to the person addressed; as, "Shall you go?" (answer, "I
shall go"); "Shall he go?" i. e., "Do you require or
promise his going?" (answer, "He shall go".) The same
relation is transferred to either second or third person
in such phrases as "You say, or think, you shall go;" "He
says, or thinks, he shall go." After a conditional
conjunction (as if, whether) shall is used in all persons
to express futurity simply; as, if I, you, or he shall say
they are right. Should is everywhere used in the same
connection and the same senses as shall, as its imperfect.
It also expresses duty or moral obligation; as, he should
do it whether he will or not. In the early English, and
hence in our English Bible, shall is the auxiliary mainly
used, in all the persons, to express simple futurity. (Cf.
{Will}, v. t.) Shall may be used elliptically; thus, with
an adverb or other word expressive of motion go may be
omitted. "He to England shall along with you." --Shak.
[1913 Webster]

Note: Shall and will are often confounded by inaccurate
speakers and writers. Say: I shall be glad to see you.
Shall I do this? Shall I help you? (not Will I do
this?) See {Will}.
[1913 Webster]




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  • SHALL | definition in the Cambridge English Dictionary
    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 accept your invitation – and in legal documents
  • SHALL | meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary
    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 accept your invitation – and in legal documents
  • Shalli definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary
    Definition of shalli from the Collins English Dictionary Life on the edge The desire to push the boundaries has been a motivator in many a daring expedition, testing the human spirit and physical abilities to the utmost Indulge your adventurous spirit by exploring some associated ‘extreme’ vocabulary
  • Shall definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary
    2 modal verb You use shall, usually with 'I' and 'we', when you are referring to something that you intend to do, or when you are referring to something that you are sure will happen to you in the future We shall be landing in Paris in sixteen minutes, exactly on time I shall sail out on the twenty-second
  • Shall - Definition for English-Language Learners from . . .
    Learner's definition of SHALL [modal verb] formal 1 — used to say that something is expected to happen in the future We shall [=will] arrive tomorrow evening I shall not mention it again = I shan't mention it again Perhaps it will happen
  • Shall | Definition of Shall by Merriam-Webster
    Shall definition is - —used to express what is inevitable or seems likely to happen in the future How to use shall in a sentence shall vs will
  • Shall | Definition of Shall at Dictionary. com
    auxiliary verb, present singular 1st person shall, 2nd shall or (Archaic) shalt, 3rd shall, present plural shall; past singular 1st person should, 2nd should or (Archaic) shouldst or should·est, 3rd should, past plural should; imperative, infinitive, and participles lacking plan to, intend to, or expect to: I shall go later
  • Shall - definition of shall by The Free Dictionary
    Define shall shall synonyms, shall pronunciation, shall translation, English dictionary definition of shall aux v Past tense should 1 Used before a verb in the infinitive to show: a Something that will take place or exist in the future: We shall arrive
  • Shall legal definition of shall - Legal Dictionary
    The Charter of the Forest designed to lessen those evils, declares that inquisition, or view, for lawing dogs, shall be made every third year, and shall be then done by the view and testimony of lawful men, not otherwise; and they whose dogs shall be then found unlawed, shall give three shillings for mercy, and for the future no man's ox shall
  • Dictionary. com | Meanings and Definitions of Words at . . .
    Dictionary com is the world’s leading online source for English definitions, synonyms, word origins and etymologies, audio pronunciations, example sentences, slang phrases, idioms, word games, legal and medical terms, Word of the Day and more For over 20 years, Dictionary com has been helping millions of people improve their use of the English language with its free digital services





English Dictionary  2005-2009

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