Modal Verbs Will and Would
'Will' and 'would' are two modal verbs that are mainly used to talk about willingness and hypothetical situations. 'Will' is used to express a certain event or action that will happen in the future. 'Would' is the past tense form of 'will', and can be used to express the conditional tense or hypothetical situations.
'Will' is a modal verb that is used to:
Predicting the Future
We use the verb 'will' to talk about the future; we use it to predict something about the future or express expectations.
Expressing Plans and Decisions
We use 'will' to talk about decisions and plans that we are certain about.
By next year we
The kids are hungry. I
Asking Somebody to Do Something
You can use 'will' to ask somebody to do something for you. It is rather polite and formal.
Inviting Somebody to Do Something
'Will' can be used to invite somebody to do something.
Making Offers or Suggestions
If you want to offer or suggest something, you can use 'will'.
Ordering Somebody to Do Something
Promising to Do Something in the Future
We use 'will' to make promises or vows.
'Would' is technically the past tense of 'will'. But it has uses in other tenses too. It is used to express:
- the past tense of will
- imaginary future (type 2 and 3 conditionals)
- regular and typical activity in the past
- refusals in the past
- politely offering or making requests
Past Tense of Will
'Would' is used as the past form of 'will' in indirect speech when reporting or quoting what somebody has said or thought.
He said he
His words were: 'I will be there at eight o'clock.'
'Would' is used for talking about the result of an action in the imaginary or unreal future. It is used in conditionals.
If I was rich, I
This sentence is type 2 conditional. In reality, the speaker is not rich and he is imagining a future.
'Would' is also used in third conditional. Type 3 conditionals are the only conditionals that talk about the past and describe imaginary or hypothetical situations in the past.
When we use type 3 conditionals, we are talking about the hypothetical result of something that did not happen.
The speaker is using type 3 conditionals, because he didn't work hard, and he didn't pass the exam and he cannot change the past.
Regular Activities in the Past
'Would' is used to talk about things that often happened in the past. In this case, 'would' is synonymous with 'used to'.
When my grandma visited us, she
'Would' is also used to talk about a regular activity or habit that is thought to be typical. Note that, in this case, by using 'would' we are expressing annoyance.
It is implied that it is really annoying when she wears that dress.
Expressing Refusals in the Past
You can use 'would' to show that somebody or something refused to do something in the past.
Remember that in this use, we use the
Politely Offering or Making Requests
'Would' is also used for making polite offers or invitations. Typically, 'would' is used with the verb 'like'.
Additionally, 'would' is used in question form to ask somebody politely to do something.
'Will' and 'would' are commonly used in English. they have many functions that are explained as follows.
|predicting the future||
|expressing plans and decisions||
|asking somebody to do something||
|inviting somebody to do something||
|making offers or suggestions||
|ordering somebody to do something||
|promising to do something in the future||
|the past tense of will||
They didn't say it
|the imaginary future (type 2 and 3 conditionals)||
If I were you I
|regular and typical activity in the past||
|expressing refusals in the past||
|politely offering or making requests||
- Modal Verbs Will and Would
You might also like
Modal verbs are also known as modals and are used to give additional information about the main verb. Let us learn more about them.
Can and Could
Talent shows are a big thing now in our pop culture. If you want to participate in them, you should know how to talk about your abilities. Learn about it here!
May and Might
May and Might are modal verbs. Some people think they are interchangeable, especially in speech, but is there really no differences between these two?
Shall and Should
'Shall' and 'Should' are like relatives, because 'Should' is the past tense of 'Shall', but they have different functions despite their similarities.
Must and Have to
'Have to' and 'must' have the same meaning and are used to express obligations. However, they are used in different situations and are not interchangeable.