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‘Will’ not always used in the future – Grammar Lesson

Some people have been taught that ‘will’ is ‘the future’ in English. This is not correct. Sometimes when we talk about the future we cannot use ‘will’. Sometimes when we use ‘will’ we are not talking about the future.

We can use ‘will’ to talk about future events we believe to be certain.

  • The sun will rise over there tomorrow morning.
  • Next year, I’ll be 50.
  • That plane will be late. It always is.
  • There won’t be any snow. I’m certain. It’s too warm.

Often we add ‘perhaps’, ‘maybe’, ‘probably’, ‘possibly’ to make the belief less certain.

  • I’ll probably come back later.
  • He’ll possibly find out when he sees Jenny.
  • Maybe it will be OK.
  • Perhaps we’ll meet again some day.

We often use ‘will’ with ‘I think’ or ‘I hope’.

  • I think I’ll go to bed now.
  • I think she’ll do well in the job.
  • I hope you’ll enjoy your stay.
  • I hope you won’t make too much noise.

We use ‘will’ at the moment we make a new decision or plan. The thought has just come into our head.

  • Bye. I’ll phone you when I get there.
  • I’ll answer that.
  • I’ll go.
  • I won’t tell him. I promise.

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