Elo Kasia

Director at Eloquent - A Professional Education Company
Professional English Training Center Located In UK.
Strategy Partner of Chatsifieds.com
www.eloquentlearning.com

Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite | English Time Ask Elo

by Jul 11, 2019English Grammar Tips, English Time Ask Elo

Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite

Elo Kasia

 

English Time Ask Elo (10/07/2019)

 

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Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite

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Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite

Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite

English Time Ask Elo

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Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite

English Time Ask Elo

 

Asked by @ Khin Khin Aye (Community Student)

Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite | English Time Ask Elo

 

Answered by @ Elo Kasia

 

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Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite

Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite  | English Time Ask Elo

 

 

Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite Question Time: Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite  | English Time Ask Elo

 

Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite  @ Khin Khin Aye, Thank you for your question.

 

Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite  As usual, I will try to explain the difference using simple language and plenty of examples.

 

Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite

 

We have already discussed some of the ways of asking polite questions. Using indirect question forms is, as I have previously explained, an especially polite and formal way of asking questions. However, it is also the most difficult to learn, as you need to observe correct word order which is sometimes confusing to students of English.
 
 
Basically, the information you are asking about is the same as in direct questions, but it is super formal and you need to ensure the correct word order.
 
 
What are indirect questions?
 
 
They begin with a phrase, such as
 
 
” I wonder if you could …”, “Do you think, you could…, “Could you tell me if..” and then the actual information you are asking about is in the form of a positive sentence (rather than question).
 
 
Introductory Phrase + Question Word ( or If / Whether) + Subject + (Helping Verb) + Main Verb
 
  • “Where is the nearest pharmacy?” turned into an indirect question becomes:
  • Could you tell me where the nearest pharmacy is?
  • What time is it? àExcuse me, I wonder if you could tell me what time it is?
  • When does the next train leave? à Excuse me, do you know when the next train leaves?
  • Does this bus go to the city centre? à Could you tell me if this bus goes to the city centre?
 
– Note that the order of the information you are asking about is like a normal sentence (not question), so S+V. The easiest way to remember this is to say to yourself that the “question” has already been “taken” by the introductory expression and you can’t ask another question.
 
 
However, it takes a little bit of practice to get fluency.
 
 
– Note that in yes/no questions you have to add “if” or “whether” to join the two parts.
 
 
“Would you mind if” is another one of these introductory phrases, but it is a bit different (and slightly more difficult) because it requires the verb in the past.
 
  • So, Can/could I open the window? becomes even more polite:
  • Would you mind if I opened the window? (note past tense – opened)
  • Would you mind if I smoked?

 

Would you mind” +ing

  • Or you could use this phrase with verb+ing
  • Would you mind helping me with these boxes?
  • Would you mind telling me which way to go?

 

It takes a bit of practise to get fluency in asking indirect questions and it is definitely easier to do so “on paper” when you have time to think, rather than during an actual conversation. That is why it is crucial to practise with a variety of expressions and introductory phrases. Once you master these, you really are going to sound like a native.

 
 
Make sure you do our *TT exercises to practise asking questions in English.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Elo Kasia is the Community Mentor for English Grammar and Speaking Academy“.

 

Director at Eloquent Learning Online School www.eloquentlearning.com.

 

Elo Kasia

Director at Eloquent Learning - A Professional Education Company Located In UK. , Strategy Partner of Chatsifieds.com

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Asking Indirect Questions to Be Especially Polite

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