Difference Between Shall Be and Would Be

Edited by Diffzy | Updated on: September 21, 2022

       

Difference Between Shall Be and Would Be Difference Between Shall Be and Would Be

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Introduction

The most important thing in the English language to make a sentence is a verb. Sentences cannot be formed without verbs. These verbs can be of various types. Some indicate work done in the sentence, while others show the tense of the sentence. The verb that represents the work done is called the main verb. And, the verb that shows the tense of the sentence is known as the auxiliary verb.

Shall be and would be are two auxiliaries used to represent the tense of the sentence. They are forms of 'be' which entirely manage the tense of sentences. 'Shall be' comes from the modal verb, shall. And, 'would be' comes from the modal verb, will.

Shall Be Vs. Would Be

Shall be is a form of the modal verb that has been modified for future continuous tense. In simple words, shall be is used with future continuous tense. It is used only with the first person that is I and we. It represents the probability of an action that is going to happen in the future.

Shall be can also be used as the main verb when another verb is missing in the line. It is used in authoritative sentences to make a polite inquiry or give mild order. However, it will only show to make a probability. The use of shall be is a kind of restricted one. It is used only in the first person. It can also be used to represent probability but only in the future continuous.

Would is the past form of verb will. It is used to modify a present situation that has happened in the past or present time. 'Would be' used with all subjects depending on the need. Also, it is used to represent rigidity in the present sentence, something that is sure to happen in the past.

Would be is an adjective auxiliary verb that means it can be used in many ways. When it is used, it means that something has already happened in the past that either has no use in the future or it cannot happen again in the future. The same thing applies in reverse as well. The present tense sentence shows a sentence that is going to happen in the future time and has nothing to do with the present or past.

Would be is also used to show possibility, wishes, desires, determinations, and ambitions. In these sentences, would be is used in the form of an adjective auxiliary verb. These are written in the present tense but represent future times. 'Would be' is used to build a relationship between the past and present tense. It is used to describe a situation happened that might have occurred in the present time.

Difference Between Shall Be and Would Be In Tabular Form

Table: Shall Be Vs. Would Be
Parameters of Comparison
Shall be
Would be
Tense
Future tense
Past and present tense
person
First-person
First, second and third-person
represents
It represents the work that will go in the future
It represents work that is already happened in the past when the present time was going.
relationship
It is related to future tense
It is about the past and the present tense.
Verb type
A modal verb or an auxiliary verb
An adjective auxiliary verb
indications
It is used when something happens or may happen in the future.
It is used when something happens in the past in the same situation when some other thing was happening in the future.

What Is Shall Be?

Shall be is a form of shall that is used to represent the future tense. It shows the probability that a person is going to do something in the future. Though it represents a work is to be done, since it is in the future, it also represents probability. The work may or may not happen in the future. For example, if a person says that he shall be writing a letter after one hour, the person may start doing some other work. It only represents a possibility. It is not sure that the work is going to happen.

'Shall be' represents continuous tense. It means a given work will be in progress in a given time, which is in the future. It will continue. However, there is only a possibility that the work will happen. 'Shall be' may represent surety when it is carried with a second person and third person. According to modern English grammar, 'shall be' shows certainty when it is in the second and the third person.

For example, India shall be the fastest growing economy in two to three years. Here the sentence represents something that is going to happen. It is India will grow as an economy in two to three years.

Uses of shall be

  • 'Shall be' is used to show work that will happen in the future.

For example, we shall be visiting his maternal home.

I shall be meeting my friends

In the future tense, 'shall be' is used to represent the continuous tense. In the given examples, meeting and visits will happen in the future. By looking at the sentences, it can also be concluded that the work is uncertain. It may or may not take place in the future.

  • 'Shall be' represents doubts in the context.

For example, shall I be there before 2 pm?

Shall we be meeting him tomorrow morning?

In the given sentences, there and meeting are showing doubts about whether they will be able to do the work or not. The sentence "shall I be there before 2 pm" if the person needs to be there before 2 pm. Is there any time-bound or they are asking if they need to go there? The same thing goes with the second sentence as well.

  • 'Shall be' is also used to give a reason or quote a reason to the sentence, which is not directly written in it. It makes the sentence quite unclear, and the person may have to put some effort to understand the sentence. One of the reasons it happens is that 'shall be' represents future continuous tense. And, the future continuous tense is uncertain in itself.

For example, we shall be working there.

I shall be going then.

If these sentences are analyzed then it seems that they are talking about doing something after completion of something. Suppose the sentence 'we shall be working there' says that the person will be working somewhere in the future. But it is not clear at which time they would be working there. It may be possible that they will go to work after completing some other work. This completion of some other work is the reason hidden in this sentence. The sentence is not giving any specific context.

The same reason goes for the second example.

What Do You Mean by Would Be?

'Would be' is a modal auxiliary verb as well as an adjective auxiliary verb. It represents one task completed in the past tense at the time when some other work was going on at other places. It is used to establish a relationship between the present and past tense. However, it can also be used when the person talks about the future but in the present context. Would be is also used to show some kind of uncertainty. It tells the work may or may not be done. It represents the present tense but future time. Would be can be used to talk about all time. It can show both past as well as future times.

Apart from this, in the present tense, 'would be' represents a desire or a want in the sentence. It indicates that the person is willing to get or do something. It shows a desire to seek suggestions, advice, will, determination, etc. 'Would be' can be used with the various subject. But when it is used with first-person pronouns, it indicates some kind of rigidity in the task. It might be the past or future time both but the context changes.

Uses of would be

  • 'Would be' to wish something

For example, if I became a president, I would be like Barak Obama

Here, the sentence shows the probability of becoming something. Then, the person wishes to become like someone. It is an example of an adjective auxiliary verb that is showing a wish.

  • Would be to show frustration in the path of the success

For example, our would-be president works day and night to get his position.

This sentence shows the ambition of a person and what they have to do to get that position. It is also an example of an adjective auxiliary verb. It represents the frustration of pursuing ambition. It also shows that the person is sure to become the president. And, his work is bound to get success.

  • Would be is used to show the possibility

For example, reading newspapers would be helpful for me in clearing UPSC

Here, the sentence shows a possibility. If the candidate reads newspapers daily, he might be able to crack the UPSC exam. It means, that if the person does something, the results might come in his favor.

  • Would be is used to show a past action in the present tense.

For example, he thought it would be good for children to tell their parents.

Here the thought came to the mind of the person in the past. It has already been done, but it is related to the present time. Other work was going on when this past action happened. The sentence is relating between the past and the present.

  • Would be is used to represent a future action.

For example, the work in the office would be done, and the employee would be gone.

This sentence is in the present tense, but it is representing an action that will happen in the future. However, this sentence is showing some uncertainty because it is not clear when this action is going to happen.

Difference Between Shall Be and Would Be in Points

  • Shall be is a modal verb that represents some work going on in the future. However, would be is a modal verb that talks about the work in the present situation that was going on in the past.
  • Shall be is used in the first person. While 'would be' is used in the first, second, and third person.
  • 'Shall be' indicates that some work will continue in the future. However, 'would be' shows that some work has already been finished in the present situation. 'Would be' can also represent the future time but in the present time.
  • Shall be is related to future tense only. But 'would be' is related to past time as well as the future time but in the present tense.
  • Shall be is a modal auxiliary verb. However, 'would be' is a modal auxiliary verb and an adjective auxiliary verb.
  • Shall be is used when something is continuing in the future or will continue in the future. While 'would be' is used when something has happened in the past, or something is going to happen in the future.

Conclusion

Shall be and would be are two modal auxiliary verbs. It is used to represent different purposes performed at different times. 'Shall be' represents the future tense. A work that will be continuing in the future as well. It is uncertain whether what shows the work might be or might not be done. It also does not give a clear picture of what kind of work is being done. It does not show at what exactly the work will start.

However, 'would be' is used in different kinds. It is a modal verb as well as an adjective auxiliary verb. Mainly, it represents the work in the present situation that was complete in the past. However, it also shows some work that will be going on in the future.

Apart from this, would be is also used to deliver suggestions, advice, wants, and determinations.


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"Difference Between Shall Be and Would Be." Diffzy.com, 2022. Sun. 25 Sep. 2022. <https://www.diffzy.com/article/difference-between-shall-be-and-would-be-161>.



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