Some Means Of Expressing Future Time
Will/Shall + infinitive:
This is the most common way of expressing future. The modal verb will is used with subjects of all three persons. Shall is used to indicate futurity but only with a first person subject:
No doubt I shall see you next week. The use of will can be in predictive aspect: You’ll feel better if..
Will and shall especially in first and second person expresses intention: How soon will you anounce that.
Be going to + infinitive:
Especially in informal speech. Its general meaning is future fulfillment of the present intention. It is used with personal subjects and agentive verbs: When are you going to get married. The other meaning is future result of present cause is used with both personal and nonpersonal subjects: It’s going to rain. Going to is not normaly used in conditional or in superordinate clause.
Future arising from present arrangement, plan or programme: I am taking the children to the zoo.( on Monday). We do not use certain stative verbs in progressive such as BE.
The present p. suggests that the future happening is imminent(közelgő): I am leaving
Another common use of future meaning. Mostly in dependent clauses, where it is regularly used after conditional and temporal conjunctions such as if and when and in some that cclauses. What will you say if I marry the boss. In main clauses, the future use the simple present may be said to represent a marked future of unusual definiteness. Can be used for statements about the calendar:School finishes on the 21st of March. Also describes immutable events: When is high tide. It is used with dynamic transitional verbs: arrive,come,leave. Having the meaning of plan or programme: The plane takes off at 20:30 tonight.
Will/Shall + progressive infinitive:
Reference to the future time with temporal frame. When you reach the end of the bridge I’ll be waiting there to show you the way. There is a separate use of WILL + progressive to denote future as a matter of course: We’ll be flying at 30000 feet. but We’ll fly at 30000 feet means that the pilot decided so. Can be a more polite way do express demand. We can use both prograssive and nonprogressive in cases where there is no human involvement: The next train to London will arrive/be arriving at platform four.
Concluding comments on constructions expressing future time:
There are othe quasi-auxiliary constructions (be to + infinitive or be about to + infinitive.) Their daughter is to be married soon .(future arrangement or plan) The train is about to leave .(expresses near future). We may add JUST to strenghten its closeness. May or must with a dynamic verb can locate the event in future. The weather may improve. Or with be sure, be bound to. Will is usually preferred to be going to in formal style. Be going to tends not to be repeated in a text referring pervasively to the future.Tomorrow is going to be a cold day. There will be snow….
Future time in past:
Most future constructions can be used in the past tense to describe something which is in the future when seen from viewpoint in the past.
1. Modal verb construction with would. It is rare literary narrative style: The time was not far off when he would regret this decision.
Be going to + infinitive: (with a sense of unfulfilled intention) You were going to give me your address.
Past progressive: (arrangement predetermined in the past) I was meeting him in Bordeaux nex day.
Be to + infinitive: (formal) be destined to or arrangement: He was to eventually end up there. and
He was to leave..
Be about to + infinitive: (often with the sense of unfulfilled intention) He was about to hit me.