Order of the words in the sentence - does it make it a question or not?

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Are these two sentences exactly equivalent?

Sentence 1: I was wondering how many bins should I fill before I go.

Sentence 2: I was wondering how many bins I should fill before I go.

 

How are the words "should I" and "I should" classified grammatically?

 

Does the first sentence imply some sort of a question?

 

Thanks,

 

    Marek

asked Feb 27 '12 at 11:39 Marek Minta New member

2 answers


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This is a good question, Marek.  In sentence #2, you are making a statement that says, "There is some sort of question."  I have often seen people mistakenly end this sentence with a question mark.  But you have written it correctly.   Stating that there is a question is not the same as asking the question. This is a statement and that ends with a period.

 

The alternative is the wording you used in sentence #1, but with some punctuation added.

I was wondering, "How many bins should I fill before I go?" 

 

The simplest sentence consists of a noun & a verb. 

I should.

 

Flipping the words around turns it into a question.

Should I?

link answered Feb 27 '12 at 18:31 Patty T Grammarly Fellow

Thanks Patty: Just to be completely assured, are the two quoted sentences exactly equivalent? And correct? (Grammarly.com says a 100/100) M Marek MintaFeb 27 '12 at 20:55

I don't think they are exactly equivalent to each other. It is my opinion that to make a statement, it should say "I should" and to ask a question it should say "should I?" Patty TFeb 28 '12 at 01:53

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The content of the two sentences is, in an irrelevant way, equivalent, yes. However, the equivalency is pointless because the first sentence presents a mistaken usage. It _can_ be corrected, as Patty T shows in her response, but the second sentence properly says what needs to be said.

link comment answered Jun 03 '13 at 18:39 David Ziegler New member

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