A Question Tag is a special construction in English. It is a statement followed by a mini-question. The whole sentence is a "Tag Question", and the mini-question at the end is called a "Question Tag".
We use tag questions at the end of statements to ask for confirmation or agreement or to check whether something is true.
They mean something like: "Am I right?" or "Do you agree?". They are very common in English.
The basic structure is:
|POSITIVE STATEMENT +||NEGATIVE TAG -|
|IT'S A NICE DAY,||ISN'T IT ?|
|NEGATIVE STATEMENT -||POSITIVE TAG -|
|IT ISN'T EXPENSIVE,||IS IT ?|
When using tag questions, watch for 4 points:
1. What tense is the verb?
2. What kind of verb is it? (to be/other verbs)
3. Is the sentence affirmative or negative?
4. Does the pronoun need to be changed?
If the main part of the sentence is affirmative, then the question tag is negative:
He gave you the cheque, didn't he?
She is beautiful, isn't she?
If the main part of the sentence is negative, then the question tag is affirmative:
We can't miss the match, can we?
They don't like us, do they?
* The contracted tag for I am is aren't I.
* We use THEY to refer to nobody, somebody, and everybody (or no one...)
Nobody phoned, did they?
* We use non-negative tags after never, no, nobody, hardly, scarcely, little.
She hardly goes on holiday, does she?
* We use IT in question tags to refer to nothing.
Nothing can go wrong, can it?
* After a negative imperative, we use will you?
Don't be late, will you?
* After Let's we use shall we?
Let's celebrate, shall we?
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