Know Polite Imperatives I Question now with a request.

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What is an Imperative?

The Imperative is used to command, request, or forbid (tell others not to do things that may harm them). But, Imperative Sentences don’t come across all that polite. In fact, Imperative Sentences can sometimes be seen as rude by the listener.

Meaning of Polite Imperative:

However, the speaker can use “please” to form a Polite Imperative. 

To form a Polite Imperative, place the word “please” at the beginning or end of a sentence. For example, a speaker may say:

Please turn down the radio 

The above sentence is a polite way to request the listener to lower the radio’s volume. The speaker may also say: 

“Please turn down the radio.” 

Both Polite Imperative Sentences are correct. And, both mean the same thing. 

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Forming Polite Imperative Sentences

How can I form a Polite Imperative Sentence?

To form a Polite Imperative Sentence, the Verb’s base form is used. No matter what the Verb is, it never has “ing”.

It’s important to remember that Imperative Sentences call for action. And so, including the word “please” softens them. For example, you’ve probably heard this expression on the radio: 

  • “Please give a round of applause for tonight’s guest.” 

In this Imperative Sentence, the word please lends nothing to syntax or grammar, but it causes the wording to come across as polite. 

The main thing to remember is that when forming a Polite Imperative Sentence the word “please” is simply added to the beginning or end of an Imperative Sentence. The comma is only needed when the word please is at the end of the sentence. The rules of syntax and grammar remain the same. 

Examples of Imperative Sentences

  • Please answer her letter, Mark. She’s waiting.
  • Pass the bowl of rice, please. 
  • Please take your seat. 

Let’s Practice

Q1: Try making your own sentence.

Q2: Give an example of an instruction you would give to your colleague/classmate. 

Q3: What is one request you couldn’t say no to? Why? 

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