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13 Essential Literary Terms

shouldst

[shoo dst, shoo tst] /ʃʊdst, ʃʊtst/
verb, Archaic.
1.
2nd person singular past of shall.
Also, shouldest
[shoo d-ist] /ˈʃʊd ɪst/ (Show IPA)
.

shall

[shal; unstressed shuh l] /ʃæl; unstressed ʃəl/
auxiliary verb, present singular 1st person shall, 2nd shall or (Archaic) shalt, 3rd shall, present plural shall; past singular 1st person should, 2nd should or (Archaic) shouldst or shouldest, 3rd should, past plural should; imperative, infinitive, and participles lacking.
1.
plan to, intend to, or expect to:
I shall go later.
2.
will have to, is determined to, or definitely will:
You shall do it. He shall do it.
3.
(in laws, directives, etc.) must; is or are obliged to:
The meetings of the council shall be public.
4.
(used interrogatively in questions, often in invitations):
Shall we go?
Origin
900
before 900; Middle English shal, Old English sceal; cognate with Old Saxon skal, Old High German scal, Old Norse skal; compare German soll, Dutch zal
Can be confused
can, may, shall, will (see usage note at can; see usage note at the current entry; see synonym study at will)
Usage note
The traditional rule of usage guides dates from the 17th century and says that to denote future time shall is used in the first person (I shall leave. We shall go) and will in all other persons (You will be there, won't you? He will drive us to the airport. They will not be at the meeting). The rule continues that to express determination, will is used in the first person (We will win the battle) and shall in the other two persons (You shall not bully us. They shall not pass). Whether this rule was ever widely observed is doubtful. Today, will is used overwhelmingly in all three persons and in all types of speech and writing both for the simple future and to express determination. Shall has some use in all persons, chiefly in formal writing or speaking, to express determination: I shall return. We shall overcome. Shall also occurs in the language of laws and directives: All visitors shall observe posted regulations. Most educated native users of American English do not follow the textbook rule in making a choice between shall and will. See also should.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for shouldst
  • Thou shouldst not have been old before thou hadst been wise.
  • Thou shouldst be taught what kind of plans are thine.
  • Thou shouldst not have been old till thou hadst been wise.
  • Soon shouldst thou be aware of kindness and many a gift at my hands, so that whoso met with thee would call thee blessed.
British Dictionary definitions for shouldst

shouldst

/ʃʊdst/
verb
1.
(archaic or dialect) used with the pronoun thou or its relative equivalent a form of the past tense of shall

shall

/ʃæl; unstressed ʃəl/
verb (past) should takes an infinitive without to or an implied infinitive
1.
esp with I or we as subject. used as an auxiliary to make the future tense: we shall see you tomorrow Compare will1 (sense 1)
2.
with you, he, she, it, they, or a noun as subject
  1. used as an auxiliary to indicate determination on the part of the speaker, as in issuing a threat: you shall pay for this!
  2. used as an auxiliary to indicate compulsion, now esp in official documents: the Tenant shall return the keys to the Landlord
  3. used as an auxiliary to indicate certainty or inevitability: our day shall come
3.
(with any noun or pronoun as subject, esp in conditional clauses or clauses expressing doubt) used as an auxiliary to indicate nonspecific futurity: I don't think I shall ever see her again, he doubts whether he shall be in tomorrow
Usage note
The usual rule given for the use of shall and will is that where the meaning is one of simple futurity, shall is used for the first person of the verb and will for the second and third: I shall go tomorrow; they will be there now. Where the meaning involves command, obligation, or determination, the positions are reversed: it shall be done; I will definitely go. However, shall has come to be largely neglected in favour of will, which has become the commonest form of the future in all three persons
Word Origin
Old English sceal; related to Old Norse skal, Old High German scal, Dutch zal
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for shouldst

shall

v.

Old English sceal, Northumbrian scule "I owe/he owes, will have to, ought to, must" (infinitive sculan, past tense sceolde), a common Germanic preterite-present verb (along with can, may, will), from Proto-Germanic *skal- (cf. Old Saxon sculan, Old Frisian skil, Old Norse and Swedish skola, Middle Dutch sullen, Old High German solan, German sollen, Gothic skulan "to owe, be under obligation;" related via past tense form to Old English scyld "guilt," German Schuld "guilt, debt;" also Old Norse Skuld, name of one of the Norns), from PIE root *skel- (2) "to be under an obligation."

Ground sense of the Germanic word probably is "I owe," hence "I ought." The sense shifted in Middle English from a notion of "obligation" to include "futurity." Its past tense form has become should (q.v.). Cognates outside Germanic are Lithuanian skeleti "to be guilty," skilti "to get into debt;" Old Prussian skallisnan "duty," skellants "guilty."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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