One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A question converted from a statement by an appended interrogative formula, e.g. it's nice out, isn't it?
- ‘Robin Lakoff's 1975 account of English tag questions, based on her introspective judgments, was that such tags ‘are associated with a desire for confirmation or approval which signals a lack of self-confidence in the speaker.’’
- ‘We use tag questions when we are already sure of the answer and just want confirmation (falling intonation with the tag question).’
- ‘The most common form of tag question is one where a positive statement is followed by a negative tag or a negative statement by a positive tag.’
- ‘Verbal behaviors related to these descriptors include the presence of politeness markers, tag questions, verbal hedging, euphemistic and supportive-responsive speech, inclusive reference, and indirect speech.’
- ‘Out of a number of studies done between 1976 and 1980 on tag questions, six found that women used more tag questions than men, while five found that men used more than women.’
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