Growing up in a country where English is not the native language, I always hear people phrase declarative statements in an interrogative form. I'm not sure if it's grammatically correct to do so.

Example in Question Form:

What will he do, I wonder?

Declarative(What I hear from others):

I wonder what will he do.

Based on what I have known all my life, I would phrase it as such:

I wonder what he will do.

... While I am sure that the way I constructed it is correct, I'm not sure if one could phrase it the way they do.

  • "I wonder, what will he do?" is fine, at least as dialogue. As a written statement you are right and it would be better to say "I wonder what he will do."
    – Andrew
    Oct 20, 2016 at 3:56
  • The matrix clause may be declarative, but the subordinate clause is interrogative. "What he will do" is an interrogative complement clause: the meaning here is "I wonder about the answer to the question 'What will he do?"'
    – BillJ
    Oct 20, 2016 at 7:28

1 Answer 1


Consider the following two statements.

First, a declarative statement:

Of course it is grammatically correct to do so.

Second, an interrogative statement:

Of course it is grammatically correct to do so?

Any declarative statement may be turned into a question by a rising modulation of the voice (signified in text by means of a question mark). There are other ways to form interrogatories, but they do not rule out this one.

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