Drop me a line and say hello, won’t you?

What is the meaning of the last part - won't you?

  • Is this a way to say "do it!" the way a parent would tell their children?
  • Or is it just another way to say please" without any second thoughts?
  • Or something else?

EDIT to add some context: I found this expression on Brian Gordon's contact page. He is the author of Fowl Language, a comics book/strip which deals with the wonderful experiences of parenting the hard way. This is why I somehow expect the meaning to be the first one in my list, along the lines of the world of the duck parents of his books.

  • In this context, I think it's another way to say please. Jun 24, 2020 at 7:30

1 Answer 1


My experience is that its meaning lies somewhere between your first two reasonable alternatives. The emotional scale goes from hoping you will do it, to asking courteously (please), to expecting, to instructing, to demanding (Do it!). “Won’t you?” sits somewhere along this scale, probably near expecting. Other opinions will be interesting to read.

  • Definitely closer to please than do it. I'd even say it's lower on the scale than please - please do X implies with its formality that X is important to me, do X, won't you? is a more casual request. Mar 8, 2021 at 22:24
  • @Maciej Stachowski, I think you're mixing the level of formality with the level of urgency of the request. "Won't you?" is at the same time informal and relatively urgent. The speaker really wants their partner in conversation to do as they ask.
    – Divizna
    Jul 8, 2021 at 16:03
  • @Divizna: I disagree. I find that appending "Won't you?" makes the whole request breezier; it helps defuse any pressure from the request. I'd assume that the speaker doesn't really care one way or the other. Feb 2, 2022 at 20:32

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