should

should
strong /SUd/ modal verb negative short form shouldn't
1 used to show that something is the best thing to do because it is morally right, fair, honest etc: He should learn to be more polite. | What you should have done is call the police. | I have no sympathy for him. He shouldn't accept bribes. | “I don't care what people think.” “Well, you should.”
2 used to show that something is the best thing to do because it helps you, is good for you etc.: The leaflet tells you what you should do if the power fails. | Why shouldn't I smoke if I want to? | I think he should have tried to get some more qualifications before applying for the job.
3 used to show what the correct or expected amount, situation etc is, especially when it is not correct or not what is expected: Eat noodles the way they should be eaten, with chopsticks. | What do you mean there are only ten tickets? There should be twelve.
4 used to say that something will probably be good, bad, interesting etc: It should be a good movie - its reviews were very good. | With her talent and experience, she should do well for herself.
5 used after `that' in some expressions showing an opinion or feeling: It's odd that he should react in this way. | The residents demanded that there should be an official inquiry.
6 should it rain/should there be a problem etc if it rains, if there is a problem etc: Should anyone phone, tell them I'm in conference.
7 formal, especially BrE used after `I' or `we' in conditional sentences: I should stay in bed if I were you. | I should be surprised if he came.
8 formal especially BrE used after `if' to emphasize that something might or might not happen if: If the wound should become inflamed do not hesitate to call me.
9 used in reported speech to mean shall: I promised I should be back by midnight.
10 what should happen but/who should appear but etc especially humorous used to show that you were surprised when something happened, a particular person appeared etc: Just at that moment who should walk in but old Jim himself.
11 I should worry/he should care etc humorous used to mean the opposite of what you seem to be saying: With all his money, he should worry about giving the waiter a tip!
12 I should have thought spoken especially BrE used as a polite or joking way of showing that you disagree with what someone has said: “Why isn't it working?” “I should have thought that was obvious.”
13 I should like formal, especially BrE used to say politely that you want something: “Will you require anything else?” “Yes, I should like a dry martini.”
14 I should think used to say what you believe or expect to be true: I shouldn't think there'll be a problem parking at that time of night.
15 I should think so/not spoken used to strongly agree with what someone has said: “I'm not going out tonight.” “I should think not, with so much work to do!”

Longman dictionary of contemporary English. 2004.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • should — [ ʃud ] modal verb *** Should is usually followed by an infinitive without to : You should eat more fresh fruit. Sometimes should is used without a following infinitive: I don t always do everything I should. Should does not change its form, so… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • should — W1S1 [ʃəd strong ʃud] modal v negative short form shouldn t ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ 1¦(right thing)¦ 2¦(advice)¦ 3¦(expected thing)¦ 4¦(correct thing)¦ 5¦(orders)¦ 6¦(after that )¦ 7¦(possibility)¦ 8¦(imagined situations)¦ 9¦(request …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • should — [shood] v.aux. [ME scholde < OE sceolde, pt. of sceal, scal, I am obliged: see SHALL] 1. pt. of SHALL [I had hoped I should see you] 2. used to express obligation, duty, propriety, or desirability [you should ask first, the plants should be… …   English World dictionary

  • Should — (sh[oo^]d), imp. of {Shall}. [OE. sholde, shulde, scholde, schulde, AS. scolde, sceolde. See {Shall}.] Used as an auxiliary verb, to express a conditional or contingent act or state, or as a supposition of an actual fact; also, to express moral… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • should — ► MODAL VERB (3rd sing. should) 1) used to indicate obligation, duty, or correctness. 2) used to indicate what is probable. 3) formal expressing the conditional mood. 4) used in a clause with ‘that’ after a main clause describing feelings. 5)… …   English terms dictionary

  • should of — This erroneous form of should have arises in all English speaking countries because the contracted form should ve is indistinguishable from it in speech. It is often associated with the speech of children or poorly educated adults: • Well, you… …   Modern English usage

  • should — should; should·er·er; should·na; …   English syllables

  • should've — [shood′əv] contraction should have * * * …   Universalium

  • should've — (should have) v. used to express the possibility that one ought to have done something …   English contemporary dictionary

  • should've — [shood′əv] contraction should have …   English World dictionary

  • should|n't — «SHUD uhnt», should not …   Useful english dictionary

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