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Is It Correct to Say “Please Find Below”?

Perhaps you’ve just written a great email to your new prospective boss, or maybe you’re emailing the final draft of a massive project to your teacher or professor. Whatever the case, it’s imperative that the recipient opens the attachment in your message. But, can you say “please find below” to draw their attention to the attachment?

It is correct to use the imperative clause “please find below.” This phrase usually comes at the beginning or the end of a sentence and often refers to an attachment to a message or a feature of your writing further down the page. There are many ways to use the same idea in a complete sentence.

Here, we’ll explore the different ways to use the phrase “please find below.” We’ll explore the definition of the imperative phrase and touch on the grammar, too. There are plenty of examples: please find below.

What Does “Please Find Below” Mean?

The imperative clause “please find below” signals that an attachment or other important feature of your writing is included with your message. As a whole, the phrase tells the reader to keep going to find this attachment or feature later in the message or document.

Let’s take a quick look at each word in the phrase. The first word is “please.” We use a polite word like “please” to start an imperative clause nicely. The imperative clause indicates that you want or need your reader to do something.

The word “please” also shows that the imperative clause addresses the second person — “you” — which is the subject of the clause. So, while the subject “you” isn’t directly stated, the word “please” helps us understand that “you” is the implied subject of this imperative clause. 

The next word is the verb “find,” which means to come across something or see something you were searching for (source). Since every imperative clause needs a verb, “find” is essential here!

Finally, there’s the preposition “below,” which has the same meaning as “under” or “in a lower place” (source). In this case, “below” references a lower place on the page or in the message. So we can use “below” to mean “later on in this piece of writing.”

For more information about using the preposition “below,” check out our article “Is It Okay to Say to “Below”?

How Do You Use “Please Find Below”?

Since “please find below” is an imperative clause, we usually use it at the beginning or the end of a complete sentence. Sometimes, you’ll even see this phrase in parentheses as an aside or an extra note for your reader.

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Check out these examples to see how we can use “please find below” at the beginning or end of a sentence and how we can add it with parentheses:

  • Please find below the graphs that summarize the experiment’s data.
  • Several charts show the differences in results; please find below.
  • We’ve made a few changes to the original document (please find below). 

Please notice that the verb in “please find below” is the simple verb form (also known as “verb 1”).

Because this is an imperative clause in the imperative mood, you should not change the form of the verb, no matter the person, gender, or the number of the subject (source). You should always use a simple present verb within an imperative clause.

When Can You Use “Please Find Below”?

The phrase “please find below” is formal, so it can help to elevate the formality of your writing. You can use it in semi-formal written communication, too.

You can use this imperative clause to help make your writing sound more official or traditional. It’s a helpful phrase for important formal correspondences. You can also use it in semi-formal settings, such as an email, text message, or blog post.

  • I have completed the report. Please see [attachment] below.
  • I collected phone numbers from the team (please see below).
  • To read more about laminar flow, please see [link] below.

Other times when you can use “please find below” include site pages, academic papers, or listings – anywhere the preposition “below” can refer to placement in writing.

In What Context Can You Use “Please Find Below”?

You can use the imperative clause “please find below” when referencing an image, table, piece of information, or attachment that appears later on in your writing, especially in digital contexts. 

For example, if you’re sending an email and you’ve attached a document, the phrase “please find below” draws your reader’s attention to the attachment and increases their chances of taking a look.

  • Please see below for the PDF post schedule.

You could also use “please find below” when you want to reference a visual feature or piece of information later on in a document. For example, you can draw your reader’s attention to a chart, graph, list, or specific keyword that appears further down in your writing.

  • Please see below for a chart of the data at work.

Remember, you can only use “please find below” in a written context. You won’t say “please find below” aloud; instead, you’ll write it in a formal message, report, or academic paper. 

When Not to Use “Please Find Below”

If you want to keep the tone of your message or writing more relaxed, then “please find below” might not be the best choice. It is too formal for an informal context, and it is awkward in speech.

Native English speakers understand that “please find below” carries a more semi-formal or formal tone that makes your writing seem more solemn and less casual, like that of a work or academic context.

So, if you want to maintain an easygoing tone in your writing or message, you shouldn’t use “please find below.”

Several other sentences and phrases carry the same level of politeness and meaning as “please find below,” but they have a less formal connotation.

For more information on informal options for written communication, check out our article “Is It Rude to Say “Have a Good One”?

What Can You Use Instead of “Please Find Below”? 

Here are some imperative clauses you can use instead of “please find below.” These examples are less formal and more straightforward options. 

  • I’ve attached {X} to this message.
  • I’m sending {X} along to you.
  • You can see the table below.
  • Please let me know if you have any questions about the attachment below. 
  • Please see the graph for more details. 
  • Take a look at {X}.
  • The attached document shows…

These examples use various grammar structures; some include an imperative clause like “please find below.” You can identify these imperative clauses thanks to the implied subject “you” plus verb 1. 

Other examples use a complete sentence with a clear subject and a verb. In both instances, though, it’s clear that you’re asking or directing your reader’s attention to a specific item located later in the text. 

Using “Please Find Below” in a Full Sentence

There are various ways you can use “please find below” in a full sentence. In most cases, the imperative clause will either come at the beginning or at the end of the sentence, separated by a comma or semicolon.

Sometimes, it can come in parentheses in the middle or at the end of the sentence.

Let’s look at some examples of the phrase “please find below” in a complete sentence:

  • Please find below a graph that illustrates the findings of our experiment.

In this example, the phrase “please find below” comes at the beginning of the sentence. It comes directly before the object, “a graph,” so the reader should look for a graph further down in the document or message. 

Another way to build this same sentence is: 

  • Please find a graph below that illustrates the findings of our experiment.

In this construction, the object “a graph” comes between the verb and the preposition. Therefore, it has the same meaning and connotation as the first example. 

Here’s an example with the key phrase at the end:

  • I’ve attached a photo of the new classroom; please find below.

Here, the imperative clause “please find below” is separate from the sentence’s main clause with a semicolon. That’s because both clauses are independent clauses with a subject and verb. 

Finally, let’s check out a version where the phrase is in parentheses:

  • Let’s review the reports (please find below) and discuss them in the next meeting.

Here, when “please find below” is in parentheses, the writer is using this imperative clause to give an extra bit of information. It’s like a clue to help the reader understand how to complete the process described in the sentence.

Imperative Clauses

We use imperative clauses to give directions, offer strong suggestions, and make commands (source). Like all clauses, every imperative clause includes a subject and a verb. However, it can be tricky to determine the subject of an imperative clause.

Let’s look at this example to illustrate: 

  • Please take out the recycling before you go to school.

The imperative clause is “Please take out the trash.” We know what the speaker wants the listener to accomplish because the verb “take out” is obvious. But can you find the subject of this sentence?

To find the subject of the imperative clause, we should ask, “Who or what do we expect to complete this command, suggestion, or instruction?”

In our example, the speaker doesn’t specify; they’re talking to an unknown second person. When an imperative clause  addresses an unidentified second person, the subject is “you.” 

Let’s check out another example to drive the point home:

  • My mom told my brother, “Please take out the trash before you go to school.”

In this example, the imperative clause has a more apparent subject. Who should take out the trash before going to school? My brother. So, “my brother” is the subject of the imperative clause in this case. 

Minor Sentences

Sometimes, we use sentences that aren’t grammatically complete because they drop their subject, verb, or object. However, we can understand them by context. These short, incomplete sentences that still carry a complete thought are “minor sentences” (source). 

You’ve probably seen and heard minor sentences in conversations, dialogue, poetry, and songs. We often use them when we speak, and they help us keep the conversation going. 

Minor sentences can also help add emphasis when we write and speak, making our ideas more straightforward and relatable to our listeners and readers.

Here are some common examples of minor sentences; have you read, heard, or used them recently?

  • Yes, indeed.
  • No, definitely not!
  • No clue.
  • The storm was raging. Cold. Wet. Loud.
  • No pain, no gain.
  • Sounds good.
  • The more, the merrier!
  • He needs help. Fast!
  • Sure, what time and where?
  • Thank you so much!

These minor sentences play a significant role in our spoken and written communication. Despite most of them missing a subject, verb, and/or object, we can still understand the sentences’ meaning in context.

A minor sentence is the abbreviated version of a complete sentence that English speakers decided to shorten over time. Perhaps the subject, verb, or object is always the same or super apparent in context, so speakers drop them to avoid sounding redundant.

What sets minor sentences apart from other complete sentences is that minor sentences depend on the context around them for meaning. Therefore, they only make sense if you read and understand them inside the larger conversation or paragraph.

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For more examples of minor sentences and how we use them, read our article “Is It Correct to Say “Safe Travels”?

Final Thoughts

The phrase “please see below” is an imperative clause. It directs your readers’ attention to an attachment, graph, photo, or piece of information that comes up later on in your document or message. In addition, the term is a formal and polite way to point your reader to add unique features to your message, email, or paper.

The imperative clause “please find below” has a formal and sometimes stuffy connotation. So, if you want to maintain an informal tone in your writing, you shouldn’t use it. Instead, use a more casual phrase to direct your readers’ attention to the attachment, graph, chart, or piece of information later in the message.