A contraction is a shortened version of the written and spoken forms of a word, syllable, or word group, created by omission of internal letters.

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4answers
388 views

Can “was” be abbreviated as “'s?”

Is it possible to write "'s" instead of "was" in a sentence or is completely wrong? For example: She was at home yersterday. She's at home yesterday.
5
votes
2answers
27k views

Is “could've” or “should've” standard English?

As the title says — is "could've" or "should've" standard English or is it slang and should correctly be spelled "could have" and "should have"?
3
votes
1answer
22k views

When were st, nd, rd, and th, first used [closed]

When were numeric contractions for ordinals first used, as in 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 6th instead of first, second, third, sixth?
10
votes
3answers
494 views

Is there a word/term for a “super-contraction”

I am doing some informal research into dynamic speech and narrative generation, and I've been looking into some local colloquialism and having a little bit of difficultly classifying a set of them. I ...
0
votes
3answers
393 views

Is it acceptable to use “math” in an admissions essay?

I am writing a college admissions essay and would like to get a professional opinion on whether it is acceptable to use the truncated and informal version of the word "mathematics" as "math". I ask ...
0
votes
2answers
342 views

Why does the contraction of “I will” sound strange in certain sentence constructions? [duplicate]

Recently, while chatting with a friend via text, my friend asked me, "Can you ask them tomorrow?" I responded with: I will when I go. It occurred to me when writing this response that it would ...
0
votes
2answers
434 views

Conjunction contraction - second “a” and “at”

Which one is correct? Or are both acceptable? *He earned an MD and a gold medal from St James for his dissertation. *He earned an MD and gold medal from St James for his dissertation. *He was ...
2
votes
1answer
539 views

Distinguish contraction of “ain't”

I know the contraction of am not, is not, are not, has not, have not, do not, does not, and did not can be represented as ain't. How can I understand correctly which contraction the speaker meant?
0
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4answers
849 views

“You ain't able to be sure about anything.”

Does this sentence make any sense to you as a native speaker? The one who said this actually meant to say, "People like you can never be sure about anything" (implying the opposite side is very ...
7
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1answer
3k views

Why would you write “ain't”? Isn't it a contraction only used in spoken English?

I often hear in English conversation or movies the contraction "ain't" (for "isn't"), but I am more surprised to see it in writing (and I am not referring to a novel, where I can understand its usage: ...
3
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3answers
2k views

Is “ain’t” slang, or is it colloquial instead?

Does using the word ain’t in a song make it slang, whereas using it in a speech make it colloquial?
5
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5answers
14k views

Why is “ain't” not listed in dictionaries?

Google finds 52,000,000 matches for ain't but non-natives simply can't look up this word. Wiktionary isn't helpful. Is it some kind of 'wildcard' for "am/is/are not"?
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6answers
2k views

Are contractions of “I am” or “I would” rude? [closed]

I got edited on Stack Overflow because I used "I'm", "you're" and "I'd" instead of "I am" etc. Is it considered rude to use contractions like that in informal conversations on the internet? I would ...
2
votes
1answer
44k views

Meaning of “How'd you know?”: “would”, “did”, or “do”?

Does the question "How'd you know" mean: How do you know? How did you know? How would you?
1
vote
1answer
662 views

What does “a'me” mean?

Only boss a'me, is me. What is the meaning of "a'me" in the above sentence?
16
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7answers
28k views

“that” + “would” = “that'd”?

Is "that'd" an appropriate contraction of "that" and "would"? I say it, but I'm not sure if it's a legitimate contraction in written form.
0
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3answers
1k views

Is this the right way to use “wouldn't”?

I apologize if this is a duplicate or anything for that matter but I didn't locate any questions on it. I have this phrase I wrote and it is confusing me a little bit. An OAHU Agent can help at ...
0
votes
2answers
3k views

Is there a contraction for “where are” like “where's” for “where are”?

What is a contraction for where are? I wanted to ask "Where are the keys?" but want to use a contraction. Do I have to just say Where are, or can I say Where's and it's understood?
1
vote
1answer
53 views

Forming the possessive of a username that is a contraction

Suppose there was a user of one of these sites whose handle was Won't. How would one form the possessive of this username to refer to that user's post?* Won't's answer Given that the 's ...
14
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1answer
92k views

When to use “cannot” versus “can't”?

When is it best to write "can't" versus writing "cannot"? Are they interchangeable in every situation?
1
vote
3answers
326 views

What type of word is “abnomaly”?

I've got a coworker that frequently uses the word, "abnomaly", not "abnormal" and not "anomaly", but "abnomaly". While the types of these words differ (i.e. adjective versus noun), the meanings are ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

Can I use the “ll” contraction with proper names?

Can I contract "will" as "ll" when preceded by a proper name? For example: John will visit you tomorrow John'll visit you tomorrow I am inclined to think this is not acceptable in standard ...
13
votes
2answers
478 views

Appropriate title case: 'em or 'Em or 'EM

It's a common practice to capitalize headings/titles of articles. But is there a correct or conventional way to capitalize words in titles that are apocopated apheresed at the beginning? E.g. ...
26
votes
5answers
98k views

“Do's” and “don'ts” or “do's” and “don't's”?

I am making a list to my children telling them what are some of the things they should do and shouldn't. Under one side is "do", and the other is "don't". Would I write "do's" and "don't's"? Cause ...
2
votes
2answers
401 views

Orthography of definite-article contractions in the Yorkshire dialect

In the Yorkshire accent the definite article is shortened to just t. E.g. 'I went on the bus' becomes something that sounds like 'I went ont bus'. How does one punctuate this? Is it 'I went on t'bus', ...
1
vote
1answer
107 views

Spelling of contracted years

Full years can be contracted to two digits like He graduated the university in '92. What I'd like to ask is how would this sentence be spelled out: "in 'ninety two"? "in ninety two"? maybe, it'...
0
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0answers
205 views

What is your preference on the use of n't in different situations? [duplicate]

Throughout highschool and college I was told "n't" (e.g. can't, wouldn't, shouldn't) should not be used in essays. The manner of which the use of "n't" was bastardized by many people who I considered ...
8
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1answer
1k views

Word contractions in Shakespeare's plays

In Shakespeare's plays it is common to find contracted words, such as "o'er", "e'en", "sulph'uous", "ta'en". Is it just a literary device or those words were actually pronounced (in day-to-day speech) ...
6
votes
5answers
2k views

Can “I are” be shortened to “I're”?

I just received a message containing "I're": Glad April and I're so different. I've never seen this used before (I suppose as it's so unnecessary, saving just one character when writing) yet I ...
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votes
2answers
124 views

Contraction in “Your file'll be downloaded…”

Is it correct to use the contraction in Your file'll be downloaded...? I don't know. It just doesn't sound right to me. English is not my first language, so maybe someone here could shed some light on ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Is it Standard American English to ever contract “did” as “-'d”?

Assuming that it is Standard American English to contract would as -'d, is it standard to contract did as -'d? For example: I would really like to have a glass of single malt scotch right now. ...
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votes
2answers
220 views

“Why Can't I” and “Why Can Not I” [duplicate]

Is "Why can not I" grammatically correct? If not, why is "Why can't I" grammatically correct?
3
votes
2answers
282 views

Whatever happened to “eyeglasses”, “facial tissues”, and “video game consoles”?

Now-a-days, we tend to ask:"Have you seen my glasses anywhere?" "Do you have any spare tissues to lend me?" and "How many consoles do you own?" It's just quicker to say and any native speaker will ...
6
votes
8answers
1k views

“I'd-a lost”? What does this contraction stand for?

The first lines of George Thorogood's version of "One bourbon, one scotch, one beer": Wanna tell you a story about the houseman blues. I come home one Friday, had to tell the landlady I'd-a ...
0
votes
1answer
169 views

Examples of Apheretic forms in English?

I am looking for a comprehensive list of Apheretic forms in English. I remember seeing in old books words being prefixed with apostrophes which do not require them in modern writing, but can't ...
0
votes
3answers
8k views

Why is “you all” contracted to “y'all” and not “you'll”?

Is you'll also valid in the context of this video? Or is viper just setting new rules down in the English language?
-1
votes
1answer
241 views

Contractions With “Has” [duplicate]

Is it acceptable to make a contraction with an arbitrary noun and the word "has" to create a more conversational style in writing? For example, can I write... "Tomorrow, when the storm's blown away,"...
3
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1answer
1k views

Are compound contractions proper grammar? [duplicate]

I've been told that compound contractions like couldn't've and I'd've are proper grammar. Are they?
5
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6answers
10k views

What is the difference between “’ll” and “will”?

Is there any difference in the meaning when we use 'll or will? For example, I will go to university tomorrow. I'll go to university tomorrow.
4
votes
2answers
3k views

Is a possessive noun a contraction?

I was told not to use contractions in an essay. My classmate wrote "the argument of Emily" but I preferred "Emily's argument". He disagreed and claimed "Emily's" is a contraction.
2
votes
3answers
1k views

Is “e'er” a true English word?

Are poetic contractions, such as "e'er", "o'er" and "ne'er" (and other less common ones), English? As in officially recognized?
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Were contractions used in spoken English in 18th-century London?

I am currently writing a story set in London of 1795. I am trying my best to avoid linguistic anachronisms in the dialogue, but I have had difficulty finding reliable resources regarding spoken ...
0
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0answers
45 views

When to use “programming's” vs. “programming is” [duplicate]

My sentence can be said as: Programming is fun. and it can also be said as: Programming's fun. Both seem to be correct. When should I use one instead of the other?
3
votes
0answers
2k views

Contradictory Idioms [closed]

I stumbled across some contradictory idioms, and it made me wonder how many idioms can be contradicted with other idioms! Some that I've collected so far: The pen is mightier than the sword ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Why does the “e” in judge vanish in the word “judgment”?

The in the word "judgment", the "e" from "judge" is absent. Three questions on this: Why is this? Is there a name for such a contraction? How and why does the "g" still retain its "soft" ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the possessive form of “y'all”?

I generally hear y'alls's used as the possessive form, but I have also heard yourn. Since y'all is a colloquial pronoun, its possessive form is basically liberated from prescriptive linguistics which ...
0
votes
2answers
337 views

Has the contraction “you’re” finally been replaced by “your”?

Your is almost universally used these days for you’re (“you are”). Is the misuse of your a result of ignorance, or is the contraction now formally dead?
0
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1answer
4k views

“What say we [suggestion (verb phrase)]”

I would like to understand the history of the modern expression “what say we” followed immediately by a verb phrase, used to make a suggestion and common in informal speech, as attested at Oxford ...
0
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1answer
391 views

Using contractions like “I'm” in text [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Using contracted forms (“don’t”, “let’s”) in a formal text Are contractions like "didn't" forbidden in written English? Usage of contractions like "it'...
4
votes
6answers
62k views

“won't” vs. “wouldn't”

Are these two words interchangeable? How do you know when to use one or the other? For some sentences it is easy to know which one to use, but not for others. The type of sentences that are difficult ...