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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How do you abbreviate “Government”?

As far as I can tell there are eight ways to abbreviate or write the contracted form "government". gov or Gov gov. or Gov. gov't or Gov't govt. or Govt. (with the full stop/period) Are any of ...
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1answer
2k views

“No, I don't” or “No, I do not” in responding English questions

Consider: A: Do you like ice cream? B: No, I don't. Usually in a grammar book when you answer someone's question with negation you'll use shortened answer as in "I don't". I know you can ...
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1answer
109 views

Are “kinda”, “sorta”, “oughta” and “sposta” acceptable in formal writing?

I get that sorta, kinda, sorta-kinda (this one I quite like though) oughta and sposta imitate speech but it still annoys me to find them "in print", especially when the overall tone is formal. ...
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3answers
86 views

How prevalent is this reversal of “yes” and “no”? [duplicate]

Example: Aren't you going to the store? Where I am from, the correct answer indicating I am going to the store is yes. The contraction "not" is ignored. Is this sort of confusion prevalent ...
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2answers
642 views

Explanation for “them's”

Recently someone said to me: Them's the rules I thought he had the sentence wrong, but as it turns out it is slang. I am learning English as a second language and I would really appreciate if ...
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3answers
19k views

“Let's” vs. “lets”: which is correct?

Say I'm promoting a product. Which is correct? [Product] let's you [do something awesome]. [Product] lets you [do something awesome]. Or neither?
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1answer
83 views

Is this a portmanteau, contraction, or perhaps both?

I have chosen to edit this post because it apparently has offended some of the more sensitive among us. While, personally, I feel this should prompt discourse rather than down votes, I do not wish to ...
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2answers
306 views

“He doesn't” vs “He don't” [duplicate]

Grammatically, for he/she/it we use "does" or "doesn't" like in, He doesn't eat meat. but these days I'm observing the usage of the above sentence(especially in American movies) like this, ...
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3answers
3k views

How can we distinguish between “I would” and “I had” if someone says “I'd”?

How can we unambiguously distinguish between I would and I had, if the native English speaker used the contraction I'd? For instance, I'd read the newspaper. We can mean the above sentence as either ...
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0answers
20 views

Is “I'ven't” a valid contraction? [duplicate]

We can contract "I have" to "I've" and "have not" to "haven't". My question is, is "I'ven't" a correct contraction for "I have not"?
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1answer
114 views

Is “mine's” a valid contraction?

Not mines, but mine's (mine is). As in, "You cooked a good turkey, but mine's better."
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3answers
3k views

Usage of “ain't”?

As far as I understand, "ain't" can mean either "isn't" (ain't no sunshine) or "hasn't" (you ain't seen nothing yet). Are there any rules when "ain't" is used? Does it have a different meaning than ...
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3answers
7k views

Is “aren't I” correct grammar?

Since "amn't I" is so clunky, is "aren't I" grammatically correct? Or is the only way to say this "Am I not"?
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5answers
13k views

Is “That’ll” a real word?

Is the contraction from that will to that’ll an actual word or not?
17
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3answers
933 views

Can the “don't” contraction be expanded when used as a command?

I refer to the usage of "don't" as an imperative to tell someone what not to do. As in, Hey! Don't you dare touch that button! When it is used in the interrogative or as part of a statement, ...
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5answers
4k views

Is there some rule against ending a sentence with the contraction “it's”?

I heard this lyric in a song the other day and it just sounded so wrong that I assumed it must be incorrect grammar, but I can't find any specific prohibition that applies. That's what it's. ...
4
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4answers
696 views

Can “let us” always be used in place of “let's”?

Me: Perhaps we need to make a left turn at Albuquerque Him: Let us try that Now I would have said, "Let's try that". "Let us" sounds wrong to me in this instance. Is it? Are there ...
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2answers
12k views

Do contractions (e.g. “don't”) and full phrases (e.g. “do not”) have the same meaning?

What is the difference between "don't" and "do not" in the English literature as well as spoken English? Are they same? The same question goes for "wouldn't" and "would not", "couldn't" and "could ...
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1answer
8k views

“Do you not” vs. “Don't you”

I live in the UK and I mostly hear people saying Don't you..., but some people say: Do you not...? What is the difference and which one is more correct? You can put any example really. Something ...
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2answers
129 views

Correct way to spell “young'un”?

As slang, this phrase: Since I was a young'un... Is there an accepted way to abbreviate the last word there?
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5answers
10k views

“Y'all” or “ya'll”?

I've seen it spelled both ways. Are both correct?
2
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4answers
107 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.
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3answers
7k views

How to pronounce the programmer's abbreviation “char”

In many programming languages, char is a type name for character values. The word character is pronounced with a [k] sound, but what about char? While trying to find the answer elsewhere, I learnt ...
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2answers
7k 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"?
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1answer
188 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?
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3answers
319 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 ...
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3answers
66 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 ...
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3answers
336 views

Meaning of a contraction, “on'ry,” in I wonder as I wander"

During a running debate or whether I Wonder as I Wander qualifies as a Christmas Carol, I looked up the lyrics. The first verse: I wonder as I wander out under the sky How Jesus the Saviour ...
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2answers
125 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 ...
9
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7answers
916 views

“Your” vs. “you're”: Why the confusion?

I have seen many comments on different blogs and forums where English native speakers spelled you're as your. I'm not a native speaker, but I know and understand the difference between the two. Why is ...
8
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2answers
168 views

Is there an exception to the prohibition against ending a sentence with “ ’s ” at work here?

The ’s can be used as a contraction representing a weak, unstressed word that is not pronounced. It allegedly cannot occur in sentence final position. She is not ready, but he is. She’s not ...
0
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2answers
66 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
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1answer
266 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?
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4answers
471 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 ...
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4answers
411 views

Is it okay to say and write “ain't” yet?

Over 10 years ago saying "ain't" was discouraged but it was gaining momentum. What happened? Seems like it's still discouraged. Maybe in another 10 years?
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1answer
1k 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
603 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?
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3answers
2k views

What does “ain't” mean?

What does the contraction ain't mean? Is it appropriate to use it in formal settings?
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5answers
4k 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 ...
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1answer
8k 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?
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1answer
170 views

What does “a'me” mean?

Only boss a'me, is me. What is the meaning of "a'me" in the above sentence?
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0answers
113 views

Word Frequency List Including Contractions [closed]

A quick search on the internet, gives me frequency lists for say the top 300 most commonly used words. But I haven't been able to find a list which includes contractions. I'm creating a form of ...
1
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1answer
160 views

Why does the word “never” not contain an apostrophe?

If never is a contraction of 'not ever' why does it not have an apostrophe, i.e. why is it not written n'ever rather than never? I can understand that the apostrophe has simply fallen out of use, but ...
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7answers
13k 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
108 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
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2answers
253 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?
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1answer
30 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 ...
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1answer
17k 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?
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3answers
137 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 ...