I've heard an American guy say "should've wrote", but as I far as I know, there is supposed to be a past participle (like "written") after "have".

Can anybody explain it to me?

  • It's contrary to standard grammar, but functionally the same as "should've written." (Should have written.)
    – Robusto
    Oct 7, 2015 at 15:34
  • 2
    Max, not everybody speaks good English.
    – Centaurus
    Oct 7, 2015 at 15:43
  • ... or knows the basics of conjugation and use of the base forms.
    – rogermue
    Oct 7, 2015 at 16:35
  • 1
    In some dialects the past participle and preterit forms have merged.
    – Anonym
    Oct 7, 2015 at 17:54

2 Answers 2


Welcome to colloquial (informal) speech; not all formal language rules apply there.

I'm sure the guy meant the same thing as "should've written".

  • This should be posted as a comment.
    – Centaurus
    Oct 7, 2015 at 15:43
  • 1
    The answer is that in colloquial speech the rules are a bit bent, and not the same ones as taught in language class. The OP is asking for an explanation about a native speaker saying something ungrammatical. Oct 7, 2015 at 15:46
  • 1
    It is not ungrammatical, nor is it a question of "colloquial", per se. It is dialect. That form is perfectly grammatical in the particular dialect of English which that person speaks.
    – Colin Fine
    Oct 7, 2015 at 17:47
  • Would a person write "I should've wrote a different comment instead." instead of "I should've written a different comment instead." ? Oct 7, 2015 at 18:21

Written is the past participle of write in standard varieties of English. Some other varieties use wrote or writ.

This is not a question of "colloquial" - my own colloquial English happens to have written. It is a question of dialect (or variety).

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.