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In a forum I frequent there are many times that contractions are used in a way that's unusual, and many users find to be ungrammatical:

"I've to" etc.

To me it's not ungrammatical but it sounds both old-fashioned and like something you might hear in certain rural areas of England, but I don't know where.

Do some of our English experts here have more information on who uses or used this structure? Which region or regions and which age groups etc?

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    It is not something that I associate with any particular region of Britain, nor to say that it is more associated with e.g. "the north". But I think it has become dated. I don't think it is heard as much as it once was. But that's just my subjective impression. – WS2 Feb 18 '18 at 10:39
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    I'd say 'I've to be at the station by 11' sounds less unnatural than 'I've to bleed the radiators before the central heating engineer comes on Thursday'. – Edwin Ashworth Feb 18 '18 at 11:01
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    I would say 'I've got to' is more idiomatic than 'I've to'. Ngram indicates similar - books.google.com/ngrams/… (Link is playing up - click on 'search') I have heard 'I've to' but it is very rare and I cannot remember where I have heard it. – Nigel J Feb 18 '18 at 14:35
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    I've never heard it spoken; it's unknown in the US, where the have of have to is stressed, and thus not contracted. My guess would be that the forums you refer to are full of non-native speakers who are following "rules" they were taught by non-native teachers. There's a great deal of that around, as anyone can tell by looking at the questions posted here. – John Lawler Feb 18 '18 at 18:09
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    @JohnLawler It certainly was idiomatic to native British speakers, as evidenced by the fact that both Edwin and I recognised it. But then both he and I are fairly "long in the tooth". It also extended to such as "He's to see his aunt on Sunday". But that means "He is to..." – WS2 Feb 21 '18 at 22:57
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Unfortunately I don't have any evidence past my own experience but I am 28 and I lived in the South of England until I was 18 and then moved to Scotland. I have heard "I've to" infrequently in England and never in Scotland. I would personally associate it with old fashioned but informal language.

  • adding your research makes your answer better. Without it may be further reviewed – lbf Mar 12 '18 at 11:57

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