Linked Questions

31 votes
4 answers
50k views

Why do we say "was supposed to" for "should have"?

I was supposed to do my homework, but I went out clubbing instead. On a literal interpretation, supposed to suggests that other people (or indeed, myself) might have supposed (thought, imagined, ...
FumbleFingers's user avatar
18 votes
3 answers
275k views

"supposed to" or "suppose to"?

What is the actual spelling/pronunciation? What is the origination of this phrase?
Erik's user avatar
  • 283
11 votes
5 answers
44k views

How to use "used to use"?

Is it correct to say something like this? I used to use the knife to open things like cans.
augusta's user avatar
  • 141
4 votes
6 answers
6k views

Why does "contrary" have two different pronunciations?

I have the impression all Anglophones pronounce contrary with stress on the second syllable (cont-RARE-ee) when applied to a person's actions or disposition, as in: Mary Mary quite contrary, How ...
FumbleFingers's user avatar
-1 votes
3 answers
13k views

"He has to do it. Hasn't he (to)?"

He has to do it. Hasn't he (to)? Is the 'to' correct/ incorrect/ unnecessary? Is that a case of an infinitive in interrogative tail (question tag)?
Kris's user avatar
  • 37.4k
1 vote
2 answers
15k views

Examples of spoken phrases where the tone used changes the meaning [closed]

I'm looking for examples of phrases & sentences whose meaning changes depending on the tone of voice used. For example, 'Follow me.' (Said with a falling tone) would be understood as a command. ...
Darren's user avatar
  • 786
2 votes
2 answers
2k views

Meaning based on emphasis

Is there a term used to explain how some words change meaning based on the accent? For example, "convict" can be both a noun and a verb depending on which syllable is emphasized. The same is true for "...
Melanchthon's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
681 views

The schwa sound with word "have"

When I looked it up in the dictionary, two versions of pronunciation for word "have" was listed. hǽv and həv. hǽv is the one that I am most familiar with. But this həv with the schwa sound... when ...
having or being's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
2k views

Pronunciation of "of" in connected speech: Can /v/ ever be pronounced as /f/ in some cases?

I know that the /v/ sound at the of the word have is sometimes pronounced as /f/ in the phrase have to, which becomes /ˈhæftə/. Is there a similar thing where the /v/ sound at end of the word of ...
Rani2Add's user avatar
  • 317
3 votes
1 answer
1k views

Differences between have to and need to

I try to grasp the difference between these 2 forms. So the question is whether these 3 cases have the exact same meaning. Why did he get up at 5 o'clock? He needn't have got up so early. He could ...
kacherese's user avatar
  • 305
1 vote
1 answer
217 views

Confused by “you came in here knowing what you had to do”

This is a caption taken from an episode from a tv series. To set the scene, a lady comes into Frank's place seeking his help in making a decision. After conversing with her, Frank realizes she might ...
Shan's user avatar
  • 397
0 votes
0 answers
287 views

How do we get pronunciation Yoost to?

In this thread How does the phrase "used to" work, grammatically? the construct "used to" is discussed but there is no mention of its pronunciation. Here (Canada) the "used" in this phrase ...
Robert Craigen's user avatar
3 votes
0 answers
198 views

Can you chain / combine contractions in correct English? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Can a word be contracted twice (e.g. “I'ven't”)? I would like to know if it is proper to chain multiple contractions into a single word when they are in a ...
ggentzke's user avatar
  • 131