You Shouldn't Of!
In his column, Word Play, Warren
Clements of The Globe and Mail recently wrote on expressions that
should be entered into a "hall of shame."
Prominent among these (I saw an
example in a student's work this week) are the expressions,
"should of" and "would of." Both result from conversational
English creeping into our written language. Writers mistakenly
believe that the correct expression is "I would have gone . . .";
however, the correct expression (past unreal) as most know is "If
I had gone . . ."
Because of our contracted ways of
speaking, "would have" comes out sounding like "would've" and next
thing you know the contraction of "have" becomes "of"!
If students had known the correct
form, they would not have made the mistake.
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