I need your help. So, "have to" instead of "must" is correct, but can I abbreviate this with 've to?

Is this a mistake, or can I use it so???

  • See here. – user3395 Apr 30 '16 at 15:53

Using a contraction (A word or group of words resulting from shortening an original form) is tricky as there are stressed words (for emphasis) in English.

For example, you usually stress "have" in "have to" and if you write "I've to go", you won't expect readers to stress "have". Therefore, it is not right to contract have to 've when writing "have to" in English.

"Have" could be contracted when it is used as an auxiliary verb (I've been sick) and as a main verb (in British English) as the linked question and answers indicate.

You can contract it when you write "I've got to go" as 've is an auxiliary verb.

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Both, "must" and "have to" are used to express obligation, but "must" refers to a type of moral obligation. For example:

My parents work a lot to pay for my studies, so I must study hard and not fail

shows you are convinced, whereas "have to" is kind of an imposed obligation. For example:

We have to do a lot of homework on this weekend.

(we don't really feel it willingly, as if it were by force.)

The phrase "have to" behaves as a principal verb and cannot be abbreviated,, but "have" (without being followed by "to") may be contracted when it is an auxiliary, that is to say, when it is followed by a past participle. Nevertheless, contractions (when possible), represent informality. They are used when speaking and in informal writing.

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