Questions tagged [auxiliary-verbs]

Use this tag if you are asking about the usage of ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Auxiliary/Helping Verbs.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ Auxiliary/Helping Verbs are verbs that are used with other full verbs to make the different tenses, voice or modality in a sentence.

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38
votes
6answers
26k views

Is “she don't” sometimes considered correct form?

Recently I was exposed to a lot of uses of "She don't + infinitive" (3rd person singular + don't), instead of "she doesn't + infinitive" (3rd person singular + doesn't). I'm not sure if it is a ...
27
votes
3answers
2k views

Why there are two 'were's in one sentence?

But, as time went on, it became increasingly obvious that many of the programs were not available, and the ones that were were written in a particularly obscure form of BASIC. (Probability Theory:...
24
votes
6answers
10k views

“None of the kids were hungry” Or “None of the kids was hungry”

Were is used with plural pronouns The kids were hungry. And we can add "None of": None of the kids were hungry. But I read a lot of articles and books use "was" with "None of": None of the ...
21
votes
4answers
11k views

Who is/are they?

A:I assume you know about the latest goings-on with Hessington oil. B:I wouldn't be much of a partner if I didn't. A:Now they've decided to take on Ava Hessington personally. B:Who is ...
18
votes
2answers
83k views

When to use “is” vs. “does” when asking a question?

When do I use is or does when I ask a question? For example, Is your item still for sale? Does your item still for sale? I am not sure which one to use.
17
votes
3answers
207k views

Should I say “what does it means” or “what does it mean”?

Sometimes, especially on this forum, I am wondering wether I should say "what does it mean" or "what does it means" ? And should I say "it means that..." or "it mean that..." ?
13
votes
4answers
3k views

Why do we have to use 'have got' instead of 'got'?

I saw the sentence on the internet like this: I don't know how much money he has got. I think that I don't know how much money he got. is only possible here. What is the difference between ...
13
votes
5answers
44k views

Help explaining “Where am I?” vs “…where I am”

I would like to explain to a non-native girlfriend that it's correct to say "Where am I?" on its own as a question, but if you want to say "Can you guess where I am?" or "Do you know where I am?" or "...
12
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9answers
43k views

Grammatically correct: 'are you hurt' and 'do you hurt'

"Are you hurt?" is grammatically correct. However, is it correct to ask someone in pain "Do you hurt?"?
12
votes
1answer
2k views

Why is “I'll be”, wrong as a short answer?

I was writing a text in English to an Italian girl friend of mine whose English is very good. In the text, I asked: Will you be coming to the staff party on Thursday? and she replied Yes, I'll ...
12
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2answers
12k views

Conditional: “are not” vs. “don't be”

Consider the following phrases (someone is talking with a friend who is challenging some mobsters): If you are not careful, they will catch you. or If you don't be careful, they will ...
11
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5answers
5k views

What does “ain't” mean in “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”?

This question is a follow up question of my previous question Meaning of "ain't" in: "...we ain't know what it meant" According to the Oxford Dictionary, ain't is used ...
9
votes
4answers
711 views

Is the interrogative structure “Is X to do with Y” grammatical?

I don't know precisely why, but the interrogative structure "Is X to do with Y?" sounds weird and not natural English. In fact, if I transform "Is X to do with Y?" into the related affirmative form I ...
9
votes
1answer
6k views

Use “got” or “have got”?

Could you please tell me if you got some time to read the report? In this sentence, I have to use got or have got ? what is the difference between these two w.r.t. the meaning of the sentence?
9
votes
3answers
14k views

Have to / having to?

As fas as I know, "have to" is the commoner version of the two, but I'm finding more and more that "having to" is also used instead of "have to". She has to / is having to look after herself now. ...
8
votes
4answers
293 views

Phrasing a question

How ungrammatical/colloquial is to structure questions without the usage of an auxiliary verb? Is it possible to communicate well using only the second type? What impression does this make on an ...
8
votes
3answers
922 views

'I wish' and counterfactual

What's the difference between the following sentences? (a) I wish they wouldn't make so much noise. (b) I wish they were not making so much noise. (c) I wish they did not make so much noise. ...
8
votes
2answers
5k views

Should I use the past tense with did?

Should I use the past tense with did? For example, I was to say: The important question is: Did they knew what it means or not? Or should I say: The important question is: Did they know what it ...
8
votes
2answers
7k views

“Why had you to” or “why did you have to”

I was solving a test on modals and there was the following line: What was the problem? Why _ leave early? The proposed fill-in combinations were: had you to did you have to must you you had to ...
8
votes
2answers
7k views

it is you who has vs. it is you who have

There is already a similar question here, but it is about forming questions: Which is the correct question ("Who has" vs "Who have")? When combining who with you in a statement, ...
7
votes
2answers
605 views

Can the auxiliary verbs be optional sometimes?

His son was smart and his daughter intelligent. His son was smart and his daughter was intelligent. This website has been shut down and its name turned over by court order. This website ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

How do I use the auxiliary “do” in questions?

Consider these two sentences: Who left the door open? and Who do you want to speak to? In the first question auxiliary do cannot normally be used, but in the latter question it can. Why is ...
6
votes
2answers
4k views

Which is the correct phrasing: Do any or Does any?

Recently while writing the title of a question, I encountered trouble when choosing the correct grammatical syntax from the followings: Do any philosophy believe that..? Does any philosophy believe ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

She is at next door

My sister lives next door. My mother went to my sister's house. My son is looking for his grandmother. "Where is grandmother?" my son asked. "She went next door." "She is at next door." ...
6
votes
1answer
4k views

What is the short answer for “Nobody has to know”?

This is from "The Lion King": Nala: And your mother, what will she think? Simba: She doesn't have to know. Nobody has to know. Nala: Of course they do! Why doesn't she reply: "Of course ...
6
votes
4answers
7k views

“I will be loving you 'til we're 70” vs. “I will love you 'til we're 70”

From Ed Sheeran's song Thinking Out Loud: And, darling, I will be loving you 'til we're 70 Why is it not And, darling, I will love you 'til we're 70 ? Why is progressive used here?
6
votes
1answer
9k views

… I was being! / what does it mean?

I could hardly believe how bold I was being! I got detention because a teacher said I was being contumacious ..... What does the word being here mean ? and what are the tenses in these sentences ...
6
votes
3answers
44k views

Is it wrong to say “I sent you many emails this week”?

When I'm writing to a person who didn't reply to a lot of emails I sent him, is it wrong to say "I sent you many emails this week but I haven't received any replies"? Must I say "I've sent you many ...
6
votes
1answer
721 views

Emphatic do-form with do as main verb

It is possible to use do as an auxiliary verb to denote emphasis: I do like ice cream Is it also possible to use it when do is the main verb as well? E.g.: I did do (it). He does do (it). ...
6
votes
1answer
218 views

Why “Windows XP won't install” instead of “Windows XP don't install”?

OK. In my native language usage (non English) using don't looks better than won't. But still I'm seeing lot of won't instead of don't. So is don't unacceptable in this situation? Reference link: Tom'...
6
votes
1answer
845 views

Is using two consecutive verbs grammatically correct? [duplicate]

I go sing karaoke at bars. An engineer goes camping. The verbs go and sing and go and camp with -ing have been used consecutively in the above two sentences respectively. Are they grammatically ...
6
votes
2answers
4k views

How do I know/ How am I to know?

Is there any difference between these two questions? Is the second one grammatically right? How do I know? vs How am I to know?
5
votes
6answers
5k views

'Wouldn't wake up' vs. 'didn't wake up'

I'm reading an article about two pets rescuing their owners. After the cat managed to wake up the mother, she tried to wake up other members but they wouldn't wake up. Cathy tried to tell her ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

“May (might,can) could have” and “Must should have/should must have” impossible?

My colleague and I were discussing Auxiliary Verbs and Modal Verbs when we came to a point where we started experimenting and we came to "May (might,can) could have" and "Must should have" whereupon ...
5
votes
2answers
802 views

Do I use 'was' or 'did' as an auxiliary in an interrogative clause?

Which is correct? Was the cheese taste delicious? or Did the cheese taste delicious? I know that we should use 'did' when we want to ask some question in the past simple form, but I'm not sure ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

Use of “have to” vs “am to”

Suppose my friend invites me to play football.But I have planned to study.So,what of the followings should be my reply: 1.I have to study.(Since, I am not obliged by someone else,Should I use it? Or, ...
5
votes
4answers
2k views

When should I use “is,” and when “does”?

Why doesn't he practice law? Why isn't he practice law? What is it? What does it? Why doesn't he come? Why isn't he come? It doesn't matter who you marry. It isn't matter who you marry. He doesn't ...
5
votes
3answers
71k views

Does anyone “has” or “have”

I have read a similar question here but that one talks about the usage of has/have with reference to "anyone". Here, I wish to ask a question of the form: Does anyone has/have a black pen? What ...
5
votes
2answers
4k views

hadn't better; had better not

[i] He hadn’t better tell them. (CGEL, p.113) [ii] He had better not tell her. (CGEL, p.196) According to CGEL, negation can be marked after or before better. But I can’t find any examples of [i] ...
5
votes
1answer
3k views

When to use “does” and when to use “would”?

I found these two sentences on an online English tutorial, and I'm confused about why one sentence uses "does" and the other uses "would": How much does it cost to fly to Europe? How much ...
5
votes
1answer
941 views

Does 'pretended not to see me' have the same meaning as 'pretended that he didn't see me' in this sentence?

I really can't understand why in the following sentence I don't need to use the auxiliary verb do: He pretended not to see me to avoid an awkward situation. Does He pretended that he didn't ...
5
votes
1answer
3k views

When do we use “do” and “be” in questions?

I'm stuck upon a particular example, should we use "do" or "be" in question below: Does it exist? Is it exist? Thank you in advance!
5
votes
1answer
980 views

Confusion understanding this sentence: Could you speak English before you came here?

I stumbled upon this one sentence in an EFL book. Could you speak English before you came here ? The whole chapter is dedicated to can and could. There are no other sentences around the above ...
5
votes
3answers
835 views

“Why didn't he make the decision?” versus “Why hasn't he made the decision?”

Which auxiliary verb should I put in a question like this and why? Why didn't he make the decision? Why hasn't he made the decision?
5
votes
2answers
12k views

Use of “could have had” “would have had” “had had” “has/have had” and such words?

Can anybody please tell me the uses of the words I have mentioned in the title? Someone please tell me where and when I am supposed to use them and how to properly use them? Like in the following ...
5
votes
3answers
21k views

Difference between “don't” and “can't” in “I don't/can't drive”

On a TV program, a person, doesn't have a driver license, said: How can I get to the shop? I don't drive. but in my opinion, he may say: How can I get to the shop? I can't drive. Is it correct?...
5
votes
2answers
19k views

Why do we use “have” with does and not “has”?

Does and has both are used with singular pronouns (He has the bottle , He does play cricket , etc) whereas Do and have are used with plural pronouns ( They have the bottle , Do they like cricket? , ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

Can we use “not” without helping verb?

We form negative declarative clauses with not after be (she is not talking), after modal verbs (they must not go) and after auxiliary verbs do and have (we did not like it; they have not eaten). ...
4
votes
1answer
12k views

“How much do” or “How much does”?

I am very confused by this article title in New Yorker: How Much Do Pacquiao-Mayweather Tickets Cost? Shouldn't it be "How much does"? Why do?
4
votes
3answers
583 views

Which is the best place to use “are”?

I had asked this question on Bio.SE Why are fearful stimuli more powerful at night? OR Why fearful stimuli are more powerful at night? Which one is grammatically correct and please explain the ...

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