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Should Have or Should Of?

It sounds as if you’re saying “should of” or “shoulda” and “must of” or “musta,” but these words are really contractions

By
Mignon Fogarty
August 21, 2013

People often ask why others write “should of” instead of “should have,” “could of” instead of “could’ve,” and “must of” instead of “must have.”

Why Do People Say “Should Of”?

When you’re talking, it sounds as if you’re saying “I should of called my sister” or “I shoulda called my sister,” and “I must of forgotten her phone number” or “I musta left my phone at home. 

It sounds as if you’re saying “should of” or “shoulda” and “must of” or “musta,” but these words are really contractions:

  • should’ve for should have
  • must’ve for must have
  • could’ve for could have

Remember that these words aren’t spelled the way they sound. You might say, “shoulda, coulda, woulda,” but you should spell them should’ve, could’ve, and would’ve.

should of or should have

Image via Notestragram. 

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