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  1. #1
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    Lightbulb 3rd person singular rules

    Hello,

    I asked a native British guy what he thinks when he hears one of those mainstream songs where the lyrics say things like "He don't love me".

    Obviously, the correct version should be "He doesn't love me". To my surprise, he said it is correct. That he doesn't consider it a mistake.

    As he is a little crazy, I'd like to know what other native speakers of English think about that?

    Is this yet another prescriptive vs descriptive grammar issue?

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    emsr2d2's Avatar
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    Default Re: 3rd person singular rules

    Quote Originally Posted by echelon View Post
    Hello,

    I asked a native British guy what he thinks when he hears one of those mainstream songs where the lyrics say things like "He don't love me".

    Obviously, the correct version should be "He doesn't love me". To my surprise, he said it is correct. That he doesn't consider it a mistake.

    As he is a little crazy, I'd like to know what other native speakers of English think about that?

    Is this yet another prescriptive vs descriptive grammar issue?

    Thank you.
    Well, of course, technically it's wrong! But the thing with song lyrics is that there is a rhythm that needs to be kept to and sometimes certain words just don't fit. "Don't" only has one syllable, "doesn't" has two, so "don't" probably just fitted better.

    I would agree with the British guy inasmuch as I would say that I don't notice the grammatical errors in songs, we just know the words and sing along. If you actually sit down and study the lyrics to many songs, you'll find multitudinous "mistakes"!

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    Default Re: 3rd person singular rules

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    Well, of course, technically it's wrong! But the thing with song lyrics is that there is a rhythm that needs to be kept to and sometimes certain words just don't fit. "Don't" only has one syllable, "doesn't" has two, so "don't" probably just fitted better.

    I would agree with the British guy inasmuch as I would say that I don't notice the grammatical errors in songs, we just know the words and sing along. If you actually sit down and study the lyrics to many songs, you'll find multitudinous "mistakes"!
    Thanks, but actually I know that about songs. Songs often contain mistakes to allow the words to rhyme. That's not really what I wanted to ask about.

    Let's forget about songs. How about normal speech?

  4. #4
    emsr2d2's Avatar
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    Default Re: 3rd person singular rules

    Quote Originally Posted by echelon View Post
    Thanks, but actually I know that about songs. Songs often contain mistakes to allow the words to rhyme. That's not really what I wanted to ask about.

    Let's forget about songs. How about normal speech?
    In normal speech, I totally disagree with the person you asked. "He don't love me" isn't correct. "He doesn't love me" is correct.

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