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Thread: must or have to

  1. #1
    princess62 is offline Newbie
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    Default must or have to

    when do we use the modals must or have to , when we are talking about law and rules? Could someone please help me, how i can explain this to my students. Thank you very much.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: must or have to

    You can use either of those terms in ordinary conversation with no difference in meaning.
    "You have to/must have a driver's licence to drive"; "You have to/must stop at a red light."
    "You must not bully other children". (There's no negative "have to" equivalent of "must not". As you know, "don't have to" doesn't mean "must not".
    You are permitted to ...
    You are prohibited from ...
    It's forbidden to ...
    It's allowable to ...
    It is an offence to ...
    X is against the rules/the law
    ... etc.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: must or have to

    We look to teachers of English to give a good example in this forum. Please always begin every sentence with a capital letter, and capitalise the personal pronoun, I, princess 62.

    Some native speakers use 'must' for an obligation imposed by the speaker, 'have to' for one imposed externally.


    Teacher to student: You must do this homework tonight.


    Student to mother: I have to do this homework tonight.

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    princess62 is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: must or have to

    Thank you very much.

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