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  1. Newbie
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    #1

    What does "used to" mean ?

    Hi guys



    I just cunfuse between " used to or use to "

    I hear them a lot at school , but i don't know what do these mean.




    Thanks in advance for help

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: What does "used to" mean ?

    If we use 'used to' we are saying that the past situation is no longer true..

    I used to live in China. - We can say this only if we do not live there now.

    There is no present tense equivalent use to.

  3. Newbie
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    #3

    Re: What does "used to" mean ?

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    If we use 'used to' we are saying that the past situation is no longer true..

    I used to live in China. - We can say this only if we do not live there now.

    There is no present tense equivalent use to.
    Thanx 5jj

    I got it.

    How about "use to have" ?

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    #4

    Re: What does "used to" mean ?

    I also have a question regarding "used to". I had already asked a couple of people about it but I want to make sure.

    When we have "did" and "used to" in one sentence, as in:

    - I didn't use to like chemistry.
    - I didn't used to like chemistry.

    Which one is correct? I was told that both are correct and that only the first one is correct and now there is a confusion in my head.

    I've also heard about an option "usedn't" but I think it is not really common anymore.
    Last edited by spongie; 19-Jan-2012 at 13:02.

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    #5

    Re: What does "used to" mean ?

    *NOT A TEACHER*

    Hello,

    The first one you have written is ok.

  5. 5jj's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: What does "used to" mean ?

    Native speakers are sometimes confused about this.

    FIfty years ago, 'educated' speakers used used to almost as a modal verb, and the 'correct' negative was used not to - it was rarely contracted to usedn't to. There are still some people who construct negative and interrogative forms in this way.

    Most speakers have always constructed these forms with 'did'; the correct negative is didn't use to. However, in the spoken language, this sounds identical to didn't used to, and some people, incorrectly, write didn't used to. I have even seen the incorrect form in newspapers and magazines. It doesn't really matter - not many people notice it.

  6. Raymott's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: What does "used to" mean ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr,T View Post
    Thanx 5jj

    I got it.

    How about "use to have" ?
    I don't think you have "got it". If you did, you wouldn't be asking that question.
    You would say something like, "Then 'use to have' must be wrong, given that you've explained that 'used to' is the only correct form?" - to which the correct answer would be, "That's right: 'use to have' is wrong."

  7. spongie's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: What does "used to" mean ?

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    in the spoken language, this sounds identical to didn't used to, and some people, incorrectly, write didn't used to.
    That's true! They both sound very similar. I've never thought about it in this way before, and that's pretty obvious.
    Thanks!

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    #9

    Re: What does "used to" mean ?

    I'm one of those native speakers who used to write "didn'ts used to" for exactly that reason. I write "I used to" and it sounds just the same as "didn't use to" so I never noticed. I became aware of this mistake within the past 10 years, so don't feel bad that you had trouble with it too!
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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