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Thread: do

    • Join Date: Feb 2006
    • Posts: 5


    I do know that ...
    I do understand that ...

    Why is 'do' used in these sentences?

  1. #2

    Re: do

    They would work perfectly well without "do". It's just an extra word in those sentences. I suppose though, that it does help to show that you know what you're saying.

    • Join Date: May 2005
    • Posts: 3

    Re: do

    I think that 'do' in those centeces is used to make the centence stronger.
    I know the lesson = I learned it
    I do know the lesson= I learned it very well

  2. rewboss's Avatar

    • Join Date: Feb 2006
    • Posts: 1,552

    Re: do

    I'll have to disagree with Robbie; it is not just an extra word.

    This construction is used in two different ways:

    1. It contrasts the positive sentence with a previously negative sentence; for example:

    A: "Look, you obviously don't study hard enough."
    B: "I do study hard -- really, I do."

    "I don't know much about history / Don't know much biology / Don't know much about a science book / But I do know that I love you..." (Sam Cooke, Wonderful World (Don't Know Much))

    2. For emphasis:

    "I do wish you'd wash your ears out!"

    This puts a certain kind of emphasis on the sentence. You could instead just emphasise "wish": "I wish you'd..." -- but this is an alternative, and native speakers often use this construction to add a very subtle kind of emphasis.


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