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  1. Newbie
    Student or Learner

    • Join Date: Nov 2007
    • Posts: 1
    #1

    must or have to ?

    When do we use must and when do we use have to in a simple present sentence? Or they are the same thing?


    • Join Date: Sep 2007
    • Posts: 1,153
    #2

    Re: must or have to ?

    Quote Originally Posted by inu1711 View Post
    When do we use must and when do we use have to in a simple present sentence? Or they are the same thing?
    I would use "must" when I want to do something.
    I would use "have to" when I was forced to do something I did not necessarily want to do.

    "Let's play baseball", cried Bobby.
    "Later, I must finish my homework first", I replied.

    "Let's play baseball", cried Bobby.
    "Later, My mother says I have to finish my homework first", I replied.

    Having said this, "must" and "have to" are often used interchangeably with little change in meaning.

  2. HangmaN
    Guest
    #3

    Re: must or have to ?

    It's a wonderful and great explain

    Have a nice day

  3. #4

    Re: must or have to ?

    I agree with Naamplao. There's very little or no difference in meaning.

    But I have the impression that "must" is gradually disappearing from the language, and "have to" is replacing it.

    "Must" is used often in the negative.

    You must not smoke here.

    That's because it's hard to use "have to" in the negative.

    "You don't have to smoke here" is NOT the same thing as "You must not smoke here."

    "You don't have to smoke here" would mean that no one is forcing you to, there's no need for you to, nothing is compelling you to.

    Here are some correct examples of "have to" in the negative.

    You don't have to go there if you don't want to.
    You don't have to pay for your meal until you leave.
    I don't have to buy new clothes. I have everything I need.

    Good luck!
    edward


    • Join Date: Aug 2006
    • Posts: 3,059
    #5

    Re: must or have to ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Naamplao View Post
    I would use "must" when I want to do something.
    I would use "have to" when I was forced to do something I did not necessarily want to do.

    "Let's play baseball", cried Bobby.
    "Later, I must finish my homework first", I replied.

    "Let's play baseball", cried Bobby.
    "Later, My mother says I have to finish my homework first", I replied.


    Having said this, "must" and "have to" are often used interchangeably with little change in meaning.
    I don't believe that the part I've blued is reflected in language use, especially for NaE. I believe BrE makes more frequent use of 'must' in this fashion.

    I agree with Naamplao and Edward on the last part but I believe that's because some there are situations in language where they meet on the neutral scale, where either works.

    'will' and 'be going to' are both future markers and they can sometimes be used interchangeably where they meet at the "middle neutral" scale. As they move away from this "middle neutral" scale into their "specialty" realms, the choice is so free.

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      • Bulgaria
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    • Join Date: Sep 2007
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    #6

    Re: must or have to ?

    Hi,

    There is sometimes difference between must and have to.

    With must the speaker is expressing personal feelings, saying what he or she thinks is necessary.

    I must write to Ann. I haven't written to her for ages. (=The speaker personally feels that he or she must write to Ann.)

    With have to the speaker is not expressing feelings. The speaker is just giving facts. To have + infinitive expresses an obligation or necessity arising out of circumstances. Its meaning is close to that of "to be obliged".

    Karen's eyes are not very good. She has to wear glasses for reading.
    I can't meet you on Friday. I have to work.

    You use must to talk only about the present and future.

    We must go now.
    Must you leave tomorrow?

    "Have to" can be used to supply the missing tense forms of the verb "must". "Have to" can be used in all forms.

    I had to go to the hospital.
    I might have to go to the hospital.
    Have you ever had to go to the hospital.

    Note that we use do*does*did with have to in question and negative sentence.

    What do I have to do to get a driver license?
    Why did you have to go to the hospital?
    Tom doesn't have to work on Saturday.

    Mustn't and don't have to are completely different.

    "You mustn't do something" means "it is necessary that you do not do it."

    I promise I'd be on time. I mustn't be late. (= I must be on time)

    "You don't have to do something" means "it is not necessary to do it; you don't need to do it."

    I don't have to wear a suit to work, but I usually do.

    Regards.

    V.
    Last edited by vil; 16-Dec-2007 at 09:52.

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