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When we speak English, we often use contractions, or short forms.Contractions are also common in informal writing: e-mails and letters to friends and colleagues you know well.
When we use the present simple or the present continuous, we use the following contractions with the verb to be:
you're, we're, they're
• I'm starving! I'm having lunch now.• You're late — but at least you aren't the last one.• He's 84! Peter's 84? He isn't, is he?
's is also the contraction for he, she and it has. We use contractions with the verb have in the present perfect:
• It's been (has been) two weeks since he left. He hasn't called.• I've (I have) had too much to drink. • They've (they have) never been to Corsica. They haven't booked their holiday yet.
'd = would or had (past perfect)I'd, you'd, he'd, she'd, we'd, they'd• I'd (I would) like a gin and tonic and a packet of salt and vinegar, please.• He'd (He had) been in Miami for three hours when his credit card was stolen.Negative forms: I wouldn't, you wouldn't, etc.; I hadn't, you hadn't, etc.
'll = willI'll, you'll, he'll, she'll, it'll, we'll, you'll, they'll• I'll be with you in a minute.• She'll be back soon.Negative form: won't
Some of these short forms are also used after question words (what, where, who, etc.) and that, there and here:• Who's (who is) that girl?• There's (there is) a hole in my bucket.• Who'd (who would) have thought it?
Now try the exercise on the next page.
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