Eff “Of”

What cloth-eared, pea-brained, lazy thinking numpty ever came up with the monstrosities “should of, would of” and “could of?” I’ve even seen them on the printed page as if they are legitimate usages. (This was in books published in the US.)

Who on Earth can possibly think “of” is a legitimate auxiliary part of a verb?

Has anyone ever said something like, “I of started, so I’ll finish?”
I very much doubt it.

It only takes a moment’s thought to realise that the proper formulation of these three phrases is of course could have, would have, should have.

The fact that they can be contracted to could’ve, would’ve and should’ve doesn’t change their essential nature. And the pronunciation of the “‘ve” part ought to be more like “ff” than “of.”

So for those who do this I say, “Eff of; it’s “‘ve.”


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