[log in to unmask] writes: >Something I've noticed very much recently, certainly in British English; >not >just sound change, but syntactic change too. The ending /schwa+v/ found in >"could've", "should've" etc., is being interpreted as "of" instead of a >contraction of "have", and the emphatic response articulated as "You >should >of!" instead of "You should have" and so on. My kids (13 and 16) consider >this perfect grammatical. In one of the chat rooms i frequent, people insist on "could of" instead of "could've". It's a bit of a pet peeve, but i've kind of gotten over it. ____________________________________________ Ancient Goth: someone who overthrew the Roman Empire. Modern Goth: a vegetarian pretending to be a vampire.