Short forms (contractions): I’m, he’s, she’s, don’t, let’s, etc.
We often use short forms (called contractions) in spoken English. For instance, instead of saying I am here, we often say I’m here. Instead of he is late, we say he’s late.
When we write a short form, we replace the missing letter with ’ (called an apostrophe).
|Short forms (contractions):
I’m, he’s, we’re, etc.
|I||he, she, it||we, you, they|
|am = ’m||I’m|
|is = ’s||he’s, she's, it's|
|are = ’re||we’re, you’re, they’re|
|have = ’ve||I've||we've, you've, they've|
|has = ’s||he's, she's, it's|
|would = ’d||I'd||he'd, she'd, it'd||we'd, you'd, they'd|
|will = ’ll||I'll||he'll, she'll, it'll||we'll, you'll, they'll|
|Short forms (contractions) of negatives:
don't, doesn't, haven't, etc.
|isn’t (= is not)||hasn’t (= has not)||don’t (= do not)||can’t (= cannot)|
|aren’t (= are not)||haven’t (= have not)||doesn’t (= does not)||couldn’t (= could not)|
|wasn’t (= was not)||hadn’t (= had not)||didn’t (= did not)||won’t (= will not)|
|weren’t (= were not)||wouldn’t (= would not)|
|shouldn’t (= should not)|
|mustn’t (= must not)|
|needn’t (= need not)|
|mightn’t (= might not)|
|daren’t (= dare not)|
The contraction ’s can mean is or has
- He’s going to the cinema. (= ‘he is going’)
- He’s gone to the cinema. (= ‘he has gone’)
- It’s getting dark. (= ‘it is getting’)
- It’s got dark. (= ‘it has got’)
See a further explanation and more examples: It’s = it is or it has. How to tell the difference.
The contraction ’d can mean would or had
- I’d = I would or I had
- You’d = you would or you had
- He’d = he would or he had
- She’d = she would or she had
- It’d = it would or it had
- We’d = we would or we had
- They’d = they would or they had
See a full explanation with more examples: I’d = would or I had.
Let’s = let us
- It’s sunny – let’s go to the park for a picnic. (= ‘let us go’)
- It’s raining – let’s watch a film at home. (= ‘let us watch’)
How’s, what’s, etc.
We often use some short forms with question words (how, which, what, etc.) in spoken English:
|Short forms (contractions) of question words:
how, who, what, etc.
|who||who’s = who is||Who’s that man over there?|
|who||who’d = who would||Who’d like some tea?|
|who||who’ll = who will||Who’ll be here tomorrow?|
|what||what’s = what is||What’s for dinner?|
|what||what’ll = what will||What’ll happen if . . . ?|
|how||how’s = how is||How’s your father?|
|where||where’s = where is||Where’s the nearest shop?|
|when||when’s = when is||When’s your birthday?|
Here’s, there’s, that’s
We can also use some short forms with here, there, and that:
|Short forms (contractions):
here, there, that
|here||here’s = here is||Here’s the kitchen and here’s the bathroom.|
|there||there’s = there is||There’s a great pub in the village.|
|there||there’d = there would||If people drove less, there’d be less pollution.|
|there||there’ll = there will||If you come early, there’ll be more time to talk.|
|that||that’s = that is||That’s my house over there.|