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The use of must, must not (mustn't) and need not (needn't)

The modals must, must not and need not have the same form regardless the subject. There is no
ending with he/she/it.

If you want to say the sth. is unnecessary, use need not, not must not. (The negation of must
means not allowed to.)

I must play football. = I have to play football. *

I need not play football. = I do not need to play football. = I do not have to play football.

I must not play football. = I am not allowed to play football.

You can use must only with Simple Present. If you want to use it with other tenses, you need the
form have to. This form is not the same regardless the subject. Look at the following table.

Modal Substitutes
I must play football. I have to play football.
I need not play football. I do not need to play football.
I do not have to play football.
I must not play football. I am not allowed to play football.

The modal must can be used in the Simple Present only, so use the substitute have to with other
tenses. The form have to has the same form regardless the subject.

Pronouns Modal Substitutes in the simple


present
I, We, You, They I must play football. I have to play football
He, she, it He must play football He has to play football
A. Affirmative sentences with must
Modal Substitute Tense
I must play football. * I have to play football. * Simple Present
not possible I had to play football. Simple Past
not possible I will have to play football. will-future

B. Negations with must not, mustn't


Modal Substitute Tense
I must not play football. I am not allowed to play football. Simple Present
not possible I was not allowed to play football. Simple Past
not possible I will not be allowed to play football. will-future

C. Questions with need and have to


Modal Substitute Tense
Must he play football? Does he have to play football? Simple Present
Does he need to play football?
The modal must is not used in the Simple Past. Did he have to play football? Simple Past
Did he need to play football?
The modal must is not used in the will-future. Will he have to play football? will-future
Will he need to play football?

The form need is not used as a modal, this is a main verb. This form cannot be put before another
verb.

I needn't sing. (Here needn't is a modal. The main verb is sing.)


We need a new computer. (Here need is a main verb).

I need sing. (This sentence is wrong.)

Must: forms

Affirmative (+) form

Must comes first in the verb phrase (after the subject and before another verb):

She must have lots of friends.

Must cant be used with another modal verb.

This must be your sister.

Not: This must can be your sister. or This can must be your sister.

Negative () form

The negative form of must is mustnt. We dont use dont/doesnt/didnt with must:

There mustnt be any rubbish left.

Not: There dosent must be any rubbish left.

We can use the full form must not in formal contexts or when we want to emphasise something:

You must not leave any rubbish.

See also:

Modal verbs

Question (?) form

Warning:
The subject and must change position to form questions. We dont use do/does/did:

Must you make that noise?

Not: Do you must make that noise?

We can use must and mustnt in question tags though tags with must arent very common:

The house must be worth millions, mustnt it?

Must: uses

Deductions and conclusions

When we think carefully about facts, we often use must to express deductions and conclusions
from these:

[fact]Hes so small. [deduction/conclusion]He must be no more than four years old.

[Two teachers talking about a student]

A:He falls asleep in class every morning. (fact)


B:He must be out late every night or maybe he works at night. (deduction/conclusion)
Warning:

We use cant/cannot as the negative of must to deny something or make negative deductions or
conclusions:

It just cant be true. He cant have left his job.

That cannot be his sister. She looks so different.

See also:
Can

Warning:

We use must have + ed form and cant have + ed form to talk about deductions in the past. They
always refer to deduction, not obligation:

[A wanted to talk to B so she phoned him but he didnt answer the phone. She phoned again the
next day]

A:

I called you yesterday around three oclock but you must have been out.

B:

We must have been in the garden. Thats a pity.

[A is telling B about his illness]

A:

I spent a month in hospital before I was able to walk.

B:

That cant have been easy for you.

Spoken English:

In speaking, we very often express our reaction to what we hear using phrases such as that must
be or that must have been:

A:She lives in Thailand now.


B:That must be amazing!
A:Twelve years ago Kevin and I went on a six-week camping trip.
B:That must have been fun.

Obligation and necessity

Must expresses strong obligation and necessity:

I must talk to you about the new project.

Seat belts must be worn even in the back of the car.

There must be a minimum of two members of the company at the meeting.

Warning:

We use had to not must to expresses obligation and necessity in the past:

By the time we got back to our bikes, it was dark and we had to cycle home in the dark without
any lights

Not: it was dark and we must cycle home in the dark

Last year, teachers had to make a report on each child every week.

Not: Last year, teachers must make a report

We use must to talk about the future in the past when we report speech or peoples thoughts in
formal contexts:

[Extract from a novel]

The pain was back in full force, but she knew she must not give in to it. She must go on day by
day.

We use will have to more than must to express future obligation, especially when talking about
obligations at a particular point in the future:
Hell have to wait five weeks for his eye operation. Then hell have to have both eyes operated
on.

We often use must with more general references to the future, particularly when talking about
obligations that come from the speaker:

The Prime Minister must decide in the next month.

I must try harder next time.

I must pop round one evening next week.

When we talk about no obligation, we use either need not, dont/doesnt/didnt have to or the
negative of the main verb need (dont/doesnt need):

You neednt worry about it. Ill take care of it.

You dont have to worry about it. Ill take care of it.

You dont need to worry about it. Ill take care of it.

Rules and laws

We use must not to talk about what is not permitted:

You must not park outside the entrance.

You must not make noise after 9 oclock.

Must and must not often occur in public signs and notices indicating laws, rules and prohibitions:

[airline website information]

All passengers must present valid photo identification at check-in for all flights.

[bus company website notice]


Tickets must be retained for inspection, and must be produced for inspection on request by any
authorised official of Bus ireann. (Bus ireann is the name of the Irish national bus company)

See also:

Commands and instructions

Invitations and encouragement

We also use must to express polite invitations or encouragement:

You must come and see us soon.

You must try some of this chocolate cake. Its delicious.

You must go and see that film.

See also:

Invitations

Criticisms

We use the question form of must in criticisms:

Must you keep playing that terrible music?

Why must you mispronounce my name every time?

Must and have (got) to?

Obligations

We usually use must to talk about obligations which come from the speaker and we generally use
have (got) to when we refer to obligations that come from outside the speaker.
Compare
The obligation is from me to
I must buy some new clothes. Mine look so old.
buy new clothes.
Ive got to buy some new clothes. Im starting a new job as a The obligation is from the
teacher and we have to wear formal clothes. school to buy new clothes.
Warning:

Must not and dont have to/havent got to have different meanings.

Compare
You must not give my credit card
details to anyone.
We use mustnt to talk about something which is forbidden.
You mustnt tell this to anyone. Its
a secret.
You dont have to tell anyone. I will
email everyone.
We use dont have to/havent got to when something is not
necessary. It is not forbidden.
We havent got to wear a uniform to
work.

Dont have to can sometimes be used to criticise someone or to tell them not to do something.
This is less direct than must not:

You dont have to drink all of the juice! (stop drinking the juice!)

Deductions

We can also use have got to when we make deductions or draw conclusions. Must is more
common than have (got) to in this meaning:

That must be a fake!

That picture has got to be a fake!


See also:

Have got to and have to

Must: typical errors

We dont use must to expresses obligation and necessity in the past. We use had to
instead:

When she got home, she had to cook dinner before everyone arrived.

Not: When she got home, she must cook dinner before

We dont use must to make predictions about the future. We use will instead:

Dont worry about our accommodation because I found a nice hotel which will be suitable for
us.

YANG ADA DI BUKU

Must, mustnt/ needent

Must is used to talk about obligation. It is stated that must means this is necessary

- You must wear shoes while you are at school.

It is stated that in negative sentence, mustnt means dont do this

- You mustnt sleep in the church

Neednt is stated as this isnt necessary

- You neednt have a permit to buy it

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