have to V / need to V
The most basic tools used to express obligation, they form a phonetic unit with the following verb. In the most informal speech, one hears:
- They all need to see a doctor.
- We have to stop using so much petrol.
- I really have to go now.
- She has to finish cooking the books.
- The first sounds /hæ/ of have to and has to can not be phonetically reduced
- They never become ə(v) as have alone can when preceding a past participle. (could have gone, for example)
- has to never becomes z as has can in She's got time. for example
The reduction takes place around the pivot "to", as with the verbs going to V and want to V, where even the t disappears!
- I'm going to go. (sometimes written: I'm gonna' go.)
aɪm 'ɡɔnə 'goʊ
- I want to be... (sometimes written: I wanna' be.)
aɪ 'wɑn ə bi
Exercise 1: Pronunciation
Practice pronouncing these verbal elements in a relaxed register:
- has to start:
- had to stop:
- have to start dealing with:
hæftə 'stɑrt 'di: lɪɳ wɪθ
- don't have to pick her up today:
'doʊnthæftə 'pɪkər 'ʌptə 'deɪ
- has to get it done:
'hæstə 'getɪt 'dʌn
- 'll have to get it done:
(ə)l'hæftə 'getɪt 'dʌn
Asking questions about obligations
have to and need to both require do-support for questions in the present or the past:
- Do you need to lie down?
- Do you have to work tomorrow?
- Did you have to work yesterday?
- Did you need to see a doctor?
For questions in the future the auxiliary will or its negative form won't are used:
- Won't you need to buy insurance?
- Will you need to take time off?
- Won't you have to ask accounting?
- Will you have to pay taxes this year?
Exercise 2: Find the mistakes
If there is a mistake in the sentence, correct it. If there is no mistake, leave it as it is...
- We'll have to work on this next week.
- We had work on this last week.
- Did you have to take time off from work?
- Have you to pay taxes?
- She has to get ready for a civil service exam (concours)
- He have to change the oil in the car this weekend. (change the oil = faire le vidange)