Sunday, March 07, 2010

Suppose and Supposed to

Here's an odd phrase: 'supposed to'

Have you ever wondered what it means?

When we use the word 'suppose', it means 'think':

I suppose so = I think so (but I'm not sure)

However, when we use it in the phrase 'supposed to', the meaning changes and, in fact, there is more than one meaning.

1 A rule which is often broken

Example: We are not supposed to bring our cellphones to class.

This means the rule is often broken - student often disregard the rule and bring their cellphones to class

2 Reputation

Example: He is supposed to be the best runner on the team.

People say that he is the best runner on the team

3 A rule, commitment or appointment that has been broken

Example: He is supposed to be here. Where is he? (He didn't show up)

Business English Listening Activities

I have just uploaded a new listening section on Road to Grammar's business English page. It features 20 short conversations suitable for...