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If You Must - Various Tenses

Quiz playing is a wonderful way to increase your knowledge of English as a Second Language. Remember that all of our ESL quizzes have titles that are both friendly and technical at the same time… In the case of this quiz you might like to tell your friends about “If You Must” but no doubt your teachers will talk about the “Various Tenses quiz”! If you hear a technical term and you want to find a quiz about the subject then just look through the list of quiz titles until you find what you need.

Practise using the word 'must' in various tenses in this quiz, if you must!

'Must' is one of those useful, everyday - but slightly 'funny' - verbs in English that doesn't really have a proper Infinitive form ('to must' [?] )! But obviously, we need to express this idea, and other shades and types of obligation, in lots of situations and various tenses. Here's your chance to practise!

English speakers sometimes say 'If you must...' in a situation where someone else does a thing that the speaker does not really approve of, and/or would have no wish to join

  1. Choose the answer that completes the gap/s in clear, accurate and sensible English.
    'You ... ... go back to the shop first-thing tomorrow, and ask them to replace that faulty thing or give you your money back.'
    'Must' does the job of all these other Answers, and much more quickly!
  2. Choose the answer that completes the gap/s in clear, accurate and sensible English.
    'Any sensible farmer ... ... wait for sunny weather before bringing in his crop.'
    Again, 'must' is the clearest here. If the farmer does anything else, it's likely to be risky and/or turn out an expensive mistake!
  3. Choose the answer that completes the gap/s in clear, accurate and sensible English.
    'Early next year we ... ... tidy the house up and prepare to sell it.'
    'Must' is still right here, too ~ because we would use the Present form to suggest future action, as with many other verbs. The time-phrase on the front of the sentence is clear enough; we do not need to try and form a 'false future' version of the 'must' verb.
  4. Choose the answer that completes the gap/s in clear, accurate and sensible English.
    'Paul's class teacher said he ... ... make more effort if he is to reach a good Grade in his exams.'
    'Must' is fine, yet again, in Indirect / Reported Speech.
    Answer 4 would not work (although the sense is clear) because one has 'to start mak-ING ...' (etc.) ...
  5. Choose the answer that completes the gap/s in clear, accurate and sensible English.
    'Why ... ... drag her divorce into every possible conversation?'
    As ever (in this Quiz), the 'must' version is the simplest. The sentence as a whole is a Rhetorical Question: we don't know what the reasons are for her obsessive talking about this topic, but it seems as though she 'must' bring it up whenever she is in conversation with anyone.
    We are sure most of you will have met people like this, whatever their individual obsessions were. Sometimes we describe such behaviour as someone 'having a one-track mind'.
  6. Choose the answer that completes the gap/s in clear, accurate and sensible English.
    'Passengers ... ... keep to the left-hand side of the escalator.'
    This 'must' is explaining safety information: if a passenger decides to stand at the wrong side, this could be unsafe, or at least inconvenient.
  7. Choose the answer that completes the gap/s in clear, accurate and sensible English.
    'In your country, ... ... carry your identity papers with you all the time, when you are out and about?'
    When talking about obligations under The Law of the Land, we often use 'have to' rather than 'must'. Within a question, the verb needs to be introduced by the auxiliary ' do / does ... ? ' .
  8. Choose the answer that completes the gap/s in clear, accurate and sensible English.
    'When I was at school, I really hated ... ... in a line in silence several times a day.'
    In English one more usually 'hates to do' something, or 'hates having to do' it.
    The problem here is that 'must' has no such parts as an Infinitive ('to must') or Participles ('musting'/musted') ... although you've seen them briefly just here, they don't really exist. So we can't very well just go ahead with our sentence as though they did; we need to use a paraphrase or synonym instead.
    Answer 4 is the only straightforward option.
  9. Choose the answer that completes the gap/s in clear, accurate and sensible English.
    'By the time you've driven as far as Yeovil, you and your passengers ... ... a 'comfort stop' .'
    Answer 3 is the only correct-English option here, since 'must' has no future form (regular, or otherwise).
  10. Choose the answer that completes the gap/s in clear, accurate and sensible English.
    'The rain came on hard and heavy just before two o'clock, so with some reluctance we ... ... cancel the match.'
    The context sets this in the past (another tense which 'must' simply doesn't have), so Answer 2 was also wrong.
    Answer 3 is the simplest way around this problem; No.4 is also fine, though it offers a slightly pompous way of explaining a disappointing situation.
    Now you must see how many points you scored out of 10 on this Quiz!

Author: Ian Miles

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