auxiliary verb in an answer

< Previous | Next >

gamberetto

New Member
Italian
Hello I know from grammar books that when you reply to someone you should use the same auxiliary verb as the one use in the question. However, I've head people breaking this rule. Is it common practice in conversation?

Here is an example:

A: Have we met before? You seem familiar.
B: I don't think so.
A: Yes you were in the lift just now. You dropped your earring, I picked it up.
B: Oh, yes. It is. Thank you. - Pleasure.

I think the most appropriate form would be "you did".
 
  • Frank78

    Senior Member
    German
    It is. - Is not a short answer here. There´s no question in the sentence before, Just a statement.

    "It" refers to the earring

    Another example:
    I picked an earring up in the lift. Is it yours? - Yes, it is.
    Did you pick the earring up? - Yes, I did.
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    Hello I know from grammar books that when you reply to someone you should use the same auxiliary verb as the one use in the question. However, I've head people breaking this rule. Is it common practice in conversation?

    Here is an example:

    A: Have we met before? You seem familiar.
    B: I don't think so.
    A: Yes you were in the lift just now. You dropped your earring, I picked it up.
    B: Oh, yes. It is. Thank you. - Pleasure.

    I think the most appropriate form would be "you did".
    I agree with you - "you did" (= you did pick it up [in the lift just now]) would be better by far than "it is".

    That said, people do all sorts of things in conversation that they wouldn't do in writing.
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top