Is mustn't used properly here?

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kingdomlee

New Member
Chinese-China
This is the text:
Benny laughed, "She can't buy electricity in packets like sweets! She'll look foolish." Mum said, "You mustn't say that, Benny!"
My confusion is: Is it proper for mum to say with "mustn't" to her son at home?
 
  • DonnyB

    Sixties Mod
    English UK Southern Standard English
    It's not the sort of thing many British mothers would say to their son at home: I would say rather it's old-fashioned.

    But then the whole dialogue doesn't sound very natural to me. :( Where did you get it from, please?
     

    kingdomlee

    New Member
    Chinese-China
    Thx. It's quoted from a textbook for Chinese Learners. I have doubts about the saying and argued with my colleagues but most of them don't think it sounds strange.
     

    boozer

    Senior Member
    Bulgarian
    The 'mustn't' part came across as something said by an old-fashioned mother, I agree with Donny, surely. But I did not think anything of it because it may well have been said long ago. Sounds like the mother is reproaching Benny for being rude, generally, teaching him manners.

    There are millions of ways to reproach your children. I would probably go with You can't talk like that, Don't be rude, You can't say such things, etc.
     
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