This must have been asked before, mustn't it?

Post date: 2018-01-10 15:52:11
Views: 23
The use of the term "mustn't" seems really weird if you think about it, yet it is used regularly. How did this term come to be? What does it actually mean in literal terms?

This question arises from conversation I had the other day, which I finished with "I must have, mustn't I?". A minute later I found myself wondering how on earth such a phrase came to be standard, as the expanded "I must have, must not I?" sounds both ridiculous and non-sensical. So what are we saying when we use this and how did it come to be?

I have googled this but most of what I have found concerns what is correct standard usage and what is not. I understand how to use this phrase, I don't understand what I'm actually saying in a literal sense though. Some of the answers are on linguistic forums and I struggle to follow such answers when they get technical, as with many English speakers I wasn't really taught grammar or linguistics. Also, I believe this may not be generally used in North America, trust me when I say it's correct and standard here.
Other Top and Latest Questions:
5 Sprained Ankle Treatments to Help You Heal
When do you work on it, and when do you decide it is over?
Microbiology/Microscope Question
What Highway Mileage Do You REALLY Get in Your Full-size 4x4 Pickup?
A job in hand is worth 2 in the bush
Should I choose a traditional vet or a holistic vet?
How much can someone expect to pay for ECT (electroconvulsive therapy) ?
Should I go to Europe next week?
Birthday Party Venue in Los Angeles
Catalyst brothers find capital success with $2.4M from True