I should have went

fraz   Wed Apr 22, 2009 9:08 am GMT
In Scotland, it's extremely common to hear the phrase "should have went" in everyday speech. Some people would say that it's wrong and "should have gone" is the correct version.

But my argument is that it's an acceptable variation in that part of the UK. Sometimes you hear Americans say things like "he was the best football player I ever saw" which doesn't quite ring true to British ears, but that just happens to be a structure employed across the Atlantic.
wringl   Wed Apr 22, 2009 9:12 am GMT
<<"he was the best football player I ever saw">>

What's wrong with this?
fraz   Wed Apr 22, 2009 9:24 am GMT
I would say "he was the best football player I've ever seen".

Similarly, I would use "the fastest horse I've ever ridden" rather than "the fastest horse I ever rode"

But I'm happy to accept that variations do exist and can be perfectly valid in a particular part of the English-speaking world. It annoys me when people insist on rigidly adhering to "Standard" English, dismissing everything else as wrong. But even a Standard version of a language amounts to little more than an arbitrary choice.
Kess   Wed Apr 22, 2009 12:45 pm GMT
I would say "he was the best football player I had ever seen".
Leasnam   Wed Apr 22, 2009 2:35 pm GMT
<<"should have went">>

Not only is 'went' the suppletive past tense of 'go', but it is also the past and past participle of 'wend' ("to make your way, go, direct"), so "I should have went" is just fine, and has always been in English. (see etymology for 'go'/'went' for details)

Only in stardard English will it be looked at as incorrect, but this is due to lack of knowledge of the English language in its totality (IMO).

<<"he was the best football player I ever saw">>

This is colloquial American English. I say it, but I realize it has a smack of non-standardness to it. If writing or being careful, I would always know that "he was the best football player I've ever seen" is preferred (it just "sounds" better). Using "saw" is just a shorter, more direct (American-styled) way of sayin' it ;)

Funny to note, I would probably never say this: "the fastest horse I ever rode". Instead I would say "the fastest horse I've ever ridden".

I am an American native English speaker.
tbd   Wed Apr 22, 2009 8:13 pm GMT
Yes, using seen or saw is determined by the presence of have.
I saw
I have seen

Though here in the US I've heard people say "I seen him ride a horse before" its not standard unless you insert have "I have/I've seen him ride a horse before"

Frankly I'm sick of the proscriptive/descriptive approach to grammar argument.
K. T.   Wed Apr 22, 2009 8:18 pm GMT
Yes, some people say "I seen" for "I have seen" when they mean "I saw", but there is no way to correct people who are adults when they say that. Unless people ask for correction, they will just resent you.

I heard a volunteer ESL teacher in my state teaching a Brazilian lady this kind of English, and I mentioned it to the directors who weren't concerned. One of them told me that they (teacher or student) would give up after a few months anyway.
K. T.   Wed Apr 22, 2009 8:22 pm GMT
Maybe I should say that the teacher (male) was teaching a very regional way of speaking that I thought would sound a little odd if the Brazilian lady used it as her model. On the other hand using volunteer teachers whether in the US or overseas is the cheapest way to learn for many people. I took some big group classes with other foreigners in Japan. I don't even remember the teacher much, just the other students.
K. T.   Wed Apr 22, 2009 8:34 pm GMT
Btw, I was looking at some of the other threads and I'm wondering how many people here have ended up in the southern part of the US based on the questions about grammar I've been seeing.

I'm not going to accuse the teacher I mentioned of saying "I seen", but that's the "kind of English" that I sometimes hear.

If you want to learn a more neutral type of American English, go to classes where the teacher can really help you with this, where you can ask a grammar question without being told "It isn't important"...

Free classes can be used as extra practice hours, but don't expect to learn everything from volunteers.
MrPedantic   Wed Apr 22, 2009 10:47 pm GMT
< even a Standard version of a language amounts to little more than an arbitrary choice>

I would have said that, since a standard version of a language depends on consensus, its status is intrinsically non-arbitrary.

Mia   Sun Apr 26, 2009 5:38 am GMT
To be honest,I would say, "He was the best horse I ever did see."
only because it's a habit because i am not from the south.
Buddy   Sun Apr 26, 2009 7:06 pm GMT
<<"I seen", >>

Worse--I've even heard "I seent"