Discussions about eggcorns and related topics
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Chris -- 2011-03-08
This is a commonly found eggcorn, I believe. The listener hears “would of” when the word is actually “would’ve”, a contraction of “would” and “have”.
To take it further, “could of” and “should of” fall into this same category.
I cannot tell you how irksome it can be when reading novel by some better known authors—Stephen King, as an example—who use this faux pas when writing dialogue for their characters. These characters aren’t spelling their words out, therefore I feel that the proper words should be represented on the written page. Now it is falling into common usage among the less informed, especially on the internet.