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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Using USED TO (Habitual Past) and BE USED TO

(a)    Jack used to live in Chicago.
In (a): At a time in the past, Jack lived in Chicago, but he doesn’t live in Chicago now. Used to expresses a habit, activity, or situation that existed in the past but which no longer exists.
(b)   Mary is used to cold weather.
(c)    Mary is accustomed to cold weather.
Be used to means be accustomed to. (b) and (c) have the same meaning: Living in a cold climate is usual and normal to Mary. Cold weather, snow, and ice do not seem strange to her.
(d)   Jack used to live in Chicago.
(e)   Mary is used to living in a cold climate.
She is accustomed to living there.
To express habitual past, used is followed by an infinitive, e.g., to live as in (d).
Be used to and be accustomed to are followed by an –ing verb form (a gerund), as in (e).
(f)     Bob moved to Alaska. After a while he got used to/got accustomed to in a cold climate.
In the expression get used to and get accustomed to, get means become.

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