Today a friend of mine asked me if this sentence is wrong grammar-wise;

"She must be home by now"

I thoroughly scrutinized the sentece, although it's very short.
It seemed OK to me, but he told me the sentence is grammatically incorrect.
I wasn't able to figure out what's wrong with that sentence.
Can anyone explain to me if the sentence above is wrong?
If so, why is it wrong?
1 2
The sentence needs improvement

I have been having difficulty logging on and posting responses. The server seems to take a while sometimes. Anyway, I replied at the above post, though it is in the incorrect location.


Join the club. The site has been flaky lately.


The sentence is completely correct. It means something like:

The only logical conclusion we can have under the circumstances is that she is now home.

Or, shorter: It must be that she is home now.
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Hi CalifJim,

demicjusz raises a good question/point in the post: The sentence needs improvement

1) "She must be home by now."

As a native English speaker, I recognize this sentence immediately and accept it. But if you were learning our language, you would almost think that she has become a house. If you wrote instead, 2) "She must be AT home by now," then it might make more sense to someone learning English?

What part of speach is home in the first sentence?

When I consulted GuruNet.com, I note that home can be an adverb. Is it an adverb in this situation (sentence 1)?

I look forward to your answer.


(I'm having a rough time trying to post this -- flaky site!)

"home" is positively, absolutely, without a doubt, an adverb (of place) in the example sentence. Emotion: smile

I read the post at the link, and I certainly can see how the sentence might be misinterpreted.
At first I thought the ambiguity was with "must": She has to be (is obliged to be) at home by now. -- in which case it would still be correct, but taken the wrong way, so to speak.

California Jim
Thank you people!
Wow, I feel like I have virtual tutors answering any questions related to English.

Being a non-native English speaking person (especially being a Korean whose language has
nothing in common with English) , I think even those of us who speak
and learn English as a second language can undertand the meaning of the sentence
on the condition that there is enough context.
That's why I wondered if the sentence was grammatically incorrect or not.
Once again I've got plenty of information on the question I asked.

You guys Rock!
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Re: Server issues

We're currently building the new server (quad processor intel Xeon 2.8ghz) with unlimited bandwidth.. Lately we've crawled into mad mad traffic and we're having problems keeping up. This will be rectified shortly; please bear with usEmotion: smile

I am absolutely delighted to hear that news!!!
This is the best site of its kind in my opinion, and although I don't know a Xeon 2.8ghz from a cream cheese Danish, it sounds like you guys are doing a great job keeping on top of the situation.


California Jim

P.S. It's September now, and all the summer vacationers are back to their usual academic schedules. I think that could explain the heavier traffic. Just a guess.
Hi CalifJim,

Great, thank you for your answer. Could I ask you to expand on it slightly?

An adverb is a "The part of speech that modifies a verb, adjective, or other adverb." (GuruNet)

"She must be home now."

What is "home" modifying? Is home modifying the verb "be"?

Just want to make sure that I am clear in my understanding.

Thank you CalifJim.

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