The verb have is used very often in English grammar. The verb have is used as an auxiliary verb or a main verb. In this lesson, we will learn all about it.
Functions of the Verb 'Have'
- Auxiliary Verb
- Main Verb
1. 'Have' as an Auxiliary Verb
Have as an auxiliary verb has no specific meaning and it is used to show the tense of the main verb. Have is used in perfect tenses in passive and active voices. For example:
Position in a Sentence
The position of the auxiliary verb have is changed in a sentence depending on the presence of the modal verbs. In other words, the tense then the voice of the verb is prioritized. Look:
I will not
As you see, the modal verb 'will' comes before 'have.'
Contraction & Negation of 'Have'
This table shows some examples of the contraction, negation, and negative contractions of the verb have:
|I have||I've||I have not||I haven't/ I've not|
|you have||you've||you have not||you haven't/ you've not|
|she has||she's||she has not||she hasn't/ she's not|
|they had||they've||they have not||they haven't/ they've not|
|I had||I'd||I had not||I hadn't/ I'd not|
2. 'Have' as a Main Verb
Have as the main verb has a specific meaning. It is used to show possession but not always. Have a look:
- Have as a main verb means 'own, possess.' Look:
The verb have does not always show possession. Look at these rules:
The dog passing by is happening now.
Infinitive means this happened in the past.
This sentence means 'we were forced to cry.'
- The verb have means 'to eat, to drink…' Look:
Have got can be used instead of have in informal language. Take a look:
Position in a Sentence
Have as the main verb acts like other main verbs and expresses the action of the doer. Note that if the verb have is conjugated in simple present and simple past tense, we need the auxiliary verb do for making an interrogative or negative sentence. For example:
Here, the modal verb 'will' is enough to make interrogative or negative sentences.
Here, for making a negation, we need the auxiliary verb 'do' conjugated in the past tense.
Here are how we conjugate the verb have:
|I have||we have|
|you have||you have|
|she/he has||they have|
|I had||we had|
|you had||you had|
|she/he had||they had|
- present perfect
|I have had||we have had|
|you have had||you have had|
|she/he has had||they have had|
- past perfect
|I had had||we had had|
|you had had||you had had|
|she/he had had||they had had|