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ESL forum > Grammar and Linguistics > have got vs. has got     

have got vs. has got



silvanija
Lithuania

have got vs. has got
 
Hello everyone .
 
I really need your help with a simple sentence that has somehow turned into a tricky one.
 
So here it goes:
 
Sally and her brothers have got a dog.
 
And then I have to make a question and I am not sure what the correct option is.
 
At first, I thought it would be:
 
Have Sally and her brothers got a dog? Yes, they have.
 
But the question sounds somehow wrong to me and I haven ´t got any explanation why.
 
What about:
 
Has Sally and her brothers got a dog? Yes, they have. (???)
 
I feel that there might be something to do with one subject in singular and another in plural... Help, please .
 
 
 
 

18 Dec 2015      



loboclaud
Portugal

Hi!
 
Since the subject is plural (Sally and her brothers), I believe the correct option is Have Sally and her brothers....
Has Sally doesn ´t make any sense to me.
I hope I may have been helpful.
 

18 Dec 2015     



cunliffe
United Kingdom

Hi guys,

Change ´Sally ´ to the pronoun ´she ´ and try it out.   ´Has she and her brothers got a dog? ´ or 
´Have she and her brothers got a dog? ´ 
We say ´Has she and her brothers got a dog? ´ There is a rule, but I can ´t remember it just now  
Still can´t!

 
 

18 Dec 2015     



Tapioca
United Kingdom

Hi Silvana,
 
That happens to me all the time! The more I look at a sentence, the less sure I become about it! :-))
 
But I agree with lobocloud. They definitely have a dog.

Peter and Jane are in the garden.
Peter and Jane have a dog.
Do Peter and Jane have a dog? Yes, they do.
Do Peter and his family have a dog? Funny you should ask that.... Thumbs Up

Look up ´compound subject´.

Tap

18 Dec 2015     



silvanija
Lithuania

Thanks a lot for taking time to answer : )
 
Welcome to the boat, cunliffe :)

I prepared a test for my kids last week but when I saw all the mistakes they make I started having doubts myself.

18 Dec 2015     



cunliffe
United Kingdom

Yes but ... ´Have Peter and his brothers got a dog? ´ which was the essence of the question.. No! That is not right! 

18 Dec 2015     



Tapioca
United Kingdom

Lynne, that ´s because you have been staring at it too long, like Silvana!
 
Have (Peter and his brothers = they) got a dog? If I ´m wrong, you can call me Rice Pudding for the next 6 months.

Silvana, I know exactly what you mean. I keep forgetting to put objects after transitive verbs ("Yes, yes, I kept!") and my native-speaker friends give me weird looks. It´s kind of like a teacher´s version of the Stockholm Syndrome. LOL
 
Tapioca

18 Dec 2015     



cunliffe
United Kingdom

Hi again,
 
What I was thinking of is this little phenomenon. Whereas we say ´A cat and two frogs are on the window ´, we say. ´There is a cat and two frogs on the window. ´ So the question would be ´Is there a cat and two frogs...? ´ If the verb comes first, it can agree with the noun that follows immediately. 
 
But Tap, the original question looks weird and I may have been staring at it too long... You and Loboclaud are definitely correct with ´they have a dog ´ and so Silvanije, I am joining you on that boat.  
Lynne 

19 Dec 2015     



Tapioca
United Kingdom

Hi Lynne,
 
Yes, I was wondering if you were thinking about the rule where ´or ´ is used in compound subjects and the verb agrees with the ´closest ´ of the subjects, which, if I understand it correctly, leads to sentences like this:
 
   We are not sure whether the dogs, the raccoons or the cat steals the bagels
 
I must say to me, that feels very wrong, but apparently there ´s a rule that endorses this verb agreement. It ´s similar to your example with ´There is ´ in some ways - where position overrules what (at least to me) seems logical.
 
Tap

19 Dec 2015     



silvanija
Lithuania

Hi again .
 
Tapioca, you made me laugh with that Stockholm Syndrome. After seeing 5 ways to spell "eight" I sometimes start thinking that it might be me who is wrong .
 
Lynne, after trying to solve that mystery with Sally and her brothers ;) I was also thinking if there might be something in common with "there is/are" and that confused me even more.
 
The funny thing is that while I was teaching kids ´have/has" and then preparing that test everything seemed clear to me. 
 
Hugs
Silvana 

19 Dec 2015     



yanogator
United States

No, they have a cat.
 

19 Dec 2015     

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