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"Have Got"

weather: cloudy
outside: 12°C
mood: confused
Why do people use the "Have Got" construct? And whence comes this abominable exercise in redundancy?

"to have got" is used in two ways (that I can tell):

  1. as the auxiliary (meaning "must") to another verb — "you've got to do something"

  2. as a main verb with a direct object to indicate either
    1. possession — "I've got an apple"
    2. state — "she's got style"

You either have it or you got it. You don't "have got" it.

I've caught myself starting to say it recently... *ptooey* >K{


Comments

( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
yueni
Apr. 16th, 2004 01:05 pm (UTC)
Actually...

There is a reason for this, and for the life of me, I can't remember what it is... *headdesks* It isn't a redundant form, really. I will get back to you tonight.

/grammar freak
bride
Apr. 16th, 2004 01:06 pm (UTC)
*perks up ears* I'm listening... =)
ntang
Apr. 16th, 2004 02:29 pm (UTC)
I can't find any etymology for it, but I did find one reference that made a good point about "have (got) to" vs. "must":

"You must not do that" has a different meaning from "You don't have to do that" (or "You haven't got to do that" I suppose to keep the got in there).

That's the negative form, though, and I'm not sure if there's any real difference between the positive forms.
bride
Apr. 16th, 2004 04:14 pm (UTC)
Ah... I can see it in the negative form.

But I'd still rather say "you don't have to do that". "you haven't got to do that" sounds awkward to me. =P
ntang
Apr. 16th, 2004 05:49 pm (UTC)
Oh, I agree, I wouldn't use it with the got either. :)

I do sometimes use it with the positive version, i.e. I've got blah de blah de blah.
rcantilles
Apr. 16th, 2004 09:38 pm (UTC)
Hey.

I totally have got the poontang. :P
bokane
Apr. 19th, 2004 10:58 am (UTC)
I think it's more emphatic than "have" or "got" - as in "Don't just stand there! Godzilla is destroying the city, and you have got to do something!"
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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