欢迎来到VOA在线收网 www.voa365.com
当前位置:VOA NEWS > VOA慢速英语 > 教育报道 >

Different Meanings of 'Have' in Everyday Speech

2017-05-12 07:07来源:未知


everyday grammar - have in everyday speech
"There Will Be Blood" is a film about Daniel Plainview, an American oil man in the early part of the 20th century.


The film's story is dark. Plainview builds his oil business slowly by using cruel, sometimes painful actions. The world he lives in is not a happy one.


A famous line from the 2007 movie sounds like this:


"I have two others [oil wells] drilling and I have 16 [oil wells] producing at Antelope. So, ladies and gentlemen, if I say I'm an oil man, you will agree. Now, you have a great chance here, but bear in mind you can lose it all if you're not careful."


This week, our Everyday Grammar story is not about building an oil business.


Instead, our report deals with verbs. The verb have appeared several times in the audio you heard. You might have noticed that it had two somewhat different meanings.


Today, we will discover how the verb have often goes with specific nouns or noun phrases to express an idiomatic meaning.


The verb have


Have is very common in both speaking and writing. It is common because it has many meanings and uses.


The verb have is irregular. In other words, the past tense is not formed by adding the usual -ed ending.


Today, we look at how to use have when it is the main verb in the sentence.


One common structure is have + noun phrase. For example, you might hear a person say "I have a bicycle," or "I don't have a bicycle." In these sentences, the verb "have" means to own or possess something.


This use of have is somewhat rare in everyday speech, say Susan Conrad and Douglas Biber, two experts on English grammar.


In everyday speech, several nouns often appear after the verb have. Together, these structures express idiomatic meanings. In other words, the meaning of the group of words is different from the individual words.


Today, we will consider two common idiomatic meanings of the have + noun phrase structure. These structures are very common in films and popular music.


#1 To be thinking about something


The verb have often appears before noun phrases such as "an idea," "no idea," or "a question". When the verb have appears with these noun phrases, the structure takes on an idiomatic meaning: to be thinking about something.


Consider this example from the 1971 film “Klute.”


"I have no idea what's going to happen. I just, I can't stay in this city, you know? Maybe I'll come back. You'll probably see me next week."


You will notice that the speaker says "I have no idea…”. The speaker means that she is actively thinking about something and is unable to provide an answer at this time.


How is this statement different than saying something like "I don't know"?


Saying "I have no idea" is more forceful than saying "I don't know." They have the same general meaning -- but they have a small difference in terms of style.


A less common noun that often comes with the verb have is the word plan. In the horror film “The Silence of the Lambs,” actor Anthony Hopkins as Doctor Hannibal Lecter gives you an example of this structure:


"Clarice Starling: Where are you, Dr. Lecter?


Hannibal Lecter: I've no plans to call on you, Clarice. The world is more interesting with you in it."


When Lecter says he has no plans to call on Clarice, what he actually means is that he is not thinking about killing her.


So, why did he say "I have no plans..." instead of "I'm not thinking about..."?


One possible explanation is this: Hannibal Lecter is a movie character who is always planning. His statement could mean that his plans might change in the future.


Whatever the case, he likes to leave his statements unclear.


#2 To get an opportunity/time to do something


The verb have often goes with other noun phrases, such as chance or time. When have goes with these noun phrases, it means to get an opportunity or to get time to do something.


So, for example, many American students have said "I didn't have time to do my science homework," or "I didn't have a chance to read the book."


You heard another example of this structure at the beginning of this program:


"Now, you have a great chance here, but bear in mind you can lose it all if you're not careful."


Daniel Plainview is trying to persuade people to help him build oil wells. So, he uses the words "you have a great chance here." He wants people to think of how they will profit from working with him (or giving him money).


What can you do?


The main idea of this report was to explain common have + noun phrase expressions.


The next time you are watching an American film or listening to American music, try to find examples of have + noun phrase. Do the speakers use it in its traditional sense (to own or possess something)? Or do they use it in a different, idiomatic way?


Once you have learned the meaning of the phrase, ask yourself why the speaker may have said what they did. Did the speaker say it for a stylistic reason?


The answers to these questions may not be easy. However, asking them can help you begin to understand how culture, style, and grammar work together.


That is all for today. Now, you have a chance to go learn other meanings of the verb have.

Words in This Story



phrase – n. a group of two or more words that express a single idea, but do not usually form a complete sentence


irregular – n. grammar not following the normal rules by which word forms (such as the past tenses of verbs) are usually created


idiomatic – adj. an expression that is an idiom – it cannot be understood from the meanings of its separate words because it has a separate meaning of its own


bear in mindexpression. to remember or take into consideration


stylen. a way of doing something; an appearance or design


bicyclen. a vehicle with two wheels; an exercise machine that looks like such a vehicle


charactern. personality


grammar – n. the study of words, what they do and their relations in sentences


  1. 网传日月光Q4产能利用率降至70%
  2. 新型存储器已经开始增长,到20
  3. 市场人士透露:联发科在汽车芯片
  4. 【VOA在线闲聊】三星收购Arm会步英
  5. Nikola召回迄今为止生产的93辆Nik
  6. 蚂蚁数科两项区块链专利完成一对
  7. 蔚来申请注册“NIO CERTIFIED 蔚来官
  8. 获小米超千万投资 改装车公司工
  9. 法拉第未来首款电动汽车FF 91再次
  10. 消息称LG显示计划明年生产920万块
  11. 宝马面向欧洲市场推出最小的跨界
  12. 美国副总统哈里斯承诺就电动汽车
  13. 知情人士透露称马斯克和推特CE
  14. 因苹果缩减订单 台积电或修改明
  15. LG推出一项新技术,以开放局域网
  16. 小米13正式上线:骁龙8Gen2发布1
  17. 米家3 KG迷你洗衣机售价699元
  18. 苹果公司官方非常兴奋:印度将生
  19. 中国广电在全国31个省区开通广电
  20. 华为 Mate 50 Pro国外上市:售价远高
  21. 特斯拉柏林超级工厂回收工厂发生
  22. 华为 Mate 50原价4999
  23. iPhone 14销售比上一代下降了11%
  24. 2021至2025中国台湾将投350亿元新台
  25. 华为Mate50Pro预定5 G芯片,苹果公司
  26. 锐龙7000核显性能实测 单核及多核
  27. 索尼PS5最新更新:6 nm制程功率与
  28. 华为会议马上就要开始了!一种全
  29. 小米再次成为了冠军!该系列产品
  30. 还能吸收病毒?!戴森首个产品也
  31. 小米又推出了一款新产品,售价
  32. Imagination携手百度飞桨创建Model
  33. 奔驰要不要再加价?2024将发布
  34. TikTok在英国或被罚款2900万美元 被
  35. iPhone15PM改用 ULTRA:笔记本和 iPa
  36. 因库存不断提升存储芯片持续降价
  37. 预计小米Civi2将推出五款新产品
  38. 可靠商务桌面电脑推荐:联想M4
  39. 受飓风影响:NASA撤回阿尔忒弥斯
  40. 《三体》影迷们疯狂了!
  41. 4090设计实在是太离谱了!
  42. Meta试图Facebook和Instagram账户添加到
  43. 苹果公司在技术上遭受重大挫折,
  44. 我国成功发射遥感三十六号卫星,
  45. 骁龙8Gen2+120 W快速充电!小米13系
  46. 屏幕下手机价格大跌,灵动岛安卓
  47. 亚马逊宣布下月举办新会员促销活
  48. 酷睿i9-13900K预告片,5.8 GHz稳定!
  49. 美国流媒体巨头Netflix宣布在芬兰
  50. 外科手术机器人 商业化将加快世