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I came across this sentence:

"It may not have been delivered yet"

I can't understand: why is "have" used here with "it"?

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1  
Maulik, what he probably means is why it doesn't cause have to turn into its third-person singular form, has: "It may not has been delivered yet". –  CopperKettle Aug 4 at 6:41
    
what is the source? –  Maulik V Aug 4 at 6:42
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Okay, that's because of may. It takes have and never has. –  Maulik V Aug 4 at 6:56
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"why is 'have' used here with 'it'" It's not! "May" is used here with "it". "Have" is used here with "may". Read all the words –  Lightness Races in Orbit Aug 4 at 7:34

1 Answer 1

up vote 10 down vote accepted

"It may not have been delivered yet"

The sentence uses have instead of has because the verb to have is attached here to may, a modal verb. When we have a construction of the type modal verb + another verb, we put the second verb in the infinitive form (without to):

She goes to the dentist today.

but

She may go (not may goes!) to the dentist today. (go is used in the infinitive form without to).

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Thanks for saving my efforts, I deleted my answer halfway! +1 :) –  Maulik V Aug 4 at 6:57
    
Well, Hindi Russi bhai bhai. (0: –  CopperKettle Aug 4 at 7:35
    
hey...wow.. you know a bit of it or the whole language? :) nice to hear that anyway! –  Maulik V Aug 4 at 8:27
    
Only this phrase. (0; Oh, and namaste, of course! My sister knows more, she had her Master's degree from JNU. –  CopperKettle Aug 4 at 8:33

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