Yesterday, I posted a question (in an another website) asking how the Causative Verb Have works. What I posted was like:

I had my dog lick my hand

And I got a good answer explaining that that the subject initiated the action and the object obliged. But still, I couldn't grasp the idea. Whenever I see examples like as follows:

Do you know what it's like to have a gun held to your head?

I can't possibly consider that as the subject let the criminal point the gun at him.

1 Answer 1


Your problem is that "have" has many meanings. See


If you look at that entry, you will see that your first example is meaning 7a in the cited dictionary, but your second example is meaning 6a.

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