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Are there equally grammatically correct:

  • Does it have to be like it?
  • Has it to be like it?

And

  • Do you have a bottle of wine?
  • Have you a bottle of wine?

Note that I haven't used used "got" because the question isn't about it.

Is it at least gramatically not incorrect to use "have" as the main verb in a question, instead of "do"?

I mean primarily British English, written style.

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  • As this is a fairly basic case: have you checked your grammar book/website and what do they say?
    – Stephie
    Commented Dec 29, 2022 at 21:26
  • @Stephie yes. They've said: "do a research". And this is what I'm doing
    – Kum
    Commented Dec 30, 2022 at 0:37

1 Answer 1

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Forming questions by inverstion with "has" is mandatory when "has" is an auxiliary verb:

He has eaten the apple → Has he eaten the apple.

It is understandable but considered dated or archaic when "has" is the main verb.

He has a ball → Has he a ball? (* dated, marked, odd)
He has a ball → Does he have a ball? (* normal, plain)

So "Have you a bottle of wine?" is correct grammar, but marked and dated in British English.

English speakers would need to have a reason to use this construction. "Because I can" is not enough. "Because I need it for the poetry to scan" is a good reason.

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  • Very marked and dated in American English too. I always thought of it as more of a British thing, but maybe my information is dated!
    – stangdon
    Commented Dec 29, 2022 at 23:33
  • Probably more common in BrE. For AmE I think "Have you a ball" is simply a grammar error.
    – James K
    Commented Dec 29, 2022 at 23:39
  • English speakers would need to have a reason to use this construction. "Because I can" is not enough. - who will I have to provide that reason to? Am I obliged? In a written form? Verified by notary?
    – Kum
    Commented Dec 30, 2022 at 0:36
  • ha ha! of course not! You are free to speak as oddly as you want and nobody can stop you. Please enjoy.
    – James K
    Commented Dec 30, 2022 at 8:13

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