Take the 2-minute tour ×
English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Is this word, ‘had’ could be implying two ways, one is ‘owned’, the other ‘made’?

[example] Dunno if he had enough human left in him to die.

share|improve this question

closed as not a real question by tchrist, MετάEd, FumbleFingers, JSBձոգչ, StoneyB Nov 10 '12 at 19:05

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

add comment

1 Answer

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Had has many uses, for example:

  • Standalone verb indicating possession or ownership
  • An auxiliary verb indicating a past action that has been completing

    In this sentence, I think had is used in the first sense. The sentence is also metaphorical and so had enough human[ity?] means owning not an object but displaying a certain quality, which perhaps the larger context makes clear.

share|improve this answer
    
I think you're right about possession. Perhaps the context is horror fiction where someone is turning into something else and the amount of human material in him is diminishing. –  Andrew Leach Nov 10 '12 at 14:47
    
Horror fiction or graduate school? –  mac389 Nov 10 '12 at 15:23
add comment

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.