Similar to this question, is it correct to use have or has with any* (any/anything/anyone/...) in a question?


  • Have/Has any of my advices help you?
  • Have/Has anyone of you seen it?

Does it depend on the context, or is there a general rule?

  • Questions have the exact same rules for verb agreement as statements. The fact that it's a question has no relevance at all. – JSBձոգչ Jan 6 '14 at 19:33
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    Actually, the fact that it's a question allows the use of any and other NPIs: the related statement *Anyone has seen it is ungrammatical. – John Lawler Jan 6 '14 at 19:36
  • @JohnLawler good point. It doesn't, however, have any direct relevance to verb agreement. – JSBձոգչ Jan 6 '14 at 19:40
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    Very little does, after all. Verb agreement only occurs in one person, one number, and one tense in English, and only on the first verb in a phrase. It's pretty moribund, and very broadly mis-taught and mis-learned in schools, so we get way too many questions about it. – John Lawler Jan 6 '14 at 21:16
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    Anyone and anything are pronouns taking singular agreement. Any (in the sense under discussion) is a determiner used to reference singular, plural and mass nouns: Has any pupil managed to solve this? // Is there any rice left? // Have any birds landed yet? – Edwin Ashworth Jan 6 '14 at 22:45

The first one (once the verb tense is corrected, and substituting a count noun for advice, which is a mass noun) allows either, with very slightly different meaning:

Have any of my suggestions helped you?

Has any of my suggestions helped you?

The first seems more natural to me; but the second is possible, and implies that only one of them could have helped.

But anyone is syntactically singular, so

Has anyone seen it?

is natural, not *have anyone seen it?. (Anyone is not necessarily singular in meaning, so the answer might refer to one person or several).

(I have left out of you because *anyone of you is not idiomatic. Any one of you is idiomatic, but that means specifically just one of you.)

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