Difference between Got and Have

Key Difference: The verb ‘have’ commonly refers to “to possess, or own”, while the word ‘got’ is a past tense of ‘get’.’Get’ refers to ‘obtain, posses or go after.”

’Have’ and ‘got’ are two different words that are often confusing due to the similarity in usage and meaning. The verb ‘have’ commonly refers to “to possess, or own”, while the word ‘got’ is a past tense of ‘get’.

 ‘Have’ and ‘got’ are both possessive verbs. They are commonly used to express possession.  Both forms can express what we own or relationships we have. ‘Have’ is most commonly used for the present tense. ‘Have’ refers to owning, possessing or taking an object, a person or an object. In the past tense, it is used as ‘had’. For example, I had a box of new pencils to give away.”

Dictionary.com defines ‘have’ as:

  • to possess; own; hold for use; contain
  • to hold, possess, or accept in some relation
  • to get, receive, or take
  • to experience, undergo, or endure, as joy or pain
  • to hold in mind, sight

Examples of ‘have’:

  • He has property.
  • The box has a bunch of papers.
  • I have to get to the party.
  • I have to take the early morning train.
  • He has his doubts regarding the proposal.

‘Got’ is also a word that is used to describe possession. However, when referring to ‘got’ in this sentence, it usually refers to ‘have got’. ‘Have got’ is much more common in British English, compared to American English. ‘Got’ is also defined as a simple past tense of ‘get’. ‘Got’ is also used as slang in the American English language, with the elimination of ‘have’ from ‘have got’.

Dictionary.com defines ‘got’ as:

  • A simple past tense and past participle of get.

‘Got’, as an auxiliary verb is defined as “must; have got”.

‘Get’ is defined as:

  • To receive or come to have possession, use, or enjoyment of
  • To cause to be in one's possession or succeed in having available for one's use or enjoyment; obtain; acquire
  • To go after, take hold of, and bring (something) for one's own or for another's purposes;
  • To cause or cause to become, to do, to move

Example of ‘got’:

  • I have got a brand new pen for this exam.
  • I got to go to the meeting.
  • I got to buy a present for my mom.
  • We got the last bus home.
  • I’ve got to study for the exam tomorrow.

Image Courtesy: makems.com, starling-fitness.com

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