haven't, don't have, haven't got

What's the difference between "I haven't any toys", "I don't have any toys" and "I haven't got any toys" ?
Answer: there is no difference!

Some teachers will tell you that "have got" is more common in British English, and this may be true, but all the Americans I know use "have got" regularly.

Interestingly, Google pulls up nearly five million results for "I haven't any money" as opposed to less than two million for "I haven't got any money". I find this strange - as a Brit - I hardly ever hear the first one. The hands-down winner is "I don't have any money" with a huge forty-three million results.








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People or Persons?

On my other website recently, I posted a dialogue of someone reserving a table at a restaurant. The restaurant employee asked the question, "for how many persons?", which prompted a reader to comment, "I thought that the plural of person was people".

Is he right? Yes he is. Generally we say one person but many people. However I would say that "persons" is correct in certain situations, like a restaurant, where the number of people (persons!) is relatively small.

A little linguistic research on Google supports me. Although there are more than eight times the number of results for people than persons, ten million results is still a significant amount for the exact match "for how many persons". What's more, the top result in Google for "for how many persons" refers to a hotel reservation, while "for how many people" is talking about the number within a population.

There's a good article about the origin and evolution of the words people and person at Daily Writing Tips:

people versus persons









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Synonyms for "to continue"


How to translate "continuer" in English:

1. The easy option is to use its direct equivalent: to continue
"The government plans to continue its economic policy which it believes is working well"

-note that the use of Latinate words in English often gives an impression of formality

2. to keep (doing something) / to keep on

"keep going until you see a pub on the corner"
"continuez jusqu'au pub à l'angle de la rue"

3. to go on

"and then he said,....."
"go on!"
"and then he said that he didn't love her any more"

In this example, "go on" is both "vas-y" and "continue". A French speaker would often say "allez!" to encourage someone to do something:

another slice of cake?
-no thank you
Go on! I know you like it

-encore une part de gateau?
-non, merci
-Allez, Je sais que tu l'aimes

3. To carry on

this phrasal verb means two things, the first "to continue" and the other "to behave"

"If you have finished the first exercise, you can carry on and do the others"

"He carried on like a child" - il se comportait comme un enfant