We had homework last night. ". " The director told me he had had a meeting with the president. How to use had in a sentence. ". " Hans Reichenbach used a similar sentence ("John where Jack had...") in his 1947 book Elements of Symbolic Logic as an exercise for the reader, to illustrate the different levels of language, namely object language and metalanguage. ". " The sentence refers to two students, James and John, who are required by an English test to describe a man who had suffered from a cold in the past. [3] In each of the five "had had" word pairs in the above sentence, the first of the pair is in the past perfect form. Yes. Got it? The sentence can be given as a grammatical puzzle[7][8][9] or an item on a test,[1][2] for which one must find the proper punctuation to give it meaning. The intention was for the reader to add the needed punctuation for the sentence to make grammatical sense. ", Sentence used to demonstrate lexical ambiguity and the importance of punctuation, difference between using a word and mentioning a word, Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo, That that is is that that is not is not is that it it is, "9 Sentences That Are Perfectly Accurate", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=James_while_John_had_had_had_had_had_had_had_had_had_had_had_a_better_effect_on_the_teacher&oldid=976509759, Short description is different from Wikidata, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 3 September 2020, at 10:12. To form the past perfect tense you use the past tense of the verb "to have," which is had, and add it to the past participle of the main verb. “I had had a lisp, but my speech therapist helped me eliminate it.”. I have had too many sweets today, so I feel sick. Since James's answer was right, it had had a better effect on the teacher.[5]. [10], In research showing how people make sense of information in their environment, this sentence was used to demonstrate how seemingly arbitrary decisions can drastically change the meaning, analogous to how changes in the punctuation and quotes in the sentence show that the teacher alternately prefers James's work and John's work (e.g., compare: 'James, while John had had "had," had...' vs. 'James, while John had had "had had,"...'). The sentence can be given as a grammatical puzzle or an item on a test, for which one must find the proper punctuation to give it meaning. The intention was for the reader to add the needed punctuation for the sentence to make grammatical sense. “I had had a pet monkey, but he authorities took it away.”. Example sentences with the word had. [11], The sentence is also used to show the semantic vagueness of the word "had", as well as to demonstrate the difference between using a word and mentioning a word. (present perfect tense) I had had too many sweets that day, so I felt sick. Julia had too much to eat. In other words, David has had a nice car (in the past). Let’s see how “has had” is used in an example sentence below: David has had a nice car. I had a test this morning. For example: subject + had + past participle = past perfect tense. [4] The sentence is sometimes presented as a puzzle, where the solver must add the punctuation. In human information processing research, the sentence has been used to show how readers depend on punctuation to give sentences meaning, especially in the context of scanning across lines of text. David has had a nice car (in the past), but he doesn’t have a nice car now in 2018. The sentence is easier to understand with added punctuation and emphasis: .mw-parser-output .templatequote{overflow:hidden;margin:1em 0;padding:0 40px}.mw-parser-output .templatequote .templatequotecite{line-height:1.5em;text-align:left;padding-left:1.6em;margin-top:0}, James, while John had had "had", had had "had had"; "had had" had had a better effect on the teacher.[6]. had example sentences. Use “had” in a sentence: when you need it and when you don't [13], For the syntactic structure to be clear to a reader, this sentence requires, at a minimum, that the two phrases be separated by using a semicolon, period, en-dash or em-dash. which serves as a substitute for the intonation,[2] stress, and pauses found in speech. John writes "The man had a cold", which the teacher marks incorrect, while James writes the correct "The man had had a cold". The italicized instances denote emphasis of intonation, focusing on the differences in the students' answers, then finally identifying the correct one. How to Form The Past Perfect Tense. Depending on the specific context, this sentence can refer to a past experience. "James while John had had had had had had had had had had had a better effect on the teacher" is an English sentence used to demonstrate lexical ambiguity and the necessity of punctuation,[1] It is correct, but as with anything it depends on how you use it in the sentence. They had lunch at noon. Here’s a few examples: “I had had the measles, but I was miraculously cured.”. You would use the construction “had had” to show possession in the past perfect tense. Hans Reichenbach used a similar sentence ("John where Jack had...") in his 1947 book Elements of Symbolic Logic as an exercise for the reader, to illustrate the different levels of language, namely object language and metalanguage. [12], It has also been used as an example of the complexities of language, its interpretation, and its effects on a person's perceptions. How to Use "Had" with Example Sentences. " We use had had in the past perfect when the main verb is also “have”: Last weekend I just wanted to relax because I had had a busy week. Experience. We had had some trouble with our washing machine, so we called a repairman. Had 'had had' had TGC’s approval? Connecting the Past With the Present Moment. Still, Jasper Fforde's novel The Well of Lost Plots employs a variation of the phrase to illustrate the confusion that may arise even from well-punctuated writing:[14], "Okay," said the Bellman, whose head was in danger of falling apart like a chocolate orange, "let me get this straight: David Copperfield, unlike Pilgrim’s Progress, which had had 'had', had had 'had had'.

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