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yǒu
v. have; there be; (used to indicate an estimate or comparison); (used to express something indefinite) certain, some, part of
Discussion of 有
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1
Both 是 and 有 can be used to express existence. What is the difference?
Generally speaking, 有 is more widely used than 是 when expressing existence. We can only replace 有 with 是 only in some sentences (E.g. 1). In E.g. 2, we cannot use 是.
E.g. 1 大楼前面是/有一个广场。 [phr] In front of the building there is a square.
E.g. 2 大楼前面有一棵树。 [phr] In front of the building there is a tree.
“Square” is a large item which fills the space “in front of the building”. In this case we can use 是. But in E.g. 2, “a tree” is a small object which only occupies a small portion of the space “in front of the building”, so we cannot use 是.
lisaC
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2
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有 has many functions:
1. Expressing possession
E.g. 1 我有三本书。 [phr] I have three books.
2. Expressing existence
E.g. 2 前边有一家商店。 [phr] In the front there is a shop.
3. Listing things
E.g. 3 我的同学里有中国人、日本人、韩国人、美国人。 [phr] Among my classmates, there are Chinese, Japanese, Korean and American.
4. Expressing inclusion
E.g. 4 七月有三十一天。 [phr] There are thirty-one days in July.
5. Reaching a certain quantity
E.g. 5 这口井有五十多米深。 [phr] The well is about fifty-metre deep.
6. Making a general reference
E.g. 6 有人敲门。 [phr] Someone is knocking at the door.
7. Comparison
E.g. 7 我没有门口那个人那么高。 [phr] I am not as tall as that person at the door.
lisaC
2
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像 and 有 can both be used in a sentence expressing comparison. What are their differences? “A像B” means that there is a resemblance between A and B. “A像B这么C” means that the resemblance between A and B resides in a certain aspect C.
“A有B这么C” means that A has reached the degree of B in aspect C.
lisaC
1
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We can use 有 to express comparison. Let’s look at the sentence below:
Example 1a. 这棵树有那座楼高。 (phr) This tree is as tall as that building.
Grammatically speaking, the phrase led by 有 (有那座楼 in Example 1a) acts as an adverbial adjunct and modifies the predicate adjective (高) or a certain verb. In this 有-phrase, 有 is followed by the object of comparison, which is 那座楼.
The words or phrases before and after 有 belong to the same type, or, in other words, have to comparable. In Example 1a, the height of 这棵树 and 那座楼 is comparable.

这么 or 那么 often occurs after the 有-phrase and before the predicate to denote degree. Example 1b. 这棵树有那座楼那么高。

The negative form of Example 1a is 1c. We simply use 没有 instead of 有.
Example 1c. 这棵树没有那座楼(这么/那么)高。 (phr) This tree is NOT so tall as that building.

In summary, “有…” used to express comparison has the meaning of “reaching a certain amount or level”. Therefore no words of concrete number and measurement can follow the predicate.
lisaC
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