At the crossroads of change

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British and Southern hemisphere varieties of English have been shifting towards <i>have got</i> for stative possession, but North American varieties favour <i>have</i>. At the same time, <i>have</i> is implicated in a critical transatlantic divide, requiring <i>do</i>-support and resisting contraction in North America. Drawing on newspaper data from Victoria, Canada, this chapter examines possession from 1858&#8211;1935, overlapping the window during which <i>have got</i> began to diffuse markedly in British varieties. <i>Have got</i> is concentrated in these materials in negatives and interrogatives, conflict sites for <i>do</i>-support. This raises the question of what happens when two changes collide, and suggests that the North American preference for <i>have</i> may have been driven by the participation of stative <i>have</i> in the shift to <i>do</i> periphrasis. Keywords. Victoria English; Canadian English; stative possession; periphrasis; <i>do</i>-support; negation


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