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Hi, please look at this sentence: The town house has a tennis court.

What I was taught at school was that only living things can “possess” something, and things without life can not actively “have” anything, so we can only say “there is a tennis court in the town house” (or There is a tennis court equipped in the town house, or A tennis court was built for the residents of the town house or whatever).

The question is, as far as I know,

“The mountains have a village in them.” ———is wrong.

“There is a village in the mountains.”————is right.

“The house has four bedrooms.”————is right.

“There are four bedrooms in the house.”————is also right.

“There is a tennis court in the town house.” is right; but is “The town house has a tennis court.” acceptable?
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DearYolanda“There is a tennis court in the town house.” is right; but is “The town house has a tennis court.” acceptable?
I see sentences like this all the time in real estate advertisements.
DearYolandathings without life can not actively “have” anything
Not so. My house has windows and doors. The table has legs. The cupboards have shelves. (But I should say that I have no idea what you mean by actively having something.)
DearYolanda“There is a tennis court in the town house.” is right
It's grammatically right, but consider how large a tennis court is and you will see that the town house has to be huge to contain such a large structure. If you say this, your listener will be astonished to hear it!
DearYolanda“The town house has a tennis court.” acceptable?
I find it borderline acceptable. Sometimes you hear The town house comes with a tennis court. Better:

A tennis court is available for the residents of the town house.

CJ
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DearYolandaWhat I was taught at school was that only living things can “possess” something, and things without life can not actively “have” anything, so we can only say “there is a tennis court in the town house”
As far as I know, native speakers are never taught this "rule," at least in the U.S. I don't know anyone who would find anything at all wrong with the sentence "The house has a tennis court."

"The mountains have a village in them" does sound odd to me, but not because of "have". It sounds as if the village is inside the mountains, and somehow it's inside all the mountains at the same time. "The mountains have a lot of valuable minerals in them" sounds fine.
Do you know why you should never tell secrets in the vegetable market?
Thank you, Khoff, I got you. I guess some vegetables "have" ears?
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Exactly, The corn has ears, and the potatoes have eyes.

Do you know how you can tell that the clock is shy?
Well, it has hands trying to cover its face?

I thought the corn and clock can "have" because they are personified here.

Thank you, Khoff. And can I say "Beijing has many ancient buildings."?(sounds odd to me)
Thank you, Alphecca!
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