BETHANY: You know, I really think they should start building the new road before putting up all those new apartment blocks.
WOJCIK: Yes, you have right.
BETHANY: I have the right for what?
This is the same common mistake that can be found when talking about age and measurements in many languages.
It’s a literal translation error. Wojcik should be telling Bethany that she is right, and that he agrees with her and she is correct in her statement. However, a native speaker may misinterpret ‘have right’ (or to be more correct, have the right) in this context as meaning ‘being morally or legally entitled to do it or to have it.’
The word right also has several other definitions, right? But I’m probably right in saying that I’m sure the right dictionary will put you right.
As mentioned above, a similar error occurs with age and measurement: this can, of course, be found in the book version of this website. If you haven't got it already, then please go and buy it. Details are on the home page.
Examples of typical errors index 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Home page
Misunderstandings Word order Cultural differences Grammar Confusing words Intonation and pronunciation Translations