What do you have? = What's wrong?

Discussion in 'All Languages' started by KalAlbè, Jan 1, 2019.

  1. KalAlbè

    KalAlbè Senior Member

    Sampa but always repping NY/1804
    American English & Kreyòl Ayisyen
    Can you use the verb have in your language to ask someone what is wrong or if they are okay?


    ¿Qué tienes? (informal) What's the matter?

    Haitian Creole:

    Kisa w genyen? What's wrong?

    Brazilian Portuguese:

    O que você tem? (Written) O que que você tem? (Spoken - shortened version of O que é que você tem?)
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2019
  2. TheCrociato91 Senior Member

    Brescia, Italy
    Italian - Northern Italy

    Cos'hai? (What's the matter? What's wrong with you?), contraction of "Cosa hai?" (lit. What do you have?)
  3. DearPrudence

    DearPrudence Dépêche Mod (AL mod)

    French (lower Normandy)
    In French, as in other Romance languages, one way of answering does include the verb "avoir" (have):
    "Qu'est-ce que tu as ?" (literally: What do you have?)
  4. bibax Senior Member

    Czech (Prague)
    The West Slavic languages use the reflexive 'to have oneself':

    Czech: Jak se máš? (= How are you?, literally How do you have yourself?), a common answer: Mám se dobře (lit. I have myself well).
    Slovak: Ako sa máš?
    Polish: Jak się masz?

    For the English speaking people the phrase is known as Borat's greeting Jagshemash.

    If we anticipate something bad, we ask:

    Co je s tebou?
    (= lit. What is with you? - so no 'have')
    Co je to s tebou? (= lit. What is it with you?)
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2019
  5. Agró

    Agró Senior Member

    Alta Navarra
    Què tens? (What do you have?)
  6. apmoy70

    apmoy70 Senior Member

    Greek does that too, when we see someone sad or ill we ask:
    «Τι έχεις;» [ti ˈe.çis] --> what's wrong? or are you ill/sad?
    «Έχεις» [ˈe.çis] is 2nd p. sing. Present indicative active of «έχω» [ˈe.xɔ] --> to have
  7. Sardokan1.0

    Sardokan1.0 Senior Member

    Sardu / Italianu
    Same for Sardinian, we can use the verb "Hàere" or "Tènnere" like Spanish.

    It'has? (what do you have?)


    Ite tenes? (what do you have?)
  8. spindlemoss

    spindlemoss Senior Member

    There isn't a word for "have" in the Celtic languages so instead you use "be" along with a preposition e.g. Welsh Mae gen i gar / Mae car gyda fi "I have a car" lit. "There is a car by/with me".

    So when you ask "What's wrong?", I guess we use a similar contruction - "be" + preposition e.g. Beth sy'n bod (arnat ti)? "What's wrong (with you)?" lit. "What is being (on you)?".
  9. SuperXW

    SuperXW Senior Member

    I'm not sure if Chinese fits the question, but here it is:
    有事吗? "Have thing?" = Is there anything?
    有问题吗? "Have problem?" = Is there any problem?
  10. tsoapm

    tsoapm Senior Member

    Le Marche, Italy
    English (England)
    In a roundabout way, I wonder whether “What’s got into you?” might be considered an English version of ‘having’ a problem.
  11. Penyafort

    Penyafort Senior Member

    Catalan (Catalonia), Spanish (Spain)
    In Catalan, as it has been said for the other Romance languages, it can also mean "What's the matter with you?"

    The reason may be that, while in English one IS hungry/thirsty, hot/cold, afraid, X years old, etc, in the Romance languages one HAS GOT those things (I have hunger/thirst, I have heat/coldness, I have fear, I have X years, etc). So "what have you got?" can clearly be referred not only to possessions, but also to more untouchable concepts.
  12. Sardokan1.0

    Sardokan1.0 Senior Member

    Sardu / Italianu
    In Italian, Sardinian and Corsican you can use both (I don't remember in French if it's the same).

    Ho fame (I have hunger) -> Sono affamato (I'm hungry)
    Ho sete (I have thirst) -> Sono assetato (I'm thirsty)

    Happo fàmene (I have hunger) -> So famídu (I'm hungry)
    Happo sìtis (I have thirst) -> So sitídu (I'm thirsty)

    Aghju fame (I have hunger) -> Socu famítu (I'm hungry)
    Aghju siti/sete (I have thirst) -> Socu assitatu (I'm thirsty)
  13. ain'ttranslationfun? Senior Member

    US English
    Also English: "What's eating you?"

    Also French: "Quelle mouche te pique?"
  14. Ghabi

    Ghabi AL/OL/Ar/Zh mod

    Hong Kong
    In Arabic: ما لك maa-lak "What to you"-->"What do you have"-->"What's wrong with you"-->"Why do you .../How come you ..."

    For example, maa-lak saakit "What to you, remaining silent"-->"Why are you so quiet?"
  15. Armas Senior Member


    Mikä sinulla on? = What do you have? / What's wrong with you?
    Mikä sinulle tuli? literally means "What came to you?" but it too means "What's wrong with you?", only it means there was a change from being OK to something being wrong.

    Minulla on jano "I have thirst" = I'm thirsty
    Minulle tuli jano "To me came thirst" = "I became thirsty"
  16. KalAlbè

    KalAlbè Senior Member

    Sampa but always repping NY/1804
    American English & Kreyòl Ayisyen
    I see what you mean, but I wouldn't consider got in this context to equate to have.

    Sure, but no have present.
  17. tsoapm

    tsoapm Senior Member

    Le Marche, Italy
    English (England)
    Nor me. But if something has 'got into' you, you 'have' it inside, like having an illness, say.
  18. Penyafort

    Penyafort Senior Member

    Catalan (Catalonia), Spanish (Spain)
    Yes, that also exists in French (je suis affamé/assoiffé), and in Catalan (estic afamat/assedegat), Spanish (estoy hambriento/sediento), etc. But they are far from being as common as j'ai faim/soif, tinc fam/set, tengo hambre/sed. Except for those quick translations or dubbings from English originals, in which they show up more frequently than they should.
  19. Frank78

    Frank78 Senior Member

    In German, yes:

    "Was hast du?" (What do you have?) - but it can only be used if you suspect someone is not feeling well or has problems, not as general enquiry like "How are you?"
  20. ain'ttranslationfun? Senior Member

    US English
    "Was betrübst du dich, meine Seele...?" '(from Mendelssohn's Psalm 42), "What is troubling you, my soul?" (No 'have'.)
  21. ThomasK Senior Member

    (near) Kortrijk, Belgium
    Belgium, Dutch
    Dutch: we could say it, certainly in Belgian Dutch, but it does not seem that common, and only when someone is behaving in a very strange way? May it implies: do you have some kind of disease, or are you suffering from it?

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