Results 1 to 6 of 6
  1. #1
    ohmyrichard is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    407
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default to the wrong person or to a wrong person?

    Hi,everyone.
    This afternoon when I came back home from work, I checked my email box at 163.com and found that someone had sent me by mistake an email which was actually intened for someone named Michael. I sent an email to this funny guy, saying to him, "I'm sorry to tell you that you've sent your letter to the wrong person." But I was and still am not sure whether I should have used "...to a wrong person". I googled it but found no clue to help me. Now the letter has already been sent out and I am sure it has reached him. I cannot do anything to revise it, but I still want to know for sure which expression is correct, "to a wrong person" or "to the wrong person". I always want to be accurate and correct in expression. Please help me to learn English well.
    Thanks in advance for your help.
    Yours,
    Richard

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    5,425
    Post Thanks / Like

    Exclamation Re: to the wrong person or to a wrong person?

    Firstly, (while I think hard about why), let me reassure you that you were quite correct when you wrote, "You have sent it to the wrong person."

    There are two particular, specific people involved, you and Michael.
    His friend Michael is the right person - the particular, specific person he calls 'my friend Michael', and the intended recipient.

    Inadvertently, it has gone to the second specific person - you - who, compared with his friend Michael, is hence specifically the wrong person to have received his email.

  3. #3
    Luizao is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    172
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: to the wrong person or to a wrong person?

    ... I cant think of a time that you would say "a wrong person"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    5,425
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: to the wrong person or to a wrong person?

    Discuss the legal procedure when a bank statement is sent to a wrong person in Great Britain.

  5. #5
    ohmyrichard is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    407
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: to the wrong person or to a wrong person?

    Quote Originally Posted by David L. View Post
    Discuss the legal procedure when a bank statement is sent to a wrong person in Great Britain.
    Do you mean "a wrong person" can be used but not in this situation?
    Thanks.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    5,425
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: to the wrong person or to a wrong person?

    Can I say, "a dog"?
    Can I say, "the dog"?
    Can I say, "dogs are..."

    Every time we do or don't use an article - definite or indefinite article - it depends on the context, the meaning.

Similar Threads

  1. Dishy as thing OR person ???
    By j4mes_bond25 in forum General Language Discussions
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 24-Jun-2006, 08:16
  2. person to person call
    By Zeca in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 22-Feb-2006, 06:24
  3. Why use "the" before "wrong number"?
    By Anonymous in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 29
    Last Post: 09-Jul-2004, 09:32
  4. person specification
    By abrilsp in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 03-Feb-2004, 11:14

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •