This is from Berkeley Square (see:43:46-43:49)

"At least come in and have your photograph took."

Why is it not "have your photo taken"? Is it a special usage or does it have a special meaning?

  • 3
    It's an example of Cockney dialect, specifically from London. In standard English it would be "have your photo taken". Dialects are not "wrong" per se, but they do deviate from standard English, often in both grammar and vocabulary. There are many dialects in the UK.
    – Billy Kerr
    Mar 30, 2023 at 15:29
  • 3
    Read some Dickens, lots of it in his books.
    – Lambie
    Mar 30, 2023 at 15:37
  • @BillyKerr - people say it in Bristol and the West Country too. Mar 30, 2023 at 15:42
  • @MichaelHarvey, Yeah, true, probably exists in others too. But the one in the clip is definitely Cockney.
    – Billy Kerr
    Mar 30, 2023 at 15:45
  • And the scriptwriter probably had her say 'photograph' in full because photography was more 'special' at that time (the first inexpensive amateur cameras became available in the early 20th century). Mar 30, 2023 at 15:59

1 Answer 1


'Took' and 'taken' are both past participles of the verb take, but they are used differently.

The short answer to your question is that sometimes even native English speakers get their own language 'wrong'. In this case, it appears to be in imitation of how those with a particular dialect or social class may speak.

Another important factor is that 'taking a photograph' is not exactly the same as most uses of the verb 'take'. Many people who might use the two past participles correctly when speaking about something being removed or stolen (eg "who took my sandwich?" vs "who has taken my sandwich?") could potentially get it wrong in the context of taking a photograph, taking a nap, or taking in a view.

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