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Scholars of Chinese will have a lot of work to do in the next 100-200 years, because eventually academics will take notice and want to document the self-emergent standardization of orthography for regional Chinese words (many of them particles) that never had them, which people are now using every time they chat online to other people from their region. (So, I figure, why not start today?)

what about the sentence-ending particle 'ga' in Sichuan?

How do you write it, and what does it mean exactly? (If memory serves, it marks a sort of friendly assertion. Ie, you are sick, you should have some soup, ga.)

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hey,I live in Chengdu,the capital city of Sichuan.I will answer the question later because I an not available now.sorry. –  Huang Jan 18 '12 at 15:16
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2 Answers 2

up vote 8 down vote accepted
  1. There are many different dialects in China, for many special words in dialects, the "correct" character may not be found (the character has been abandoned in Mandarin), or may be a character but with a different pronunciation from Mandarin, or even can't be found. In fact, the average Chinese person can't tell you what the "correct" character in the dialect is in many cases. We don't care about it when speaking, while in formal writing, we will use another character or words in Mandarin to express the same meaning. Only linguists would be interested in them.

  2. I searched the "ga" on the internet and didn't find a good answer to the correct character. Generally, we will use a character with the same or similar pronunciation to represent it (in informal writing). On the TV here, I find "嘎" is used for "ga". Please note that "嘎" is not the correct character, just for the pronunciation.

  3. What does it mean? Well, your guess is basically right: assertion. More precisely, I would like to say, it is used when:

    you think something (the sentence before "ga") should be right (you are confident about it), but you are not very very sure of it, you need the confirmation from the listener. The answer from the listener is expected to be "Yes!" by you. It is used like "right" as in "we are the best friends, right?"

You example may be good, I think, when "should" shows your mood of guess (I am not an English expert. I know should can show that mood, or show the mood of "order". I think "will" could be more proper here). At last, I want to say that when using "ga", you should have an obvious stop before it. Your example is good in this sense because you have a comma.

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i'm guessing that the character used on television would also be the one people are using on QQ? –  magnetar Jan 20 '12 at 20:46
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because very few characters have the sound of "ga", I think 嘎 is the very choice.in fact ,when I want to express this meaning,I would like to say "对吧", in a standard way.also, pinyin "ga" is acceptable when both of the listener and speaker are familiar with the dialect. –  Huang Jan 21 '12 at 4:09
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From

成都方言词典| 现代汉语方言大词典·分卷:

嘎

· The correct character, from the world of academia, is '嘎'.

· Sichuanese Pinyin is: gā

· It is a contraction of '该是哈'

· It means 'isn't that so' or 'isn't that right' - equivalent to the how people in English say "you know what I mean?" at the end of sentences.

· Also has the connotation of 'hoping that the listener will agree with their opinion or viewpoint' (希望对方能同意自己的主张和看法)

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