Questions concerned understanding of individual words or phrases, considering a context in which these words and phrases are expressed.

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2
votes
2answers
320 views

What word could you use to approach your friend in Chinese with?

Either close friends, family friends or fun/casual friends. E.g. "hey ... (close/family/fun friend), what are you up to?" I am looking for a word to replace the "close/family/fun friend" with.
2
votes
5answers
190 views

What is the difference between 几乎 and 差点儿?

Recently I've studied these two words: 几乎 and 差点儿. My book says that they have different meanings and they are used in different contexts, however I don't quite grasp in what way they are different, ...
2
votes
4answers
130 views

The meaning of 拿 in this sentence

I have encountered the following sentence: 他就拿我没办法的信念 in the following paragraph: 抱着誓死不从,他就拿我没办法的信念,我只有拼命挣扎,但是我错了。 from the following text: http://health.sohu.com/20041120/n223089261.shtml I couldn't ...
2
votes
4answers
116 views

Use of “是不, …” to introduce sentence

In a video I recently watched, the narrator introduced an idea by saying 是不, ... Can someone tell me what the best way is to understand this for an English speaker? Thanks. Edit: here is one ...
2
votes
1answer
88 views

Character Gaps On Comic Conversation : 5 [closed]

While reading a comic book, I have some problems with seeing some characters in this older copy of a book (the Chinese character is sometimes too dark to distinguish strokes and scanning doesn't help)....
2
votes
3answers
251 views

What is the difference between 日 and 号?

Right now I am taking Mandarin 1 in Brooklyn Tech. From my understanding, 号 and 日 both mean "day." I took it upon myself to check Google Translate and find out what they both mean for confirmation. I ...
1
vote
5answers
367 views

How to translate: 我发音得不太准

我发音得不太准. Does it translate as "My pronunciation is the best/exact?" What is the meaning of 准? Does it depends on the context?
1
vote
1answer
132 views

Meaning/Translation: 熟肉 [TV Series]

I've seen the word 熟肉 associated with TV Series'. For example: What does it mean? What's a good English translation?
1
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4answers
194 views

很 and 最 - Questions of The Context

很 means very. 最 means truly, really. I was wondering in which context they would be most appropriate. 我最喜欢去组约。- I'd really like to go to New York. So 最 can be used as a descriptor in this ...
1
vote
3answers
195 views

The correct usage of 大约 vs. 差不多

I am a bit confused by the appropriate use of 大约 and 差不多. I have learned to use 差不多 in many cases where I am talking about an approximate amount, value, extent, etc. of something, or speaking about ...
1
vote
3answers
144 views

How can I translate “非语言表达方式”?

This is an example sentence from my textbook: 除了学习用语言表达自己的思想感情以外,还要学习用非语言表达方式。 Here "非" has the meaning "not" or "non-". I would translate it to something like: Aside from studying using ...
1
vote
2answers
73 views

What does 低喝了一声 mean?

低喝了一声 I could not see how 喝 here means drink, so I tried to look further in my dictionary and it says: The same as 嗬, which is an onomatopoeia Which kind of makes sense since I also found a ...
1
vote
1answer
57 views

what is the translation for 或啁之曰 ?

A random phrase from Lun-Heng begins with 或啁之曰, as far as I understand its parts mean: 或 someone 啁 to chirp, to twitter 之 objectpronoun "it,him,her" as in "I like him, I talk about it" 曰 to say (...
1
vote
3answers
69 views

Is the phrase 南狩之志,乃大得也 ironically ?

A random phrase from 周易 is 南狩之志,乃大得也. I tried to translate it using the following thoughts. 乃 is probably a conjunction and renders to "in fact, actually" to stress something not as expected. 大得 ...
1
vote
3answers
118 views

只 zhǐ appropriate use in context?

I am studying 常用漢字 and I ran across the following meanings: 只得 只好 只有 All of which were translated with the same English meaning "can do nothing." What was not given is the context in which one would ...
1
vote
2answers
145 views

零 in context of age, other uses?

I'm led to believe that 零 has the context of age as in this sentence. I've also heard Cantonese use the sound soy to refer to someone's age (is this the same word). What are some other contexts that ...
1
vote
1answer
93 views

Rules on when to read characters in sequence

Maybe the hardest part so far about learning to read Chinese is determining when to read the characters in sequence and when to view them separately. So, in my recent question on 的大预言 for example: ...
1
vote
2answers
166 views

Character Gaps On Comic Conversation : 6 [closed]

I am reading a comic book to learn more Chinese. I have some problems with seeing some characters in this older copy of a book (the Chinese character is sometimes too dark to distinguish strokes and ...
1
vote
1answer
200 views

What is the difference between qi3 and qi3 lai2?

In both situations my pen is now on a table. Speaking to another person, why do we say: 1) Qing3 na2 qi3 wo3 de5 bi3. 请拿起我的笔。 Not: 2) Qing3 na2 qi3 lai2 wo3 de5 bi3. 请拿起来我的笔。 How does the ...
1
vote
2answers
90 views

Best way to express a change of subjects in a succession of events

I'm trying to say that "she will go eat after playing tennis with her friends" but I want to know if there are better ways of saying this then the ones I'm about to show 她和朋友打了网球,她去吃饭。 or 她跟朋友打网球以后,...
1
vote
3answers
94 views

谁 as relative pronoun?

至少今天她都不想再见到聂离了,谁让聂离骗了她。这是对聂离的惩罚! Can 谁 here be translated as the relative pronoun who? My literal translation would be: At least for today she, who has let Nieli to deceive her, doesn't want ...
1
vote
2answers
175 views

Why did 人艰不拆 get banned?

人艰不拆 百度百科 人艰不拆(读音rén jiān bù chāi),网络语,意思是“人生已经如此的艰难,有些事情就不要拆穿”。该词语出自林宥嘉歌曲《说谎》,“别说我说谎 人生已经如此的艰难,有些事情就不要拆穿”后常被网友在回帖中引用,楼主直接说出了一个事情的真相,只是让人一时无法直接面对的意思。“人艰不拆”已经在国家新闻出版广电总局今2014年11月27日发出的通知中被明令禁止使用。 ...
1
vote
2answers
69 views

Meaning of 狂牛 in this context?

你在說什麼? 你是又被變種狂牛攻擊喔了喔? I'm what the second sentence means. It translates literally to something like Have you been attacked by a mutant mad cow again? But I'm sure that's not the actual ...
1
vote
1answer
198 views

Meaning of 修养­­­­

The dictionary defines 修养 as: accomplishment / training / self-cultivation However many examples in context seem to have the sense of the development of being a gentleman / lady, or being ...
1
vote
3answers
109 views

What is the meaning of 庸 in the phrase 毋庸置疑?

毋庸置疑 is a chengyu. Its meaning is "beyound any doubt", but what is its verbatim meaning in literary Chinese? 毋 is like "don't" 置 is "to place, to put" 疑 is "doubt" 庸 I am not sure of the correct ...
1
vote
1answer
45 views

(n.) 的大預言 having trouble making sense of this construct

So I have a person's name in place of the noun and I am trying to get a better handle on how to interpret this sentence. Would it be for example, Tommie's people predicted? The full context is that ...
1
vote
1answer
299 views

不知說謂, 不三不四 - Meaning In Context?

I have heard 不三不四 pronounced (m sarm m sei) in Cantonese. I wonder if Mandarin speakers use this term and in what context? When I asked, someone they supposed that Mandarin speakers might prefer to ...
1
vote
1answer
267 views

Chinese symbols on a Murakami painting? [closed]

Recently at an art gallery, I was introduced to some works of Takashi Murakami. On quite a few of his paintings were symbols which looked like Chinese, some sort of a seal perhaps. There was a ...
0
votes
4answers
145 views

Meaning and etymology of the expression “棒棒的!”

Someone wrote to me "两个月就写这么好,棒棒的!" I get the first part (though I don't think it's true - 哪里哪里 ;-)), but what exactly does that "appendix" stand for? I interpreted it as a kind of "clapping one's ...
0
votes
1answer
76 views

Making sense of '推魏大肚'

《锦城旧事》 在这灌县城中得此三者之利的,当推魏大肚。 What does 推魏大肚 refer to?
0
votes
2answers
98 views

Bare verbs meaning and 了

As I study usage of different aspects markers in Chinese I started to realize that my problems with those markers come from simple fact that: "I don't see any much in them." Reason for this is: ...
0
votes
4answers
120 views

What are these 2 的s doing here?

I have 2 的s in my text which are confusing. "可以明确的是实习生与企业间不是劳动关系,。。。“ "我九月份进的这家公司,老板说前面几个月是作为实习期的。“ In 1. I think '的‘ nominalizes, but I'm not sure what it nominalizes. Maybe there is a ‘所’ ...
0
votes
3answers
91 views

Similarities between connectives 就 and 而?

而 - is a connective like "and" in some situations. Etymologically this meaning comes from how hair in someone's beard are close together. 就 - is a connective in other situations. Etymology information ...
0
votes
1answer
105 views

Something I came across in a movie 你说它真它就真说它假

I came across this in a Chinese television show, which I would like some help to translate. 你说它真它就真,说它假它就假,它是真真假假假假真真谁也弄不明白. The first part I do understand. It means: "If you say it is real then it ...
0
votes
1answer
50 views

What is the meaning of 豫兮 in 豫兮若冬涉川 ?

A random phrase from the 道德經 is 豫兮若冬涉川 . I understand the part 若冬涉川 as "like crossing a stream in the winter" where "in the winter is used" is used adverbially, so a more verbatim translation might ...
0
votes
1answer
84 views

How to translate 哪有农村热闹?

北京城里禁止随便放鞭炮,城里人过春节越来越简单, 哪有农村热闹? I don't understand the last part of this sentence, marked in bold. I guess it's a rhetorical question? My attempt: Beijing City banned setting off fireworks, so ...
0
votes
3answers
126 views

产业 vs 企业 vs 商业. What's the difference?

产业 vs 企业 vs 商业. I think the 3 of them means enterprise. What's the difference between them?
0
votes
1answer
41 views

What is the meaning behind 华胄 ?

I found the sentence 他是华胄,所以气质不凡. It is been translated as "He is the offspring of a noble family, thus his character is not a common one". I also found for 华胄 the translation "offspring of the ...
0
votes
1answer
79 views

What is the meaning of 貪人之有者殘?

貪人之有者殘 is a phrase from 素書. I am not able to understand the grammatical structure of this sentence. For instance: 貪: does it mean greedy or make s.o. greedy, or consider s.o. greedy , or greed (...
0
votes
2answers
61 views

Connotations of different “to give”

Can natives and other knowledgeable people share their ideas on how to differentiate between many "to give" verbs? The list is not complete. Anyone is welcome to add their "gives" in it. 施 - ...
0
votes
3answers
197 views

Why in some contexts does 走 mean “walk”, but in others “go”?

I was practicing the usage of prepositions and made the sentence 我走通过城市。 This sentence was intended to translate back to "I walk through the city.", which it did. However, adding the word 怕 with the ...
0
votes
2answers
41 views

What is translation for 或作譈懟,亦書作憞 ?

In the sentence from the Kang-Xi Dictionary 或作譈懟,亦書作憞, I looked up the characters 譈,懟,憞 all are pronounced dui4 and all are translated as to hate. I am confused and do not know how to deal with ...
0
votes
1answer
156 views

In how many ways can we say “go straight ahead”?

I have heard 一直走(Yīzhí) and 往前(wǎng qián)走, but it seems the online translators prefer 一直往前走(Yīzhí wǎng qián zǒu) or 一直向(xiàng)前走 (if we're going forward)... From the above which are the most ...
0
votes
1answer
63 views

What does “更生” in “自力更生” mean?

I've seen the phrase 自力更生 used to mean self-reliance, but am confused by what the function of the last 2 characters is.
0
votes
1answer
1k views

How to use 指 when giving a definition?

How is 指 used, what is it's role in definitions such as this (from Wikipedia): 研究生是*指*获得学士学位后继续深造.
0
votes
0answers
40 views

The pronunciation of 的 [duplicate]

I have always pronounced 的 as "dė", regardless of the context, but I have heard people pronouncing it as "di"(fifth tone). For instance, 我的(di)姑娘 暖暖的(di) 漫長的(di)歲月 I do not remember ...
-1
votes
1answer
69 views

What is the meaning of the last part of this passage? [closed]

这也是人之常情。毕竟嘛,世人都知道,王爷从小就想娶冷王妃,好不容易抱得美人归,那个时候一定是喜不自胜,金风玉露一相逢便胜却人间无数. I don't understand "金风玉露一相逢便胜却人间无数."
-2
votes
1answer
114 views

How to translate 抓紧 here?

This text is talking about 甲型H1N1流感疫情。 女:那么我们应该作哪些准备? 男:抓紧疫苗研制是重中之重。然而,在没有有效的疫苗之前,提高大众的健康意识和公共卫生意识是最有效的 Edit: added a bit to make it clearer. Edit again: A friend told me to rewrite it thus: ...
-3
votes
1answer
94 views

How should I translate 细心 here?

I have this sentence: 这些发明都要归功于他在实践中留心观察,细心发现。 I think 留心,细心 and 用心 all have much the same meaning of 'careful, attentive'. I understand 留心观察 as 'carefully observe', but I don't like 细心发现 as '...