Questions on specific points regarding translating Chinese to/from another language. Do your own research first!

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146 views

Is 同性恋 considered a slur?

Is calling a homosexual person 同性恋 rude, offensive, or a slur? My dictionary translates it simply as "homosexual" but then in the usage examples gives "fairy," which is definitely a slur in English ...
3
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4answers
266 views

reason for saying/asking 什么叫活腻歪了 (what does tired of living mean) in tv series 敢死队:第11集

In a Chinese TV series 敢死队(第11集). it seems hard to understand why the peddler says to the detective (11:05) "what do you call(what is meant by) tired of living, I am looking for someone", ...
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3answers
255 views

Translation help:: How to translate 我们经常会怎么说 into English?

假如我们现在碰到有个人,觉得他实在太不争气,实在太让我们失望,我们对他又爱、又恨、又急,那么我们经常会怎么说? We often do what/as we say? This is from an ancient text so I'm not sure if the style of language back then is different from today's. ...
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3answers
181 views

How can I express the concept “There's nothing of which I'm absolutely sure” in Chinese?

Scientists and philosophers have at various times been quoted as saying: "There's nothing of which I'm absolutely sure" or "I'm not absolutely sure of anything". (Richard Feynman, for example.) How ...
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3answers
77 views

What is the best translation for 投胎?

If you look online, translation for 投胎 is 'reincarnation'. It suits phrases like 投胎转世 but often does not feel quite right in other context. For example: 你急什么,赶着去投胎? Not sure if anyone would ...
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6answers
319 views

How to say "歪打正着“ in English?

How do you say "歪打正着“ in English? I brought a gift to someone's place for appreciation of his help, but he wasn't there. Several days later, I went there with the gift again, and he was there, and ...
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1answer
308 views

What does 七年之痒 mean?

I looked it up and something about the Seven Year Itch but I'm kind confused. Does it have any deep meaning in Chinese culture?
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3answers
205 views

Is there a word for “kosher”?

I'm looking for a translation of the word kosher in it's most strict sense: a food that is apt according to the jewish law. Google translates kosher as 犹太, but if I'm not mistaken, that just means ...
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1answer
78 views

What is the English translation for this picture

I am trying to translate this I tried to Google Translate it : 三屰戈巳市 But it didn't give me any satisfying translation. I don't know if I typed it wrong or if Google Translate simply doesn't know ...
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1answer
181 views

Medieval Chinese Pronunciation

It's here! The A Student's Dictionary of Classical and Medieval Chinese dictionary is finally out! Language Log says: A Student's Dictionary of Classical and Medieval Chinese All of the ...
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1answer
130 views

How to say “shin splints” in Chinese?

I would like to know how to say "shin splints" in Chinese. Shin splints are a fairly common injury for runners. Please note that shin splints are NOT splints that you put on your shin but rather a ...
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2answers
95 views

Expressing numbers in scientific notation

I assume that scientific discussion in Chinese uses scientific notation, such as 5×1012. How would I read such a number aloud? I looked at the rules for saying numbers, as well as the Wikipedia ...
3
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1answer
297 views

Help translating 爱人跟人走

I have come across the song 爱人跟人走 (lyrics here). I'll give a complete translation attempt of this Hokkien song: It's already 3 years since you left me; Have you gone away without [ever] turning back? ...
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1answer
129 views

Could someone translate text carved on my flute?

could someone translate a text carved on my bamboo flute? I think it might be a poem :o Here it goes, I took 2 photos in case it's not readible Also this one I suppose it might be the ...
3
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1answer
220 views

大风绝尘而去 in idiomatic English

"大风绝尘而去" In a weather report document, such as http://news.163.com/14/0528/18/9TBR0KOI00014Q4P.html, does this phrase mean that the gale is going to 'stay away and leave' ? or 'A large storm will ...
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3answers
214 views

How to say “tricks” in Chinese? As in “Snowboarding Tricks”?

I looked it up and a lot of words that mean "trick" come back so I'm sure which is the right one.
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4answers
304 views

When to use 家 vs 师 vs 员 vs 者

I'm translating my resume into Chinese so I can maybe apply for a Chinese job. There are a number of items on there where I'm not sure when to use 家, 师, 员, or 者. Example, I developed a comics ...
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2answers
141 views

In “我只喜歡你一個” what does the “一個” do?

If I were to translate "I only like you" I'd say 我只喜歡你 Wǒ zhǐ xǐ huan nǐ However I have seen the following 我只喜歡你一個 Wǒ zhǐ xǐ huan nǐ yī ge Translated as I like you alone ...
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2answers
614 views

How to say “meeting” in Chinese?

I would like to create a chat meeting for CL&U and so I thought, why not make the title in Chinese? I was thinking of using the term "meeting" or a similar one. On my dictionary, for meeting, it ...
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2answers
682 views

What is the English equivalent of 拜托, and what is it's proper usage in Chinese?

I quite like the expression 拜托, but I've never been 100% sure of what exactly it means in English, and I'm not quite sure how to use it properly in Chinese. Little help?
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1answer
123 views

Origin of the slang “機車”

I know that "機車" is motorcycle and it is also used as a slang word, but I was unsure of its meaning. Thus, i checked this page, and I was confused by its ambiguity when translated to English, as ...
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1answer
298 views

Subway door announcement mystery

I think probably every metro system around the world has to have an audio announcement warning passengers to stay away from the train's doors as they're closing. Here in New York, a pre-recorded voice ...
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7answers
211 views

How would you translate “hard” in “squeeze my hand as hard as you can”?

Odd question, perhaps, but I'm stumped. I know that to say 'as fast as you can' you can say 尽可能快, but what about for other adjectives? For example, if you were to say 'Squeeze my hand as hard as ...
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1answer
89 views

How do I translate “context”?

是不是可以说: 在这上下文,这个生词不可以这样用。 还有, You've taken it entirely out of context. 或者比如有学生问老师个问题,可是问提不太清楚,老师会回答说: Can you give provide some context?
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1answer
246 views

How do we translate the Chinese slang “抠脚大汉” into English?

And are there any proper ways to translate the action “抠脚”? Update: Thanks for your comments and answers. Although there is an "引经据典的"answer, 我本来是想知道它的字面意思。 Also, I tried Google translation ...
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1answer
169 views

不要多给: not a single cent more?

I'm reading a weird story about a myna (八哥儿,是一种鸟儿) that speaks and is quoting the price for himself, since he's a talking bird. Is what he adds after his price idiomatically translated as something ...
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3answers
354 views

Is there a Chinese equivalent of the German “Mut zur Lücke”?

In German, we have the expression "Mut zur Lücke", in English something like "courage to have a gap" - a knowledge gap. It is used between students, when they skip to learn something for an exam. ...
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1answer
139 views

Is there a logical explanation why 非得不 and 非得 means must?

I understand that 非 and 不 have negative meanings by themselves, and 得 means "must" by itself. So with a double negative, which means affirmative positive. So far so good. But 非得 by itself is also ...
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1answer
148 views

What's the Eye of a Hurricane called in Chinese/Pinyin?

For a role playing game I'm joining, my character is a monk of Chinese origin. Trying to come up with a name I thought of "Eye of (the) Hurricane/Typhoon" as the monk is a very calm character caught ...
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1answer
47 views

Clarifying usage and definition of 怀疑

怀疑 means (1) to doubt, and (2) to suspect. This seems to lead to some confusing translations. For example: 我怀疑这张百元钞票是假的 could have two very different translations. If I use "to doubt", then it ...
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2answers
71 views

How do you say Difference between?

How do you say the difference in this context: the difference between 4 and 6 is 2. It is 区别?
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1answer
65 views

What does “翻起了短信” mean?

xxx翻起了短信 I know that 翻 can mean flp, cross, etc. So does the phrase mean "flipping through messages" or "crossing through messages", aka "deleting messages"? Could it also mean "replying to ...
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2answers
101 views

What is the Correct Sense of 隔空喊话 in English?

Baidu defines it literally as "not directly engaging with [someone/thing] when talking, rather talking with no person in mind." I'm curious whether it can be close to how we say in English, "[two ...
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2answers
106 views

What is the translation of 托业考试必备 ?

I ve looked up the words: 托 = to entrust (only one possible meaning, i do not know which one makes sense) 业 = enterprise 考试 = test 必备 = essential I can make no sense of this sentence, i even can ...
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1answer
82 views

Help translate these two sentences with 也未必 and 更何况

有时就连你的父亲也未必信得过,更何况是陌生人。 有时连陌生人你也可以相信,更何况是你的父亲。 The challenging parts for me are 也未必 and 连…更何况. Thanks in advance.
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1answer
119 views

How to say “this?” interjection in chinese?

For example of a case: (I was in home walking holding a jar of chocolate candy, I was gonna go to upstairs) Mom: (She saw me and she called me from behind) "Where did you buy that?" Me: (I was a bit ...
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3answers
170 views

How to translate the following grammar-pattern: 让/叫 N+V —— N还/ 就真 V (呀)

I know that this is a pattern that expresses a reverse meaning of what is really expressed (some kind of rhetorical question) - and that the speaker is somehow showing a negative attitude. I suppose ...
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1answer
58 views

Do this for me and then we'll be even

I'm trying to convey "If you do x, we'll call it even." So my sentence is: 我们可以互相学习,我教你滑雪,作为回报你可以教我什么呢? we can both learn from each other... I teach you to ski... and in return what can you teach ...
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2answers
158 views

How to understand “实” in this context? ”五侯九伯,女实征之“(《齐桓公伐楚盟屈完》)之“实”字何以训?

《齐桓公伐楚盟屈完》,出《左传》僖公四年,原文节此: ”昔召康公命我先君太公曰:‘五侯九伯,女实征之,以夹辅周室。’” 这个“实”字当何以训?“实”常见的释义里,大概只有“真正、真确”还强通文意。但看到《康熙字典》里“实”又有“具數”一义:“又具數也。《史記·始皇本紀》使黔首自實田。《註》謂令民自具頃畝實數也。”用来训此“实”,是否得当?有更好的解释吗?
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1answer
73 views

Translation of “we”, pronoun in official company introduction material

I am translating a document that looks like an official introduction of a company maybe to be placed on their website or marketing material. In the document, the first sentence starts with the name ...
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2answers
129 views

How can 蔫 be translated as “mischievous”?

《饥饿的女儿》虹影 著 ch. 2, sect. 4 has the following text: 在学校, 最蔫的男同学对我也没兴趣, is translated by Howard Goldblatt as: "even the most mischievous boys in class showed little or no interest in me". How is this ...
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1answer
88 views

Translation Gaps On Comic Conversation : 2

I have translated the following: 那可不一定 It certainly can not be. (*Hope this translation is correct) Here is what I have so far.. 三十分(?)從,大(?)會(?)吊(?) 來。 Thanks for any help to fill ...
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1answer
78 views

What is equivalent of “分润”?

In many trading system I can offen find a concept call "分润". Is that a word in english equivalent to "分润" ?
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2answers
353 views

Issues with machine translation from Traditional to Simplified (not vice versa)

I'm trying to translate my website into Traditional and Simplified Chinese. I have a full human translation for it into Traditional Chinese and I was wondering about what errors and inaccuracies can ...
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1answer
108 views

difference between two words for balance of account

I want to pay off the remainder of my credit card bill. Can someone help me differentiate between 余额 and 尾数 Thanks
3
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1answer
186 views

Use of polyphonic characters in transliteration

The pronunciation of polyphonic character is usually deduced from the semantic of the context. In a transliterated word, there is no such context, the character only stands for its pronunciation, so ...
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1answer
165 views

Meaning of “网络驿站”

I've come across the phrase "网络驿站" a couple of times recently, but don't understand precisely what it means (see Hbjjrb.com for an example). The only translation of 驿站 that I can find refers to a ...
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4answers
117 views

Can 偷工减料 be used to describe the intentional and open purchasing of somewhat inferior product?

I know that 偷工减料 is frequently used to describe intentionally (and perhaps secret) shoddy construction. When I translate it, I usually say "Cut corners". However, I think 偷工减料 has a very negative ...
3
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1answer
354 views

What is the exact meaning and etymology of 拜年?

Since Chinese New Year is on the way (and thanks to Xiaohouzi's great suggestion), I've been thinking all about the new year. One term the sticks out is 拜年. I'm very curious to know the exact ...
3
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4answers
89 views

The meaning of a Chinese inscription found under a little sculpture

I bought a figure of a taoist wise some years ago, and in all these years I have been unable to decipher the tiny seal below the figure. It is an important figure in my life and I would be extremely ...