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

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1answer
168 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 ...
3
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1answer
154 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 ...
3
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4answers
105 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
257 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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1answer
151 views

How Archaic is James Legge's Written Chinese in this Side by Side English/Chinese Book?

I'm not sure if this is even an appropriate question for this venue, but here's hoping. I want to read the translated works of Zhuangzi on this site, but I'd like to know how archaic the original ...
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2answers
129 views

How to translate “doesn't lift a finger” and “without lifting a finger”?

I recently same across this stumbling block in conversation; in one case I wanted to say "doesn't lift a finger" and in another "without lifting a finger". These phrases mean that someone is extremely ...
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7answers
429 views

How can I translate this correctly into English “今晚怎么意思”

I have a group of friends who regularly meet to play soccer, someone asked on WeChat: 今晚怎么意思 The reply given was the time that we start "7" (meaning 7pm). I may be missing something very ...
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5answers
335 views

"不甘心“ in English?

How shall we say "不甘心“ in English? For example, "经历多次失败后,仍然不甘心放弃过去的种种努力和自己的理想”. Note that "is not willing to" means "不愿意“, still not exactly "不甘心“. Consider an example, "经历多次失败后,仍然不甘心放弃自己的理想”, ...
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4answers
123 views

The Chinese of “Browse Teachers” : 访问老师?

I have a tutoring website with many teachers on it. On the front page, there is a button to browse the profiles of all the teachers. Is 访问老师 the correct translation?
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3answers
521 views

Preferred translation for “log out” or “sign out” (such as a web site): 注销, 登出, 退出?

We're having trouble figuring out the preferred Simplified Chinese translation for "log out" or "sign out" for a web application we're translating. Our third-party translator thinks it's 注销, and an ...
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3answers
751 views

What does “理所应当的美好” mean?

我们确信, 在 Mac 的世界中, 你只需放飞自己的想象力。 享受一切**理所应当的美好**。 So 享受一切理所应当的美好。translates to: Enjoy all beauty as it should be? Sentence is from here: http://pinyin.sogou.com/mac/ Other Examples with 理所应当的美好 More ...
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4answers
412 views

What's the meaning of 高冷?

Could anyone tell me, what's the meaning of this word: 高冷? Haven't found any translation in the dictionary or any explanations.
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5answers
452 views

What is the English translation for 劲爆?

I saw this word in a news headline. It isn't found in any of 4 dictionaries I checked (PLC, CC, ADS for Pleco; YellowBridge.com). 劲 jin4 means strength, energy, or enthusiasm 爆 bao4 means explode or ...
2
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1answer
249 views

What does this text on a vase mean?

We have recently received this vase as a gift from a business partner. I am very curious what this text on it means but am not in a position to ask them. I wasn't able to use Google Translate ...
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5answers
213 views

再一次地, why is 地 used?

Here are some sentences for context. To me, leaving out the 地 preserves the meanings: 再一次地感谢大家 让我再一次地想你 微笑,再一次地让我们微笑 Is 再一次地 a set phrase/固定短语? Here's one w/o the 地: 再一次战胜自己
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2answers
132 views

Translation of “this much and no more”

I found this sentence and its English translation on tatoeba.org: 我知道的就這麼多了。 Beyond this I know nothing. Now I'm trying to parse the sentence structure, and I'd like some confirmation or a ...
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3answers
670 views

Am I so predictable?

When I go to my favorite restaurant, I often order the same thing. I order in Chinese and apparently I've become predictable. How can I ask an equivalent (not necessarily equal) phrase of "am I so ...
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4answers
212 views

Is the symbol in the images a chinese letter?

Is the symbol in the images a chinese letter, and if it is, what does it mean?
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3answers
197 views

What's the subject of this sentence?

I found a short sentence on tatoeba.org and I'm not exactly sure what it means. 好像找到了。 My best guess is that it means, "Seems like you found it." Is that right?
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3answers
106 views

Chinese equivalent of “I'm stealing that joke”

Is there a Chinese equivalent of I'm stealing that joke? I just heard a hilarious joke, and I'd like to say "that's a great joke, I'm stealing it" (i.e. I will use it myself). Is there a Chinese ...
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4answers
395 views

How to say “I prefer x over y”?

For example: I prefer eating fried rice over fried chicken. How to say that in chinese? How about this? 我较喜欢吃炒饭比炸鸡 我炒饭比炸鸡较喜欢吃
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3answers
154 views

Are there multiple translations for 不上边?

Trying to translate this: 始终是碰不上边的... From the beginning, not able to meet (in agreement) with those above? I searched on "不上边" in 百度 and it seems there are multiple ways to interpret it - ...
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2answers
2k views

how to correctly translate 我想你

When I started learning Chinese I was taught that this term would mean I miss you However have recently seen this been translated different ways into English. 1st I miss you 2nd I'm ...
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2answers
152 views

Translation of text on stamp

We got this stamp as a gift. What does the chinese characters translate to? It seems too long to just translate to "conscius".
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3answers
247 views

Proper use of “closet”

I apologize if this is very elementary: I've never heard of closet referred to as 壁橱, only as 衣柜, but the direct translation doesn't seem apropriate. I've also heard 衣柜 used to reference cupboard as ...
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2answers
267 views

What’s the meaning of 会 in this sentence?

In this sentence: 你明天这个时候会是在做什么?, I find 会 useless, especially since its English translation on tatoeba.org does not seem to reflect its sense. What meaning does it carry here?
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2answers
166 views

Does 外行的想法 mean “rookie mistake”?

I found this sentence and its translation on tatoeba.org. Is there a better way to translate it into English? 這是外行的想法。 That's a layman's idea. I looked up 外行, and it does mean amateur or ...
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4answers
160 views

What is the meaning of 捅破 in this text?

The following text is taken from the serial of 寒夜: 一直到有一天 一个偶然的机会 我的心事 或者说是我们的心事 被我们的学生捅破 感情是不能被捅破的 一旦捅破 就如同大坝破堤 汹涌而出 He's talking about his love for the heroine of the series, then ...
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2answers
104 views

English translation of The Odes of Confucius (詩經)

Some time ago I read two Chinese poems and now I can't find the original Chinese version, only the English translation. Maybe you could help me with a link or a title! The poems are from The Odes of ...
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5answers
279 views

When your computer freezes/hangs/stalls, stays on same screen, input devices don't work - how do you say that?

我的电脑。。。 冻结 失速 卡住 ? Also got - 死机了 and 当机 from another board. Any others?
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3answers
145 views

信子 meaning “tongue”

信子apparently can mean (snake's)"tongue" but only if 吐 also occurs near it (s. all examples below) http://news.sina.com.cn/s/p/2014-08-03/051130621113.shtml headline:半夜如厕 小臂粗大蛇 蜷缩地上吐信子 within ...
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3answers
279 views

Is there a difference between 你无意之中流露出来 and 你无意流露出来?

In a casual conversation, one person didn't know he unwittingly revealed he doesn't like whatever, ice cream. The other person says... 你无意之中流露出来 which translates to roughly to "You let it slip." I ...
2
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2answers
166 views

Translation of 档案专业人员

I found this string 档案专业人员 in a Chinese resume. Google translated it as "file professional" but I don't know what would be the proper word in English for it. I'd like to know which are the main duties ...
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4answers
219 views

How to say she short changed me (without negative conotation)?

For example, if I went to the bank to withdraw money from my account and my account showed I took out $50, but the bank teller only gave me $40. I don't want to imply the bank teller was trying to ...
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3answers
148 views

Translation for “things you don't agree on”

I attended a wedding last weekend and wanted to say something along the following lines: "In the first year you will probably find there are many things that you don't agree on". I couldn't think of ...
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4answers
501 views

how to say ”(尤为)难得“ in English?

How would you say "难得“ and ”尤为难得“ in English? For example, 他在自己生活困难的情况下,资助老弱病残,尤为难得。 Thanks!
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3answers
215 views

Translating the word “feelings” for conversational use

When I look for a dictionary translation of "feelings", I see two translations: 情怀 and 情面. Which of these two would be better suited to translate the following sentence The woman rhetorically ...
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5answers
331 views

如果你不介意 : appropriate translation from English?

I recently heard, 如果你不介意 (literally: "if you do not mind."). Is the literal translation from English also a correct, native one? Or is there a more common way to prefix such a question?
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2answers
173 views

Having trouble translating this: 多是不跑步的替跑步的操心

My rough translation is "better not to run than to run and worry about it." It's the double 的 and 替 that's throwing me off. Is my translation close? Here's the context: ...
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5answers
188 views

(Better) Translations of: 稀罕/稀奇?

In Chinese 稀罕 and 稀奇 are often used negatively to express disdain, e.g.: ABC 我不稀罕你的钱。 Wǒ bù xīhan nǐ de qián. I don't care about your money. And 你以为我稀奇你的东西? Dictionaries often ...
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3answers
241 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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1answer
159 views

What does 嘰咿— mean?

I'm reading a Chinese manga translation and have come across this note above a panel: 嘰咿— I'm not sure what it could mean or say in English. Can anyone help me? Thanks!
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1answer
208 views

Is this a translation of 逍遥游?

I think this is from 逍遥游, but I'm not sure. I just can't locate the following sentence. Thus, the wise man looks into space, and does not regard the small as too little, nor the great as too ...
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4answers
500 views

Is this a Chinese Proverb?

I found this proverb which I'm not sure about what is its origin: He who asks is a fool for five minutes, but he who does not ask remains a fool forever. Is this really a known chinese proverb? ...
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3answers
160 views

What is the most appropriate translation for this law article?

In this Skeptics answer, a user provided a rough translation of a Chinese law article — from this source — about vehicles and pedestrians using Google Translate. So I thought, why don't we provide a ...
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3answers
67 views

Singing in tune translation help

I sang Chinese karaoke last night... went alright... but couldn't sing in tune. I wanted to express this to my Chinese friends.... so I wanted to learn phrases/words related to singing and music, ...
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3answers
118 views

How to translate “I have always been”

I have always struggled with this translation, but have never quite figured it out. How do I translate I have always been ... Some examples would be: I have always been an academic I have ...
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2answers
102 views

Can “ 天空一片蔚藍 ” also be “一片蔚藍天空”? And translation please?

Can " 天空一片蔚藍 " also be "一片蔚藍天空"? And what's the reason? Could "天空是一片蔚藍" be correct too? Also can someone give a good translation? I just translate it as "An azure blue sky". I might be over ...
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1answer
78 views

the word “menu” in the context of gaming

The word for a food menu is 菜单 Càidān, sensibly translating as "food list." But what would you call a game menu? I could only think of 选项 Xuǎnxiàng, but this "options", which may be a sub item in the ...
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2answers
227 views

How do I translate, “by pretending that something is real?”

Just as the title says. I really have no idea how to translate the word "by" in this sense. It's just a form of grammar I've never even been exposed to, so I wouldn't know where to start. Anyone know ...