It's the set of words used by a language, but also all of the words within a language known by a single person.

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2
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5answers
121 views

How to say “to light a candle"

I'm trying to figure out the most appropriate way to say "light a candle" would it be 点蜡烛 or would 点燃蜡烛 be more commonly heard? Thanks for the help!
1
vote
4answers
126 views

When can 尔 (er3) be used instead of 你 (ni3)?

I got a letter from a new penfriend in Hong Kong, written in 普通花. I think their first language is Cantonese. Mostly the letter uses simplified characters, with the occasional traditional one. It ...
3
votes
5answers
405 views

Is there a difference between 杀头 and 砍头?

I'm learning about 鲁迅 and the picture he saw of a man being decapitated. My teacher would switch between 杀头 and 砍头 - is their a large difference between the two? is one more formal? Is there a ...
2
votes
5answers
283 views

What is the difference between “面对” and “应对”?

I would love a quick overview of the difference btween 面对 and 应对! In particular, I would love to know what you say if you want to use 以...的太对来应对/面对 这个问题? Is 应对 or 面对 used in this instance?
2
votes
3answers
303 views

How do you say “Cafeteria Workers”?

I've been trying to figure what is the best way to describe school cafeteria workers without sounded too formal or too rude (just a normal way of saying cafeteria worker) Would you say “食堂员工” “工人”? ...
5
votes
3answers
459 views

Does the Chinese language distinguish “doubt” and “suspicion”?

Doubt expresses a lack of belief due to insufficient evidence. Suspicion expresses a feeling of belief in the absence of evidence. If I'm not mistaken, the Chinese language does not distinguish the ...
5
votes
1answer
132 views

What is the difference between 探望 and 看?

Both the expressions 探望 and 看 are, in an appropriate context, translated as "to visit". I haven't been able to figure out the difference between the two. When does one use 探望, when does one use 看?
1
vote
1answer
180 views

Can you 搬东西? Or do you need to 搬家?

I'm interested in the use of 搬 in the case of moving in. Could I say "我帮了我的室友搬一些东西?“ or does it need to be ”帮了她把他的东西搬到他的宿舍里面“ Can you simply say 搬东西 ?
2
votes
3answers
117 views

不然 when it occurs at the beginning of a sentence

不然你逛那边的时候,我逛电子商品区. I came across this but none of the dictionary meanings for 不然 seem to fit when it's at the beginning of a sentence. What's the meaning here as are this a common usage?
2
votes
3answers
180 views

Can you 离开 a person? (as in physically separate from them?)

I'm interested in the usage of the term 离开 as in " to leave". If, for example, I was traveling with another person on the underground (train) and I left them/we separated (to take different trains) ...
0
votes
1answer
78 views

How to say “twelve tigers” [duplicate]

I learned that two tigers is said "两只老虎" but I wonder how to say twelve tigers, twenty two tigers in Chinese. Is that 十二只老虎 and 二十二只老虎 or 十两只老虎 and 二十两只老虎
0
votes
5answers
463 views

The translation of “Karma”

I want to know the colloquial chinese translation of "Karma". The conversation example: Bob: She had financial problem for 30 years and never got a decent job besides labor. Me: I guess it's karma. ...
4
votes
4answers
107 views

What are the different ways to say “Chapter” in Chinese?

So, I've been trying to figure out the proper way to say "chapter" for a long time in Chinese. Is this something that depends on a case by case basis? (i.e. a chapter in a novel would be different in ...
3
votes
1answer
105 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 ...
3
votes
2answers
131 views

How to say “had a child”

So, I know that 出生 means to birth or "To give birth" - but what if I want to casually say that my friend (who is a male) recently had two kids. Could I say 他最近生了两个小孩 。 Or does that imply that he ...
2
votes
3answers
85 views

How to say “to found”?

I've been struggling for a while with how exactly in Chinese to say "to found". Recently, I learned that 创办 could have that meaning? (I.e. 北大是1898年创办的) - but, I also know that words like 创始 also ...
2
votes
3answers
67 views

How do you use the phrase 留宿 (liu2su4) (i.e. “To stay over at someone's house")

I've been trying to figure in what contexts it is appropriate to use the term 留宿。 Is it simply staying at another person's house for the night (like in english "crashing at someone's place") or is it ...
3
votes
3answers
120 views

What does it mean to 按时收听?

I've been listening to a great mandarin podcast recently called "imandarinpod". At the beginning of every podcast the host says something like this "谢谢大家按时收听我们的节目“。 I've looked up the translation of ...
2
votes
3answers
113 views

How to say “Avoid” as in “Avoid going to a place”

I've always struggled with the proper translation of "Avoid". Is there a way to best say "avoid going to a place". For example, if I wanted to say that " I believe that if I want to embrace chinese ...
2
votes
3answers
86 views

How do I say “right at that time”?

I'm trying to explain a situation I was in recently in written Chinese. How would I say "Luckily, right at that time Mark heard my voice" Would it simply be 幸亏, 她正好那时候听到我的声音,马上叫了起来“ Thanks for ...
2
votes
2answers
80 views

How do you say “Clean” as in “clean a city”

How would one say "clean" as in "Clean a city" For example, in english we would say. "Once a month everyone in Rwanda leaves their house to clean the city" Could I say "打扫城市“ ”把城市弄干净”? Or is there ...
2
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3answers
59 views

How do I say “It didn't help that..”

In english, we often use the transition "it didn't help that" to indicate that something bad had happened, and that there was another factor that potentially made it even worse. Ex. He was already ...
6
votes
5answers
1k views

How do I say that a program (coding) “Works!”

I'm trying to say a program (as in something a programmer/程序员) finally works! Is there a way to translate this "works" into chinese? Could I say 我的代码终于可以了!? Or is there a way that is more clear ...
3
votes
4answers
128 views

How to express the word “enjoy”? As in “enjoy traveling”

As a native english speaker, I've always struggled with the translation of "to enjoy" in to mandarin. I know that a couple of variations involve 享受, or 欣赏. But often the sentences I write using both ...
2
votes
3answers
64 views

How do you say the noun form of “Campaign”

I know that in Chinese we can say "竞选” for campaigning (as in a verb). But, if I wanted to say "campaign" as in "Obama's Campaign" how would I say that? I've seen 竞选活动 in dictionaries。 But, would ...
1
vote
1answer
71 views

How to say a “strong flavor”

I know that currently people in Chinese would say "很重的味道“。 But I'm wondering if there are any other ways of saying it. Could I say "很大的味道 “ or ”很浓的味道“ if I'm referring to something like a hot sauce? ...
5
votes
1answer
122 views

Proper letter writing etiquette

I've recently been writing a lot of letters in Mandarin and I have several questions regarding the form. Chinese has many salutations in letters. For the most part, is it okay just to use 亲爱? If ...
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vote
2answers
93 views

Number of unique characters in the X most common words?

I assume this would be wouldn't be too hard to calculate with a proper database, but does anyone know the number of unique characters/morphemes used in the 5000, 10000, 30000, etc. most common words? ...
4
votes
3answers
393 views

How to say I want to leave colloquially?

How to say I want to leave or I want to go home colloquially in the case of we are visiting someone's place? Let's say I'm visiting my auntie, then when it's the time for me to leave, what should I ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Does there exists an English word for 汉化 ?

汉化 means becoming more assimilated to Han culture. (like Anglicise means being more assimilated to English culture) Historically, this has happened many times, e.g. during Khitan Empire, Jurchen ...
4
votes
7answers
327 views

Accidentally Saying Chinese Swear Words

So I saw a video on youtube about a guys experience in china. He said that people can often accidentally say swear words if they say the tones wrong. Like the word "ma" It can heard as mother but ...
8
votes
8answers
772 views

Never mind in Chinese

I ask someone a question, but then realize I already know the answer. In English, I'd say: "Oh wait, never mind." What's 口语 for "never mind" in this context?
1
vote
2answers
82 views

Test taking : ji选?

During test taking I've heard people talking about ji选. Which apparently is pretty much just "guessing" at the answer or as one person told me - just picking which ever answer 'looks' good. So what ...
3
votes
1answer
159 views

How to wish people good health, etc during Chinese New Year 揮春 | 春貼 | 門聯、春仔

Every Chinese New Years I try to remember common expressions associated with huī chūn (揮春). 賀年的吉利字詞 (Hè nián de jí lì zì cí) Some expressions that I have heard are usually only four characters. I ...
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vote
1answer
96 views

How and when to consider 面子 when speaking Chinese?

Avoid Losing Face ( 沒面子 ) As a student of Chinese I would like always maintain a respectful tone. It can be very easy when speaking a second language to make mistakes that offend others. I would like ...
2
votes
2answers
127 views

How to say those mouth-watering Chinese dishes names in Chinese? [closed]

Chinese food is delicious. For example, beef noodles (牛肉面) is one of my favorites. Fried noodle (炒面) and fried rice with shrimp(虾仁炒饭)are also yummy. Q: How to say other mouth-watering Chinese dishes ...
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vote
2answers
164 views

What does 软文 and 小号 mean in internet slang?

Just like the title said, what does 软文 and 小号 mean in intenet slang?
2
votes
2answers
89 views

Keeping track of words learned [closed]

I'm looking for a good online site to keep track of chinese words I've learned. I've looked at memrise.com, but found it lacking in features since its not linked to a dictionary and I have to manually ...
1
vote
1answer
53 views

Distinct terms for 'authentication' and 'validation'? Both seem to be 验证

Could someone point me to distinct, accurate terms for 'authentication' and 'validation' in Chinese? This is in a web development context, and I can only find 验证 as the best word for both of them. ...
2
votes
4answers
167 views

Is 帮忙 and 帮助 interchangeable?

I looked up in the dictionary, 帮 means help, and 忙 means busy while 助 also means help, so is 帮忙 (help busy) and 帮助(help help) interchangeable? Or what is the subtle difference between them? Thanks!
1
vote
2answers
82 views

What is the difference between 形成, 构成, 组成, 养成?

According to the dictionary, 成 has meanings of to become or to form, what is the subtle difference between 形成, 构成, 组成 and 养成? Thanks!
3
votes
4answers
158 views

What's the general word for cheese?

What's the general word for "cheese"? I've tryed to look it up in the dictionary but there are so many options!! What's the most general, the word that native speaker would use to say "I want a piece ...
1
vote
1answer
68 views

餐馆, 饭馆, 酒家, 饭店 - restaurant in Chinese? [duplicate]

What's the difference between 餐馆 饭馆 酒家 饭店 and all the other different words that exist to say restaurant??? What's the most common and used and what is the one that could fit in quite every situation? ...
0
votes
1answer
118 views

Learn Chinese Step 3: Vocabulary Building. Is it the same way to memorize Chinese vocabulary as it is to memorize English vocabulary? [closed]

Many Mandarin Chinese teachers claim that the step 3 for Learning Chinese is: Vocabulary Building. Is it the same way(s) to memorize Chinese vocabulary as it is to memorize English vocabulary? Or ...
1
vote
2answers
139 views

Is there a word in Chinese to mean “mostly”? Is “大多” appropriate?

As title, is there a word in Mandarin Chinese to mean "mostly" ? For example, I am going to tell my friend who wrote a letter to me that "I mostly got what you man", is it appropriate to say "大多" that ...
2
votes
1answer
129 views

What is the difference between 突然 and 忽然?

They both have sudden meaning, but what is subtle difference between 突然 and 忽然?Thanks!
1
vote
5answers
138 views

What is the difference between 听到、听过 and 听说?

There are 3 听 (hear or listen to), what is the difference between 听到、听过 and 听说?Thanks!
8
votes
2answers
122 views

What is the difference between 有名,著名 and 闻名?

We know 名 means name or famous, what is the subtle difference between 有名,著名 and 闻名? Thanks!
4
votes
1answer
162 views

What is the difference between 变成、变化、变得、改变、转变?

There are five 变 here, so what is the difference between 变成、变化、变得、改变、转变? Thanks!
2
votes
2answers
266 views

Is “佳能” the standard translation for “canon” in a religious sense?

Apparently "巴利佳能" is the translation of "Pali Canon." When referring to the foundational documents of other theological or philosophical schools, will I be understood if I use the term "佳能"?