4
votes
5answers
422 views

Loanwords with Chinese Equivalents

How many loanwords in Chinese have Chinese equivalents? Example: 三文鱼 is a loanword, borrowed from English, meaning salmon, but Chinese also has the word 鲑鱼 meaning salmon. Are there a lot of these ...
1
vote
1answer
117 views

Where is the right place of the 的 in this sentence

I am not sure where I have to put the 的 in this sentence, if someone could explain me 我的西班牙语只学了半年 or 我只学了半年的西班牙语
1
vote
2answers
116 views

Need help in translation. Problems with 了. Again :)

The sentence is (1)突然父亲嘘了一口气 and (2)突然父亲嘘一口气 I would have undertand them if it's not the for the "突然" part. My take: (1) "Suddenly father exhaled (once)" (like "ooooh" and then maybe ...
0
votes
2answers
60 views

Translation of “繟”

In a version of the Dao De Jing that I found on Gutenberg.org, this character appears: 繟. I've done multiple searches of the web and of several dictionaries online, but wasn't able to find a ...
2
votes
1answer
202 views

有钱能使鬼推磨, is this verb serialization?

So there is a Chinese saying, 有钱能使鬼推磨。 If you have money, you can make the devil push the millstone for you. Right after the verb 有,the other verb 能+使 comes. Is that also considered verb ...
1
vote
4answers
257 views

Why is the 了 here after 错 not after 投?

The agent says the customer should insure all risks, he wants normal insurance. Agent: 万一货物出了问题,就有可能因为投错了险而无法得到赔偿,那麻烦就大了。 I imagine '投了险' is short for '投保了保险' and I thought '错‘ is an adjective for ‘...
4
votes
6answers
401 views

What is the difference in meaning between 应变 and 适应 here?

Is there a difference in meaning between 应变能力 and 适应能力 in this sentence? If so, can you please try to explain it? 公司领导人认为,在未来十年的商战中,最重要的武器是应变能力、适应能力和创新能力。
28
votes
10answers
2k views

How do we choose the correct characters for a westerner name?

Since there are many characters that share a common pronunciation and sometimes also the same tone, how do we properly choose which character best represents our name? Is it totally arbitrary or are ...
0
votes
3answers
69 views

How to translate "顾方略何如耳,不至学古兵法“?

In Chapter 111 of Records of the Grand Historian (史记), there is a famous quotation attributed to Qubing Huo: 骠骑将军为人少言不泄,有气敢任。天子尝欲教之孙吴兵法,对曰:“顾方略何如耳,不至学古兵法。” I checked the translation from many ...
8
votes
3answers
519 views

What is the difference between 一只狗 and 一条狗?

I've been told by native speakers that the former refers to little dogs while the latter is for bigger dogs. I also have been told that the latter has a negative connotation. I'm wondering: how ...
4
votes
5answers
448 views

GoldenDict Chinese-Chinese Dictionary?

I have an intermediate grasp of mandarin and would like a Chinese-Chinese dictionary. One where I input Chinese characters and it returns me a Chinese definition. I am using GoldenDict and have tried ...
2
votes
2answers
430 views

Why 文以載道 but 以文會友?

以 is one of the most confusing words in Chinese. Texts that really challenge me are usually full of it. Today I saw something confusing again: I encountered the phrase 文以載道。The document claims it ...
1
vote
2answers
93 views

Looking for a legit place for Classical Chinese grammar rules

Here is an example of my problem. I came across final particle 乎 in a classical text by 孟子. I know from a short description in a unreliable resource that it is similar to 呢, 吗 and 吧。 The thing is, I ...
2
votes
1answer
76 views

zh sound with a flat tongue?

This is from the Wikipedia article on retroflex consonant, but isn't this wrong? I assume that Mandarin zh, ch, sh, and r sound should be pronounced with your tongue curled up, rather than "flat?" ...
0
votes
0answers
44 views

How to pronounce multiple consecutive third tones in a sentence [duplicate]

I learned that a third tone character is pronounced as a second tone if it's followed by another third tone character. My question is, how do I pronounce a sentence that has three or more consecutive ...
0
votes
2answers
71 views

Confused with the use of 的 with respect to '住在上海旁边的一个小村子里’

I came across the phrase '住在上海旁边的一个小村子里’... I cannot understand the use of 的 in this phrase. Any help is greatly appreciated :) If you have the time to fully break down the sentence that would also ...
0
votes
2answers
71 views

Difference between 借 and 贷

Both can either mean "to borrow" or "to lend". I know you can combine both of them "借贷" to mean "debit and credit". But what are the differences in usage and semantics between those two words. They ...
0
votes
3answers
80 views

What is the difference between 钱 and 金钱 (and 款)?

金钱 is just 钱 with an added 金 but both mean "money". Are there any semantics or grammar differences between the two? Also, 款 seems to also mean money. I know 款 is usually used after 贷 but can it also ...
0
votes
3answers
134 views

Difference between 生活 and 生命

Both 生活 and 生命 mean "life". Both can be modified by "好" (好生活/好生命). Like any language, I don't believe two words ever mean the exact identical thing. If anybody could point me to the subtle (or not so ...
8
votes
1answer
157 views

When should I use the 是…的 construction?

I've been told that 是...的 is used to put emphasis on something, but I'm not sure when or why I should use it.
11
votes
2answers
224 views

What is the etymology of “商” in “商数”

"商数" is usually translated as "quotient" in both its mathematical and common usage forms (eg in "智商"/intelligence quotient, which is in fact an actual quotient.). What is the etymology of "商", and ...
3
votes
5answers
124 views

Chinese given names with 3 or more characters?

Most Chinese given names are 1 or 2 characters long. Were there any proper, Han Chinese given names of 3 or more characters, that weren't transliterations or pseudonyms? Surnames are different; while ...
0
votes
3answers
207 views

Does this sentence sound awkward?

I recently tried to compose a sentence to some who told me they were translating a book from English to Chinese. I responded to them: 太好了!很不幸,我的中文知识不足够的,所以不可能帮你们。加油,我很兴奋的! As I am not a native ...
14
votes
2answers
565 views

Lowest pixel resolution needed to support Chinese?

We are creating a product which has an small embedded OLED display (64 x 48 pixels). We would love to support Chinese in this product and wonder what is that smallest resolution that would be needed ...
0
votes
3answers
116 views

“to slice or cut (a finger)” in Traditional Chinese / Spoken Cantonese?

Haven't managed to find a usage that speaks specifically to cut or slice open a body part. Also seeing contradictions (or perhaps information gaps) between CantoDict and Pleco. Some notes: ...
4
votes
4answers
120 views

砲響: were there cannons in ancient China?

After reading Romance of the Three Kingdoms, I was surprised to see a lot of references to 砲響 (the sound of cannonade). Here's a few examples: 嚴綱鼓譟吶喊,直取麴義,義軍見嚴綱兵來,都伏而不動;直到來得至近,一聲砲響,八百弓弩手一齊俱發。 ...
0
votes
4answers
158 views

没有人不喜欢自己的。 what does 的 imply here?

I understand the meaning of this sentence. Nobody doesn't like him/herself. My question is, why is there a 的 at the end? It is not a past tense sentence. And also there isn't any detail so that the 是。。...
1
vote
4answers
557 views

What does 她是笨蛋的学生 mean?

I and my Chinese friend are discussing about the meaning of "她是笨蛋的学生” So, can u guys tell me which meaning is correct, or which meaning is popularly used: "She is a fool student", or "She is the ...
0
votes
1answer
68 views

My Chinese Story, need correction, any suggestion? [closed]

Are you guys aware of any website service or any language exchange platform where one can post their stories or essays and get them checked? Also, below is my story, if anyone finds a very striking ...
0
votes
3answers
155 views

How do you say “we don't have any common interests”?

I was trying to say this to someone and it came out "我跟你们没兴趣", which I can tell isn't right. To clarify, common interests here refer to personal interests or interests in activities, rather than ...
0
votes
1answer
79 views

What is “Black tie optional” in Chinese

I'm writing a wedding invitation in both Chinese and English. In English, the dress code is "black tie optional", which means guests are given the option to either wear a tuxedo or a proper dark ...
0
votes
2answers
57 views

如果真的有 what does this mean?

My friend who learns chinese sent me this. The google translator says that it means "if there".. Is this the right translation? Because to me, i think that five chinese characters should mean ...
0
votes
3answers
61 views

what does this symbol mean in chinese? [closed]

I saw a random image of Chinese character. Can someone tell me what letter it is. I had often seen it as a mysterious symbol. So where does one use this symbol? Is it spiritual or zen kind of symbol?
0
votes
3answers
53 views

Is this usage of 不 before a noun acceptable?

In the first episode of the Chinese-Japanese anime collaboration 一人之下, we see Zhang Chulan (张楚岚) in a classroom at his university. Just prior to this, we see a still of a university building, with a ...
0
votes
2answers
100 views

Looking for the right way to combine concepts of (smart) investment and metadata

in simplified Chinese. 'investment' I believe is 投资 meta 元 as in metadata 元数据 The concept I am looking for in Chinese is 'making a smart investment based on (knowledge from) metadata' I was told by a ...
4
votes
3answers
189 views

Meaning of “不了” in “忘不了/喝不了/…”

I know that 了 after a verb means a completion or termination of a certain action, such as: 吃飽了 (I am) full. 開始了 (It) has started. 不動了 (It) is not moving anymore. But what about 了 ...
0
votes
3answers
82 views

The phrase “Brush Stroke Order”

This is my first post here and I apologise if this isn't quite the right forum for such a question - although I'm hopeful that it is. I'll be happy to edit and refine my question if necessary, or ...
0
votes
2answers
54 views

Why is 是 in this sentence?

Can someone help me understand why 是 is in this sentence? 这件事情到底是解决了 I can't figure out what role it plays, and I think I usually see such a sentence without it. Does it form the passive or ...
0
votes
2answers
75 views

how to say “learn” without involving studying?

All of the versions of 'learn' that people are explaining to me here in Taiwan involve studying (學到,學會) but I often find myself wanting to speak of learning in a way that has nothing to do with ...
1
vote
1answer
32 views

“May you live in interesting times”

I have often heard (and probably repeated) that there is a Chinese curse: "May you live in interesting times." Is there really such a saying in Chinese? I can't think of one, and can't even think how ...
0
votes
1answer
29 views

How to say “One of these” and three other mini phrases?

I'm very glad I found this website. Just a few months ago I've started learning Mandarin Chinese by myself and right now I'm in Sichuan. I try applying my little knowledge in daily life, but it's not ...
14
votes
4answers
2k views

Why is Russia translated to 俄罗斯(E Luo Si)?

The Chinese Wikipedia article describes the name of Russia, and many of its historical Chinese exonyms. 按照俄语发音“Россия”,其名称应翻译为“羅西亚”。元朝时根据蒙古语译为「斡羅思」[b],到清朝初年许多文献中曾称为「羅剎」[c],但在以国家相称时则多译为「鄂羅斯」[d]或「...
4
votes
5answers
247 views

A unified theory of 就 meaning

就 always bothered me. I couldn't (and maybe still can't) get a hold of its meaning. By looking at many examples of the usage I came to realization that 就 marks a process of becoming a subject to or ...
0
votes
2answers
57 views

Is there any compilation/resources/dictionaries on the transformations of how simplified characters came to be?

I had the same question as the OP of What is the story or reason of how 龙 came from 龍? and I like visuals given by Stan. The hardest part for me in Chinese is remembering the strokes of these ...
4
votes
5answers
2k 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? ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

Are there differences in writing between Chinese languages, such as Mandarin and Shanghainese

There are already many questions about the different spoken languages that can be called Chinese. This question on the other hand asks about the written one(s?). Well, to start, is the written ...
0
votes
2answers
88 views

Chinese for “rebirth”

I am translating a text about a man who got divorced and after many days of desperation, he eventually starts accepting his situation and so he totally changes himself and starts a new life and a new ...
1
vote
3answers
57 views

How can I change the icon used for a keyboard input type in Mac

I do a lot of writing in different languages and have keyboard input types set up with hot keys so I switch easily. I'm currently in Taiwan studying Mandarin and added the "traditional" Chinese input ...
2
votes
4answers
179 views

Do native speakers think about compound words as “东西”?

Something that interests me from a linguistic/neurological point of view: Do Chinese native speakers actually thinkg about the parts of compound words that have a completely different meaning from ...
5
votes
2answers
454 views

Hakka song “kam-thung sim”: character approximation and translation required for a part

Background: Searching for songs as exercises of translation from Chinese, I came across kam-thung sim, the Hakka version of 感动天感动地. Unfortunately, there were no characters (well, except for those ...

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