4
votes
2answers
314 views

Hokkien pronunciation of `白头偕老`

白头偕老 is a set expression in Mandarin, meaning to get old together, in a loose translation. I found it in a Hokkien song called 牵阮的手 (Mandarin 牵我的手, English While you hold my hand). In the linked ...
3
votes
2answers
502 views

differences between: 过来, 起来, 下来

i encountered this multiple choice question: 这件事情说__________简单,做__________难 Where among the choices there are: 过来,起来,下来。 I always thought that their meaning was the same, but in this case the right ...
6
votes
4answers
510 views

The origin of 鸡贼

I speak Mandarin Chinese, but it is the first time that I stumbled upon the word 鸡贼. According to 百度百科 (Baidu wiki), it means being stingy. The wiki page also says that it comes from the Beijing ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

How to use jyutping as an input method on windows 8.1

Is there a way to use Jyutping as the input method on Windows 8.1?
3
votes
3answers
87 views

洗尘: why is a welcome banquet “washing dust”?

洗尘 refers to the traditional Chinese custom of holding a banquet to welcome visitors from afar. However, the literal translation is "to wash dust", which has nothing to do with eating, and I'm also ...
3
votes
1answer
61 views

What kind of food is 漢巴德? (from 官場現形記)

In the Qing dynasty novel 官場現形記, there is this passage: 三荷包接過看時,只見上面開的是:清牛湯、炙鰣魚、冰蠶阿、丁灣羊肉、漢巴德、牛排、凍豬腳、橙子冰忌廉、澳洲翠鳥雞、龜仔蘆筍、生菜英腿、加利蛋飯、白浪布丁(10300620)、濱格、豬古辣冰忌廉、葡萄乾、香蕉、咖啡。另外幾樣酒是:勃蘭地、魏司格、紅酒、巴德、香檳,外帶甜水、鹹水。 ...
0
votes
4answers
115 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’ ...
1
vote
7answers
284 views

Learning/remembering Chinese

I lived in China for a few months and picked up quite a bit of Mandarin. Now that I've moved back to the US, I have forgotten the Chinese I knew and spoke while there. Other than actually living where ...
5
votes
2answers
382 views

How can I improve the speed of my spoken Chinese?

I'm currently trying to learn '听妈妈的话' on SingChineseSongs, and I'm having trouble keeping up with the fast parts. I also have trouble trying to speak terribly fast in Mandarin anyway. Does anyone ...
34
votes
9answers
5k views

How many characters do I need to learn?

How many Chinese characters would I generally need to learn to be able to handle most text in typical every day circumstances? How many would be required to be considered fluent? Are there any good ...
0
votes
1answer
78 views

What is the meaning of 变现?

I have this sentence, but I'm not sure what '变现‘ means. I think it's 'assets', but baidu has 'realize' and 'liqidate'. Is '变现‘ an abbreviation for a longer phrase? 三是租赁行业,利用虚假身份证明,骗取汽车租赁公司汽车进行倒卖变现; ...
4
votes
2answers
63 views

Learning written forms of dialects

I've looked for this question on the site but can't seem to find it. I'm interested in learning Chinese, well, Cantonese specifically, and I want to focus on both the written and spoken components. ...
3
votes
4answers
615 views

德行:moral integrity or disgusting?

The question is quite simple, how it is possible that 德行 means two completely opposite things? And when facing this character, how can I know what it means?
0
votes
1answer
29 views

Fast dictionary lookups while reading text

I am looking for a program for google drive (or for a PC, perhaps a word plugin or something like grammarly), so that I can highlight chinese text and have a bubble show up with a dictionary ...
5
votes
4answers
322 views

written characters: yuē vs rì

I have some troubles in distinguishing written characters 曰 yuē (to speak) and 日 rì (sun). Although they singularly look different on computers (maybe yuē look a bit wider, while rì is taller), I find ...
2
votes
4answers
106 views

Email salutations for mother / father

Wikipedia lists many honorifics for one's own family, but I don't see any for one's own (living) mother or father. How would an adult write the equivalent of "Dear Mom" or "Dear Dad" in an email? Does ...
2
votes
2answers
208 views

Is this a correct usage of “來日方長”?

I want to say: You still have a long way to go, wish you have a memorable secondary school career And here's my translation to Chinese: 來日方長, 希望你有個難忘的中學生涯 I'm wondering if it is correct to ...
6
votes
3answers
71 views

Different kinds of writing paper

What is the suggested pattern on paper to learn handwriting? On the web, I've found many kind of paper, such as those named 九宫格 jiǔgōnggé, 米字格 mǐzìgé, 田字格 tiánzìgé, etc. I've got a book of chinese ...
3
votes
4answers
243 views

Meaning of 泡­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­

I first encountered this word in the brand of a kid's drink, O泡. When I looked it up I saw that it meant something like "bubble", and was (ironically for the name of a drink) the classifier for ...
1
vote
3answers
82 views

Synonyms of (不会)少块肉?

I'm quite fond of the phrase 少块肉, as in 又不会少块肉 or 能少块肉吗?. What synonyms of 少块肉 exist in Chinese?
2
votes
1answer
116 views

What does “大开大合” mean?

I checked this out, but I couldn't really understand the meaning behind it. 形容文思跌盪,放得開,收得攏。 Does it mean good introduction, and good conclusion or something similar?
3
votes
2answers
69 views

How to say “That looks delicious”

In company, or at someone's house, how might I say "That dish looks delicious?" or "That looks good"? My inclination is to say 那看起来好吃, or maybe 那看地好吃, but both seem like too much of a direct ...
1
vote
4answers
66 views

Correct/natural way to say “在我的咖啡可以加糖吗?”

I'm wodering about the correct, or natural, way to say "could you please add some sugar to my coffee?" My unnatural-sounding way would be 在我的咖啡可以加糖吗, but I feel like a Chinese speaker is unlikely to ...
1
vote
1answer
67 views

written characters: bèi vs jiàn

I have two books displaying different meannings for characters that look the same to me: What is the difference (if any) among the character for "bèi" (shell, money) and "jiàn" (to see)?
1
vote
1answer
54 views

Comparing intensifiers

There are a lot of intensifier in Chinese, like 很,真,挺,非常,相当,极为 ,太,and recently I found out about 蛮. So how can I use them effectively? In particular I want to compare the differences in degree of ...
1
vote
1answer
49 views

Measure words for music

I'm aware of the construct: 一首歌曲。 However, what's the difference between the following 声音 constructs? 一张音乐 一曲音乐 一段音乐
2
votes
1answer
39 views

Alternative notations for Cantonese tones

What is the list of diacritics used to denote the seven Cantonese tones (in pinyin or similar notation)? Is there a standard (or even, more common) convention?
2
votes
1answer
65 views

Writing direction on seals

I am experimenting with an online seal generator, the text I have entered is 一千五百 and I have noticed that the characters go first from top right to bottom right, then from bottom left to top left. Is ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

When should I say 你多大 or 你几岁 when asking age? [duplicate]

When should I say 你多大 or 你几岁 when asking age? Is one more formal than the other? are there any other alternatives, too?
2
votes
2answers
33 views

Cantonese Pronunciation of 户珥 (Hur)

Hur (Ex. 17:12) in the Bible is translated as 户珥. Does anybody know for sure how to pronounce 户珥 in Cantonese? 珥 has two variants (Jyutping) nei6 餌, 鈮, 膩 and ji6 二, 樲, 潩 I just wonder ...
1
vote
2answers
64 views

解 Read as Jiai?

from《四川方言词典》: 解 jiai3 Originally, I just figured it was a topolectical reading but then I found this: “解”的准确读音是“jiai” ...
2
votes
7answers
155 views

What's the difference between 载体 and 媒介?

They both mean medium, so they are probably the same. Are they?
4
votes
3answers
179 views

The two pronunciations of 粘

粘 can be read as either "nian" or "zhan", but in both way it can be translated as "sticky", so what is the difference? In other words what should I take in mind, when reading a text , in order to ...
3
votes
1answer
117 views

What's the Mandarin equivalent of the Hardcore History podcast?

So I'm looking for an very interesting and in-depth history podcast, in Mandarin, for native speakers. It's doesn't have to be about Chinese history, or any particular place or period. Any ...
1
vote
2answers
57 views

的 with nouns which classify other nouns

Should the particle 的 be omitted among nouns that refer to other nouns, such as phrases like "the plot of the film", "the head of a giraffe", etc.? Thanks!
0
votes
2answers
58 views

Chinese/English/Pinyin Books For Young Adult Readers

I'm looking for some medium level Chinese books to read. Most of the books I can find in Chinese are aimed at more fluent speakers or for the very beginners but I'd like somewhere in between. Ideally ...
2
votes
1answer
57 views

What Possible Pronunciations of 也 exist in Suzhou Dialect?

I was looking at old Kunqu opera the other day and was interested by the fact that the singers seemed to be pronouncing 也 as "yi" instead of "ye", for example in ...
1
vote
1answer
137 views

What Does Unicode 8.0 Mean For Chinese?

Was reading Unicode 8.0 Brings 7,716 New Characters Including 36 New Emoji and 5 Skin Modifiers on iClarified, the article also mentioned: 5,771 new ideographs for Chinese, Japanese, and Korean ...
5
votes
1answer
100 views
0
votes
2answers
69 views

Two contrasts between 文 and 武, culture and war

There are two sayings available on-line, each with various explanations. One is: 文无第一 武无第二 (in culture there is no first, in war there is no second) And one is: 文无第二武无第一 (in culture there is no ...
4
votes
6answers
367 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。 Thanks!
0
votes
1answer
209 views

I am trying to decipher what type of tea I have in this canister

I received this tea as a gift and was told it was green tea, but it doesn't taste or smell like green tea. When I try to match the characters up to chinese characters, it doesn't seem to match any of ...
2
votes
3answers
115 views

Why do some Chinese characters have multiple simplified variants?

According to Unihan database some Chinese characters have multiple simplified variants. For example the Chinese character 鍾 have 2 simplified variants: 钟 and 锺 How it could happen? What is the ...
1
vote
4answers
89 views

phrase for “It happened just as you finished talking about it”

I was pointing at a thundercloud and saying that lightning may strike, and my Chinese friend said a 4-syllable phrase that meant that it happened just as I finished talking about it. Do you know this ...
3
votes
3answers
312 views

When did the usage of “N” to indicate some unspecified quantity come up?

I have heard a number of Cantonese speakers use N (pronounced like the English letter) to designate some sort of unspecified quantity, for instance: 我 N 年前去过。(Approximately "I went there some ...
1
vote
1answer
38 views

I cannot understand the subject exacly of this phrase (DL used in romanization) [closed]

Wo shi 2002 nian nian de (this above, I understand, is a date of birth) Yinwei wo bu tai dong yingwen Baoqian wo zhi kan de dong DL San ju (A person showed for me with "DL" and never see this ...
1
vote
3answers
86 views

What's the best way to improve Chinese after mastering the fundamentals?

I think to learn a language including Chinese, you would need to first learn the fundamentals, such as the vocabulary, pronunciation and grammar. After that, native speakers go their own way to ...
3
votes
2answers
87 views

Pronunciation Of 佛 in 四川话

The 1986 edition of《四川方言词典》has the following entry: 乐山的大佛——老石人 Lo2 san1 ni1 da4 fu3——nao3 si2 ren2 乐山大佛距今已有一千多年历史, 所以是“老石人”。谐“老实人”。 ▷你以为他是~嗦? 他才阴倒不老实。 佛 is given the ...
0
votes
2answers
82 views

Is it appropriate to use 喂 by text?

喂 is used to answer the phone, but is it accepted over text? If not, is there an alternative to 你好 that's in common use (informally, like "hi", "hey", or "yo" in English). Is 嗨 widely accepted in ...
0
votes
1answer
53 views

What should I call a capacitive touchscreen stylus in Standard Chinese?

I'm in China and would like to buy a stylus for the tablet I aquired a week ago. I tried to explain to several stalls at a secondhand electonics market in Guangzhou today what I needed and nobody ...

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