1
vote
2answers
361 views

How do you say “A tight community”

Helo All! I"m trying to figure out a good translation for "a tight community". For example, I'm trying to say "A tight community is not a means of having a good student organization, but the end ...
1
vote
2answers
197 views

How to translate 食客 into English?

食客 were honoured guests living in the houses of kings and princes for free. They had neither property nor rank; and they scarcely ran any errands. They were not even officially employed. They ...
4
votes
4answers
360 views

Refreshing or Rude: addressing an older woman as 小姐

太太,奶奶,大姐,阿姨,女士,and many other variations are commonly used to address older women. 小姐 is used to address young women. Would it be a complement or an insult to address a middle aged or elderly woman as ...
1
vote
1answer
94 views

When to use 这道 for “this kind”

The answer at http://chinese.stackexchange.com/posts/9675/revisions offers "这道菜" to say "this kind of food". This looks like a very useful phrase, which I had not seen before (and if I've heard it, ...
3
votes
2answers
878 views

Cantonese Romanization schemes

The Cantonese romanization scheme that I know is Yale Romanization, which to me makes the most sense and is the easiest to read of any that I've seen. It seems to give a very good idea of how to ...
2
votes
2answers
194 views

What is the difference between 概念 and 观念?

I recently read on jukuu.com “ 它使老的观念向新的观念转变。” This sentence makes sense, but I'm trying to figure out whether it would be much different if I used a term like "概念“ instead of 观念. Is there a clear ...
3
votes
2answers
185 views

Is the phrase “on a scale of 1 to 10” used often if at all?

Just wondering since it does seem to me like a more western phrase, in Google translate it comes out as 上规模的1到10, I'm just wondering if there is a more common way to ask someone to rate a particular ...
4
votes
1answer
108 views

Can 良好 be used as a closing remark?

良好 is translated as be good, or be well in one of my dictionaries. This is a common closing remark in spoken English. Can 良好 be used in the same context in Chinese. i.e. OK, Bye now... Take care, be ...
5
votes
3answers
164 views

Is there a difference between 凡事 and 所有?

Recently, I've been reading a bit of 鲁迅 and I've run into the word 凡事 a number of times. Everytime, I see it translated it seems to mean 所有。 It seems to me that 凡事 is either an older usage or is much ...
3
votes
5answers
484 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 ...
27
votes
5answers
3k views

Can native Chinese speakers distinguish tones in songs?

I already have a hard time distinguishing tones in normal speech. This gets significantly worse when I listen to Chinese songs, since the melody masks tones even further. Yes, I understand that ...
1
vote
2answers
88 views

How to differentiate MacBook Air from MacBook Pro in Chinese?

In Chinese, Macintosh is described as 苹果的电脑, and MacBook series are described as 苹果的笔记本电脑. However, I don't know how to differentiate MacBook Air from MacBook Pro. Apple's Chinese page doesn't ...
6
votes
4answers
765 views

Can I use "我知道“ to say I know some kind of food?

There are kinds of foods, such as malaxiangguo, that people often suspect a foreigner will not know and will not like. I can say "我吃麻辣香锅" (wo chi malaxiangguo). Is that the best thing to say? And I ...
1
vote
2answers
72 views

Translation: confabulation

How is confabulation properly translated into Chinese? Wikipedia doesn't have a corresponding entry. The only dictionary I can find this in, LDC English-Chinese Wordlist, just lists 交谈/闲谈 - which is ...
1
vote
1answer
66 views
1
vote
1answer
148 views

How to translate 武大郎开店 into English?

武大郎 is a legendary short man. He runs a shop; and all of his employees are shorter than him. It characterizes an orgnizational phenomenon. I wonder if there is an English saying that means the same ...
2
votes
4answers
240 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
239 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
1answer
246 views

Cantonese sandhi

In Mandarin, there is limited tone sandhi, mainly about third tones and the tone variations of yi1 (one) and bù (not). By contrast, Min has sandhi rules for all tones, as illustrated by this diagram. ...
3
votes
4answers
686 views

How do I say “I held my head in my hands”

Recently, I was writing about my time at a funeral. I am trying to express the situation that I was overwhelmed by emotion so I put my head in my hands. (I.e. I rested my head on my hands). Is there a ...
1
vote
4answers
455 views

What does 亮黄灯了 mean?

Can someone please tell me what 亮黄灯了 means in this sentence: 我承认,应该是运动量过大,身体*亮黄灯了* And why is the colour yellow (黄) used?
11
votes
10answers
7k views

Tips for pronouncing X vs SH in Mandarin?

I'd like to think my Mandarin pronunciation is generally pretty reasonable, but I often get tripped up with X and SH - for example words like 雪 and 水, or 虾 and 莎. Even with different tones, I find ...
0
votes
4answers
242 views

Can someone please translate this picture for me? Please i need help! [closed]

I have this picture and I know that the last symbol means sentenced, but i don't know what the rest of them are, or even what is the meaning. Please help! :)
3
votes
2answers
70 views

live poultry for sale?

Is there a specific term that is usually used to describe live poultry, or live chickens, or any type of live animal, which is for sale in a market and which the customer takes home alive to butcher ...
1
vote
4answers
136 views

Meaning & Etyomology: 博眼球?

The only meaning of 博眼球 I've been able to come across is the following from a 百度知道 answer: 回头率高,吸引人的意思 but is it really that simple, is that all it means? 'An eyeball-turner?' What does 博 mean ...
1
vote
3answers
118 views

只 zhǐ appropriate use in context?

I am studying 常用漢字 and I ran across the following meanings: 只得 只好 只有 All of which were translated with the same English meaning "can do nothing." What was not given is the context in which one would ...
2
votes
3answers
192 views

Is there a difference between 显得 and 看起来?

Recently, I've been reading a short story writting by 丁玲 and I noticed she often used the term "显得" where I would have said "看起来”。 I'm trying to figure out when I should be using 显得 vs. 看起来. It seems ...
3
votes
2answers
125 views

What is the word for “they/them”?

I apologize for my rudimentary Chinese, but I am having trouble finding the translation for "them/they" in Chinese in regards to an entity (and gender neutral). For example: Does the store sell ...
1
vote
4answers
106 views

Help translating the phrase, “was seen as.”

The sentence I am trying to translate: "Revolution was seen as desperate and dangerous." I am aware of the grammar pattern, sb 把革命视为危险的 for "see as." However, this usage is incorrect because the ...
2
votes
1answer
93 views

Mandarin chinese: syllable pronunciation training

Is there free mp3 resources of all combinations of syllables (1consonnant + 1vowel) in different tones? Here an example of syllables: All Possible Syllables in Mandarin Chinese
2
votes
2answers
96 views

The position of 给

I‘ve notice that sometimes 给 changes its position in the sentece. Look at these examples: • 我发给你一个邮件 • 我给你发一个邮件 Both are correct but what different meaning/shadow do they express?
1
vote
1answer
88 views

How to translate “连环夺宝”, the name of a game from China LotSynergy?

"连环夺宝" is a popular game operated by China Welfare Lottery. It can be seen in this video: http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XMjkyNDczNDI4.html . I've heard it referred to as "Precious Stones" in English, ...
4
votes
1answer
278 views

Explanation usage of 得 and 地 [duplicate]

Can someone explain me exactly when I have to use these two words? They are both pronunced "de", but I found some difficulties understanding why should I use 得 (or shouldn‘t) in some senteceses. 地 , ...
1
vote
1answer
52 views

Hokkien `綴` vs. `共`: compare and contrast

According to my reference, both 綴 (tuè/tè) and 共 (kā) can translate from Hokkien (alias Min Nan) to 跟. What is the difference between the two?
2
votes
1answer
1k views

Tones in Cantonese: 6 or 9?

Wikipedia has a tone contour chart for Cantonese with only 6 tones, but the table just below has 9. In fact, the table states 7=1, 8=3 and 9=6. From a historical point of view, there are 9 tone ...
1
vote
2answers
69 views

does 并未 have to go with a pairing of words?

So, I recently learned that 并未 is a formal way of saying 并没有. However, whenever I see it in writing it is always paired with a two word set. (i.e. 并未解决, 并未提出, 等。 ) Is this a hard and fast rule? I've ...
6
votes
2answers
453 views

If Confucius came back to life today and scribbled a message, could most modern Chinese people understand it?

For example (and I am not sure if this is a good example), if presented the following stone inscription (石鼓文, source, c. 374 B.C.), could most modern Chinese people understand it (even vaguely)? ...
4
votes
2answers
88 views

Tone three sandhi

If there are two third tones in a row, e.g. ni3hao3, the first one is pronounced as a second tone, i.e. ni3hao3=ni2hao3. At least, that's what I was told in a course. What happens with more ...
3
votes
2answers
194 views

The tricky prepositions. . . “in my garden”

I think prepositions are tricky in every language. The other day I was trying to figure out how to write correctly : In my garden there are many fruit-trees. The first sentence I thought of was: ...
3
votes
1answer
347 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? ...
1
vote
1answer
136 views

What is the difference between 星心相印 and 心心相印?

The title is all that is necessary, but the following description can give context. I know the phrase, 「心心相印」means something to the effect of "two hearts beating in unison" which might be said of a ...
8
votes
4answers
220 views

Why 又 is used there instead of 再?

In this dialogue: A: 现在恢复得怎么样了? B: 没问题了,又可以爬山了。 Why is 又 used there and not 再? As far as I know (I might be wrong), both 再 and 又 are used for describing recurring actions, but 又 refers to ...
5
votes
3answers
527 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
380 views

How do you say “mentor” in Chinese?

I've been trying to figure out if Chinese has a similar concept to the idea of "mentor" in english. I know 导师 and 良师 are both options that have been thrown out. But, I'm not sure if they imply the ...
4
votes
3answers
135 views

difference between 伤痕, 伤疤 and 疤痕?

Recently, I read that someone's 额头上有一个伤痕 。 I knew that the sentence literally meant that there was a scar. But then I thought "Why didn't they say "伤疤” or “疤痕”。 All three of these translate to scar ...
3
votes
3answers
252 views

How do you say “A story is set in another place”

Does anyone have an idea of how to translate "This story is set in a small town". I've been looking around but I haven't found a good way to translate "Set in". Thanks again for any help! Cheers, ...
2
votes
1answer
357 views

What does 狗吃连帮 mean?

I heard people say this phrase once or twice, in derogatory tone. It sounds like 狗吃连帮 or 狗吃粮帮. Internet search gives no result, but it didn't sound like some local dialect to me. I heard people say ...
6
votes
7answers
785 views

What's the difference between 对不起, 对不住 and 不好意思

When I was in China, I heard people using 不好意思 to apologize casually. I also heard the expression 对不住 in TV series and movies. Is there any differences?
3
votes
6answers
664 views

What's the difference between 打开 and 开门?

How can I tell when to use 打开 and when to use 开门 in Chinese? For example, in the following sentences: 这扇门打开了 这个书店开门了 Why does the first sentence use 打开 and the latter use 开门? Also, is it ...
2
votes
3answers
523 views

When radicals make words does Chinese convey two layers of meaning all the time?

I can recognize and translate the 215 radicals. Now, I'm told radicals combine with each other and other characters to make words, and that some radicals denote sound for pronunciation of the word. ...

15 30 50 per page