4
votes
1answer
168 views

How to tell when one word starts and another word ends?

I am doing some work with scanning Chinese text with my computer and I have run into a problem that I do not have with other languages. Because there are no spaces between characters, I cannot tell ...
0
votes
1answer
100 views

Something I came across in a movie 你说它真它就真说它假

I came across this in a Chinese television show, which I would like some help to translate. 你说它真它就真,说它假它就假,它是真真假假假假真真谁也弄不明白. The first part I do understand. It means: "If you say it is real then it ...
5
votes
3answers
352 views

Help me understand why 我艹你 means i f*** you?

This might seem as an unserious question but i was really stunned the first time I had an argument with a Chinese guy in League of Legends and he said: "我艹你". my first thought ofcourse was WTF!?! I ...
3
votes
3answers
99 views

How do you say “tape it” as in, “taping a package”?

Google translate says "tape" is 胶带, and "tape it" is 用胶带. But to me, that's just saying "use tape". Is there a verb for the act of taping something? For example, how would you say "could you tape ...
1
vote
1answer
82 views

Classical Chinese question. 古文。 Meaning of 起予?

I'm translating a classical Chinese text into English and the phrase "起予“ 让我头痛。 Please, help. This is the full classical text (from the Confucian analects) : 子夏問曰:「『巧笑倩兮, 美目盼兮, 素以為絢兮。』何謂也? 子曰: ...
3
votes
1answer
115 views

Character for “□” 西南官话 kuai³¹: “~着走, 两脚尖向内地走”

□ is the official place-marker for unknown or unwritable characters. Sometimes though there are appropriate characters for the mistakenly believed unwritable or nonexistent. Here's my conundrum: ...
3
votes
7answers
221 views

和 or 或? When to use “and”s and “or”s

A very short, isolated question: No hopes or dreams In English, it's very clear that this is "neither hopes nor dreams" i.e. there are no hopes, and also no dreams. In Chinese, which word, 和 or ...
2
votes
2answers
117 views

Would you use 为 or 给 (or neither) as a dedication?

I'm wondering how to write a dedication (in a book or on a memorial, for example). In English I would inscribe "For my friend." I like the somewhat ambiguous and all-encompassing meaning of this ...
2
votes
2answers
98 views

Is the frequency of written characters much different from spoken ones?

I'm referring to frequency tables such as this one:. To take one example, it lists words like 商 and 业 in the top 500 characters and words like 买 and 卖 in the second 500 characters. That's true even ...
3
votes
2answers
695 views

What is the correct Chinese expression for “Only child”?

I noticed lot of compound words using "只" for "only", but what is the correct way to say "only child" (a child with no brothers, nor sisters)? Thanks!
1
vote
3answers
92 views

Does “sticker” have a transliteration?

I hear people use the English loan word sticker a lot in Chinese, perhaps even more than 粘粘, 贴贴 or what have you. Although a loan word, sticker prounced in Chinese mainly sounds like a ...
2
votes
2answers
83 views

How might 'pidgin' have represented a Chinese pronunciation of 'business'?

[Etymonline:] pidgin (n.) 1876, from pigeon English (1859), the reduced form of the language used in China for communication with Europeans, from pigeon (1826), itself a pidgin word, ...
0
votes
3answers
141 views

What is the difference between 响,声,and 音

What is the difference between 响,声,and 音. When I check the English translation, it says 响: echo, sound, noise, make a sound, to sound, to ring, loud, classifier for noises 声: sound, voice, tone, ...
3
votes
2answers
112 views

插,刺,捅,扎 what are the differences?

I looked up a dictionary and 插,刺,捅,扎 are all translated as "sting". Any difference between them? For example some are more casual while others are not...
7
votes
1answer
227 views

Saying “you too”

What's the proper way to respond a sendoff like 祝周末愉快 while repeating the same wish to the sender? In English, we might say something like "Thanks, you too." Is there a shorter or more appropriate ...
1
vote
1answer
95 views

Translate “feature” as a verb to Chinese

How would one translate "feature" as verb to Chinese? e.g This album features all the new artist from NYC. or This frying pan features all new design allows the user to cook in their sleep ..
0
votes
2answers
116 views

How to translate “穷则变,变则通,通则久” to English?

Is there any elegant and succinct way to translate “穷则变,变则通,通则久” to English? I felt the translation could be quite lengthy when I tried to explain every single character. Thank you very much.
1
vote
2answers
103 views

Can the dialectical final “ue” be written in pinyin “ue”?

The final ue can be found in some Chinese dialects/topolects. It seems to also be written properly as uɛ if I'm not mistaken. The Wikipedia page for Sichuanese Mandarin lists an example: uɛ ...
1
vote
3answers
244 views

Number of population whose actual mother tongue is Mandarin?

It is, falsely, assumed that Mandarin is the mother tongue of all Chinese speakers (here we can understand Mandarin as 普通话/国语/华语). The mother tongue would be the language that someone learned at home ...
0
votes
3answers
81 views

What is the difference between 实质 and 本质?

I looked up a dictionary and 实质 and 本质 are all translated as "essence" or "core". Anyone who can explain the difference?
-1
votes
1answer
64 views

Dizi poem on my dizi flute please [closed]

Could someone please translate the text carved on my dizi? Please, thank you, with all my heart
2
votes
5answers
207 views

Translating Chinese

I have this exchange student next to me and last week I saw a friend of hers write something on her door and they seemed to have quite a lot of fun about it. Can someone translate it or at least say ...
0
votes
2answers
71 views

Puzzling negation in a beginner's grammar book

From Jimmy Du's Essential Chinese, p. 46: I understand everything you say. 你说的我都懂。 I don't understand all they say. 他们说的我不是都懂。 Why is 不是 there in the second example, and not simply 不? I ...
0
votes
1answer
63 views

What is the difference in use between 迷失, 迷路, 走失 and 迷途?

All of the words are defined as "to lose one's way".
1
vote
2answers
103 views

Translation: Chinese relative names + numerals into English

Working on some translations but always come across things like: 李二嫂 王二叔 三奶奶 张幺伯儿 For 李二嫂 I think I came up with something like: The Li family's second eldest son's wife, ...
1
vote
2answers
60 views

Difference between 新式 and 新型

I looked up a dictionary and 新式 and 新型 are all translated as "new type". but when I look up a Chinese-to-Chinese dictionary it said that 新式 is 新的样式 and 新型 is 新的类型. and both seem to be different but ...
0
votes
4answers
211 views

Is Chinese imprecise? [closed]

I admit that I am a beginner with Chinese, thus in no position to judge the language. However, I got the feeling that it's "vague" when I tried to understand its logic, by examining a Chinese text and ...
1
vote
3answers
89 views

Difference between 谦虚 and 虚心?

In my Chinese textbook, 谦虚好学 is used, and 虚心求教 is used as well. They both mean modest, so when should I use each one?
0
votes
2answers
67 views

What is the correct saying?

In Zhuang Zi 5.2 we read: 聞之曰:『鑑明則塵垢不止,止則不明也。久與賢人處,則無過。』 Lin Yutang translation: "Now I have heard that if a mirror is perfectly bright, dust will not collect on it, and that if it does, the mirror ...
1
vote
2answers
115 views

When do I use the state complement?

Recently I have been confused about when I am to use the state complement. For example, if I want to say "In general I read the messages quickly", which sentence should I write? 我一般很快地看留言 我一般看留言看得很快 ...
3
votes
3answers
153 views

Are 耳光 and 巴掌 the same?

There is this sentence in this story 沙漠里的朋友: 今天我的好朋友打了我一巴掌. Here, can I replace 巴掌 with 耳光?
2
votes
2answers
138 views

Most common/well known translation (transliteration) of “pizza” in Chinese?

Results for pizza in Chinese are numerous 比乍 披莎 比萨 匹萨 批萨 皮萨 披薩 I'm never sure which to use. Is there a most common/most well-known translation or transliteration for Pizza in Chinese?
5
votes
5answers
246 views

Difference: 些 and 有的

A while ago I learned that some was 些 or 一些, but now I've also learned that there is another way to say some, 有的. My teacher didn't go into the difference in class and I forgot to ask her afterwards. ...
4
votes
3answers
64 views

Is 察颜观色 or 察言观色 the correct term to use?

I have found citations from ancient texts backing both interpretations on the Internet while searching for the correct form of the term: 清·唐甄《潜书·食难》:“吾老矣,岂能复俯首于他人之宇下,察颜观色,以求无拂于人,吾不能也。 However, ...
8
votes
2answers
190 views

Etymology of 我 - How did 我's radicals 手 and 戈 create the meaning of 我?

Tell me, please, how do 我's radicals 手 and 戈 create the meaning of 我 (ie: I)? I know that 戈's pictogram (象形) means a rake-like tool or weapon, borrowed for sound to mean "me" (note 'Oracle bone ...
6
votes
3answers
126 views

What's the Chinese word for “bare-metal” (computer programming)?

Bare-Metal Programming Bare-metal programming is a term for programming that operates without various layers of abstraction or, as some experts describe it, "without an operating system supporting ...
1
vote
3answers
221 views

What is the etymology of 餵?

I was surprised to find out about the character 餵 (wei4, 喂) because it doesn't seem to have a meaning other than an expression to answer the telephone. Since the telephone was only invented in the ...
2
votes
1answer
51 views

What is the difference (and english translation) between 风浪 and 涌浪?

As far as I can tell, 风浪 is waves created by wind, and 涌浪 would be waves created by tidal movements or surge waves. However, this is a very bulky way to describe them. What is the English for this ...
2
votes
3answers
74 views

Where can I find people to communicate in Chinese to learn and improve it? [closed]

I am a beginner in Chinese language. I have taken the Chinese - level 1 course on edX [MandarinX]. I did learn the basics which I could use when I travel and go to a restaurant while I am there as a ...
1
vote
4answers
286 views

How to say “newbie” or “noob” in Chinese?

What would be the most accurate term for newbie or noob, namely one that also conveys a dash of sarcasm and a bit of a condescending tone? I guess it should also be slang. 新来的 or 新手 are pretty ...
2
votes
1answer
69 views

Can you decipher what this seal stamp says and means? [closed]

I am told that this seal stamp character(s) are from the Chinese dialect, though I got it from my Japanese grandmother. She had it made and gave it to me. I was told it says 'strong and smart' and ...
3
votes
4answers
135 views

How to parse “就算世界与我为敌”?

I'm looking at the phrase: "就算世界与我为敌" and I understand that the gist of it is: "Even against the whole world" But, I don't fully understand how to properly parse it. In particular, the words: 与 - ...
3
votes
2answers
53 views

What is the correct style/format when including Chinese translations in academic articles?

For instance, I would like to write the following sentence about China: "Many songs were written to praise the Chinese Communist Party and the 'Motherland' ". By "Motherland", I mean 祖国 ( zuguo / ...
5
votes
3answers
209 views

How to type these old and rare Chinese characters?

I've tried to google these old Chinese characters using their closest approximations but still haven't found out any. I want to find these characters so that I can copy and paste them instead of ...
3
votes
4answers
125 views

Does an existential sentence with “有” only carry a non-specific noun?

Sentence 1: 桌子上有一本作业 Sentence 2: 桌子上有我的作业 I think both sentences are correct. However, I just watched a grammar video which mentioned the existential sentence with "有" can only carry a non-specific ...
1
vote
1answer
73 views

What is the origin of 抠门儿?

I understand that 抠门儿 is an informal phrase meaning dingy. But can't figure out how these three Chinese words combined together could be used to describe a person being dingy (extremely reluctant to ...
3
votes
3answers
147 views

美国意大利黑帮 - Expressing location without 在?

Yesterday in class I was correcting the mistakes in my translation together with my teacher. He gave us an article about the mafia in America and the Lufthansa heist at John F. Kennedy International ...
0
votes
2answers
91 views

Please help me translate what is carved on my dizi flute. Thank you! [closed]

I tried handwriting it in Google translate, but struggle to copy the characters. Please, help me! Thank you very much in advance!! http://s019.radikal.ru/i635/1511/0e/38a93e447481.jpg
-1
votes
2answers
161 views

Difference between 盖,修,建

We probably all know these three (盖,修,建) can be used when we want to say "build a house" like: 盖房子 建房子 修房子 But is there any difference between them? (if possible please also explain the ...
2
votes
2answers
97 views

Difference between 公告 and 通知?

通知 and 公告 both mean a notification from the authority. But any difference? Could somebody help me figure out the difference with some concrete examples?

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