Hot answers tagged language-learning
I personally believe that every character has its function in the sentence, but not all characters have a "translatable" meaning. Many characters, when they are added to the sentence, don't change the literal meaning of the sentence, but may create an emphasis or introduce a certain emotion, and there is no English equivalent to this phenomenon. Maybe that's ...
http://translate.google.com/#zh-CN/en/%E7%AD%9B%E9%80%89 It's a more sophisticated word than 过滤, which we usually use for filter. 过滤 mean filtering out unwanted substances, like filtering coffee. 筛选 is more for computer filtering.
I found the same situation, living in China for quite some time, and unlike some other people who have answered, I understand exactly what you're asking. It was quite annoying to try to learn new words when the native speaker just tells you the meaning of 3 characters together and doesn't know or can't explain each character's meaning. I think the answer is ...
There are times when a character is inserted for emphasis. At such times, it can be said that the character in question has no ADDITIONAL emphasis. An example is given in the following: 太: Meaning in 灰太狼 太 is the character with "no meaning" even though it has a "standalone" meaning of "too.'
Actually it's true that every character have their own meaning. But many of foreigner can't understand every character without merge into sentence. So, probably they would just answer it NO MEANING. But as a person who are very linguistic, they can answer what it mean and completely answer what it's mean. For foreigner, even they know it can mean what, but ...
到 is OK. You could also use 至. 到 is more colloquial. In many cases they are interchangeable, for example: 从古到今/从古至今（from ancient times to the present）, 直到此刻/直至此刻（up to now）. But you could only say 自始至终（from the beginning to the end），从这到那（from here to there） because 自始至终 and 从这到那 are kinda like set phrases.
if you want to listen to separated 聲母(initial consonant) and 韻母(simple vowel), I would suggest this swf from here https://www.mdnkids.com/BoPoMo/BoPoMo.swf This material is made by 國語日報 from Taiwan. Just click those symbols (left 16 are vowels, right 21 are consonant) and you can listen to it. The tone of Taiwan Mandarin is a little bit different from that ...
You might come across the phrase 虛詞 which literally means "empty phrase" but refers to function words. I've heard people describe them as "meaningless" especially function words in classical texts but of course they have important grammatical functions. As for lexical terms, each character had a well defined meaning in Old Chinese but nowadays many of them ...
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