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Founding Engineer at FutureAdvisor.


Jun
30
comment What does 非也 mean?
也 is not a modal particle; rather, it is a copula (similar to the word 'to be' in English or 是 in Modern Chinese) that appears at the end of a sentence in Classical Chinese. 非 means "not so", so 非也 as a whole means "it is not so".
Jun
21
comment “醡” and “炸” in “醡醬麵” and “炸醬麵”
This does not provide an answer to the question. To critique or request clarification from an author, leave a comment below their post - you can always comment on your own posts, and once you have sufficient reputation you will be able to comment on any post.
Jun
17
comment 角/毛 (10 cents) for money: why?
I thought it might be relevant to note that in Cantonese, 毫 is still used as the colloquial term for 10 cents.
Jun
3
comment Using variants of 那
Refer to the answers in this question for more information regarding the nèi pronunciation. The zdict.net link also provides the explanation of its derivation as a contraction of nà yī (那一).
May
12
comment Do 之 and 的 come from the same word?
@zsf222 不好意思我的中文没我的英语那么好。我写的就是表达"之/的"的情况与"父母/爸妈"的有点差别。"的"的现代发音很有可能保留了"之"的古代发音,但我 链接的文章 论证了:虽然"父母"古代发音类似"爸妈"现代发音,但是"爸妈"发音不是保留古代"父母"发音的,而是由于每一代的婴儿最初的语音通常是[m]和[a],紧接着[b]、‌​[p]、[n]、[d]、[t]等等,每一代的父母会将[ma]、[ba]那些声音当作妈妈和爸爸的意思。
May
10
comment Do 之 and 的 come from the same word?
@zsf222 the explanation for 爸/妈 is a bit more complex and doesn't completely correspond to this. This paper has more details; from the conclusion: "Children universally produce the sounds [m] and [a] earlier than other sounds, followed by [b], [p], [n], [d] and [t], and parents almost universally assign the meanings ‘mother’ and ‘father’ to the child’s first identifiable noises." 爸/妈 is not so much an archaic pronunciation of 父/母, but rather a pronunciation that keeps being recreated at every generation.
May
2
comment What is the morphology or etymology of the word 列车?
Another book I would recommend regarding Chinese word formation is The Chinese Lexicon: A Comprehensive Survey by Yip Po-Ching. It doesn't go into linguistic theory as much so it's easier to follow for people who are not versed in linguistics.
May
2
comment What's the general word for cheese?
起司 is used in Taiwan, not Hong Kong.
Apr
30
comment Why is (是) shi4 dropped in this sentence:“我很好”?
@Ming That's fair. :) I suppose I meant "simply" as "most concisely".
Apr
28
comment How to say, “Did you hold your cellphone close to your face?” in Cantonese?
Oops, I meant zyu6 instead of zyu3. It's too late to edit my original comment unfortunately.
Apr
28
comment Why is (是) shi4 dropped in this sentence:“我很好”?
@NS.X. I wouldn't necessarily say that this question is a duplicate of that one. While the answer to that question helps to answer this one, these two questions are fundamentally different. This question asks why 是 is not needed; the other question asks what word in the sentence is playing the role of the verb and how does it behave.
Apr
28
comment How to say, “Did you hold your cellphone close to your face?” in Cantonese?
@user3410 I think you meant to address your question to @abcs, but I can answer this anyway. In Cantonese, the continuous aspect is expressed using the zyu3 verb suffix. This is indeed cognate with Mandarin's zhe suffix, written as 著 or 着. In Cantonese though, 著/着 is typically pronounced with the literary pronunciation zoek6. In order to indicate that the zyu3 pronunciation is intended, 住 is often written instead.
Apr
25
comment What is the difference between 依然 and 仍然?
@user1551 In this case I would more accurately describe 依然 as a predicate that consists of a verb-object compound. 依 is the verb and 然 is the object. The reason why 仍然 is not possible is because 仍 is not a verb. In Classical Chinese, 然 can be a standalone word meaning "such, so", roughly corresponding to modern 这样 or 那样. 然 has fossilized in Modern Chinese and is now restricted to set words, the etymology of many of which can be traced back to this usage.
Apr
22
comment How to say, “Did you hold your cellphone close to your face?” in Cantonese?
The character for lik1 is 搦. It's a nasal-stop alternant of ling1 拎.
Apr
21
comment What's the pronunciation of 不在乎
See this previous answer for more information about pinyin not including tone changes (also known as tone sandhi): chinese.stackexchange.com/a/2110/166
Mar
21
comment Alternative name for moon cakes?
@user58955 That's a great example. The Wikipedia article for the dish also indicates that it comes from the Teochew word for soy sauce. I don't know Teochew, but Cantonese uses a similar word for soy sauce: 豉油 (sih yàuh).
Mar
20
comment Does the beta like character (as in 陳, 附 and many more) in Chinese have a special meaning?
There is a tendency to analyze characters as pictograms when it isn't necessarily warranted. Most Chinese characters are actually phono-semantic compounds rather than pictograms. For instance, 附 should simply be analyzed as a phono-semantic compound with the components 阝 and 付 (i.e., it specifies a word that sounds similar to 付 with a meaning related to 阜), rather than a pictographic compound of 阝, 亻, and 寸.
Mar
19
comment Does the beta like character (as in 陳, 附 and many more) in Chinese have a special meaning?
@user1551 I removed the "mandarin" flag accordingly.
Mar
14
comment Simplified/Traditional Chinese characters commonalities with Japanese Kanji
There's also more information here too: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shinjitai
Mar
14
comment When do you use 唄 instead of 吧 to end a sentence?
I wasn't the one who downvoted you, but I suspect it's because your answer didn't really answer the question. This site isn't limited to only standard Mandarin, and there will often be questions regarding how people use the language, even when such usages are non-standard.