3,063 reputation
820
bio website peterthenelson.com
location United States
age 26
visits member for 2 years, 4 months
seen 2 mins ago

I lived in China for a couple years. My Chinese isn't too bad, but I'm always trying to get better. Special interests in:

  • Etymology
  • Historical phonology
  • Winning arguments in other languages

3h
comment Which non-sinitic languages contributed to the wordstock of common chinese words before 1800?
Almost all of these are native Sinitic words.
3h
revised Old Mandarin vs. Mandarin Chinese?
added 45 characters in body
Oct
22
comment How do you say “I know that I don't know”?
FYI for readers: This actually means "To know when you know and know when you do not--this is knowledge!". Also, it's fun to say fast.
Oct
13
comment how do you say in 文言 “I became an eunuch because of the sex and drugs and tang-poems, not because i love the king and his rotten offspring”?
This is the best translation request I've ever seen.
Oct
10
comment how did victor mair came up to the conclusion that the reading of 道 in old chinese was *taolu ?
I believe you misunderstood the claim made. The claim was that 道路 was originally a monomorphemic word and it was clipped to be 道.
Oct
10
comment how did victor mair came up to the conclusion that the reading of 道 in old chinese was *taolu ?
Can you provide a source for that claim? I can only find claims of 道 > *lûʔ or *lûh
Oct
2
comment Reading Chinese without speaking it
You could also learn how to read English without knowing how the words are pronounced (e.g., some profoundly deaf people do that). Sounds like a terrible idea though.
Sep
22
comment When to use 这道 for “this kind”
If you want to say "This kind of dish" rather than "this dish", you can say 这种菜
Sep
14
answered If Confucius came back to life today and scribbled a message, could most modern Chinese people understand it?
Sep
3
comment How to translate skepticism?
I recommend you modify your question. Asking about the translation of skepticism (and how "good" that translation is) is totally on topic (and a good question). Your final paragraph is off-topic and is flame-bait. This is not the appropriate forum (or really a forum at all!) to argue about the evidence for religions and such.
Aug
14
comment Why is the 会 in 会计 pronounced kuài?
@user54609 See edit.
Aug
14
revised Why is the 会 in 会计 pronounced kuài?
Adding more historical pronunciation info as requested in comments
Aug
13
awarded  Informed
Aug
13
answered Why is the 会 in 会计 pronounced kuài?
Jul
27
comment Is there a single word for “無用”
Do you mean "single character"? 无用 is a single word.
Jul
16
comment Are there transitive/及物动词 or intransitive/不及物动词 verbs in Chinese?
@minerals 比賽 is definitely a direct object in that sentence. You're reasoning about it wrong--"direct object" is a syntactic property, not a semantic one. Although it often is the case that a direct object is "a thing that is acted upon", that need not be the case. In order for it to be an indirect object, it would really need to be part of a preposition phrase or some similar syntactic construct (e.g., "double" objects).
Jul
8
comment Why does the word 萌 mean “cute”?
@KyeWShi It's Chinese internet slang that comes from Japanese internet slang.
Jul
2
awarded  Curious
Jun
28
comment Hong Kong Cantonese variations
No. See wikipedia for details on what changes have taken place. They're very 'natural' changes, and furthermore (as noted in the article), they actually make communication with English speakers harder (e.g., n-l merger).
Jun
28
comment Toneless Sinetic Dialects/Topolects
@YangMuye That's probably the closest. In Shanghainese, there's a two-way phonemic "tone" contrast, but the tone of the first character in a word determines the realization for the entire word. Because of this, you could describe Shanghainese as a "pitch accent" language rather than a (contour) tonal one.