I have read about connectives 也 和 并 与 及 and asked some questions about them but still I'm somewhat not satisfied with my understanding. Let me summarize my knowledge:

1. 与

  • connects: nouns only (old chinese), similar items of abstract and contrasting nature. 天与地, 是与非
  • does not connect: words having YU sounding charactes.
  • etymology: many hands holding something.
  • analogs to:和跟同
  • connotation: "together with" (to sit together with...), used in high speach, ancient/archaic tounge.
  • geography of usage: universal
  • literal or oral: literal mostly

2. 和

  • connects: nouns, pronouns, synonyms, antomyms
  • does not connect: verbs, words having HE sounding charactes.
  • etymology: "a grain + a mouth". Meaningn that something is always a process of connecting food and mouth.
  • analogs to:与跟同
  • connotation: netural
  • geography of usage: universal
  • literal or oral: both

3. 跟

  • connects: nouns, single characters, words, applied to similar items and more often to humans.
  • does not connect: verbs, phrases, words having GEN sounding charactes.
  • etymology: heel of a foot
  • analogs to:和与同
  • connotation: A跟B -> means "A and B" where A is following B "in foot steps". (some disagree with this "following" connotation")
  • geography of usage: northern colloquial
  • literal or oral: oral mostly

4. 同

  • connects: ?
  • does not connect: words having TONG sounding charactes.
  • etymology: Singing while working. Unison, chorus.
  • analogs to:和与跟
  • connotation: A同B -> "A and B" when both are alike, similar.
  • geography of usage: southern colloquial
  • literal or oral: oral mostly

5. 并

  • connects: synonyms verbs
  • does not connect: antomyms?
  • etymology: two human standing next to eachother.
  • analogs to: 竝﹒並﹒并﹒併
  • connotation: A并B, where A and B happen at the same time or close in time progressing from A to B.
  • geography of usage: ?
  • literal or oral: literal mostly

6. 及

  • connects: nouns, verbs, phrases
  • does not connect: ?
  • etymology: a hand grabbing a man
  • analogs to:?
  • connotation: A及B, means A and B with greater emphasis on A. (can anybody explain)?
  • geography of usage: ?
  • literal or oral: completely literal

6.1 乃 or 廼(迺)

  • connects: ?
  • does not connect: ?
  • etymology: 乃 is a dull blown version of 廴 which is a remnant of "a nest" in 廼 where 西 depicts a bird taking a seat in the nest.
  • analogs to: 若乃 (like a series of\stacking on top untill) = 至于 (up to). Now servers as "then" as a consequence of it's "in a serie" connotation.
  • examples: 乃聖乃神 - "And perfect and divine!" Here 乃 stresses layering of attributes.
  • connotation: layering of sticks on top of each over, a series of events, one after another (like sticks in a bird's nest).
  • geography of usage: ?
  • literal or oral: ?

7. 而

  • connects: words (old chinese only), phrases
  • does not connect: ?
  • etymology: hair of a beard.
  • analogs to: 但 but still means "and".
  • connotation: giving a sence of exeeding expectations, moreover kind of "and".
  • geography of usage: ?
  • literal or oral: both


  • connects: In classical chinese 也 connects nouns. In modern - verbs only
  • etymology: controversial some say it's either a snake (the idea "stretch/connection") or umbilica cord(connection to mother), or some utility object on the floor, whence "to be low" connotation originate which you still can trace for characters containing 也 as a radical.
  • usage: In classical chinese a sentence AB也 frequently translates to "A is(equal) B" or "A being(always being) B". This model of 也 as *"a copula particle with function analoguos to modern is being deisputed by some linguists. The best model of a genesis of 也 IMHO is explained in Marco Caboara works.

In short: In classical chinese 也(chi), regardles of it's etymology and true meaning, became a substitute for 啻 since they both had the same reading "chi" but 也 is much easier to write. 啻 had a meaning of "only"/"just"/"alike"/"As" and "to stop" (funny isn't it), so generally we can interpret AB也 as modern ** A是B** but more thorough translation would be "A also B" i.e. A (is) also (being) B. So I hope you see that thingking about 也 as copula "to be" was not a big mistake but "copula-model" does not explain why today we use 也 as "and/with". But "也-also-model" does hint on the origins of modern 也.

  • connotation: "also" almost perfect translation for modern and ALSO :) classical chinese. Other translations: "also equal", "is also like that", "alike", "is the same as", just "as" when we treat "as" as also. Example: "He as me(AB也) is good at chinese" :).


  • connects: numbers only ex.: 一千零一夜 1000 and 1 night.


  • geography of usage: Cantonese


  • connects: antonyms, parts of a complex number. ex.: 二十又五, 一又三分之二


  • connotation: also


  • connects: ?
  • does not connect: ?
  • etymology: Primitive pictograph 且. An ancesteral tablet placed on the altar or a depiction of a penis as in 祖 (spirit+penis = spirit of Fathers). So the sence of "following from ancestors to you and so on. The line of following = lineage.
  • analogs to: 将, in ancient times 且 was used as a future tense marker.
  • connotation: almost a perfect analog of an english word "further" which is close to meaning of "moreover" as a stressing of some futher things to come.
  • usage:

    1. 而且 - "but still" or "yet further"
    2. 尚且 - "further more"
    3. 且不说 - "further no mention"
    4. 且看 - "(let's) further look (at)" or "let's consider"
    5. 且慢 - "further wait (a minute)"
  • geography of usage: ?

  • literal or oral: literal as a standalone character only in classical chinese.

14.兼 - ?

  • connects: ?
  • does not connect: ?
  • etymology: "2 cereal twigs + one hand". Meaning "holding two things in one hand, to lump together, combine
  • analogs to:?
  • connotation: A兼B , A and B all held together and treated as one object.
  • geography of usage: ?
  • literal or oral: liteal

I'm trying to understand the "AND" meaning of those HanZi.

Help! Can you fill in the blanks in the table above? Can you explain usage rules with simple but precise words?

Relevance Questions:

Do 和 and 及 refer to two different kinds of “ands?”

  • see grammars,e。g。"实用现代汉语语法"studychinese.ru/grammar/9 ,2 more:**以及** , **同**,iciba: 连 (表示联合关系, 与“和” 相同) and; as well as; with I am together with you. 我同你在一起。
    – user6065
    Commented May 11, 2016 at 14:01
  • Note: The conclusions about those characters are not completely right, for keeping the original intension of the question, they are not deleted, so you should not use them as a guide. e.g. 与 is still a common character nowadays, and it can connect words which is its typical usage, likes 我与你一起去 equals 我和你一起去.
    – sfy
    Commented May 11, 2016 at 16:05
  • all that is needed is looking at grammars and dictionaries, in addition web searches of corresponding topic(s) will yield comparisons of meanings and usages, articles on the topic and forum discussions at other sites, also jukuu will supply an unlimited number of examples
    – user6065
    Commented May 12, 2016 at 11:34
  • user6065, you are right ofcourse, but different books stress different things and use different wording in their explanations. Some explanations are good in one respect and bad in other. I'm trying to gather all here under one roof.
    – coobit
    Commented May 12, 2016 at 11:41
  • to gather under one roof, why not copy grammars and dictionaries, all the information is readily available, it seems other users supposed to do the gathering, 也 is an adverb (so it modifies verbs),so are 又,亦,且 (also conj.),兼 is a verb
    – user6065
    Commented May 12, 2016 at 12:40

3 Answers 3


CCG (2nd ed.) 22.1: Conjunctions that link words or phrases

22.1.1: The 4 conjunctions

There are 4 conjunctions that join nouns or nominal expressions. These conjunctions, which all mean 'and', may often be used interchangeably, the difference between them being one of style:

  • 和 [neutral]
  • 跟 [northern colloquial]
  • 同 [southern colloquial]
  • 与 [formal]

For example:

  • 爸爸和妈妈都出去了。
  • 城市跟农村我都住过。
  • 你同我都是南方人。

If there are more than two nominal items, the conjunction comes between the last two, the rest being separated by dun-commas /、/...

  • 哥哥、姐姐、妹妹和弟弟
  • 物理、化学、数学和哲学

22.1.2: 而 'also'

This is often used to join two adjectives or adjectival expressions, which are either both affirmative or an affirmative followed by a negative. In the former case, the two adjectives must be of similar length, either both monosyllabic or both disyllabic. In the latter case, the affirmative adjective is always monosyllabic and the negative disyllabic with 不 'not' as the first syllable, in a rhythmic, antithetical sequence:

  • 这个人坚定而勇敢。
  • 他是个认真而严谨的科学家。
  • 这篇文章长而空。
  • 长而不空。艳而不俗。
  • 这个西瓜大而不甜。

22.1.3: 并 'also'

This can link two predicate verbs that are transitive and share the same object:

  • 会上讨论并通过了这项提案。
  • 大家都同意并拥护我的提议。

The lexical conjunctions cited above are the standard connectives for the three word categories of nouns, adjectives and verbs. However, as we shall see from the clausal conjunctions below ,they have disyllabic variants: e.g. 以及 for 和, 而且 for 而, and 并且 for 并.


Nice summary. Some additions and comments:

  • "并" and "及" are largely literal and you don't normally use them in oral expressions
  • "而" is normally not used in the sense of "and" in modern Chinese. It usually denotes "but", "yet".
  • I'd say "和" "与" and "跟" are largely interchangeable in daily usage, with "与" being slightly more literal.
  • "跟" is not really "vulgar". It's just another way to express "and" without necessarily any special/baser meaning on its own. And the meaning of "following" is not really invoked when it's used to mean "and".
  • But what is the difference between "并" and "及" ? When can't they be used interchangebly?
    – coobit
    Commented May 11, 2016 at 13:54
  • "使用现代汉语语法";"及"和"以及"都是表示并列关系的连词。(一)"及"可以连接名词(短语)。"并"、"并且"都是表示递进关系的连词,可以连接两个动词(短语),也可以连接分句,see e.g. jukuu for many examples
    – user6065
    Commented May 11, 2016 at 15:17
  • 表示并列关系的连词。和 too posess meaning "to stand side by side". What's so special about 并?
    – coobit
    Commented May 11, 2016 at 18:28
  • "和"连接名词、代词、名词性词组,"并且",也可以说成"并"连接动词、词组,助动词,分句,此外,把双音节连词如"以及"、"并且"的讨论忽略了似乎没有道理
    – user6065
    Commented May 11, 2016 at 22:33
  • Got it! Thanks. I've added 并 connotation info to OP.
    – coobit
    Commented May 12, 2016 at 13:12

I'm trying to understand the "AND" meaning of those . . .

in the context of "and", as a conjunction, there're roughly about 21 chinese characters:


to have a full, complete answer is, well; beyond my ability; here're some of my suggestions to your query.

for "and" in numeric expression, you must use 零, not others.

e.g. one thousand and one nights ⋯> 一千零一夜

very formal, might change with 及; example from 國語辭典

e.g. 歡迎董事長暨夫人蒞臨指導, 中華兒童暨家庭扶助基金會

in literary chinese﹒若﹒猶及也﹒與也; not used as "and" in modern time.

e.g. 天官書⋯無德受殃﹒若亡

若 is roughly "及至於"

e.g. 燕策⋯今涇陽君若高陵君﹒先于燕趙

here﹒若 is exactly as "and"


in literary chinese﹒乃 = 迺﹒及也﹒且也﹒又也; i think that in modern time, we do not use 乃, 迺 as "and"

e.g. 儒林列傳⋯欲求能治尚書者﹒天下無有﹒乃聞伏生能治﹒欲召之

here﹒乃者﹒及也﹒and 也; the event "聞伏生能治﹒欲召之" is happened later than the event "欲求能治尚書者﹒天下無有"

e.g. 漢書⋯自古而患之久矣﹒何況迺復其南方萬里之蠻乎😾

here﹒乃者﹒又也﹒and 也; furthermore (何況), and there're barbarian in the distant south.

in literary chinese﹒且者﹒而也﹒又也﹒並也; nowadays, we used "而且", "並且" as "and"

example from 國語辭典

e.g. 老榕樹既高且大

e.g. 魚麗⋯君子有酒﹒旨且多

e.g. 僖公二十四年⋯以志吾過﹒且旌善人

in literary chinese, 也 is one of the most used particles. however, i've difficult to find that it's used as "and" in literatures of yore; i would suggest it's commonly used as "also", "too".

this one, translations such as "both", "together"; are better than "and"

in literary chinese﹒而者﹒與也﹒及也;

e.g. 昭公二十五年⋯哀樂而樂哀﹒皆喪心也

e.g. 論語⋯學而時習之﹒不亦說乎

e.g. 美而廉

it's the name of a restaurant in hong kong, should be translated to delicious (美) and (而) cheap (廉)

this one, i prefer translation "together" most of the time, though it could be used as "and"

e.g. 滕王閣序⋯落霞與孤鶩齊飛﹒秋水共長天一色

in literary chinese﹒亦者﹒又也﹒且也

e.g. 文公七年⋯先君何罪﹒其嗣亦何罪

e.g. 宣公十四年⋯楚子使申舟聘于齊﹒曰﹒無假道于宋﹒亦使公子馮聘于晉﹒不假道于鄭

in literary chinese﹒及者﹒與也﹒乃也﹒又也

e.g. 湯誓⋯時日曷喪﹒予及汝皆亡

e.g. 刺客列傳⋯非獨政能也﹒及其姊亦烈女也


based on my reading experience, 竝 (u+7add) is used more in literatures of yore. nowadays, we use 並, or 并, 併.

roughly, 竝 -->並; 國語辭典 stated "并" 通 "併", "并" 通 "並"; so, i put this four characters in group.

e.g. 我支持這項決定﹒并加以宣導

e.g. 漢書⋯徙代王於清河﹒是為剛王﹒並前在代凡立四十年薨

well, i'm tired to find examples for the others five: 又﹒與﹒和﹒同﹒連

let me to stop here, have fun :)

  • 零 is absolutely unexpected for me :) Thanks.
    – coobit
    Commented May 12, 2016 at 11:39
  • there're a few more, but it's hard to find a suitable example to explain it :) Commented May 12, 2016 at 11:45
  • 零 does not mean "and", but in Chinese people say "two hundred zero three" where an English speaker might say "two hundred and three".
    – KWeiss
    Commented May 12, 2016 at 12:53
  • Funny how 零 is a "digit holder" but can be sometimes translated as "and" ex.:1000 and 1 night.
    – coobit
    Commented May 12, 2016 at 13:09
  • 零 in numeric expression is a special case. considering number such as 1001, 108. in english, we would not say, and/or write "one thousand one", "one hundred eight"; we always say, write "one thousand and one", "one hundred and eight". then, in chinese, we would say, write "一千零一", "一百零八" i agree that 零 doesn't mean "and" in normal circumstance. so, may i suggest, eh, 零 has the same usage as "and" in numeric expression? therefore, to explain chinese characters as conjunction "and", 零 is a valid entry in this context. Commented May 12, 2016 at 13:35

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