I've seen "敦厚老实", where the two adjectives are simply put together, but I've also seen things like "x而x", "x又x" and "又x又x".

What do these mean, are there any other ways, and which are the most common?


1 Answer 1


(1.) In [(X) (Y)] , "" = "and" in English


(快)(準) = (quick) and (accurate)

(強)(有力)=(strong) and (forceful)

(簡)(清)= (simple) and (clear)

(2.) The [(X)(Y)] structure functions like [(X) and (Y)] in English,

When (X) and (Y) are adjectives, the subject is being (X)and (Y) at the same time.


(快)(準) = (fast) and (accurate)

(強)(有力)=(strong) and (forceful)

(簡單)(清楚)= (simple) and (clear)

When (X) and (Y) are verbs, the two actions could happen at the same time or one following the other.


(哭)(笑) = (crying) and (laughing)

(打)(鬧) = (punching) and (yelling)

(3.) [(X)(Y)] is just [(X)()(Y) ] omitted the first

In this form, (X) and (Y) are usually two characters words. Since [(X) (Y)] is similar but much more popular, [(X)(Y)] is kind of redundant, not many people would use it.

I've seen "敦厚老实", where the two adjectives are simply put together

In this form, both adjectives have to be two characters words.


快捷準確 (fast and accurate)

簡單清楚 (simple and clear)

強勁有力 (strong and forceful)

** You can use multiple four characters adjective clauses on one subject


他的演說 簡單清楚, 強勁有力 ( his speech is simple and clear, strong and forceful)

  • both A and B,A as well as B: 既 A 且 (又, 亦,也) B,e。g。既盲且聋,既醉又饱,既高且大; 既快又好; 既坚持原则, 又灵活运用 (from bkrs)
    – user6065
    Aug 13, 2016 at 8:45
  • 既= already;且= also -- [既盲且聋= already blind, also deaf], [既高且大= already tell, also big].
    – Tang Ho
    Aug 13, 2016 at 9:35
  • Thanks for your thorough answer. In informal, spoken Chinese with my friends, which way should I use?
    – Henny
    Aug 13, 2016 at 15:15
  • (1.) is outright wrong. 而 implies a meaning "and yet", as in 快而准(quick and YET accurate), because when being fast, some may worry if inaccurate. “而” removes such a worry.
    – user13501
    Aug 13, 2016 at 17:42
  • 而= 而且 (also / and) there's no " and yet" meaning in it. For " and yet" meaning, it is "雖... 卻" for example 雖快卻準
    – Tang Ho
    Aug 14, 2016 at 0:07

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