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I cannot understand in this sentence the various functions of the components.

德国人不习惯他们旁边围满了人

I understood the meaning ("Germans are not used to be surrounded by a lot of people", non-literally) but I can't well understand the structure.

Up to 他们旁边 it's fine: "their side". Now there's 围, and I can't understand if it's here as a verb or as another noun. In this last case, it would be determined by 他们旁边, and we could maybe translate it as "their immediate surroundings", since 旁边 gives me the idea of "very close". At this point though, 满 must be the verb, but Pleco says that, as a verb, you can use it only to express the meaning of "to fill" (unlike 充满, that actually would work better since it expresses "be filled with"). But if this is the case, its object should be the object that it fills, like a cup. 人 has no sense as an object in this case.

Maybe 满 is a complement for 围? Can be used as a complement? And why the use of 了?

  • why not repeat the Chinese text in the question, since it cannot be copied from the title (using mouse copy function), 习惯他们旁边围满了人:围 enclose; surround,满filled; full of; packed,here functions as complement of result, thus literally "not used to their nearby position (旁边) being packed with people" of course one might wonder whether 围 could not be replaced by 周围, – user6065 Nov 10 '17 at 22:48
  • I didn't know the title could not be copied (yep, I'm a freshman here). Just solved. So you say that 满 can be used as a complement? This makes everything more clear then, and thus 人 is the object of 围. – mast3rsensei Nov 10 '17 at 22:55
  • ✓ some would say,object of 围满 – user6065 Nov 10 '17 at 23:01
  • 旁 is a noun of locality or 方位词 and 旁边 is a compound noun of locality,Chinese grammars devote a special section to them, e.g. "实用现代汉语语法" 第二编,第一章,名词 has 4 sections (节)of which the fourth says 方位词、处所词、时间词, and the subsection on 方位词 says (一)单纯方位词:东、南、西、北、上、下、前、后、左、右、里、外、内、中、间、 。1。单纯方位词较少单独使用,一般只在下列几种情况下才可以单独用。。。(二)合成方位词(also applies to 处所、时间)1。合成方位词的构成。单纯方位词前边加上"以"或"之"或者后边加上"边"、"面"、"头"就构成合成方位词,表示方位、处所或时间。"边"、"面"、"头"要读轻声。不同的方位词与"以"、"边"、等组合的情况不完全相同。详见下表("+"表示能组合,"-"表示不能组合)last column covers 旁:only one + :边。 – user6065 Nov 11 '17 at 0:03
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德国人不习惯他们旁边围满了人。 Germans are not used to having a lot of people around them.

(whoever wrote this has never been to the Oktoberfest or any Bierfest)

A Chinese sentence does not have to conform to the grammatical standards of English.

德国人
Germans
不习惯
not used to
他们旁边围
their surroundings
满了人。
full people

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