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想, 觉得,以为 all mean to think. But is there any subtle difference between the three or tense difference? When would you be more likely to use them in context?

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    users recommend;search site for Q&A about 认为/以为 ,dictionaries, e.g. bkrs: to think to believe to suppose to wish to want to miss (feel wistful about the absence of sb or sth),(思索) think; ponder:想办法 think of a way; try to find a solution 想问题 think over a problem(推测; 认为) suppose; reckon; consider; think: 你想会下雨吗? Do you think it will rain? 觉得 to think to feel(发生某种感觉) feel; be aware; sense: 一点不觉得累 not feel tired at all (认为) think; feel; find: 我觉得不必事事都告诉他。 I don't think we have to tell him everything. 他觉得这个计划不妥当。 He felt the plan to be unwise. – user6065 Jan 23 '18 at 15:02
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[我想 + statement] the statement is what I think is true

[我觉得 + statement] the statement is what I feel is true

[我以为 + statement] the statement is what I thought was true

[我認为 + statement] the statement is what I concluded to be true

[我相信 + statement] the statement is what I believe to be true

Examples:

他不会来了 = I think he won't come

觉得他不会来了 = I think (feel) he won't come

以为他不会来了 = I thought he wouldn't come

認为他不会来了 = I think (concluded) he wouldn't come

相信他不会来了 = I think (believe) he wouldn't come

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以为 is mostly used for:

  • wrongly thought/believed

like: 我以为你死了! I thought you were dead!

觉得 is closer to:

  • feel/think (of an opinion)

like: 你这样说,我觉得非常不靠谱 What you said is totally unreasonable.

想 is close to the English:

  • think

like: 我想这个案子肯定有猫腻。 There's something fishy about this case.

In Chinese the idea of English 'think' is hardly ever used - even in English it's mostly just a buffer or fluff; if anything 觉得 is the closest.

  • 想 is close to "to think about " in the English, and close to "miss". 以为 is mostly used for: wrongly thought/believed or a modest mode. 以为 usually is used in writing. – XL _At_Here_There Jan 24 '18 at 2:49

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