Aren't you both also Americans?
Nǐmen dōu ye bù shì měi guó rén ma?

Is it correct? I am comfortable with this word order. Is it acceptable?

  • preferred word order: 也都 see comment #2 of chinese.stackexchange.com/questions/30098/… confirmed by iciba's 9 examples for 也都,only 3 for 都也 ("not" missing ?)
    – user6065
    Jun 11, 2018 at 6:16
  • 1
    of course "you both" could be translated as "你们两个人" or even 你们俩(人) (to specify 2, lost with 都)
    – user6065
    Jun 11, 2018 at 6:41

3 Answers 3



Nǐmén (dōu) yě búshì měiguórén ma? Nǐmén yě (dōu) búshì měiguórén ma?

Are (both/all of) you also not Americans?

In this case, you're inquiring your targets whether they are also not Americans, just like you or some other people.


Nǐmén bu/bú/bù yě (dōu) shì měiguórén ma?

Aren't you (both/all) also Americans?

This is a rhetorical question to make a point that you're under the impression that both/all your targets are also Americans, like you or some other people. There are three possible ways to pronounce the 不 with bu being the most casual tone and bù being the most serious.

Gist: 也 is "also", 都 is "both/all". 不也都 signals that the question is rhetorical. Depending on the exact sentence you wish to construct, you should omit 也 ("also") or 都 ("both/all").

As per the comments by user6065, it's also correct to use the following rhetorical questions if you're addressing exactly two people.

你俩不也都是美国人吗? Nǐliǎ ...

你们俩不也都是美国人吗? Nǐménliǎ ...

你们两个不也都是美国人吗? Nǐmén liǎng'ge ...

你们两人不也都是美国人吗? Nǐmén liǎngrén ...

你们两个人不也都是美国人吗? Nǐmén liǎng'gè rén ...

These five rhetorical questions all share the meaning of "Aren't you two also both Americans?"

  • users note that 你们两个人 etc. was edited into answer 18 min after appearing in comment #2
    – user6065
    Jun 11, 2018 at 7:09
  • @user6065 You have just been given credit.
    – Frenzy Li
    Jun 11, 2018 at 7:15
  • @Isabel I have made a non-trivial edit to the answer.
    – Frenzy Li
    Jun 11, 2018 at 7:18

Nǐmen dōu ye bù shì měi guó rén ma? (你们都也不是美国人吗?)

The correct order is 你们(两个)不也(都)是美国人吗?

你们不也是美国人吗?or 你们两个不也是美国人吗?, without 都, sounds more natural to me.

  • It is optional to omit 都 in all three cases here, but it doesn't make the sentence more natural or less.
    – Frenzy Li
    Jun 11, 2018 at 6:29
  • @FrenzyLi I don't know. To me, 我觉得 你们不也是美国人吗?or 你们两个不也是美国人吗 说起来更顺一些. Of course, it's not about right or wrong. Anyways, this is just opinion-based.
    – dan
    Jun 11, 2018 at 6:41
  • Thanks.. but if I keep bushi together and place ye before it, is it still.. correct :( ?? Like I can?
    – Isabel
    Jun 11, 2018 at 6:42
  • @Isabel unfortunately, 也不是 still doesn't fit for this sentence. 你们也不是美国人吗? doesn't sound right.
    – dan
    Jun 11, 2018 at 6:47
  • @Isabel I just realized 你们也不是美国人吗 is actually a correct sentence, but it means differently. It means you guys are not Americans as well? Well, 你们不也是美国人吗 means "aren't you both also Americans?". So, you see the difference?
    – dan
    Jun 11, 2018 at 13:31

"Aren't you both also Americans." is ambiguous.

1.(I know you both have Chinese passports,) aren't you both also Americans?

2.(I'm American,) aren't you two both also Americans?

  • “我知道你们都有中国的护照,你们两个难道不也还是美国人吗?” is a contrived sentence that doesn't make logical sense. To make this complete, you have to say the following instead: “我是美国人,我知道你们都有中国的护照,你们两个难道不也还是美国人吗?” In all, context is important.
    – Frenzy Li
    Jun 12, 2018 at 2:34
  • I know, my Chinese friends could not understand that the English could be ambiguous. That does not fit Chinese logic at all. They said, I don't understand the English correctly!
    – Pedroski
    Jun 12, 2018 at 10:12
  • Yeah, exactly...
    – Frenzy Li
    Jun 12, 2018 at 10:14

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