When discussing the differences between 的·地·得 usage I've only know the following pronunciation:


I can't find a lot to back this up. But, I did find one Tianya forum thread that that mentions:


I also found this comment on a thread on 19lou


The idea is the same, but the order is different.



the correct pronunciation when talking about Mandarin? If not, how is the 的·得·地 phenomenon vocalized in Modern Standard Mandarin?

  • 1
    In Mandarin, when used as particle, these characters have the same pronouciation.
    – fefe
    Nov 30, 2018 at 7:54
  • I’m not asking about when used as partials, I’m asking about when they are referred to as a group.
    – Mou某
    Nov 30, 2018 at 7:57
  • unclear about what you are asking. Wouldn't a consultation to a dictionary help?
    – dan
    Nov 30, 2018 at 10:12
  • It seems like s/he wants to know how to read the sentence like "“的地得”用法的区分" when 的地得 appear as a group.
    – xbh
    Dec 1, 2018 at 7:25
  • @xbh Yes, exactly. I've always heard it read as "die、di、de," but I'm thinking that it's not a normal thing.
    – Mou某
    Dec 1, 2018 at 11:17

3 Answers 3


I think I misunderstood what the original poster meant, here is an update.

In distinguishing 的地得 in Mandarin, you would say

dē dì dé

In Mandarin, in practice, they all have the same pronunciation de in first tone. They are used differently though, 地 is used after 状语 and before 动词,like 高兴地说,得 is used after 动词,like 跳得高,and 的 is used for other cases.

Indeed, it is nice to distinguish those in order not to cause ambiguity. For example


There is a good article in zhihu which people could look at.

There is one more point I would like to make, in some of the articles you referred to, it is claimed that people should stick to their dialects instead of trying to learn the obscure Mandarin. I disagree with this point.

I come from Shaanxi province and we do have out dialect, but I grew up speaking Mandarin with my parents and classmates, because the people in our area come from different parts of China and speak different dialects. What dialects do you require people to learn? I assume not a single dialect could persuade everyone to study it. In this case, we of could Mandarin!

Some people were saying, I do not want to learn to speak another language! I would like to stick to my own language! Well, first, dialects are called dialects because they are not language, they are dialects! Second, you have the right to stick to your own dialect, but it would eventually prevent you from communicating with people from other parts of China who speak Mandarin in order to communicate!

So, please learn Mandarin first and then, if you have the kind of interest and time, learn other dialects.

Language is first a tool for communication, then a culture, so are dialects.

  • I don't think this is the answer that OP needed. It seems like s/he wants to know how to read the sentence like "“的地得”用法的区分" when 的地得 appear as a group.
    – xbh
    Dec 1, 2018 at 7:25
  • @xbh You are probably right, I have updated my answer, thanks for reminding.
    – zyy
    Dec 1, 2018 at 14:59

There are different pronunciations of the characters 的, 得 and 地, but of course you know that and you can look them up in the dictionary.

I don't know if there is a special way of pronouncing these characters when talking about their grammar, and I don't know if there's a standard way of saying them together, like die, di, de.

But when I talked about the grammar of the different »de«, I usually just say »地理的地«, »你的的的« and »得到的得« or something similar. I'm sure are better or more standardized examples, but this is only to show you what I mean.


Base on your question and your clarification by your comments:

There are two ways that I often use (or hear people use) when talked about this.

One way is to pronounce them differently. The pronunciation would be "de1 di4 de2" for "的地得". There is often used when all of they appear together, like in a phrase "“的地得”的用法". You may treat it as it is the reading of the "word/phrase" "的地得".

The other way is use a "descriptive way" to call the characters: "白勺的" (bai2 shao2 de1) for 的, "土也地" (tu2 ye3 de1) for 地, and "双人得" (shuang1 ren2 de1) for 得. This is often used when they do not appear together and need to be distinguished. Like: 这里应该用"白勺的",不是"土也地"。(In written form, the sentence usually looks like: 这里应该用“的”,不是“地”)

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