1

The Chinese Grammar Wiki writes:

Note that 难道 can only be used for rhetorical questions which could be answered with yes or no, and generally end with 吗.

And gives examples such as:

今天是我的生日,难道你不知道

However, none of the examples on 标准教程HSK4上 page 105 include 吗, such as:

怎么有买了这么多饼干和巧克力?难道你不减肥了?

From the examples I've seen, I'm getting the impression that the 吗 at the end can be included or omitted without changing the meaning.

Question: Can we omit the 吗 at the end of a 难道 rhetorical question?

5

Yes, definitely you can. However, in some situations, with 吗 it sounds more natural and less rude. And sometimes, with 吗 it might sound less criticizing, such as your first example 今天是我的生日,难道你不知道吗?

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1

"今天是我的生日,难道你不知道吗?" (Today is my birthday, could it be you don't know that?) is a rhetorical question

Omitting "吗" and write "今天是我的生日,难道你不知道?" or "难道你不知道今天是我的生日?" is still perfectly acceptable as a rhetorical question, as long as there's a question mark at the end.

Even without "难道" , "今天是我的生日,你不知道吗?" can still be a rhetorical question if you are expected to know. And you are expected to answer "of course I know"

If you are not expected to know, then it is a real question. I really am asking "is it true that you don't know?" and your answer can be "yes, I know" or "no, I don't"

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