2

I am reading a textbook and I already understand that 还 (hai) is used to indicate continuation or in addition to something, but for the following sentence it is not exactly clear. When I read the following sentence I see three meanings:

快下雪了,我还以为今天是好天气

  1. It will snow soon, I also thought today is good weather.
  2. It will snow soon, I thought today is good weather.
  3. It will snow soon, I still thought today is good weather.

How does "hai" function in this sentence and why is the translation correct for .2 but not .1?

Thank You.

5

It implies that I had been thinking today is a good day, until I noticed that it would snow soon. means 本来 here, it indicates a continuation of original thought. For no. 3, I wouldn't say it's wrong, but it sounds very Chinglish to me.

It couldn't be "also", because 快下雪 means bad weather, which is opposite to good weather.

2

I think in this case 还 doesn't indicate the continuation or in addion to. It denotes this sense defined in dictionaries:

(表示对某件事物没想到如此, 而居然如此)(something goes unlike one's original thought):

He really is resourceful.

他还真有办法。

So,

快下雪了,我还以为今天是好天气

The sentence is saying that my original thought was today would be good weather, but now it will snow soon(which is against my original thought).

Note that my interpretation is not a word for word translation. My intention is to explain the meaning of the sentence.

Your translation 2 seems fine because the past tense thought in English can express one's original thought in this case. Still and also are not appropriate because they denote different meanings instead of the sense addressed above.

0

You always need the context to interpret correctly. Maybe the person likes snow? Nothing like a beautiful snowy day!

快下雪了,
It's gonna snow soon,
我还以为今天是好天气。
I still reckon today's weather is great.

还以为: still believe

  • 1
    Doesn't 以为 carry the idea that it was a mistaken belief? – Becky 李蓓 Nov 19 at 1:04
  • Often, yes, but not always. 吾深以为然。= 我认为是这样。 – Pedroski Nov 20 at 2:30

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