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In my textbook there's an exercise in which I must decide if a sentence is correct. There's this: 在客厅里坐着一位老人. In the answers they say it's incorrect because "zai4" shouldn't be there. Is it really a mistake? I always thought "zai4" was optional in sentences like (zai4) + somewhere + li3/ shang4/ xia4/ zuo3 bian/ you4 bian/ qian2/ hou4.

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    在客厅里坐着一位老人 is fine in day-to-day usage. – dan Mar 1 at 12:55
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在客厅里坐着一位老人.

The 在 is redundant because of the 里, as 客厅里 already says "In the living room..." and adding the 在 would be saying "in the living room" twice.

So, 在客厅里坐着一位老人 would be saying -- "At the living room in which sits an old man"

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    在客厅坐着一位老人 is uncomfortable to me. Somehow strange... – tsh Mar 1 at 14:55
  • How about 在树上坐着一只老猴子? – Wayne Cheah Mar 1 at 15:29
  • 上 here sound the replacement of 里 in original example. – tsh Mar 1 at 15:39
  • Yes, you are right. I'll edict my answer accordingly. – Wayne Cheah Mar 1 at 16:27

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