In terms of the appearance of something, there a lot of HSK5 words that are very similar. Here are four and the definitions I've found thus far.

  • 表面 - 1. surface (tangible, 方面 is intangible), 2. outside, appearance (表现 is more behavioural, subjective, the way something comes across)

  • 形式 - n. outer appearance, form, shape

  • 样式 - n. type, style

  • 方式 - n. way, manner, style, pattern

Is there a clear way to distinguish between 形式,样式 and 方式? They all seem very close to each other and am not sure how to separate their usages.

1 Answer 1


According to dictionary owned by Ministry of Education in Taiwan.

形式 can mean:


(Format of literature.)


(The way of how abstract or concrete things show directly or constitution.)

樣式 can mean:


(How does things look like, The way it show directly or constitution.)

方式 can mean:


(The way of how to do things.)

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