2

I've found that 长 (zhang, as a verb) is always translated as 'to grow'. However There are cases where 长 is much better translated with 'to look like'. Here are two examples:

  • 我长得像我爸爸. (I look like my father.)
  • 他长什么样? (What does he look like?)

While the first sentence could be read as 'I grew into looking like my father', such an interpretation can not be made for the second sentence. 'What does he grow like?' seems too far fetched to be reasonable, especially because it is in present tense, so it can't be read as 'What did he grow up to look like today?'.

I checked multiple sources (namely: pleco, leo.org, mdbg.net, dict.naver.com, dictionary.writtenchinese.com) and they all translate it with 'to grow'.

  • 1
    Hint: 像 is the character which means likeness, and your second sentence is an abbreviation; the full sentence is 他長得像甚麼樣子. – dROOOze May 3 at 16:55
  • 1
    I get the angle of the question, but "bodily growth outcome" = "appearance" doesn't feel that far-fetching, either. – NS.X. May 3 at 18:00
2

It's true; a lot of sources don't mention looks. I'm not sure why. But, here is one that does:

Wiktionary

(of a person) to look; to appear (e.g. beautiful)

Also if you have Pleco, you can check out Tuttle, their definition includes:

grow to be, look

A lot of resources are more likely to put this definition under 长得.

MDBG

to look (pretty, the same etc)

This is likely to be because you'd be hard-pressed to find 长 by itself talking about looks with a 得.

| improve this answer | |
0

It is 像 that means "look like".

我长得像我爸爸.

I grow to be like my dad.

| improve this answer | |

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.