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野心的 is what I "Ambitious" means in google translate. Is this right? If not can someone let me know how it is actually written?

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Not a native speaker but I've been studying Chinese over 10 years. 野心 seems to me to be a bit too strong, it can be used for wild ambition / careerism. 雄心 is another word that means ambition, I think it would be fine. But there is another alternative that I think could also be appropriate: 雄心壮志.

You can have a look what Google translate makes of these terms.

(More comments, added 2021-07-04): For this question we run into a typical problem faced by translators: synonyms. Synonyms are different words whose meanings are very close or identical. However synonyms often have a different "vibe" or energy. This is true in Chinese and also in English.

雄心壮志 is a clearly more verbose / "wordy" than 雄心. Maybe it sounds a bit more poetical or literary. It shows a larger vocabulary. You can get a feel for the meaning it conveys, by looking at the meaning of each individual character.

雄 (xióng): grand/imposing/mighty
心 (xīn): heart
壮 (zhuàng): strong/magnificent
志 (zhì): aspiration/ambition; the will

Some of these characters have multiple meanings, for instance 雄 also means "male" (as opposed to female).

壮志 means a great (or noble) goal (or objective, or aspiration)

The other answers also give good options worth considering; and they're proposed by native speakers:
雄心萬丈
宏图远志
壮志凌云

These all seem to be fine.

However please be aware that some of these characters can be written differently depending on whether traditional characters or simplified characters are used. I advise you to think about which type of characters you prefer. For instance, 壮 in 雄心壮志 is written 壯 in traditional characters.

Next question: how to choose, among all these options? Maybe you could do some research and look up the meanings of each individual character. And then you can see which you like the best. Maybe pay for one or two lessons with a Chinese teacher and ask them to go through these words and characters, and so you'll get a better basis for making your choice.

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  • Thank you for the response bro. Quick question though. I used google translate to see what these terms come to mean and they all mean "Ambition" what makes these different characters mean the same thing? Like would you say that there is any difference between 雄心 and 雄心壮志 ?
    – Jay
    Jul 3 '21 at 11:06
  • @Jay I've added more info to my answer; hope this helps Jul 4 '21 at 16:04
  • I appreciate you bro. I just have a question about the simplified and traditional characters. I see how you said how 壮 in 雄心壮志 is written 壯 in traditional characters. And, 雄心壮志 is actually the tattoo I was thinking of getting. Since you said, 壯 is a traditional character in this specific statement, It still has the same meaning right? also, is all the other characters in that statement traditional as well? or it it only just 壯.
    – Jay
    Jul 6 '21 at 9:23
  • @Jay In general many characters are written the same; using traditional or simplified characters, these characters do not change. In 雄心壮志, three of the characters (the 1st, 2nd and 4th) are like that. There is no change in meaning when writing in traditional or in simplified characters; just a slight change of vibe/energy. A bit like the choice of a font. // speaking of fonts, there are many different writing styles for Chinese characters. Using Regular script is probably a safe bet. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Regular_script Jul 6 '21 at 10:53
  • That makes a lot of sense, thank you bro. Quick question though, as you said, does regular script include 壮 or 壯 ?
    – Jay
    Jul 7 '21 at 11:37
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雄心萬丈 is a common idiom, and it does mean 'Having an ambitious heart'

On the other hand, 野心的 is an adjective. 野心/ 雄心 (Ambition) would make a better tattoo

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  • Hey what's up bro. I appreciate the response. However, I just have a quick question about this. What would you say the difference between 野心的 , 野心 , and 雄心 of saying ambition is?
    – Jay
    Jul 3 '21 at 11:01
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    @Jay 野心 - the ambition to fulfill desire; 雄心 - the ambition to overcome challenges. Japan's ambition of conquering China was a 野心; American's ambition of sending people to the moon and back was a 雄心
    – Tang Ho
    Jul 3 '21 at 12:12
  • Oh okay that makes sense. So I see that there are meanings behind certain ways of saying ambition. The type of ambition I am looking for is the type that simply means like to be very determined and work really hard at what I want to do in life career wise. Since you said that 野心 means the ambition to fulfill desire, would you say that matches my description the best? or is there a better way to say what I explained.
    – Jay
    Jul 4 '21 at 5:21
  • @Jay See the two examples I gave, you can see 野心 came from desire and it could lead to aggression and confrontation; meanwhile, 雄心 is about determination and pride. so, 雄心萬丈, 雄心壮志 and 雄圖大志 or even just 雄心 or 壮志 would fit your description
    – Tang Ho
    Jul 4 '21 at 5:44
  • Thank you very much for informing me on this topic because it really interests me. I now understand the meaning behind each of those ways of expressing ambition. I just have one more question. I am now curious on the difference in meaning behind 雄心萬丈, 雄心壮志, 雄圖大志, and 壮志 are.
    – Jay
    Jul 4 '21 at 8:46
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Oh no, 野心 decribes bad guys ,not good ones. You can use "宏图远志" or “壮志凌云”.

let's see some classical examples:

  1. 羊舌食我初生之時,叔姬視之,及堂,聞其啼聲而還,曰:其聲、豺狼之聲也,野心無親。(论衡·本性)
豺狼之聲:sound of wolf and jackal 
野心:nature of savage 
无亲:no mercy for his parents

2、是猶圈而不塞其垣,禁其野心,決江河之流而壅之以手……(文子·上礼)

獸:beast,animal
禁:prohibit
野心:brutal nature

You can see how bad the word is.

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  • 男人在事業上有野心並非壞事;説在事業上有雄心壯志未免太自命清高。多數人祇是想爬得更高,賺得更多,並非想要建大功業,揚名天下
    – Tang Ho
    Jul 3 '21 at 14:02
  • 野心基本上就是對私慾的渴望,強大的拳手想要成為冠軍故然是一種雄心,說是野心卻也沒錯。畢竟要踏在別人頭上,奪取他人的排名才可向上爬
    – Tang Ho
    Jul 3 '21 at 14:11

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