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The grammar surrounding 问 seems to be a gap in my knowledge. Using "two objects" seems okay:

了他一个问题。
那女孩:“你结婚了吗?”

But judging from a lack of examples online, using the prepositions 向 and 对 seem wrong:

我对孩子:“你几岁了?” (“我对孩子问”: Google; Baidu; YouDao)
“你喜欢我吗?”我向他问道。 (“我向他问道”: Google; Baidu; YouDao)

I don't really understand why. I noticed this warning on the Chinese Grammar Wiki for 对:

Note that you shouldn't be plugging in just any old verb here; the ones that work with 对 are limited.

This indicates the error lies with the prepositions 向 and 对. But it feels rather arbitrary, since it seems it's okay to use 向 and 对 as prepositions for other similar verbs 我向他道歉。我向他解释我的情况。我对他说“我爱你。” and so on.

Question: Is it grammatically incorrect to use 问 with the prepositions 向 or 对?

I'm hoping to understand this better than "对……问 and 向……问 are wrong because I say so".

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  • 「我對孩子問」、「我向他問道」???Why not just say 「我問孩子」、「我問他」?I don't think they are wrong but they certainly are wordy. Bad sentences if you ask me.
    – joehua
    Apr 29, 2022 at 1:06
  • joehua is somewhat correct but 向他問XXX is still grammatical and can be used instead of 問他XXX in some instances. For example, 向他問(他的钱都花在哪里了), can replace 問他(他的錢都花在哪裡了)
    – Tang Ho
    Apr 29, 2022 at 1:15

2 Answers 2

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In my opinion, 问 itself already denotes the sense 向 or 对, so most of time we don't have to clarify using 对 or 向. It's also worth to note that 向 works better with 问 than 对 because 对 also implies face to face.

E.g. 我向他问你的事情.

In this case, 我问他你的事情 might not work very well. We'd better say 我问他关于你的事情.

As for 我向他问道, we take 问道(the whole) as a verb.

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When using "问" directly, the person you ask is worked as subjective(may imply "向",may imply "关于" or other meaning). When using "向" or "对", this part works as the adverbial.

The two usage are all correct.

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