Can anyone provide some guidance on word order of a sentence if it has an adverb using 地 and coverb phrases. I thought 地 always came directly in front of the verb, but then I saw this site: http://resources.allsetlearning.com/chinese/grammar/Word_order#Placement_of_manner_in_a_sentence Which showed the "manner" part coming before all the coverb phrases. So, I started doing some searching and found this sentence which has the coverb 向 after the adverb and before the verb:


But, I also found this sentence with the coverb 把 first, and then the adverb after:


So, what is the difference between the two word orders?

  • I think the ba-construction is something quite different, it wouldn't be wise to treat it as just another "coverb".
    – neubau
    Commented Apr 13, 2014 at 1:45
  • @user2619 Interesting thought. In my grammar book 把 is listed as a coverb, but it has a chapter all its own. However, in the example sentences I gave, the 把 sentence is actually the normal one. That is, most often I see the adverb + 地 immediately before the verb. The strange one to me is the first sentence. Commented Apr 14, 2014 at 3:06

2 Answers 2


In Chinese you can also say "他会很诚恳地向你道歉" in this way: "他会向你很诚恳地道歉"

Then the order of coverb and adverb is the same as the sentence "父母应该把事情好好地告诉孩子."

Example: the following 2 sentences have the same meaning

coverb first, adverb after: 医生*对他*仔细地检查

adverb first, coverb after: 医生仔细地*对他*检查

  • Thank you, this answered my question. I will wait to see if there are any more comments before marking the answer. Commented Apr 11, 2014 at 13:58

Basically, "地" is used as adv, that means it is used when describing verbs. for example "他大聲地笑著" means "He is laughing loudly". loudly is used to describe how he laughs, so we use 地.

  • Thanks for the comment.My question was more about where in the sentence the adverb appears. Being that it describes the verb, you might expect it to immediately proceed the verb. But in the example I gave above, it doesn't. So, what is the difference? Can it go anywhere between the subject and verb? Commented Apr 14, 2014 at 3:00
  • coverb+noun+verb this is the basic structure of the sentence. And you can put the adverb after the noun or before the coverb. but sometimes it makes different meaning.
    – sunnie
    Commented Apr 15, 2014 at 3:37

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