I‘ve notice that sometimes 给 changes its position in the sentece. Look at these examples: • 我发给你一个邮件 • 我给你发一个邮件

Both are correct but what different meaning/shadow do they express?

  • 1
    我发一个邮件给你 is also correct
    – Daeus Tang
    Commented Sep 16, 2014 at 12:24
  • Really??? Are you sure? I've always thought that 给 had a specific position in the sentence, meaning before the main verb! Is it like that or not?? Why sometimes we can change its position?
    – Chiara
    Commented Sep 16, 2014 at 12:43
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    It depends on the point of view you want to emphasize. Let's say 我发给你一个邮件 is the normal order; 我给你发一个邮件 emphasize the object of to you; 我发一个邮件给你 emphasize the action of send a mail.
    – user4072
    Commented Sep 17, 2014 at 1:34
  • it sound like "I send you an email" vs "I send an email to you", they mean the same right ?
    – ah_hau
    Commented Sep 17, 2014 at 1:54

2 Answers 2


Sentence 1: 我发给你一个邮件

发给 is its own meaning of "issued/transmitted/sent", whereas 给 just means give. So the first sentence:

我发给你一个邮件 = I transmitted/sent an e-mail to you.

Sentence 2: 我给你发一个邮件

is more of a connection/preposition, like to. So, It's more like I to you send an e-mail.

Like you said, both are equally correct and used with equal frequency.

  • Am I wrong that "我给你发一个邮件“ could also be interpreted as "I send an email for you", as in "you were to lazy to do it so I did it instead."?
    – Buddy L
    Commented Jul 7, 2022 at 17:04

I think you can take it this way, correct me if I am wrong

  • 我 is the subject, 发 is the verb, 一个邮件 is the object.
  • 给你 is like to you, need to be together
  • It is like I sent a letter to you == I sent you a letter.

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