1

比如,如果我要翻译:

The temperature in Beijing tomorrow will be in its low/mid/late 20's

或者

I'm guessing she's in her early/mid/(high or upper) 20's

要怎么翻译?

更新:

1.)一般来说,early/low 等于 20-23, mid 等于 24-26, high/upper 等于 27-29, 可是这不是固定的。

2.) 我把问题该城更普遍. (I made the question more general.)

4

For early/low 20s

I'm not very sure about the EXACT ranges (if any) that "early 20s" and "low 20s" refer to in English.

But in Chinese, you may at least have three options to choose from, according to "how early/low" the range that you intend to express is:

early 20s

20多岁 or 20来岁 or 20岁出头

low 20s

20多度 or 20来度 or 20度出头

e.g. A weather forecast broadcast by CCTV in which "5度出头" was used at 1:01, another one in which "20多度" was used at 0:45

There must be some disagreement among native speakers as to what the exact ranges the expressions above refer to (they are not rigidly defined), but I believe generally one will feel that the range gradually turns narrower from left to right. (e.g. 20多岁 → 21 to 25; 20来岁 → 20 to 23;20岁出头 → 20 to 22 or even lower)

Besides, the patterns mentioned above are fairly productively in Chinese:

multiples of ten + 多/来 + unit

e.g. 30多天, 20来吨 (We don't say 32多天 or 25来吨)

number (it doesn't have to be multiples of ten, but the nuance is a bit tricky, see exmaples below) + unit + 出头

e.g.

25米出头(a little bit longer than 25m, must be shorter than 26m, since the scale is 25m - 26m),

20米出头(a little bit longer than 20m, can be even longer than 21m, since the scale is 20m - 30m).

For late/high 20s

I agree with Marc that 将近30度/岁 or simply 近30度/岁 (in literal: near 30) can be used.

For mid 20s

I agree with Marc that there may not be a handy phrase for that. However, I think you can alternatively say 25度/岁左右 or 25度/岁上下 (in literal: around 25).

  • low twenties (temperature):低二十 cf。woyaofanyi.com/translate_2008673.html low twenties [for temperature interval of 21-23 C] 的翻译是:低二十[为温度间隔时间21-23 C] (age)given answer agrees with iciba's entry for "early twenties" cf。iciba.com/early_twenties?renovate=742660 – user6065 Oct 18 '14 at 15:03
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    @S.Rhee I'm a native Chinese speaker. To me "低二十" appears to be a very unacceptable expression for "low twenties (temperature)". It may well be the result of some poor machine translation. – null Oct 18 '14 at 15:20
  • looking at one Chinese weather forecast (上海),it seems impossible to find anything corresponding to "low twenties", 低二十 simply seems to be the "literal translation"。"low twenties" seems to be an English idiom, which may not have any commonly used analog in e。g。French or Russian either。To confirm the common use of 20多度 or 20来度 or 20度出头 it would be helpful to quote some online Chinese weather forecast。 – user6065 Oct 18 '14 at 16:21
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    @S.Rhee 20度出头 looks good for 'low twenties' for temperature, but it sounds also colloquial. I have never heard of Chinese weather forecast uses the notion of 'lower twenties'. If referred to the number itself not in the context of temperature or age, 二十小几 and 二十大几 are very colloquial way to say 'lower twenties' and 'higher twenties'. – user58955 Oct 18 '14 at 16:37
  • @Noir Can you also address "mid" and "high/upper"? – tofu_bacon Oct 19 '14 at 0:37
1

In colloquial speech, "20多度" "20来度" "20度出头" are all acceptable. However, one would definitely not expect to see them in formal speech (like a televised weather forecast) or in writing.

First of all, it seems to me that Chinese weather forecasts would probably prefer "20度左右" or "大约20度" (around 20 degrees) to any of these terms. If one insists on finding a translation for "low twenties", I would say "20余度". This article, for instance, says

进入5月,当地气温迅速回升走高,从最高20余度,迅速到达了30度。

High twenties would probably be "将近30度". I'm not sure if there even is a phrase corresponding to "mid-twenties".

1

early/low: 二十几(度/岁)、二十(度/岁)多一点儿、二十(度/岁)出头、二十一二(度/岁)

mid: 二十五六(度/岁)、二十五(度/岁)左右

late/upper: 二十七八(度/岁)、将近三十(度/岁)、三十(度/岁)不到

1.Note that 左右 means about, which means "may be bigger or smaller than".

2.Note the position of quantitative word, herein represented by 度/岁.

3.Do not use 二十八九岁 in the last case (or similarly, 二十六七、二十三四、二十四五 for previous cases) unless you are sure that person is exactly 28/29.

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