Questions tagged [grammar]

Questions about the rules that govern and structure the language, and the composition of clauses, sentences and expressions.

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Translation of 飞架 in 港珠澳大桥飞架三地

How do you make grammatical sense of 飞架 in the expression 港珠澳大桥飞架三地? Is it "the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge flies a three-city frame"? Or "the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge: flying and supporting ...
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22 views

Express that an event in the past could have occurred, if not for some condition

How do I express that an event in the past could have occurred, if not for some other condition that prevented it from occurring? For example: We could have deployed the code on Tuesday, but our ...
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Good resources that complement HelloChinese?

I've been learning Mandarin using HelloChinese and Pleco flashcards for a month now. I've been noticing that HelloChinese doesn't bother to explain some concepts that I've found through googling such ...
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48 views

Express when festivity or event happens

I need to write an eassy about festivities and I included the following sentence: 公历每年十二月十五日是这个西方传统的节日。 The teacher said this was not correct Chinese, instead, I should have written: ...
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Differentiating between adjective and adverb?

The sentence in question is this: 我的心又似小木船 it is translated: my heart is like a small wooden boat. can it also mean: my heart is a little bit like a wooden boat?
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48 views

Why can't I repeat the verb with degree complement in “昨晚我的朋友表达得很明确”?

I thought I have finally been able to wrap my head around this structure, but it seems no, not really. So I have seen this sentence: 昨晚我的朋友_表达_得很明确。 But according to my native speaker friend, you ...
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51 views

make/become friends. 成为朋友,交朋友。 Since we were friends

I wanted to write in chinese. Since we were friends.... or ever since we made friends.... In my essay. I wrote 自从我们是朋友。And the teacher correct it, you cannot use the verb 是. She wrote 自从我们交上了朋友,。。 ...
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77 views

What does 的 do in "现在的Paul已经63岁了“?

I was reading a text from The Chairman's Bao titled "Australian Boy Finds 56-year-old Message in a Bottle" and I came across the following sentence: 现在的Paul已经63岁了 What does 的 do here? Could it be ...
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Question about third tone sandhi in two specific cases

I know of the commonly cited rules for third tones, which are the following (copied from somewhere else, so excuse the grammatical errors): "When word with the 3rd tone is used alone, or used at the ...
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111 views

没有 as an answer. Cannot be 不?。

I have been studying a simple dialog that says: A> 你家住在哪里? 还住在城里? The answer was. B> 没有。我们最近搬到郊外住了。 If A was asking about the present how can you answer with 没有.besides the question does not have ...
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66 views

了 position with 把 construction

Good Morning. Today reading my chinese textbook i found the following sentence. 刚才上音乐课时把书包放在了教室的外面。 I have never seen the 了 after a preposition 在. ¿is it right or a mistake? I think the right ...
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82 views

Why is “的” not necessary when talking about someone's body parts?

I am learning Mandarin using Lingodeer and I've encountered the sentence, “这个女孩眼睛大” and I am wondering why it isn't necessary to refer to the girl's eyes with “的” in this sentence? I know that “的” can ...
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118 views

When is it necessary to say “_色的” when telling the color of something?

I'm learning Mandarin primarily using Lingodeer and when colors were first introduced I was taught to say “_色的” such as in “月亮是白色的”. Now in Lingodeer I am learning of how to put emphasis on certain ...
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101 views

THE WAY TO OR FROM SCHOOL 上下班

What is the proper way to say, "On the way to or from school (suppose from home)..." For example: "On the way to or from school students like to look through the cars windows." When referring to: ...
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1answer
68 views

How to say “Hopefully we can treat each other with more X”

Is there a general template for translating, "hopefully we can treat each with more X" where X is some noun. Examples: Hopefully we can treat each other with more consideration. Hopefully we can ...
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73 views

Is the 要…了 grammar structure needed in this sentence?

If I am trying to convey to someone that I still have much to learn. The first thought that came to my mind was, “我还有很多要学习了” But I am unsure if the 要...了 structure is necessary. Without it the ...
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49 views

Saying “instead of” in cantonese

I want to ask how to say “instead of” in cantonese in the following context? “Can you pay me in Canadian dollar instead of Hong kong dollar?” (Or the general form of X instead of Y) One way might ...
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1answer
41 views

努力工作 用功学习 adjective, verb or adverb

In the sentences 他努力工作 and 他应该用功学习. 努力 is an adjective, or a verb. In Pleco only has this two options but it seems to be a adverb, that modifies the verb 工作. Or is 工作 a verb and both are verbs? I ...
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Translation of “you either speak too quickly or too slowly.” without repeating 说

This answer gives an example sentence meaning "you speak too quickly" to illustrate the usage of 得 (·de). 1) 你说得太快了。 In order to say "you either speak too quickly or too slowly", I'm pretty sure it'...
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What is the proper order to list the noun and adjective when using 的

I've learned that 的 can be used to say that some noun has some quality, for instance 你说的太快了 is saying that 你说 (your speech) has the quality of being 太快了 (too fast) or in other words "You speak too ...
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42 views

What are the differences between 的,地 and 得? [duplicate]

I am trying to understand the differences between the three (de) in Chinese.
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A city is located east/north/west/south of a country; what is the correct Chinese grammar for that?

For example: I want to say that Freiburg (in Germany) is located east of France. My sentence was this: 弗莱堡在法国的东边。 This is also how we did it in class. But I'm starting to worry this sounds like it's ...
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127 views

What is wrong with this sentence and why? 我们八点上课,老师八点半才到了。

What is wrong with this sentence and why? I would like to have a grammatical explanation. 我们八点上课,老师八点半才到了。
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73 views

是什么 ?系? when is it right to use it. In Spanish we always use 有什么关系。

图中的男人跟男孩儿可能是什是什么关系? When to use 是什么关系。or 有什么关系。 Will it be right to use the later in the above phrase¿
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100 views

is 晚 verb or adjective in the sentence 我 晚了一 个半小

In the sentence below the word 晚 is a verb or an adjective. In the Pleco and other Dictionaries says adjective but I have not seen and adjective with a 了一and a duration in any grammar book. is there a ...
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74 views

身 as a measure word is it commonly used

My Wenlin dictionary describes 身 as also a measure word for "suits of clothing". Is it commonly used by Chinese speakers ?
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37 views

Indicating degree with 比 and 不如

When using 比, you are able to add a classifying degree. For example, 一个苹果比一个香蕉贵一块元。 Can you do the same with 不如? 一个香蕉不如一个苹果贵一块元 ??
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How to say 反常识的 in English?

How to properly translate 反常识的 to English in academic writing? I want to express a surprising and unusual phenomenon that shouldn't appear in an experiment, which is not expected and against the ...
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40 views

Fixing sentences with object and complement after a verb

While perusing an article on allsetlearning.com about complements, I came across an interesting example of an ungrammatical sentence: 回来中国, where the object and complement are both placed after the ...
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58 views

Which grammatical rule is being used here?

I thought it’d be easy to say “I didn’t do well on my exam/I did poorly on my exam” but turned out it’s not an easy one. I have tried to translate it multiple times and here’s what I got (I’ve tried ...
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59 views

Uses of 正好 / zhènghăo

So, my focus today is the use of 正好, but it usage seems a little muddled. The first usage, as an adjective is quite clear: Just right (not too big, nor small; not too hot, nor cold etc). 这个饭不太辣不太淡 - ...
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367 views

Why one uses 了 and the other one doesn’t?

我每天吃吃睡睡,从来不运动,吃饱就睡,醒了,就吃,怎么还是不胖。 I wonder why the writer didn’t add 了 after “吃饱” whereas they added 了 after 醒. I know what 了 indicates here, it’s just that I don’t know why the writer didn’t treat “...
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Why is 弄 (nòng) in 他终于弄明白了?

I found the following sentence in a grade three 语文 school book in China (transcript). 他终于弄明白了,这块大石头是从遥远的秦岭被冰川带到这里来的。 [My translation] He finally understood, this big rock is from the distant ...
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Add 很 or not in these cases

Case 1 他的字写得好。(✕) 他的字写得很好。(〇) Case 2 他的字写得好,是因為比別人勤勞練字的關係。(〇) 他的字写得很好,是因為比別人勤勞練字的關係。(✕) Why is 很 compulsory in case one while it is redundant in case two?
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140 views

What is “语气词”? Why does this question end with 嘛 instead of 吗?

Somebody showed me a group picture that included their face, and asked me “你可以找到我嘛”. After replying I asked why 嘛 is used instead of 吗 for this question. My Chinese is not great and my Chinese friend ...
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63 views

Can 宁和 be used as a real name

I'm creating a half Japanese half Chinese character and I'm trying to figure out whether or not 宁和 can be used as a name. I'm also wondering if it means to aspire to peace and is read a "ninghe".
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How are those “sentence shrinking” exercises called and where to find ones on my level? [closed]

Today my Chinese teacher showed me those exercises: https://www.51test.net/show/8629497.html The goal was to shrink sentences like "可爱的小红在认真地看着有趣的新书" to "小红在看书". I heard this is what children in ...
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Mandarin equivalent for 返嚟?

In Cantonese 返嚟 is often used when asking someone about where they obtained something from. For instance, "學返嚟“ could be used in a sentence asking someone, "Where did you learn this from?" What's the ...
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Difference between 事情 and 事件?

What's the difference between 事情 and 事件? They both seem to be generic terms that refer to "event, thing, affair". 事件:http://www.cantonese.sheik.co.uk/dictionary/words/4421/ 事情:http://www.cantonese....
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將以求吾所大欲也 meaning of 將

What meaning of 將 applies? Origin In 孟子there is a sentence where he describes various failings to the king (such as war preparations) and goes on to ask, whether his majesty delights in such. And ...
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How can i translate “Please fill the code shown” in Chinese? [closed]

I have to create a website for China, and i have a sentence to translate which is : Please fill the code shown This message is followed by a Captcha Code. Thanks for help guys.
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Translation for 无效

I'm looking for a translation of "无效". Does that mean "incorrect" ? Thanks for answers.
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68 views

What's the difference between 主任 and 主管?

As per title, what's the difference between these 2 terms? My teacher said that in China, 主任 is considered as low position, and 主管 is higher. But looking at the translation 主任 means director, which ...
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3answers
55 views

Existential sentences that used to be but are no longer

I'm trying to construct a sentence along the lines of, "There were two hard parts...," where I use the existential 有. The issue I'm having is how I convey the meaning that this 'existence' is confined ...
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61 views

褒贬句 In chinese language

So since my native language is Arabic, our 语法 is somehow very strict, but then I find the Chinese 语法 somehow flexible. In Arabic we have a certain 语法 structure that is called 褒贬法,for example: will ...
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67 views

Asking for right answers for 中级 questions

I just wanted to ask for the right answers for these questions...  In these 2 paragraphs, are my 标点符号 right?  我家有五口人,爷爷   、奶奶、爸爸、妈妈和我。爸爸在电脑公司工作,他是一名工程师;妈妈在一所学校教数学,爷爷和奶奶早就退休,但他们也有很多活动;爷爷在老年大学学习书法,...
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114 views

What does 好 mean in this context?

In the following phrase, what does 好 mean in this context? Traditional: 我們​人人​天生​都​不完美,每​逢​想​做​對​的​事,內心​往往​要​經歷​好​一​番​掙扎,而且​都​會​說​錯​話​做​錯​事 Simplified: 我们​人人​天生​都​不完美,每​逢​想​做​对​的​事,内心​往往​要​经历​...
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19 views

How do the terms in this sentence modify its meaning?

I came across the phrase 千里之行,始于足下 on the Internet. Per consensus from native speakers, it appears it can be loosely translated as 'the journey of a thousand miles begins at your feet'. I'm able to ...
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84 views

Confused about 们 in this particular sentence “你们家有几口人”

I understand that 你们 is plural as in you're talking to more than 1 person; however, this question is said to one person so how come we do not say "你家有几口人" Why do we add a 们 to it or am I ...
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82 views

He “looks like”

In my Chinese class we’ve recently had a chapter quiz. I missed the following question: Translate “He looks like Guan Gong” into Chinese. My response: 他看关公一样。 Teacher’s correction: 他看起来像关公一样。 So ...