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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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2answers
37 views

Using the word 为止 (with a TP)

我没知道存有椰子火锅到他吃为止。 他吃椰子时(到)我没知道此存有为止。 I am trying to formalize my grammar. Are either sentences acceptable. Would someone know what I am saying? I am not sure if I have to include the Time Phrase first ...
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2answers
37 views

Understanding 了: difference between 她上个月去了北京 and 上个月我去台湾了?

This grammar page tries to explain when to use 了 after a verb and when to use 了 after an object. https://resources.allsetlearning.com/chinese/grammar/Expressing_completion_with_%22le%22 It claims ...
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1answer
30 views

Difference between 儘量 and 盡量?

Both 儘量 and 盡量 seem to mean, "try your best," according to these dictionary entries: https://www.yellowbridge.com/chinese/sentsearch.php?word=%E7%9B%A1%E9%87%8F https://www.yellowbridge.com/chinese/...
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2answers
44 views

Is 看怎麼理解? a generalized expression for “it depends” in Mandarin? How about for Cantonese?

A movie used the phrase 看怎麼理解 to mean, "it depends." The context was character A asking character B if something is good or bad. Character B responded with 看怎麼理解. 1) Is 看怎麼理解 a generalized phrase ...
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2answers
40 views

Difference between 學識 and 知識?

According to these dictionary links, both 學識 and 知識 mean knowledge. http://www.cantonese.sheik.co.uk/dictionary/words/6078/ http://www.cantonese.sheik.co.uk/dictionary/words/6078/ 1) What's the ...
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2answers
47 views

Mandarin vs. Cantonese: 令 vs 讓 for making something happen

In Cantonese, it's common to hear someone say 令 when referring to making something happen. Example: 妳咁做令我開心 (You make me happy when you do this.) Some friends claimed Mandarin doesn't use 令 this way ...
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4answers
513 views

How to say “I wouldn't go so far as to say…” in Mandarin

I'm searching for a common way to say "I wouldn't go so far as to say that" in Mandarin. The only translation of this expression, that I found in a dictionary, is : It's good, but I wouldn't go so ...
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2answers
74 views

Placement of 在 in the sentence

Why is 在 usually placed before the verb but in other cases can come at the end of the sentence? For example, what is the difference between: (1) 她在北京出生。 (2) 他出生在北京。
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1answer
834 views

Place of 了 particle for the past tense?

Ok, I saw explanation that: 我去了商店。(means: I have gone to the shop already) 我去商店了。(means: I am going to the shop now) So I expected to meet 了 for the past tense only right after the verb: 昨天我去了商店。 ...
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2answers
82 views

Is there a dictionary that includes 搭配

Is there a decent dictionary that includes 搭配, or words that the searched word cannot be used with? I use Pleco, but one of my largest complaints with it is there is really no baseline for how the ...
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2answers
61 views

Using a verb as a habitual thing vs Chinese

I have noticed perhaps that in English we could say a sentence like ‘you think I sleep?’ And it could be referring to (in a comical way of course) that fact of me not sleeping in general or at all. ...
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3answers
75 views

Understanding 到,去 in a sentence:

I was reading the story "Little Horse Crosses the River" and encountered the following phrase: "今天你把这袋粮食送到河对岸的村子里去吧." I understand this to mean 'Today, take the bag of grain to the village on the ...
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3answers
77 views

In what circumstances can 呢 be interchangeable with 吗?

I a new to the Chinese language and something that really confused me is that in some circumstances 呢 and 吗 could be used interchangeably, but in others they cannot. For example you cannot say 你吗? ...
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2answers
99 views

What is the meaning of 要 in these sentences?

While doing exercises on my book I found some sentences with a use of 要 which I've never seen before and I can't figure out the meaning. The sentences are the following: 他很忙,但是他应该要来参加我的生日晚会 ...
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1answer
38 views

几点 position in sentence

As I know words describing time are placed before and after Subject, e.g.: 昨天晚上八点我去超市了。 我昨天晚上八点去超市了。 So I expected the same to be in questions, 昨天晚上几点你去超市了? OR 你昨天晚上几点去超市了? but I ...
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2answers
117 views

Is it possible to ask a question with just a single noun?

In informal English, you can ask a question like, "Tea?" as a shorthand for "Would you like some (more) tea?" I was wondering if the same can be achieved in (informal) Chinese? Something along the ...
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1answer
40 views

Difference between location nouns and place/position nouns, 方位词 vs 处所词

There are supposedly 4 categories of nouns in Chinese, according to Chinese Grammar Wiki: Proper nouns and common nouns Position nouns Location nouns Time nouns The links to Position and Location ...
1
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1answer
67 views

Is this use of 把 and 过 correct?

I read that you should not use a 把 construction with 过 as an aspect particle for the verb. But I came across this sentence: 他把手机摔坏过两三次 Is this correct ?
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1answer
92 views

How come 将 is a “future marker” and a “passive marker”?

Any good logical theories on the subject? What twisted life must have 将 took to merge such functions into one glyph? For my background 将 as 把(to take) and 将 as 且(further) are queit different in ...
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3answers
83 views

Shi / Hen for adjective + noun when discussing facts or perceived facts

There are the simplified rules about never using "shi" to link an adjective with a noun. However, I believe this is not true for facts or perceived facts, such as colors, then I should use "shi" to ...
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1answer
49 views

Which is the more polite way to ask for permission: 能 or 可以?

According to this site, both 能 and 可以 can be used to politely ask for permission. 1) Which is considered more polite? 2) Which is more formal? 3) Is it the same for Cantonese?
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2answers
83 views

Why is 有 used here?

I have the following sentence: 你的表有一点儿快。I understand this sentence to have the meaning in English of "Your watch is a little bit fast." But if I were put this sentence into Chinese, I would say "你的表很快"...
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2answers
55 views

Safe to always use 之後 instead of 以後, and 之前 instead of 以前?

According to this grammar page, it appears like 之後 can always replace 以後, whereas 以後 cannot always replace 之後. However, these grammar pages are not always reliable. 1) For simplicity, is it safe to ...
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2answers
69 views

Placement of adjectives with verbs?

There is a line in a Chinese poem that reads like this: 我要高飞。 To be translated literally it means "I want to high fly" but carries the meaning "I want to fly high." I was wondering if it is usual to ...
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1answer
65 views

Say time in 24 hour format

I've never seen in Chinese study materials that time could be said/written in 24 hour format. It is always in 12 hour format with addition of description like 早上, 下午... E.g.: 早上八点半 晚上九点四十五分 And ...
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1answer
59 views

Proper grammar: 生活 中 不是 缺少 美 ,而是 缺少 发现的?

This grammar page lists the following example: 生活 中 不是 缺少 美 ,而是 缺少 发现 美 的 眼睛 。 Shēnghuó zhōng bù shì quēshǎo měi, ér shì quēshǎo fāxiàn měi de yǎnjing. Would it be correct grammar to omit ...
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1answer
55 views

The position of 已经 in “have been doing something for some times already”

Since 已经 is an adverb I thought I'd always have to put it before the verb like in: 1) 这对老人已经相爱三十多年了 2) 他已经睡四个小时了 But I found a sentence on my book that say: 他们恋爱已经一年多了 It should translate ...
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3answers
89 views

Is it ok to omit “也” in responce 我也很好?

Is it ok to omit "也" in responce 我也很好? Dialog (3rd line): -- 你好吗? -- [ 我 ] 很好! 你好吗? -- 我 [ 也 ] 很好! And if it is ok to omit 也 in third line, is it ok to add 我 in the second line?
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3answers
64 views

Is it ok to answer only the day of the month to the question “今天几号?”?

Is it ok to answer only the day of the month to the question "今天几号?"? First dialog: -- 今天几号? -- 今天是八月二十号. (it is OK, common phrase) Second dialog: -- 今天几号? -- 今天是二十号. (is it Ok? Why not?) If ...
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2answers
89 views

Is it 在桌子上面 or 在桌子的上面?

A Google search of both exact phrases turns up both: 在桌子上面 在桌子的上面 There are about 10x more without the 的. Do they mean the same thing?
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3answers
76 views

Is my joke about my first talk at Nankai correct, understandable, and funny?

I'm practicing my upcoming talk in Chinese, and I like to start talks with a light joke to appear friendly. So I came up with this: 我第一次在南开学校作演讲,我用汉语讲第一句话,听众大声鼓掌以示回应。然后我说英语,但是听众听不懂,所以我讲完了时候,鼓掌比较小声。...
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2answers
59 views

How to use “considering [that]” as a conjunction?

How do I use the conjunction "considering [that]" in Chinese? See example below. "The companies process is sub-optimal, considering the complexity of their business model."
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1answer
34 views

How to translate “note:” into Chinese?

How is the word "note:" translated into Chinese within the following example? -Example- Summary of Findings Finding 1 Finding 2 Finding 3 Note: these findings were based on a first draft and may ...
5
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1answer
125 views

Why number 2 has two forms?

二 (èr) and 两 (liăng) I understand when to use which But I'm curious to know why, and correct me if I'm wrong, this is the only number that has 2 forms.
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2answers
40 views

Role/Grammar of 找 and 跟 in this sentence: “他找白如玉跟他在師大附近走走”

他找白如玉跟他在師大附近走走, 試試地圖好用不好用。 My book translates this as: He went to see Bai Ruyu and asked her to accompany him on a walk around NTNU to try out the map functions. This is how my English brain is ...
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2answers
82 views

Could you please correct my sentences?

Could you please correct my text ? 虽然我会说一口流利的法语,但是我想说一口流利的汉语。 我的职业 是律师。 律师 的责任很大,因为他必须解决严重得实情。然后压力大。 可是在巴黎 律师逐渐增加。 因此招聘越来越少。
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2answers
76 views

What is the difference between 收了 and 收到了?

What is the difference between 收了 and 收到了? 1. We say 我收了他的錢 2. But we don't say 我收了他的信, We say我收到他的信了 When do we use 收了 and 收到了?
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1answer
59 views

How do i write Erobee in Chinesse?

I want to use Chinese writing of Erobee in my logo. Does someone tell me please?
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2answers
41 views

How does 一面向 break down in 她一面走着,一面向旁边张望着?

This is from the children's book 七色花: 她一面走着,一面向旁边张望着,念着招牌上的字,... As she walked, she looked sideways and read the words on the signboard ... [Google Translate] I'm wondering how 一面向 breaks ...
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2answers
65 views

How are my 用词造句 (“use the word to make a sentence”) sentences using 幸福 and 俩?

In the HSK4上 Standard Course workbook, the first practice exam has this problem: It's a 用词造句 ("use the word to make a sentence") problem. I came up with these sentences: 我妹妹十一月会结婚,太幸福了! My ...
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6answers
524 views

Why use combined characters that have the same meaning?

(rèn shí ) both characters means ( to know)and when combined it still have the same meaning. So why can't I use only one of them ?
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3answers
129 views

What is the use of “的” in “辞的职”?

In 汉语口语速成: 基础篇 pp. 147, there's a sentence: 爱珍: 你学习汉语是为了工作? 左拉: 可以说是吧,不过,现在我失业了,来中国之前辞的职。 I understand that "辞职" means "to resign", but I don't understand why "的" is inserted between them. ...
2
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1answer
35 views

When will one be able to

How do you say "When will I be able to go to China?" After trying to figure out and failed, I tried to translate the sentence from Korean to Chinese and came up with this : "什么时候能去中国?" Now, the ...
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3answers
89 views

The meaning of 是…的 in 有什么事是我该做的吗

I am a total noob when it comes to Chinese, so sorry if this is a dumb question. Recently I started using an Anki deck called SpoonFedChinese to study Chinese. Today I came across the following ...
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3answers
577 views

Why is 去 (“to go”) in 也不去考虑以后会是怎样 (“…and don't think about how it will be in the future”)?

In the book 活着 (audio book, around 6 minutes 55 seconds into 第01集), we have: 我只是感到和她在一起身心愉快,也不去考虑以后会是怎样。 Google Translate gives: I [我] just [只是] feel [感到] happy [身心愉快] with her [和她在一起], and [也] ...
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2answers
64 views

Are independent and dependent clauses reversible?

In English a phrase such as “Call me when you get home” can be reversed into “When you get home, call me.” Is this also possible in Chinese? I tried to answer the question myself, but I could only ...
2
votes
3answers
445 views

Encountered usage of 为

接受函数为参数,返回值为函数 I can vaguely translate this as Gets function as parameter, return value is function. but that's only due to my domain knowledge. I am confused by the use of 为 here. The only 为 I ...
0
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2answers
74 views

是 in using 好像/像

I am really confused in regards to how 是 is used in 好像/像 sentences and sometimes not used. For example, I can come up with something like 那朵云好像是一朵棉花。 (that cloud looks like cotton.) Can I omit 是 here?...
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3answers
52 views

Difference between 你能看完这本书吗? vs 你看得完这本书吗?

I just happened to randomly come across this question. What's the difference between 你能看完这本书吗?and 你看得完这本书吗? To me, they all mean can you finish reading the book, but the former uses result ...
1
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2answers
52 views

提高 and degree complement

How do you append degree complement to a 离合词 such as 提高? I naively came up with 他提高得很快, but then I remembered for 离合词 words such as 打折, I had to construct somewhat differently such as 他们打了很多折,我忍不住就买。 ...