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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32 views

我给打过电话,但没有打通。 The use of 过 (not experienced)

Hello I want to ask for the use of 过 in this sentence. 我给打过电话,但没有打通。 The translation of the book says, I tried, albeit unsuccessfully, to phone her. 大卫的朋友最近打过电话给大卫吗? What I understood is that 过 is ...
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1answer
24 views

Are these senteces correct? [closed]

I tried to correct them but I'm not sure about it. Is there a rule or a scheme to follow in order to correct them properly? 1.这幅画被我做了。 这幅画是我做的 2.我弟弟越来越高一点。 我弟弟越来越高 3.我只要喝茶,不要喝啤酒。 我只要喝茶,就喝啤酒 4....
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2answers
72 views

Placement of 了: difference between 吃飯了 and 吃了飯

Do 我吃早飯了 and 我吃了早飯 mean the same thing (I have eaten breakfast), slightly different things? Or is one of them wrong? Which is better? (For context, the second option was marked incorrect by an app ...
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3answers
156 views

沒verb vs 沒有verb

I encountered this in one of my language learning apps. What is the difference between 昨天這個男孩沒有喝牛奶 (by google translate: The boy did not drink milk yesterday) and 昨天這個男孩沒喝牛奶 (by google translate: ...
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3answers
350 views

How can both 过 (past actions) and 会 (future actions) turn up in 下过雨以后,空气会好很多?

I found this example in a Chinese grammar teaching web. 下过雨以后,空气会好很多。 What I do not understand is: I learn that "过" is used for past actions, "会" = "will" (for future actions). So, how can both 过 ...
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1answer
19 views

What grammar pattern with 着 does this sentence follow?

奥林匹克运动的故乡流传着这样的几句话:... This 着 is confusing to me. I suppose this sentence here follows one of these two patterns: place + verb + 着 + subject, for example 桌子上摆着一杯水. verb + 着, for example 我听着音乐看报纸. ...
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1answer
49 views

Grammar: using 的 several times

I often come up with the same problem in Chinese. How to use 的 in very long and complex sentences like: "He's the guy who just employed a person who doesn't even know how to work." I'd translate ...
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2answers
89 views

How to write and structure a modern professional follow-up email like a native Chinese speaker?

I'm interested in how the modern professional email structures differ between Chinese and English. I'd like to create a go-to template/structure that can convert what native English speakers ...
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5answers
80 views

How to say “the fourth floor of that building”?

My doubt is in translating this sentence: "That apartment is in the fourth floor of that building." Is there a grammatical structure to say things like "the fourth floor of that building" in Chinese?...
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2answers
33 views

主要 as adverb?? or is it a sub+pred as subjet phrase

In the following sentence: 补习老师主要帮她练习什么? 主要 is before a verb. In the dictionary it says it is an adjective and the uses I've seen is as an adjective like: 主要的问题, the main problem. Can it also ...
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2answers
40 views

What exactly is 动宾短语?

What exactly is 动宾短语? Is it structure with no subject like 学汉语对人有好处。 Or is it part of a pivotal sentence what I have seen on some books. 兼语句:用兼语短语充当谓语的主谓句。其主要特点有:它的谓语 由一个动宾短语和一个主谓短语套接而成;...
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45 views

Parsing grammar of 我想不出还会有谁

我想不出还会有谁。 I don’t understand how to parse this. Is it [i][cant think of][still can][there is who]? How does that translate to “i can’t think of of anyone else”? I just see a string of verbs that don’...
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1answer
124 views

Why is 名字 used with 叫, but 姓 isn't?

Examples: 我姓李。 我名字叫张。 Why not 我姓叫李?
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3answers
57 views

Is a reduplicated verb necessary after “ba3”?

In my textbook there's an exercise in which I must decide if a sentence is correct. There's this: 请把这些汉字练. In the answers they say it's incorrect because "lian4" should be reduplicated. Is it really a ...
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1answer
59 views

Is zai4 + … + li3 really a mistake?

In my textbook there's an exercise in which I must decide if a sentence is correct. There's this: 在客厅里坐着一位老人. In the answers they say it's incorrect because "zai4" shouldn't be there. Is it really a ...
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1answer
30 views

Why is 在 in 就这样在孔琳犹豫不决地跟着朋友进了酒吧?

I'm revising my notes, and a while ago I wrote: 这样孔琳犹豫地跟着朋友进去。 It means something like "In this way, Kong Lin reluctantly followed her friends in", and in the context of the story she entered a ...
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3answers
176 views

Translating “很快就有人去了.” ? Confusing word order

Can anyone help me translate this sentence properly? 很快就有人去了. My attempt is “Very quickly and soon, some people left.” However I don’t really understand the 很快就 part. Like i thought if these were ...
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2answers
64 views

What is the meaning of 之 and 当 in the phrase “比之当初战火蔓延的速度有过之而无不及”?

The sentence looks like this: 乱葬岗大围剿刚刚结束,未及第二日,这个消息便插翅一般飞遍了整个修真界,比之当初战火蔓延的速度有过之而无不及。 I do not understand the meaning of 之 here and also do not know how to read 当 in this context (and what is the ...
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1answer
36 views

Is there is list of medicinal plants and their translations in Mandarin?

I am interested in both learning Mandarin and the names of traditional medicinal plants in China. I am also interested in the history of herbal medicine in China, and a resource to study this in ...
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83 views

How do I negate a 要……了 structure?

If someone says: 要下雨了。 But I want to deny that statement, how would I do that? I thought about 不会下雨, but it seems as if I'm using another grammar. Is there a way closer to 要……了 that I can use to ...
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3answers
65 views

How do I make V-not-V questions with prepositions?

If I have sentences with prepositions like: 他从北京回来。 我把水喝了。 我往上海开车。 学校离我的家不远。 How would I turn them into V-not-V sentences? Is it right to say: 他从不从北京回来? 你把没把水喝? 你往不往上海开车? 学校离不离你的家远? ...
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1answer
34 views

Standard Chinese translation of “I'm not a bad person”

I'm trying to translate "I'm not a bad person" to standard Chinese. I am told the following: There are also two ways to say "A isn't B". When B is a noun (things, people, places, etc.), use bú shì. ...
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3answers
69 views

When a sentence ends with '来了', is it the aspectual or modal particle 了?

I understand the differences between aspectual and modal particle, but I have some confusion about when a sentence ends with a 了 and at the same time with a verb, like 来了. So it is aspectual or modal?
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2answers
42 views

When using 尽管 (jǐnguǎn) as “feel free to” in e.g. 你想看电影就尽管看吧, do we need the 你, 就, and/or 吧?

When using 尽管 as "feel free to", do I always need to use it with 你? Can I omit 就? Can I omit 吧? For example 你想看电影就尽管看吧。
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3answers
264 views

How to say in that year 2000

Which of this following expressions is right if i want to say that year 2000. Besides is necessary a , in any of both expressions. 2000年那年 or 2000 那年 It is supposed to be used in sentences such ...
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2answers
196 views

Why does 鱼 come before 做 in this sentence?

I'm reading the book "301 Conversational Chinese Sentences". At Lesson 20, this sentence appears: "这个鱼做得真好吃". 鱼 should be the object, and 做 should be the verb, right? "Fish" cannot do the cooking ...
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1answer
72 views

When is it necessary to use 来 to convey the meaning “in order to”

In Mandarin, if we have two VO in order the second one indicates the purpose of the first action, something like "in order to" or just "to" in English, as in: 我回家学习中文 - I'll go back home (in order) ...
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1answer
129 views

'老了以后再去考虑吧' this sentence has apectual or modal 了?

I'm a student of Chinese. I know the differences about modal and aspectual 了,but this sentence, 老了以后再去考虑吧 confuses me. I think is not modal, because modal should be at the end of the sentence, but a ...
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3answers
982 views

It's Kong Lin's birthday, but she hates birthdays: is it okay to write 孔琳宁愿发现来月经而整天肚子疼,也不过今天?

I'm writing a story in Chinese (which I go through with my teacher), and this is one sentence from it: 今天是一年中她最讨厌的一天,孔琳宁愿发现来月经而整天肚子疼,也不过今天。 Today is the most annoying day of the year, [and] Kong ...
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3answers
86 views

Could anyone help me check my grammar in sentence

请多多指教 😢 I'm just a beginner 这是谁的手机不知道呢 你想吃什么随便呢 我想发电子邮件向妈妈 请在这里等我 我有急事,请您接替我的职位,可以吗? 我想我的行李箱忘在出租车上了 云岘宫是韩国名胜古迹之一 你专心学习,当然不会考不及格的 她不知道怎样使用提款机 上次他们问了我没回应 要是我有一百万,我要买汽车给父母 请等他一会儿 妈妈希望我成功 我们要万事如意 ...
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2answers
105 views

Is 會 an aspect marker?

It is my understanding that Chinese does not employ tenses, but does rely on grammatical aspect in order to convey meaning. I'm still trying to fully grasp what exactly an aspect is, but viewing the ...
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3answers
45 views

Is this an example of chaining adjectives?

I came across this sentence in my reading yesterday and even though I didn't quite understand the grammar being employed I decided to skip over it because I understood the gist of it, but I've now ...
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4answers
218 views

Is the “的” not always required when prefacing a noun with an adjective?

I've decided to brute-force my way through a novel written in Mandarin as a means of expanding my vocabulary and bettering my understanding of Chinese grammar, and suffice to say my horizons have been ...
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2answers
76 views

How do I understand 能 in 请问几天能到?

In the following dialogue: A: 小姐, 我想机一个包裹。 B: 请问,寄到哪儿? 寄什么? ......... Then later A asks: 请问几天能到? What is 能 here, I cannot find the grammar. In my books 能 is for permission, to be able to ...
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3answers
98 views

What does 原配手撕小三 mean?

In fact, rather than asking the meaning, I want to know which components this phrase consist of. 原配手撕小三: Is it: 原 - 配手 - 撕 - 小三 原配手 - 撕 - 小三 原配手撕 - 小三 I know 小三 mean mistress and 撕 mean to tear, so ...
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2answers
59 views

“tā gāoxìng de tiào qǐlái” distinguishing 得 vs 地

If you hear, "tā gāoxìng de tiào qǐlái," there are two interpretations: 他高兴地跳起来。 He jumped up happily. 他高兴得跳起来。 He was so happy that he jumped up. Or another example: tā shūfu de shuìjiào. 他舒服得睡觉。 ...
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1answer
60 views

what do 形 and 便 mean and how can they combine to make the meaning “situation”?

The Chinese word of 형편 (situation) in Korean is 形便. Can anyone explain what 形 and 便 mean and how can they combine to make the meaning "situation"?
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1answer
39 views

Linguistic Gloss (literal translation) of long English verb phrases into Mandarin Chinese

I am wondering how Chinese grammar handles complex verb phrases. Like in English you can have up to 4 (from what I've seen) verbs chained together. I wanted to post some examples of these verb phrases ...
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0answers
62 views

Rules for pronouncing Rules for pronouncing 著 as zhe5 or zhao2? [duplicate]

Are there rules to know when to pronounce 著 as zhe5 or zhao2?
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1answer
72 views

Difference between 不了 and 不到

This question focuses on the differences between 了and 到. What's the difference between verb + 不了 and verb + 不到? Do the differences also apply to Cantonese? Examples: 收不到 vs 收不了 幫不到 vs 幫不了 來不到 vs ...
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6answers
208 views

What action does “打” in “打酱油” refer to?

Lately I found out that 打酱油means “buy soy sauce”, but it becomes “beat soy sauce” when translated literally. I know 打 can mean “beat”, so I’d like to know if this word can mean “buy” in day-to-day ...
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3answers
68 views

很 in reduplicated adjective phrases?

Is it not neccesary to use 很 to link nouns and adjectives when you reduplicate the adjective and instead you use a 的 after the adjective? For example: 你的女朋友高高的。 她们漂漂亮亮的。
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8answers
2k views

Is the sentence 昨天把我吃得站不起来了 correct?

I came across this example use of 把 in the sentence structure "把 + Object + Verb + 得 complement": 昨天把我吃得站不起来了 I've gotten some feedback that this sentence is not correct. It's used as an example ...
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2answers
322 views

Why is there no 地 in 不小心踢到椅子 (“carelessly kicked the chair”)?

A bunch of examples: (1) 脚不小心踢到椅子上面[src] (2) 在上课,后面的人不小心踢到我椅子了[src] (3) 孩子不小心踢到椅子[src] (4) 贾玲跳舞,不小心踢到椅子,椅子腿断了,陈赫非常关心![src] (5) 脚肿了,是不小心踢到椅子脚上,小脚趾肿了[src] I don't understand why there's no ...
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3answers
724 views

What does 都 mean in 小松鼠每天都到地里去

The full sentence is 小松鼠每天都到地里去,看看结花生了没有。 What is the function of 都 in this sentence? Is it to emphasize that the squirrel looked every day, or that it looked everywhere, or is it something else ...
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1answer
54 views

How does work the chinese adjectives?

I'd like to know how work the chinese adjectives, because i was searching on the internet about this, but i wasn't able to understand the use of 的 and if any noun can become a adjective, if yes is it ...
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2answers
65 views

寄 包裹去 上 海 怎 么寄 ?. 去。meaning

in the sentence 寄包裹去上海怎么寄 ? what is 去 grammar point. Is it a directional complement¿. Has it got the meaning of "in order to” Like in the sentence bellow after the definition. 5 [between two verbal ...
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2answers
82 views

Expressing “Both A .. and B”

I came across the following sentence: 我既是一个语言的从教者,也是一个语言学习的爱好者。 I understand that "既 A , 也 B" is a sentence structure for expressing "both .. and ..". I was wondering about what effect 既 has on ...
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2answers
76 views

Could you say what is postposition in chinese and why it's different from preposition

I'd like to know more about it and what is its difference from preposition and some examples of this.
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2answers
72 views

How does work ergative structure and how often is it used?

I want to know how works the ergative structure and if it's often used or not and please could you give some examples like 院子 里 停着 车。 Literal: Courtyard-in park vehicle. Translation: In the courtyard ...

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