Questions tagged [grammar]

Questions about the grammatical rules governing Chinese structure and composition.

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Questions about 们 in Chinese (which one is correct?)

家好 请问一下,这些句子哪个对,哪个不对 ? Which one is correct and which one is wrong? 他们是我的老师们 (两个以上的老师) 他们是我的老师 (两个以上的老师) 他们是我老师们 (两个以上的老师) 他们是我老师 (两个以上的老师) 他们是我的朋友们 (两个以上的老师) 他们是我的朋友 (两个以上的老师) 他们是我朋友们 (两个以上的老师)...
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Which one is correct? 给我打电话/打电话给我

can you help me which one is correct and which one is wrong? 你给我打个电话 你给我打电话 你给我电话 你打给我个电话 你打给我电话 你打电话给我 Thank you.
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What is the subject of 其他的都很满意?

I found the following translated example: 除了没有电梯,其他的都很满意。 Chúle méiyǒu diàntī, qítā de dōu hěn mǎnyì. I am satisfied with everything except for there is no elevator. I have a question about the ...
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236 views
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Modern Standard Mandarin equivalent of the 倒…不… and 半…不… constructs?

I've seen this mostly as dialect usage, but I'm wondering if there's a Modern Standard Mandarin (MSM) equivalent. 倒...不... - (seemingly) neither A nor B 倒男不女 倒文不武 倒明不白 半...不... - (seemingly) half A ...
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What is the function of 一次 in “去一次”?

I came across these translated examples: [Talking about a place]: 明年夏天我打算去一次。 Mínɡnián xiàtiān wǒ dǎsuàn qù yí cì。 I plan to go there next summer. 三年以前我去过上海,去年我又去了一次,明年我想再去一次。 Sān nián yǐqián wǒ ...
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Sentence construction with 除了, 被,一方面

I'm currently studying these sentence constructions and I tried to translate in the best way possible. in addition to the kitchen, the living room of this apartment is also very large.Only if the ...
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1answer
118 views

When is a degree required? or: hai6 vs hou2 vs gei

I am trying to learn Cantonese. I want to be able to say (speak, not write) after a meal: I am full. Which I could translate directory to: Ngo5 hai6 baau2 But, my local (student in HK) ...
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What is 了 doing in 这个表快了+time?

I am confused about the 了 in the sentence: 这个表快了五分钟。 Zhèɡe biǎo kuàile wǔ fēnzhōnɡ. This watch is running five minutes faster. Clearly there is no change of state. Is it for completion? I don't ...
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How to say “we want what is best for our kids”?

I'd like to say the above sentence. I can't think anything but the following sentence, but it just doesn't sit right with me somehow: 我们都要对我们的孩子最好. While the subject "what's best" in english ...
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Is this email correct grammatically and structurally? 希望你一切都好。我已经学习七张纸你给我。……

Recently I have tried to become more proficient in writing emails in Chinese. The structure for these are difficult, I have provided an example of a email I recently wrote. Is this correct ...
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Do time range constructions as “从~至” and “从~到” have a different meaning without 从?

In the following sentence, the teacher said that, since there is no 从 at the beginning it means that not everyday 我 have exams. If there was a 从 it would mean that 我 would have exams everyday until 六 ...
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2answers
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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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4answers
617 views

How and when is 做 used as the verb “to be”?

Can someone please clarify how and when 做 is used to mean "to be" e.g. 不愿做奴隶人们 I am familiar with 做 meaning "to do" or "to make", and I would expect that if I was saying "I am a slave", “我是一个奴隶“ ...
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What does 任一牌 mean in Chinese “Magic: The Gathering” cards?

I thought magic cards would be a fun source of study material for me, but I've hit a bit that confuses me. (From this card) 每当任一牌手施放瞬间或法术咒语时,你抓一张牌。 I already know from the English translation that it'...
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1answer
86 views

Does Chinese have an equivalent to Arabic-style praising grammar (translates to 褒贬句)?

Since my native language is Arabic, our 语法 is somehow very strict, but I find the Chinese 语法 somehow flexible. In Arabic we have a certain 语法 structure that is called 褒贬法, translating it into Chinese....
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Is the use of a conjunction between the second-last and last word in a list (A、B和C) a natural Chinese construction?

Is the use of a conjunction between the second-last and last word in a list a natural Chinese construction? Sometimes the construction feels like an Anglicism: I do not hear it in daily speech that ...
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1answer
145 views

Can 地 be used in place of 的 as a stylistic choice?

Is the use of 地 in the following document correct (some specific samples included below)? I feel like there are many cases where 的 should have been used, but 地 is used instead. The number of such ...
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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. It claims when the time is specified, it's acceptable to use 了 after a verb and before the object as ...
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Why use 的 at the end of a sentence such as 我一定會去看他的?

I'm looking for confirmation of the way I'm parsing a sentence with 的 at the end, and I'd appreciate some background or other examples of this usage. I found this sentence on tatoeba.org: 我一定會去看他的。 I'...
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Why 说的 and not only 说 in 你要按照我说的做并且要做好?

I saw that phrase while I was studying and I don't understand. 你要按照我说的做并且要做好。 Why 说的 not only 说? What does 的 mean in that phrase?
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Both is correct? 你认为如何 and 如何你认为

你认为如何 - More like a Chinese guy would talk like that. 如何你认为 - Feels like the English sentence. *Like the sentence start with "What", "Which" etc. So both is correct? Especially to ...
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When using 是…的, what should I do when there is both a direct and an indirect object (e.g. 这样话是我告诉他的) or a separable verb (e.g. 这本书是我读书的)?

I'm having difficulty around the position of two kinds of objects in the 是...的 structure. First, what should I do when there is both a direct and an indirect object? Would "这样话是我告诉他的" be ...
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1answer
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Why can 地 sometimes be omitted when placed after adjectives?

I thought that 地 is attached to any adjective to form an adverb. In the case of 大声, why would you say 大声唱歌 (sing loudly) instead of 大声地唱歌? Is this because 大声 is originally an adverb (loudly) instead ...
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Which do I use: 喜欢不喜欢 or 喜不喜欢?

I know that 喜不喜欢 and 喜欢不喜欢 have the same meaning, but in a sentence, which would look more appealing or make more sense in the sentence? In other words, which one is grammatically correct?
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369 views

What comprehensive grammar books are available? [closed]

I have found many grammar books, but none that go beyond the low-intermediate level. Some textbook series contain lots of grammar, but this is spread out across many books and difficult to quickly ...
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How do I break apart 电子纸是利用电泳显示技术原理发明而成的?

I'm struggling to understand how the part in bold breaks apart: 电子纸是利用电泳显示技术原理发明而成的,之所以也被称为“纸”,是因为它可以最大限度地模拟传统纸张的功能。 HSK6 past exam; also Coursera HSK6 course, week 7, lesson 3 Breaking it apart ...
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6answers
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In 吃完晚饭后,我们去了维多利亚海港看烟花, why is 了 after 去 and not after 看?

In my chinese book I saw the following sentence. 6年初二晚上他们一家人去看了烟花 。 That has sense with the following grammar point for verbs in series with 去 9.5   Two verbs: One indicating purpose When a simple ...
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1answer
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Why is 英语和汉语我都会说 correct and 我会说都英语和汉语 incorrect?

While studying today's lesson I came across this sentence: 英语和汉语我都会说。 The lesson also says that I cannot say: 我会说都英语和汉语。 I imagine it's because of 都, so if I omit it, would it be correct to say ...
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What is the purpose of 是 in “我应该是感冒了”?

I came across the following translated example: 我应该是感冒了,耳朵也有点儿疼,不过没发烧。 Wǒ yīnɡɡāi shì ɡǎnmào le,ěrduo yě yǒudiǎnr ténɡ,búɡuò méi fāshāo 。 I think I caught a cold, and my ears are a little painful, ...
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Critique request for my monologue: 我下课以后常常去我的实习。 我以后我的实习我有课一遍。……

Is anyone willing to help me edit this monologue for grammatical errors? If so, I would really appreciate it. I have chosen the most simple words I know to make performing it easier. 我下课以后常常去我的实习。 ...
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1answer
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What does 并没有 mean?

I am confused about the usage of character 并 with 没有来, as in this sentence: 他并没有来北京 Does it mean: She never (and will not) come to Beijing. She hasn't come to Beijing, yet. (but she will come soon)
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What's wrong with this sentence 我终于快到中国了

It is from my correct-the-sentence exercise. 我终于快到中国了。 I asked a Chinese, he said that this sentence is understandable. In my opinion, "终于" seems redundant. If not, the original sentence ...
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Why 给我钱 and not 把钱给我?

I read and listen a lot of people say “给我钱”. I had no problem with that for quite a long time until I learned about 把. I started to wonder why people said 给我钱 and not 把钱给我 when there’s disposal to the ...
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1answer
334 views

What does 不 at the end of a sentence (e.g. 更新速度可以快点不) mean?

What does 不 at the end of a sentence mean? For example, 更新速度可以快点不 The context is somebody complaining about updating site content so slow. Does it mean "Can update speed be quicker" ?
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The location of my country within Europe: 我先說一下我國在歐洲中的地理位置

I started my essay with: 我先說一下我國在歐洲中的地理位置,⋯ Apparently, there are a lot of problems with this. It seems that the teacher thought my country was in Central Europe, since he changed 中 to 中部。I wanted ...
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When can 要 replace 需要?

In an answer to the post 要 to indicate "will [verb]" vs "need", it is argued that 要;yào;want to, need to, going to is actually the short form of either 需要;xūyào;to need, to want ...
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243 views

What is the difference, if any, between 即使 and 無論?

Is there a big difference between 即使 and 無論? I was working on a couple of fill-in-the-blanks exercises and the following sentence came up: 你的畫很有特色,_______ 是畫家也不一定能畫得比你好。 I think the right answer ...
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How do you say “we only have one carrot left”?

I'm practicing sentence writing and want to say We only have one carrot left. Imagine looking in the cupboard, and seeing there is only one carrot (although lots of other vegetables). I'm fairly ...
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5answers
237 views

Where to put 从头到尾 in a sentence?

我从头到尾把他的电影看了一遍。 我把他的电影从头到尾看了一遍。 Which of the two sentences above is more idiomatic?
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What kind of words can be followed by the character 感?

For example: 正义感 使命感 厚重感 But some sound weird to me, as 意义感. Is there a rule?
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236 views

Is there a dictionary that includes word collocations (词语搭配)?

Is there a decent dictionary that includes word collocations (词语搭配), or words that the searched word cannot be used with? I use Pleco, but one of my largest complaints with it is that there's really ...
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5answers
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What's the meaning of 龙舟队分哪个两个组?

What is the meaning of this sentence? 龙舟队分哪个两个组? Moreover, is 分组 a separable verb 离合动词, or is it a verb and a noun? I haven't found grammar references that explain the verb in question. I'm confused ...
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2answers
114 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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What are the rules for the order of time adverbs?

I have some doubts about the sentence order for time adverbs. Note: Time adverbs tell us when an action happened, but also for how long, and how often. English examples: When: today, yesterday, later,...
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3answers
813 views

Is 不 A 不 B a grammatical structure like 又 A 又 B?

I ran across 不知不觉 the other day. If I use MDBG to look up c:不*不* I see there are many idioms with that format. Can I use it with any verbs (?) or is it only part of fixed expressions?
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3answers
610 views

Difference between 还 and 又

Both 还 and 又 may be used to indicate an addition to the preceding information. For example: 我买了香蕉、苹果还买了葡萄。 我们不但要努力学习,还要考得好。 昨天没考好,现在又撞伤了,真倒霉。 他要买肉又要买鱼。 May I exchange both in all above examples? ...
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1answer
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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
236 views

What is the meaning of 会 in 你们太会了 and the sentence's connotation?

Context: There was a photo of a Chinese celebrity sitting down and some fans cropped and pasted that photo on different photos, so it looked the person was sitting on a horse or bicycle etc. The ...
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9answers
375 views

Why “校车来了“, not ”校车来着“ and ”校车正来"?

My question is as the title. The sentence "school bus is coming" is translated as "校车来了". I understand this translation because "了" here indicates a new situation. But why are "校车来着" or "校车正来" WRONG?

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