Questions tagged [grammar]

Questions about the grammatical rules governing Chinese structure and composition.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
4
votes
5answers
1k views

How should I understand the absence of conjunctions in 流行音乐歌唱的大都是男女爱情、歌词贴近生活、通俗易懂、易于传唱、受到欢迎、不足为怪?

In the Coursera HSK6 course, week 5 lesson 22, part of the spoken 短文 is: 流行音乐歌唱的大都是男女爱情、歌词贴近生活、通俗易懂、易于传唱、受到欢迎、不足为怪。 [My translation]: The majority of pop music songs are male-female romance, lyrics ...
3
votes
2answers
309 views

What is important to consider while building an adverbial phrase? [closed]

As far as I know, in Chinese, the adverbial phrase is put right in front of the verb and its purpose is to describe the verb. Sentence pattern: S adverbialphrase V O What are the rules to put a ...
0
votes
4answers
140 views

How can 那本书找了很长时间也没找到 be corrected?

This sentence comes from my homework. 那本书找了很长时间也没找到. (1) What's wrong with this sentence? (2) How can this sentence be corrected?
2
votes
2answers
226 views

Reduplication of adverb in Adv. + V1 + Adv. + V2 structure…?

I was watching We Bare Bears on Netflix with Chinese subs and encountered this sentence: 请轻拿轻放 Which translated into “Please be careful (with this).” I wonder what structure/grammar it is. Could ...
1
vote
5answers
183 views

Where is the verb in reduplication of adjectives “Noun + Adj + Adj + 的”?

I understand the 的 from the structure: Adj + 的 Example: 高的。 as attaching the Adj to an omitted Noun. This omitted Noun can either be a general noun such as "one/s" (高的 can mean the tall ...
0
votes
2answers
85 views

我看了化验结果 vs 我看化验结果了 which one is correct? [duplicate]

The book that I have studied said “我看了化验结果。” but I’m wondering if “我看化验结果了” make sense or not. If the second one can be used, what’s the difference?
2
votes
2answers
159 views

What should one pay attention to when translating “I will go to military-school [within the next week]” into Chinese?

What advice for translation could you give in this context, how would you translate the following sentences containing adverbials: I will go to military-school soon. I will go to military-school ...
0
votes
3answers
72 views

How “Noun + Adj + Adj + 的” (reduplication of adjectives) is grammatically equivalent to “Noun + (Adv of degree) + Adj”? [duplicate]

This question is motivated from Why 的 in reduplication of adjectives "Noun + Adj + Adj + 的"?. In the answers, it was argued that the reduplication of adjectives structure: Noun + Adj + Adj +...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

Where should I place the comma in large numbers?

If writing for an exclusively Chinese audience, would the number 五萬 be written as 5,0000 or 50,000? To flesh out the question, we could consider: 五千 5000 or 5,000 五萬 5,0000 or 50,000 ...
2
votes
4answers
118 views

How does reduplication change the meaning of adjectives?

What is the difference in meaning of: 它的眼睛大大的。 它的眼睛很大。 and 他有大大的眼睛。 他有大眼睛。 And more generally, when might someone use reduplication for adjectives?
3
votes
3answers
119 views

Adverbs of degree with reduplicated adjective phrases?

Why is it not necessary to use 很 (or other adverbs of degree) to link nouns and adjectives when you reduplicate the adjective, and instead use a 的 after the adjective? For example: 你的女朋友高高的。 她们漂漂亮亮的。
3
votes
3answers
130 views

忠美聖愛仁義利義好哀恕: How do I segment this proverb into separate words?

I saw a single row of characters with no punctuation: 忠美聖愛仁義利義好哀恕 I believe this is a proverb relating to Confucian values, but I can't break it into separate words. Zhongmei (忠美) might be loyalty. ...
31
votes
9answers
3k views

Tense and use of 了

I struggle a bit to get my head around tenses in Mandarin, and in particular when I need to use 了 (le). Do you have any tips, examples or resources to help me out with this?
0
votes
4answers
118 views

Meaning of 的 in 我十岁才到的美国

I do not understand the meaning of 的 in the following sentence: 我爸爸是美国人,妈妈是意大利人,我十岁才到的美国。 This sentence is in my Chinese textbook. At first, I had thought it may be wrong. Afterward, I run into ...
5
votes
3answers
457 views

Questions ending with 么: Do 么 and 吗 have the exact same meaning?

I was chatting online with a Chinese person and he sometimes added 么 at the end of questions: 你觉得汉语难么? 是因为声调掌握不好么? Can 么 and 吗 be used interchangeably? Do they have the exact same meaning?
5
votes
1answer
324 views

Are there loanwords from Portuguese used in Macau Cantonese?

I'd like to know if there are some words from Macau Cantonese that are from Portuguese. As HK Cantonese has some words from English, I think Macau also can have some words. Thank you for any examples ...
1
vote
4answers
200 views

What's the difference between 是不是 and 对不对?

Can you use both of these interchangeably? Is one more common than the other? I also haven't seen this pattern used with other verbs. Are there other verbs where this is commonly used as well?
3
votes
4answers
89 views

Can you still use “Number + MW + 多” when the Number can be more than one MW larger?

I have a doubt related to these questions: Does 多 always come after the measure word?, How to correctly use "多" to say "more than"? In the answers, they explain you can give an ...
6
votes
5answers
2k views

What is wrong with my sentence 我的同屋睡觉时候想开屋门一点点?

I wrote this sentence: 我的同屋睡觉时候想开屋门一点点. Wǒ de tóngwū shuìjiào shíhòu xiǎng kāi wūmén yīdiǎndiǎn. It was meant to mean "when my roommate sleeps, they like to open the door a little". Our teacher ...
2
votes
1answer
40 views

Is there any difference between beginning a sentence with 在北京游览 and (你)在北京游览(时候/时)?

In my learning book Easy Steps to Chinese 4 textbook you can see the sentence: 在北京游览,乘坐什么交通工具比较方便。 For the first part of the sentence, 在北京游览 means "visiting/touring Beijing" but is this a ...
2
votes
2answers
104 views

Is it possible to know what 都 means in “Subj + 都 + Predicate + 了”?

In my lessons, I came across two different meanings for the adverb 都 dōu: "Already" with the structure: Subj. + 都 + Predicate + 了, where 了 stands for completion of the predicate (see ...
1
vote
3answers
88 views

How do I avoid repetitions when combining two sentences with the same subject and verb?

Consider the following two English sentences: The song is called "Name 1" on "Website 1". The song is called "Name 2" on "Website 2". I can combine these two sentences to read: The song is called ...
0
votes
4answers
111 views

Why was I told 在什么情况下……吗? is wrong?

Under what circumstances can police use tear gas? I translate it as 在什么情况下警察可以使用电击枪吗? Someone told me this is not correct because it shouldn't end with 吗. But I don't understand, if can police use ...
2
votes
3answers
150 views

What is the grammatical function of 到 in 这些的确是铁匠会用到的老式钉子 ?

How does 到 contribute to the meaning of the expression: 这些的确是铁匠会用到的老式钉子. Is there a difference between sentences with and without it: 这些的确是铁匠会用到的老式钉子 这些的确是铁匠会用的老式钉子
1
vote
3answers
70 views

How to make a recommendation/suggestion to someone

I want to translate the following sentence: The Student Union suggested to the restaurant manager that the restaurant should sell healthy food, less fast food, and no sweets and soft drinks during ...
2
votes
2answers
77 views

How to ask what personality traits do you like in Mandarin

How would one ask "What personality traits do you like?" in Mandarin? I've seen it translated as: 你喜欢什么个性特征 but isn't 性特征 sexual characteristics? So I wasn't sure if it would be better to ...
3
votes
4answers
121 views

Why 了 in 走+time+就到了?

I came across the following sentence: 她的家很近,走五分钟就到了。 Tā de jiā hěn jìn, zǒu wǔ fēnzhōnɡ jiù dào le. Her house is very close, only need to walk for five minutes to arrive. Question: Why is there a ...
7
votes
3answers
935 views

What is 吗 doing in 你有什么事吗?

In a Chinese lesson, I came across these sentences: 你有什么事吗? Nǐ yǒu shénme shì mɑ? 你有什么事? Nǐ yǒu shénme shì? And both were translated as: What's the matter? I don't understand 1. Without 吗, I ...
3
votes
3answers
112 views

Why is 很早 after the verb in 我起床很早?

I came across the following sentence: 今天我起床很早。 Jīntiān wǒ qǐchuáng hěn zǎo. Today I wake up very early. I am confused about 很早 appearing after the verb. I think here 很早 (very early) indicates the ...
4
votes
3answers
89 views

Difference between Verb + 不了 and Verb + 不动

My teacher gives me two examples to state the difference between 不了 and 不动 as follows. (A)我的腿受伤了,所以我走不了。 (B)我累得走不动。 I also read in Chinese Grammar Wiki but I still get confused. (1) My teacher said ...
0
votes
1answer
64 views

Purpose of the reduplication in 一步一步地往上爬

(A)别着急,一步一步地往上爬,爬不动的时候就休息一会儿。 (B)我请田芳一句一句地给我纠正。 I learned about the reduplication of Measure words (e.g:个个,天天 ) but these sentences use a different structure. (1)What is the purpose of this ...
4
votes
3answers
564 views

Can an adverb modify another adverb in Chinese?

I was wondering if an adverb in Chinese can be used to modify another adverb. I looked some resources but I could not find it. For example, in Adverb in resources.allsetlearning, they just say "...
2
votes
1answer
67 views

Is “就快下雨了” correct Mandarin?

I've been watching Peppa Pig to improve my Mandarin, but here at 1:59, the mama pig says “就快下雨了” meaning to say that it will rain soon. However I thought that the phrase "就快" was Cantonese ...
6
votes
5answers
991 views

What is the difference between Chinese simplified and Chinese traditional?

I'm Indian. I'm trying to learn Chinese. I searched Google translate, it's showing Chinese simplified or Chinese traditional. What is the difference between Chinese simplified and Chinese traditional?...
3
votes
2answers
74 views

Why is 在 translated as “during” in this sentence rather then “at”?

This sentence 中国人喜欢在端午节吃粽子。 is translated as, Chinese People like to eat Zongzi during the Dragon Boat Festival. Why is 在 translated as "during" rather then "at".
1
vote
2answers
48 views

Placement of stative verbs

I notice that stative verbs tend to connect with the subject and then the rest of the sentence proceeds with normal word order. 我們喜歡在圖書館讀書 Why does 喜歡 precede the location-phrase 在圖書館? (why not 我們 ...
9
votes
5answers
724 views

Which verbs DO NOT go with 了 and or 过?

I remember reading that some verbs don't accept 了 or 过. Side question: When I use a word like 昨天 or 以前 do I use 了 or is it redundant? e.g. 昨天我去买了一台电脑 or 昨天我买一台电脑
3
votes
4answers
108 views

Is “一些队员一样太好” correct?

一些队员一样太好。 Is this above sentence correct? My question is related to the existence of 太, which seems odd. If it's wrong, how would I say "Some players are equally very good"?
1
vote
2answers
111 views

What are the grammatical functions of 一米八五 and 一个小时?

In the following examples, we have a subject + an adjective + a quantity. What are 一米八五 and 一个小时 in terms of grammar? Do they have a specific grammatical name? I cannot find it in grammar books. ...
3
votes
4answers
136 views

Difference between 那时,那时候,当时,那会儿,那阵子

I was trying to say "at that time I started to be interested in maths". I translated it as: 当时我开始对数学感兴趣. Then I saw some other expressions to say "at that time": 那时,那时候,那会儿,那阵子. ...
1
vote
2answers
61 views

When does 可 before a verb mean “willing to”, and when does it mean “can”?

In a sentence like this, 他遇到了一个好朋友, 可带他去很多酒吧 does the 可 mean the new friend “can” bring him to the bar, or that he is “willing to”? I’ve always thought of 可 as just “can” or “able to”, but I saw on ...
8
votes
2answers
844 views

Describing a person that can speak Mandarin

Yesterday I met a person that can speak Mandarin. We had a nice chat and I was going over it in my head today. I want to tell another friend that I met someone that can speak mandarin, but I'm having ...
1
vote
1answer
30 views

Placement of duration complement 很长时间 before a negated verb 没看?

I found the following sentence: 我很长时间没看电影了。 Wǒ hěn cháng shíjiān méi kàn diànyǐngle. I haven't watched a movie in a very long time. I believe 很长时间 (very long time) is the duration of the action 没看 (...
3
votes
6answers
388 views

How to use 得 without single-character verbs (e.g. 我旅行得很快)?

I've been taught that ‘得’ can be used in situations such as, “我打篮球打得很好”, to describe the "degree" that the action has. But I've also been told that ‘得’ only works with single character verbs-- so ...
7
votes
3answers
680 views

Why is 得 in 多得做不完?

My understanding of 的-地-得 is the same as what's here: 的-地-得, when do you use which? -- which is summarised as: “地” usually appears before the verb while “得” appears after the verb. However, I found a ...
1
vote
2answers
96 views

In 有一只小鸟真可怜,它在树枝上冷得发抖 why is 有 at the start?

So I am studying this children´s story, and I can´t find a proper grammar explanation. 有一只小鸟真可怜,它在树枝上冷得发抖。 So here I assume 有 indicates the bird´s existence, however in every explanation about 有 ...
1
vote
1answer
43 views

Which is correct:了 or 过 in 我去。。。他家,知道他住在哪里

我去。。。他家,知道他住在哪里. I do not know what to choose in this sentence: 了 or 过. In my opinion: (1) 我去了他家,知道他住在哪里. (I had been to his house) (2) 我去过他家,知道他住在哪里. (I had had the experience of being in his house) ...
1
vote
3answers
90 views

Passive object position in 是…的 structure?

I came across the following sentences: 1. 电话是谁打来的? Diànhuà shì shuí dǎlái de? Who was calling? 晚饭是妈妈做的。 Wǎnfàn shì māma zuò de. Mom made dinner. Which literally is something like: The phone call ...
1
vote
2answers
173 views

If 冬 in itself means winter, why add 天?

If 冬 in itself means winter, do adding 天 Impact the meaning, or perhaps refer to winter time instead of the season itself? Or is it because 冬 is monosyllabic and 冬天 has two syllables?
4
votes
1answer
432 views

What's wrong with 很多同学坐着在草地上?

很多同学坐着在草地上 => My textbook gives me the correct sentence: 很多同学坐在草地上. But I think the original one is not wrong. (1) 很多同学坐着在草地上. Many students are sitting on the grass. (2) 很多同学坐在草地上. Many ...

1 2
3
4 5
27