Questions tagged [idioms]

Questions related to idioms, maxims, sayings, and other expressions consisting of a combination of words that has an indirect, figurative meaning.

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5answers
97 views

Precise meaning of 马到成功

So I just happened to watch a youtube video that has displayed in the background an artwork with horses and the phrase 马到成功. Google Translate offered these: It's a success. Gain an immediate victory....
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1answer
69 views

What is the meaning of 及义?

One of Confucius sayings contains the construction 言不及义. It carries the meaning "unable to talk on serious topics", from what a dictionary gave me. However, I was interested in the per-...
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1answer
45 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 21 (中文填字遊戲)

A new puzzle for July 2021 The hunter doesn't know he is being hunted extremely foolish 在水滸傳中的梁山泊排第一百零七位,綽號鼓上蚤的人物 If you want to deliberately frame others, you can always find excuses Busy ...
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1answer
51 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 20 (中文填字遊戲)

Puzzle for June 2021 「病從口入」下句 Lengthy article (or speech) Asking a tiger for its skin (Make deal with dangerous people) Busily run around or move around for a certain purpose Bragging without ...
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2answers
127 views

Literal meaning of 無奇不有

The correct meaning of 無奇不有 would be: full of extraordinary/bizarre things. But why don't the individual characters not add up to the intended meaning? This is not the only idiom that I found ...
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1answer
49 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 19 (中文填字遊戲)

Another puzzle for May-2021 One of the three dynasties in the Three Kingdoms period ruled by the 曹 family A poem that was written by Cao Zhi (曹植). Fictionalized the author's encounter with a goddess ...
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1answer
219 views

What is the origin of the word 鬻?

The word 鬻 (yù) appears to originate as a joint pictogram from: 粥 depicting the rice and two whirls of steam on the sides 鬲 (pronounced lì?) a cooking vessel Later 粥 alone came in use to express the ...
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1answer
63 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 18 (中文填字遊戲)

A new puzzle for May-2021 All or nothing Bathe A modern metaphor for a person’s life with extreme luxury and indulgence, without restraint (有關紂王的典故) Everyone wants to get to a higher position ...
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1answer
102 views

What does 出人头地 mean?

The idiom 出人头地 chūréntóudì means “stand out among one’s fellows”. How to mix the above four words and arrive at the above meaning?
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2answers
67 views

What does 按部就班 mean?

I have checked the dictionary, the following are the meanings for Idiom and its components. could not get how ‘keep conventional ways’ was the meaning derived. can share more light on this? thanks ...
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56 views

Idioms Quiz of 23

Idioms Quiz of 23Q for Idiom lovers Q1. 小华的爸爸是围棋高手,你在他面前夸耀自己的棋技,不是____吗? Q2. 自从那次火灾后,村民一听到孩子的惊叫就_____以为又是哪一家失火了。 Q3. 世界上没有_____的事情,要成功就应该付出努力。 Q4. 这个电视剧向人们提出一个 _____的问题:中学生应该追求什么? Q5. 小女孩由于找不到妈妈,...
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1answer
71 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 17 (中文填字遊戲)

A New puzzle for April 2021 Launch a direct attack on the enemy’s headquarters Makes people happy and satisfied (especially when someone gets the deserved punishment) Notorious Extremely urgent ...
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1answer
148 views

Is there an explicit/crude saying for bravery in Chinese?

I am looking for something similar to the english 'having big balls' as an indication of bravery.
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4answers
101 views

成语 and 俗语 emphasizing adaptation

I would like to know what chinese 成语 or 俗语 can be used to emphasize the need of people or generations to adapt to the given situation or environment. Thanks.
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3answers
720 views

Does 没有办法 have the same idiomatic meaning in Chinese that “No way” does in English?

"No way" in English has a couple of meanings. Like, it can be used to express surprise. Does 没有办法 also carry some idiomatic meanings?
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1answer
79 views

Why 看 is used in 我看得目瞪口呆?

Going through this sentence. 我看得目瞪口呆。I was stunned/dumbfounded. 看 means see, why see in this sentence?
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1answer
77 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 16 (中文填字遊戲)

A new puzzle for March 2021 Steal the bell while covering your ears (deceiving yourself that you are deceiving the others) Revenge one's personal vengeance in the name of official business ...
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3answers
117 views

Four-character idioms that contain an allusive pair

I am interested in finding some examples of four-character idioms that contain exactly a pair of allusions, different in source but similar in nature, that were often compiled by a specific literary ...
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1answer
75 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 15 (中文填字遊戲)

A new puzzle for Feb 2021 It’s better to see it with your own eyes than hear it hundreds of times. It often takes many twists and turns to get what you want Good for others and oneself Boxing ...
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2answers
82 views

Up close and personal equivalent

How do you express something similar to “up close and personal”? Like this sentence: She likes to get up close and personal.
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1answer
53 views

Attack them when they are unready, take them by surprise : 这个成语有多少方法可以说?

Could you please let me know which of these sound right and why the other ones sound wrong? I'm not sure about the difference between 不 and 无. 出其不意,攻其不备 攻其不备,出其不意 攻其无备,出其无意 攻其不备,出其无意 攻其无备,出其不意 都可以用吗
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1answer
86 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 14 (中文填字遊戲)

Please solve the following puzzle Untidy (of one's appearance) Too poor that there is no place to insert an awl. Describes as poor as nothing It is the collective name of the three most prominent ...
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5answers
296 views

How to translate 因為所以科學道理?

I heard this from native speakers but am confused about its meaning. I understand every word but this phrase itself does not make much sense to me.
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2answers
94 views

Is there a common idiom equivalent to “tomato tomahto” in mandarin?

I'm being very nitpicky with a coworker (20s, first language is mandarin) and I'm trying to tease myself playfully by saying something along the lines of "tomato tomahto" in mandarin. I'm ...
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1answer
90 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 13 (中文填字遊戲)

Please solve the following puzzle A grain of rice in the sea. A metaphor for something small and insignificant To bluff Disappear without a trace, no news, or nothing to follow Idiom The multi-...
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1answer
82 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 12 (中文填字遊戲)

Please solve the puzzle below sharp tongue (edit: the first character was replaced by a Homophone) A match made in heaven Come back to life by borrowing a corpse (a metaphor for things that have ...
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1answer
156 views

看图说成语: What chengyu do these sketches refer to (from a grade-3 语文 textbook)?

This chengyu puzzle is on page 66 of a grade-3 语文 textbook (上册). I'm fairly sure I can get the top-left one, and the middle-right one, but not the others. I present this as a chengyu puzzle (a ...
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1answer
109 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 11 (中文填字遊戲)

李白名詩: 「舉頭望明月, ?????」 Hate the social status quo and the state of the world Grammar mistake The peach blossom is the same but the missed person is nowhere to be seen Go between and put things ...
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1answer
162 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 10 (中文填字遊戲)

Please solve the puzzle below People use their collective wisdom and abilities to work together (something good) Happens twice Give no quarter Awesome skill Miles of waves Overly militaristic; ...
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1answer
64 views

Why is 系 pronounced xì (not jì) in the idiom 解铃还须系铃人?

With regards to the idiom: 解铃还须系铃人 jiě líng hái xū xì líng rén CC-CEDICT: lit. whoever hung the bell on the tiger's neck must untie it (idiom) / fig. whoever started the trouble should end it I'm ...
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2answers
130 views

Chinese idiom puzzle 9 (中文填字遊戲)

Please solve the puzzle below Hints: Use the power of others to dominate Like bathing in the spring breeze Rock breaking shock the sky It's like disappearing all at once A very long distance ...
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1answer
65 views

“Single drop of red” (Wuxia)

I have this only via oral tradition, but wanted to ask about it here b/c I assume this is where the Chinese scholars are. Where does this phrase appear in the Chinese literary tradition, what are the ...
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2answers
138 views

Is the following text grammatically correct?

Would you be so kind as to help me correct this text? I am currently trying to incorporate more 成语 and more complex vocabulary in my writing. -- 首先,你必须试探你的对手,因为他的话靠不住。不要让他的想法弄垮得稀巴烂你的思想。其次,你应该每天选择自己的战斗。...
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1answer
94 views

What 莲 means? does it has a “social” meaning, if it's used in everyday life?

I think that '莲' literally means "lotus" but I heard some people saying that it also has a bad meaning, if somebody calls you like that you should be offended. Can someone explain me why? ...
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6answers
195 views

What is the role of chengyu (成语) in a sentence?

I've learned some chengyu (idiomatic expression), and I see many are used in different position in the sentence. For example: adjective -> 那个人看来有点不三不四 noun -> 我集市看到人山人海 adverb or verb? -> ...
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7answers
770 views

How to say something “gets old fast”?

Describing something as 'getting old fast' is a very common phrase in English to describe something that as tedious, but it has the nuance that the thing may not be boring initially. Is there a ...
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2answers
42 views

另當別論 : 另, 別 superfluous? What does 當 add?

ABC Chinese–English Comprehensive Dictionary (2003), p 561. I can't access the "slightly revised through July 2005" ed. I also quote Wiktionary. Why both 另 and 別? Aren't they redundant? ...
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1answer
70 views

Chinese idiom puzzle 8

Please solve the following puzzle Describe a woman's husband is not good (nowadays refers to get together with a bad partner) 語出《詩.王風.中谷有蓷》 A live and death matter Everyone has one 遏後語 "年晚煎堆&...
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3answers
92 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 7

Please solve the following puzzle To win a war, you need XX, YY, and 人和, What are XX and YY? All formed by nature, no traces of man-made carvings One hand covers the sky. ( Describes someone use ...
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3answers
89 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 6

Please solve the following puzzle Simultaneously raise the Combat capability and reduce the number of soldiers of the army When living is so painful, it is better off being dead To fight a battle ...
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1answer
57 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 5

Please solve the following puzzle You are not a gentleman if you don't take revenge for a wrong against you - 見:《施公案》六四回 People in the world are all brothers - 出自:先秦·孔子《論語·顏淵》 Give no quarters ...
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2answers
142 views

Chinese Idiom puzzle 4

Please solve the following puzzle The country is peaceful, citizens are happy. - 出自宋·吴自牧《梦梁录·山川神》 A talented man and a pretty lady (a good match) - 出自唐·李隐《潇湘录·呼延冀》。 Heros show themselves when the ...
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1answer
53 views

New idiom related to surveillance: People do things, the sky watches

I'm trying to find information (including the original Chinese) on an idiom that seems to be gaining popularity recently, related to surveillance (unsure whether this is a traditional phrase or not). ...
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1answer
54 views

Idiom, common phrase crossword puzzle challenge 3

Please solve the following puzzle 語出《易經. 繫辭下》It means that when things develop to the extreme and exhaustion, they must seek changes. After the changes, they will be accessible and suitable for needs....
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1answer
86 views

Idiom, common phrase crossword puzzle challenge 2

Please solve this puzzle A famous Chinese general with a red face Too greedy; take on more than one can handle Extremely insightful Going back on one's words Soul flying out of the sky ...
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1answer
82 views

Idiom, common phrase crossword puzzle challenge

Please solve the following puzzle Recklessly run around Make things up A big mistake is made Better be independent King among Kings buried talent Become a bandit To do a good job, you must ...
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3answers
265 views

Meaning of 滾水 as Cantonese idiom

滾水 (Cantonese gwan2 seoi2) is used (often in restaurant kitchens) as a warning. It literally means "boiling water", but I think it indicates that something potentially dangerous or fragile ...
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6answers
6k views

Why did my Chinese teacher describe Donald Trump as 口吐莲花?

In my regular Chinese class yesterday, I was discussing Donald Trump with my teacher, and she described him as 口吐莲花 (kǒutǔliánhuā). As always I didn't fully understand the particulars of the ...
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2answers
123 views

Is there a chengyu to describe small-time thieves or scoundrels with a playful connotation?

I'm looking for a chengyu or an idiom to colloquially describe small-time criminals, but without excessive negative connotation. There are already words both in Chinese and English that come close: ...
3
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4answers
174 views

「批烂斗臭」这个四字词语,除了「批评」强调什么?

为了练习阅读,我有时候看小报新闻因为内容比较简单。在下面关于“逆向种族主义”的文章中我遇到了一个四字词语:「批烂斗臭」。 当然,并不是所有西方人都认同这场文化层面的“革命”。很多保守派的白人就认为这场“革命”是偏激和粗暴的,是在通过树立种种“政治正确”的言论牢笼,逼迫人们去接受“革命者”的观念。而倘若拒不服从,就遭到网络暴力的攻击,被“批烂斗臭”,甚至会失去工作和前途。 美国白人终于喊出这个词,...