Questions tagged [mandarin]

Question specifically about the Mandarin dialect. (Not for arbitrary questions that happen to involve Mandarin.)

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151 votes
15 answers
51k views

Resources for learning Mandarin Chinese

This is a community-maintained list of resources for learning Mandarin Chinese. Alphabetical Index Add-ons (browser) AI chat bots Apps Books Dictionaries Language Exchanges Lists of Resources News ...
0 votes
2 answers
109 views

Understanding how natives speak with multiple subjects (Mandarin)

In English, if I wanted to say: "Today I practiced Chinese with an employee" the other subject (employee) can properly come last in the sentence. Of course I can also say "Me and an ...
0 votes
2 answers
74 views

Help with the right version what the Chinese guy is saying

Recently during the lectures we've been listening to "China's Betting Big on Artificial Intelligence. Could the US lose the AI Race?" from YouTube. Certain video sections were in Chinese, ...
0 votes
5 answers
293 views

Is 林心鹭 a good Chinese name?

I’ve been looking to find a Chinese name and I found somewhere on a website the name “心鹭”. I instantly loved it because herons are my favourite birds so it’s meaningful for me, but I’m not sure if it ...
1 vote
1 answer
78 views

Mandarin music with clear speech tones

As discussed in other questions, in a lot of Mandarin music the spoken. tones get lost which make it hard to understand or use for learning. Is there any well-known Mandarin music or music artists ...
3 votes
3 answers
670 views

What's the difference between 主任 and 主管?

As per title, what's the difference between these 2 terms? My teacher said that in China, 主任 is considered as low position, and 主管 is higher. But looking at the translation 主任 means director, which ...
6 votes
3 answers
799 views

Difference between 小吃 and 零食

Both of these words in the dictionary have themselves defined as “snack” but what are the differences between these 2 words?
3 votes
3 answers
3k views

的确, 确实, 实在, and 真正: what's the difference?

(Related a bit to Difference between 实际, 现实, 确实, and 实在 I guess. Good to link to it for posterity.) 的确, 确实, 实在, 真正 My dictionaries all say that all four can be adverbs with a meaning of "really." ...
0 votes
2 answers
152 views

How can I install Shuangpin in Rime for Traditional Characters only?

I am on a Windows 10 PC. I have installed the Zhengma method on RIME and have been using it for the past few months. But I want to try practicing with Shuangpin (aka Double Pinyin) since its easier on ...
3 votes
5 answers
516 views

What is the difference between 没 and 不 when used with 又?

What's the difference between these sentences: 他又没来上课 他又不来上课() Here: https://resources.allsetlearning.com/chinese/grammar/Expressing_%22again%22_in_the_past_with_%22you%22#Negative_Form it says both 没 ...
1 vote
2 answers
79 views

What is the meaning of 萝图荟萃?

《萝图荟萃》 is the title of the catalogue of the imperial map collection from 1760. However, according to various dictionaries, 萝 means "radish" which makes no sense in this context. Some ...
0 votes
2 answers
141 views

Hearing the difference between 他 vs 大

When listening to normal conversation or fast spoken Mandarin chinese, can native speakers still hear the aspiration in 他 vs 大, particularly if relying only on sound or what is heard? As an English ...
1 vote
5 answers
213 views

Can「文化」replace 「學歷」in a sentence?

I watched a Chinese documentary program, a woman told the interviewer:「我父母都沒什麼文化,所以祇能做一些低薪的勞力工作」 My reaction was "She couldn't really mean to say her parents are uncultured". Judging from ...
0 votes
2 answers
146 views

Hearing difference between 那里 and 哪里

Of course it is the fate of any native speaker of English to struggle with tones. And I suppose I should be happy I have begun with Mandarin, which is far less extravagant in its tone system than are ...
1 vote
2 answers
379 views

Are there any patterns for which tone is used for each Mandarin character?

From both a practical learning perspective and an interest in linguistics, I want to know whether there are any common patterns or "rules of thumb" that influence which tone is assigned to ...
1 vote
3 answers
86 views

的 at the end of the sentence (ex: 蠻有趣的)

這篇文章蠻有趣的。 Why is there a 的 at the end? Could anyone explain the grammar to me? Thanks!
1 vote
3 answers
190 views

How to understand 之所以

I’m reading Randall Munroe’s “What If 2” in Mandarin. (It’s the author of the popular cartoon xkcd.com) There’s a chapter about placing a house-sized Jupiter in the middle of a neighborhood. The ...
1 vote
1 answer
112 views

Use of 空降兵 in net language

This particular word has been a sore spot for me. 空降兵 I know it literally translates as Paratroopers. like Air raiders or smth. but I heard its also an internet slang. Id love to know what it means.
1 vote
3 answers
148 views

Is there statistics on the frequency of individual pinyin syllables in real texts?

I'm interested in the frequency of pinyin syllables (both when including tones and toneless). This implies the usage in real text, weighted by the occurrences in the corpus, not by parsing a ...
1 vote
4 answers
104 views

usage of 几乎 vs 几乎要

I just spent an hour of class trying to figure out the difference between: "这辆车几乎 撞 到我了" and "这辆车几乎 要撞 到我了". The only differnence is 几乎要 and not 几乎. The teacher kept saying ...
3 votes
4 answers
1k views

Does Chinese have idiomatic equivalents of "a regular" and "the usual"?

In English there is an idiomatic noun sense of "regular" for a regular customer. Somebody who regularly dines/drinks/etc at the same café/restaurant/bar/etc: That guy is a regular, he comes ...
1 vote
2 answers
1k views

Chinese-characters learning software for Ubuntu (Linux)

I am looking for a software that shows a Chinese alphabet/word on my desktop with its pinyin and meaning in English, and each day it will give a different word. Since I am using a Linux (Ubuntu 18.04) ...
1 vote
2 answers
348 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....
0 votes
1 answer
86 views

Can anyone help me check if the translation I made is correct?

Guy 1: Good morning, everyone. I’m News Anchor (name), and welcome to Weather Weather Lang. Today is April 6, 7AM and we’ll look at the city weather forecast. Reporter (name), how’s the weather today? ...
13 votes
8 answers
8k views

What is the difference between 通常,经常,and 常常?

What is the difference between 通常,经常,and 常常? I hear them a lot in conversational Chinese, but I can't pick out the difference in meaning. The dictionaries I've checked don't seem to agree on their ...
1 vote
1 answer
77 views

Does translate actually have it backwards - 别人在睡觉时的我?

Google translate looked at this: 别人在睡觉时的我 And said it means: me while others are sleeping is that correct or should it be: Others while I am sleeping.
0 votes
2 answers
203 views

What is the difference between shénme 什么 and nǎ 哪?

I can not really understand the difference and found no article about it. Example : 你叫什么名字?Nǐ jiào shénme míngzi? 他们是 哪 国人? Tāmen shì nǎ guó rén? Thanks !
1 vote
6 answers
632 views

Does this sentence make sense? 我打算工作在一个网站会完了在四月十五

I thought something like: 我打算工作在一个网站会完了在四月十五. Pinyin Wǒ dǎsuàn gōngzuò zài yīgè wǎngzhàn huì wánliǎo zài sì yuè shíwǔ. English: I'm working on a website that will be finished by April 15th. Even ...
0 votes
1 answer
58 views

How is the pronunication of 为什么呀?

I was watching this youtube lesson https://www.youtube.com/shorts/LHOX4m2ToiI And shortly into the video the boy says: 为什么呀 But it certainly sounds more like: "wei r meya" Did I hear that ...
1 vote
2 answers
108 views

Does "这很大钱! 再见大学钱...." make sense? Or have I written it wrong?

For my Chinese class, I have to make a film recording an exchange in a restaurant. I'm trying to say "This is a lot of money! Goodbye college money..." in reference to someone spending too much on ...
1 vote
5 answers
77 views

Is 我认为保护环境将为子孙后代保证未来 correct? Does it make sense?

我认为保护环境将为子孙后代保证未来 I am trying to say that saving the environment will guarantee a future for future generations. Does it actually mean that or have I made mistakes?
1 vote
1 answer
63 views

Pronoun for human babies in Mandarin?

In English we can use the impersonal pronoun "it" for babies: She gave birth to a baby, but unfortunately it died to illness shortly after What pronouns are appropriate to use in Chinese? ...
6 votes
1 answer
219 views

The readings of 栅

What is the deal with the readings of 栅 (柵) and how do they appear? According to modern dictionaries (such as the 漢語大字典 2nd Ed.), there are three readings for 栅? zhà, in the meaning of "fence, ...
0 votes
1 answer
158 views

How do I ask for more meat or rice?

Friendly auntie at more workplace only knows Mandarin. Was wondering how do I ask for more meat/rice. Thanks!
0 votes
2 answers
73 views

Main utilisation of 过

I'm working on a lexicon for the main Chinese characters, and I only have a few words to give a meaning. I am wondering about the two main significations of the character 过. All dictionaries online ...
0 votes
1 answer
45 views

那透明的心 - transparent heart?

What is a transparent heart in the context of the chorus lines of the song 致你 by 苡慧? Transparent in the sense of being visually transparent or some other sensory perception? The chorus lines are: ...
3 votes
1 answer
2k views

What phonetic sounds are there in Chinese?

What are the IPA symbols for sounds in (Beijing) Mandarin? Which Mandarin sounds are not in (American) English? Which English sounds are not in Mandarin? Below are the IPA consonant and vowel charts ...
1 vote
2 answers
145 views

Use a car as a scooter? 作为代步车?

Google translate tells me that 作为代步车 means "as a scooter". Is that what it means in this sentence: 我想买一辆二手的马自达作为代步车
1 vote
2 answers
83 views

What is with the characters 覆, 復, 複, 复? Are they all the same ? They appears to have overlapping meanings in dictionaries but not 100% equivalent

What is with the characters 覆, 復, 複, 复? Are they all the same? They appears to have overlapping meanings in dictionaries but not 100% equivalent for some reason. Normally characters may have 1 ...
1 vote
1 answer
124 views

erhua in loanwords — 模特兒 mótèr?

OK, so I was browsing Wiktionary — as one does — and found out about the word 模特兒 'model', which is apparently pronounced mótèr, with just 2 syllables. there's also an alternative pronunciation, mótè'...
2 votes
10 answers
1k views

Need help with sentence structure/style: 当时, 我学习了更多关于中国的文化.。

Basically, I'm trying to say: "At that time I learned more about Chinese culture." Google Translate told me: 那时我对中国文化有了更多的了解。 Pinyin: Nà shí wǒ duì zhōngguó wénhuà yǒule gèng duō de liǎojiě. ...
2 votes
0 answers
58 views

Can anyone explain the sentence structure for prepositions and using adjectives/numbers and measure words?

It's hard to remember where 有,在 and prepositions go. I'm also not sure how I would add adjectives to do with colour/size/numbers would go in the sentence.
8 votes
3 answers
3k views

Which is the most frequently used tone?

The most difficult for me in learning Chinese is memorizing the correct tone. I tried to find on web what the most frequently used tones are, but it seems to be hard to find. I suppose if one tone is ...
1 vote
1 answer
50 views

what is the meaning of 都不甘于平庸 in the song 致你 by 苡慧?

The line 都不甘于平庸 seems to be speaking of a degree of confidence, and a will to demonstrate it. But the lines before and after it, don't seem to support this interpretation. How is it best to read this ...
2 votes
4 answers
664 views

Translation of the sentence 我向我的女朋友学习

I wanted to say, I've been learning (Chinese) from my girlfriend. I thought it would be something like: 我在学习从我的奴朋友 (Pinyin: Wǒ zài xuéxí cóng wǒ de nú péngyǒu) Which Google Translate funnily ...
0 votes
2 answers
67 views

Which verbs allow time words to come after?

I notice some verbs like 会 and 将 among some others can be placed before time words. Like in my sentence below, an example: 我将在十一点半给你打电话, 好的? - Pinyin: (Wǒ jiàng zài shíyī diǎn bàn gěi nǐ dǎ diànhuà, ...
3 votes
1 answer
161 views

Use of 儿话 in Mandarin

I've noticed recently that the use of 儿 differs depending on the dialect but I'm not too sure why. It is present in 普通话 (Standard Chinese) and some gov docs, as well as taught to L2 learners, but ...
11 votes
1 answer
6k views

What is the correct pronunciation of 垃圾?

The word 垃圾 is sometimes pronounced laji, but other times I've seen it pronounced as lese, which pronunciation is deemed to be more correct? Are they both interchangeable?
0 votes
1 answer
72 views

Help translating this sentence: "They're speaking a different language"

I've run this through Google translate, and received this: 他们说的是不同的语言 Pinyin: Tāmen shuō de shì bùtóng de yǔyán I would have expected it to be something like: 他们说不同的语言 Pinyin: Tāmen shuō bu tóng de ...
2 votes
1 answer
79 views

Would this make sense when approaching a customer? 你需要帮助吗? 好的, 如果你需要某物, 告诉我

Let's say the customer is shopping in a furniture store and they only speak Chinese. If I approached & said 你需要帮助吗? 好的, 如果你需要某物, 告诉我. would it sound natural? (Assuming tones/etc are good). ...

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