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Questions tagged [mandarin]

Mandarin is a group of Chinese dialects that are considered the official language in many Chinese-speaking communities. The Beijing dialect is considered as standard pronunciation of Mandarin. Thus, when people say the "Chinese language", they implicitly refer to Mandarin.

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Assistance Please [closed]

Please tell me the appropriate mandarin character for the word, warrior. I want to use the character on our Special Olympics banner and shirt.
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What is the meaning of 忽爾間 in the song “說散就散”?

I just learn Mandarin from songs whenever I find the time. I have recently discovered this JC's song called Shuo San Jiu San. In the last sentence of the last paragraph of the song, which goes"因為成長 ...
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有一點 can only be used for bad things, but how about 一點?

I've learned that 有一點 can only be used for negative things, such as 有一點累, 有一點不好吃 etc but not 有一點漂亮, 有一點好。 But how about if I say only 一點? Is that the same? For example, are the following sentences ...
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Has 咖啡色 replaced 茶色 in everyday use for “brown”, or can I use both?

I've learned that 咖啡色 now is the most common way of saying "brown". Does that mean that saying 茶色 now is outdated, and not used any more, or are both words still used? Would also be interesting to ...
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Only two characters but I have no idea what they signify

I was given a pair of gold cufflinks by my grandfather who was in Shanghai 100 years ago. Each shows a Chinese character (Mandarin, I guess) and I would like to know what these mean. However I have ...
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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 ...
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Differences: 别的 vs 其他 vs 另外 (other)

Well, the question is in the title... I'd be very thankful for an explanation, but also: Could you give examples of cases where they are and are not interchangeable? Can I use them for "where are ...
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Verbal reading of 块?

In my open-source dictionary a contributor has suggested a verbal reading for 块: to cut/chop into pieces, noting that in this 'verbal sense' it is always reduplicated. I cannot find this in either CC-...
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The use of “、” in more than three items

In the following sentence: 沙溢、胡可与安吉、小鱼儿一家四口集体亮相,同时《捉妖记2》视效制片人Ellen Poon也透露了电影幕后制作的花絮。 I think the use of "、" should be A、B、C与D. In other words, it should be put between each word except the last ...
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Is the 边~边 the synonym for 一边~一边?

Is the following sentence: 并与当地青年一同BBQ,边烧烤边交流。 Is the 边~边 the synonym for 一边~一边, which mean "doing ~ while doing ~"? Or is there any difference?
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What software can correct pronunciation?

What software is available which can record my voice and warn me about problems with my pronunciation and tones?
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Do I drink (喝) or eat (吃) a soup in Chinese?

In English you say eat soup, not drink soup. But how about Mandarin? Drink 這個菜湯很香! 你喝喝看! (This vegetable soup is really tasty! You try it!) or eat? 這個菜湯很香! 你吃吃看! (This vegetable soup is really ...
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When searching in Chinese, why do things always come up in traditional characters?

I noticed that after a few attempts using google to search in Chinese, every result I was getting was written in traditional characters (even despite me searching in Mandarin, simplified characters). ...
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What was this online dictionary's name with ancient traditional and simplified characters and glyph origins?

I once found a Mandarin Chinese dictionary which for each character listed the ancient, the traditional and the simplified Chinese characters. For each it described its meaning and how it developed ...
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Is 你是哪个人 the correct way to ask where you are from in China?

I saw one of my friends used "你是哪个人" to ask where you are from in China. I thought it is the valid expression to date. However, I just used it to a Chinese people and she didn't understand it. So I ...
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Tone contours along diphthongs

I'd like to know as much as possible about how tone contours (T2, T3, T4) are distributed along Mandarin/standard rhyme diphthongs, especially ai ei ao ou, with references to academic articles if ...
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你 <verb phrase> 你

I have been watching a TV show set in Beijing where many of the characters keep saying things like 你別打狗了你 (probably a bad example), putting a seemingly redundant 你 at the end. What is this used for? ...
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Why can't 去 or 回来 be used with 在 or 正在 to become progressive

So first off, I feel I should specify I am a beginner at Chinese. In my Chinese class, we were asked to write down a progressive question, using the 在...(呢) format. My question was, 你们没在去吗? which I ...
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What is the equivalent of the English word 'Fail' in Mandarin?

Fail is a pretty popular term on the internet these days, and one I'm quite fond of. Looking in my Chinese dictionary I can't find a great equivalent - is there a good way to say this? What would be ...
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How to say, “In Chinese" in Chinese

If I want to tell someone they can speak to me in Chinese, how can I say it? My guess is: 你可以给我说用中文 Is this correct, and is there any other way to say it, for example using the 把 structure (i.e. ...
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What's the general word for '样‘ in '这样,那样’,‘小样’, ‘怎样', ‘好样的’?

It is hard for me to find out one general or exactly English word for '样' in different contexts, it is so common in Chinese.
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Does this conversation/exchange of words make sense?

Person A: 你快乐吗? - Are you happy? Person B: 我常常是。-I often am. Person A: 有意思。- Interesting. Person B: 你没有不对。- You are not wrong. Would this exchange make sense to a 中国人? Does it sound natural and ...
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How to say “productive” in Mandarin and Cantonese? Google Translate says 生產的

效率 means efficient, but what is the word for productive in Cantonese and Mandarin? CantoDict does not have an entry, and Google lists 生產的 which feels wrong. For instance, let's say you want to ...
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Is this sentence grammatically correct? 中国的建设开始的时候,人人是不以为过环境污染的。

I'm trying to write: While construction began in China, people hadn't thought of the pollution. Is this an accurate use of the grammar: shi4 ... de
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The meaning of 牛气 and 很牛

I have seen one of my language partners use 牛气 and 很牛, but he couldn't explain it to me. The context suggested it meant something like "bullshit" or "you are kidding me", a sign or disbelief, but the ...
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277 views

What's the difference between 后 and 以后?

I was taught that so as to say "after" in Chinese one should use 以后, like this: 吃饭以后 Today I came across a bare 后, like this: 15分钟后 What's the difference between these two words?
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How to say the following phrase in Mandarin? [closed]

I'm preparing a presentation for my Mandarin class. The idea is to stage a situation. Basically the point is to create a situation which begins with a Chinese person asking for two foreigners to take ...
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Proper way to say “I don't know what the problem is.” [closed]

What is the proper way to say "I don't know what the problem is" in Mandarin? Not sure if this is a “问题” or a "关系“ structure.
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List of verbs followed by 給

According to this page, 給 usually precedes the verb. On this page, it says 給 sometimes follows the verb, and often these exceptions are single-syllable verbs. 1) Is there a list of these exceptions ...
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645 views

Example of grammar difference between Cantonese and Mandarin?

This page lists the following sentence in Mandarin: 现在 不要 给 我 打 电话 However, in Cantonese it feels like the grammar would be more like: [now do not]打電話被我 In other words, the "target" part of ...
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What is the difference between colloquial and literary readings of characters?

This CantoDict page for 熟 says: Pinyin shu2 is literary reading; shou2 is colloquial. What does this mean? More importantly, how are you supposed to pronounce 熟 in Mandarin? :)
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Mandarin equivalent of 後尾 (in the end)?

In Cantonese, you often say "後尾" to mean "in the end." What's the Mandarin equivalent of 後尾? Is it 最後?
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How to say tradeoff in Cantonese and Mandarin?

The word tradeoff is not listed in Google nor in CantoDict. Is it 折衷? What's the Cantonese translation? What's the Mandarin translation?
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378 views

How to say throw away: 扔掉?

CantoDict lists 扔掉 as the translation for "throw away" as in "throw away the can," but I often hear people use 扔 by itself or 掉 by itself. Is 扔掉 the formal way of saying "throw away"? Is there a ...
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Understanding how to use 多 properly

My grammar could be wrong, but it feels like in Cantonese you would typically say something like 食多啲 to mean eat more. But this Mandarin grammar page says you should usually put 多 before the verb, ...
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Which one to use: 搞笑 vs. 攪笑 and 搞亂 vs 攪亂?

For "amusing/funny," CantoDict lists these two variations: 搞笑 and 攪笑. Similarly, these two words are listed as variations of each other for "to confuse, to mess up": 搞亂 and 攪亂. In Cantonese they are ...
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665 views

How to say “slang” in Cantonese and Mandarin?

This excellent answer explains the differences between 成语, 俗语, and 谚语. However, it doesn't discuss which one -- if any -- translates into "slang." Do any of these mean "slang" in Cantonese and ...
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Difference between 商店 and 店舖?

Can someone explain the difference between 商店 and 店舖? The dictionary differences are not clear. 1) For instance, if you want to say, "My friend works at a store in the downtown area," which would you ...
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2answers
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洩氣 for frustrating?

Google Translate says frustrating translates into 洩氣. CantoDict doesn't list an entry for frustrating. 洩氣 doesn't seem very natural, at least from a Cantonese perspective. Is Google Translate ...
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254 views

Using 也 (ye3) vs. 又 (you4)?

What's the difference between 也 (ye3) vs. 又 (you4)? These two links, link1 and link2, discuss them individually but do not contrast them. This last link contrasts 又 with 再 (zai4).
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Difference among 走去 vs 走路 vs 步行?

Are 走去, 走路, and 步行 interchangeable? Specifically, are they all valid variations of saying "to walk?"? For instance, are all these identical? 我們走去了三分鐘 我們走路了三分鐘 我們步行了三分鐘
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Flexibility of word classes in Chinese

I have just started learning Chinese and I know that 姓 can be both a verb and a noun. I wondered whether there are a lot of other Chinese verbs that can also be used as nouns. For example, is a ...
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Pinyin of 車 in idioms

In Cantonese, 車 has two pronunciations: [ce1] and [geoi1]. In Mandarin, 車 also has two different pinyin: [che1] and [ju1]. [ce1] corresponds to [che1]. [geoi1] corresponds to [ju1]. In most idioms,...
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Advice on Mandarin Chinese passive learning

What are the best Chinese online TV channels with English subtitles for passive Mandarin learning. I find Chinese a rather musical language and would love to watch subbed TV (news, documentaries, ...
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693 views

How to pronounce the Mandarin third tone

I've started to learn Chinese about a month ago (as a foreign language) and I'm a little bit confused about how to pronounce the third tone (while dropping aside the tone sandhi rules). I'm confused ...
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5answers
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寻 找 , 就 寻 见: I do not understand the second “xún”

At the website http://learnchinesethrubible.org/ I find the following phrase: seek and you will find 寻 找 , 就 寻 见 I do not understand the second "xún". In the dictionary http://www.mdbg.net ...
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How to say “in my opinion” in chinese?

For example, "In my opinion, this music is very good". The translation indicated by Google, 在我看来, seems rather dodgy to me.
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How do I say “Why not both” in Mandarin?

Specifically, how would I say "Why not (choose) both?" or "Why not (do) both?" Ex. "Do you want to go to the park or go watch a movie?" "Why not both?" I tried to do some searching and found two ...
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Is this sentence correct? 打扫大客厅这么多累的啊

If not how would it be corrected using the exact same characters? And what is the issue with the original sentence? Struggling a bit with word order!
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Which is correct, “我对我的妈妈说很多话” or “我对我的妈妈说很多”?

Can someone explain me which one is correct and why?