Questions tagged [meaning-in-context]

Questions about understanding words or phrases within a given context.

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Which 魏 did 蘇軾 mean in 上神宗皇帝書?

Text In his 上神宗皇帝書 Su Shi opines on a permanent problem of Chinese governmental philosophy: the power distribution between centre and periphery or intra-capital and extra-capital officials. He comes ...
Ludi's user avatar
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2 answers
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Meaning of 特异人士

In the song 皇后大道东 there is a verse which says: 冷暖气候同样影响这都市 但是换季可能靠特异人士 What are the 特异人士 here on whom the changing of the seasons depends? Google translates this as "special people" but I ...
河南宝宝's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
82 views

Why is 愈演愈烈 before 一件事情 here?

My assumption is: 社交媒体是讨论的平台. I saw this: 最近中国社交媒体中愈演愈烈的一件事情是, I immediately wondered, "Why not write like this?" 最近中国社交媒体中一件愈演愈烈的事情是, My answer: The topic does not change. The discussion, ...
Pedroski's user avatar
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1 answer
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How to understand 无法可修饰的一对手

The song 真的爱你 begins with this line: 无法可修饰的一对手 which means literally "A pair of hands that can't be decorated". It's his mother's hands so they might be aged a bit but I feel there must be ...
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4 votes
7 answers
2k views

总 vs. 中 - can someone help me get the whole picture? Possible Typo?

I am currently looking at a text about the situation of chinese kids in schools. The following sentence asks the (rhetorical) question of whether kids are allowed to rest a few weeks in the holidays. ...
Xylose's user avatar
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1 vote
3 answers
144 views

Uncrowned bodies, and altruistic ideology

Beyond released a song called 长城, The Great Wall. It seems to reflect mixed feelings and a sense of the human cost that went into building the Wall. https://youtu.be/IOXoAvF6r_A?si=bOuI6TCa67321S2I In ...
河南宝宝's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
271 views

What's the meaning of 年前 in the context of "年前估计出不来"?

I asked a factory about how long to produce. 生产多久? They replied: 年前估计出不来 Translation tools shows: "Years ago". Does it mean that they haven't been able to produce it for several years, ...
Fredric's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
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Who is acting cool, and who is innocent and generous, and what is their relationship?

I'm trying to understand an obscure pop song from the early 90s called 小鸟 by a band called 现代人乐队. You can hear the entire song here: https://youtu.be/Eef7wcIdqsc It has a verse which goes like this: ...
河南宝宝's user avatar
1 vote
6 answers
761 views

Can 他给它吃掉 mean both "he ate it" and "it ate him"?

他给它吃掉。 (男人给苹果吃掉。) Normally, we'd interpret this as meaning "he ate it". However, 给 can also be equivalent to the passive 被: CC-CEDICT 给 (gěi​) to / for / for the benefit of / to give / ...
Becky 李蓓's user avatar
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1 vote
6 answers
373 views

What is the literal translation of 比尔 • 盖茨每年都要进行两次为期一周的 “闭关”?

从20世纪80年代起,比尔 • 盖茨每年都要进行两次为期一周的 “闭关” 。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK 5, chapter 26. I want your help in the literal translation of this: 比尔 • 盖茨每年都要进行两次为期一周的 “闭关” 。 I have reached on ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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1 vote
4 answers
88 views

Help understand this 却少了抬头看路,少了思考、总结这一重要的步骤?

“那是为了让我们的灵魂,能够追得上我们赶了三天路的疲劳的身体。” 多么富有哲理的话!在这个提倡和鼓励竞争的时代,我们常常只顾低头拉车,却少了抬头看路,少了思考、总结这一重要的步骤。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, section 26. I need your help for understanding this 却少了抬头看路,...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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2 answers
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How to literally translate this: 能够追得上我们赶了三天路的疲劳的身体?

“那是为了让我们的灵魂,能够追得上我们赶了三天路的疲劳的身体。” This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 26. I need your help in its literal translation. 那是(that is)为了(for the sake of)让(letting, allowing or making)...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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1 vote
3 answers
281 views

How to literally translate this: 在赶路时,用尽全力地向前冲?

经过沟通,大导演总算搞明白了,当地人自古就有一种习俗:在赶路时,用尽全力地向前冲,但每走上三天,便要休息一天。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 26. I need your help in the literal translation of this part: 在赶路时,用尽全力地向前冲。 So far, I ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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4 votes
3 answers
811 views

What is the function of 可 here: 他可不敢得罪?

二来,会因为费用增加而让投资人不高兴,至于这部影片的投资人,可是一位大人物,他可不敢得罪。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 26. What is the function (and the meaning) of 可 here: 他可不敢得罪? I ask because for me the sentence ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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1 vote
3 answers
209 views

What is the difference between 所 and 被 in passive voice?

假如借走回家看,则每本每天2分钱,挑好书后交给摊主,摊主仔细地将租书人的姓名、地址和所借小人书的书名登记在本子上,收了租金就可以拿走了,... This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, section 20. What is the difference between 所 and 被 in passive voice? Some ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
108 views

What is the difference between the classifiers 册 and 本?

租借小人书很便宜,在摊里看,每册1分钱,选好书坐下就看,看完连书带钱交给摊主;假如借走回家看,则每本每天2分钱,挑好书后交给摊主,... This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 20. What is the difference between the classifiers 册 and 本? 在摊里看,每册1分钱 在摊里看,...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
262 views

What is the meaning of 为 in 老有所为

This is the title of an article from 人民网. 人民来论: 老有所学、老有所乐,更可老有所为 The first part of the article is: 随着我国人口老龄化的不断加剧,各地积极推动老年教育,以丰富多彩的活动形式助力老年人老有所学、老有所乐,让老人们生活变得充实、快乐。 为 seems to correspond with: ...
Pedroski's user avatar
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2 answers
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What is the meaning of 走 in 假如借走回家看?

...,在摊里看,每册1分钱,选好书坐下就看,看完连书带钱交给摊主;假如借走回家看,则每本每天2分钱,挑好书后交给摊主,... This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, segment 20. What is the meaning of 走 in 假如借走回家看? Actually, it looks like it means to go, ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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1 vote
4 answers
342 views

How to literally translate this: 看完连书带钱交给摊主?

租借小人书很便宜,在摊里看,每册1分钱,选好书坐下就看,看完连书带钱交给摊主; This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 20. How to literally translate this: 看完连书带钱交给摊主? I know that 看完 here means reading finished or reading ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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1 vote
3 answers
71 views

What is the literal translation of this: 摊主是位上了年纪、身材瘦小的老人?

...,整齐漂亮的毛笔字能充分地显示出书摊主人的文化水平。摊主是位上了年纪、身材瘦小的老人,总是穿着一件灰色长衫,... This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 20. I need your help in literal translating this: 摊主是位上了年纪、身材瘦小的老人。 So far, this is ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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0 votes
2 answers
63 views

Help understand this: 每本小人书都用牛皮纸加了层封皮,封皮上用毛笔写上书名

为了减少损坏程度,每本小人书都用牛皮纸加了层封皮,封皮上用毛笔写上书名,整齐漂亮的毛笔字能充分地显示出书摊主人的文化水平。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 20. I need your help in understanding this: 每本小人书都用牛皮纸加了层封皮,封皮上用毛笔写上书名,... Actually ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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0 votes
3 answers
58 views

Is this sentence correct 很多人需开始工作得帮家

I'm making a text for a test and I ended up with this sentence 很多人需开始工作得帮家. What I'm Trying to say is: Many people need to start working to help their families It's a complex phrase for my level and I'...
CoolTarka's user avatar
0 votes
3 answers
88 views

How to literally translate this: 会因为费用增加而让投资人不高兴?

大导演非常着急,一来,耽误了时间,日程就得重新安排;二来,会因为费用增加而让投资人不高兴,至于这部影片的投资人,... This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, section 26. How to literally translate this: 会因为费用增加而让投资人不高兴? I have reached to the following ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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0 votes
4 answers
59 views

What is the meaning of 脚力过人 in 尽管他们背着重重的行李,但他们的脚力过人,健步如飞?

他雇了20来个当地人为他带路和搬运行李。这批当地人个个都表现出色,尽管他们背着重重的行李,但他们的脚力过人,健步如飞。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, segment 26. What is the meaning of 脚力过人? Baidu translate: Despite carrying heavy luggage, ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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1 vote
5 answers
157 views

What is the meaning of 重重 in 尽管他们背着重重的行李?

他雇了20来个当地人为他带路和搬运行李。这批当地人个个都表现出色,尽管他们背着重重的行李,但他们的脚力过人,健步如飞。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 26. What is the meaning of 重重? How to make it make sense? 尽管(despite)他们(they)背着(...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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0 votes
3 answers
70 views

How to literally translate this: 极爱冒险的大导演...?

据说,曾经有一位很有个性、极爱冒险的大导演到南美丛林拍有关古代印加文明的纪录片。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 26. About its literal translation, I have reached to the following point: 据说 (it is said that),曾经(once)有(...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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6 votes
4 answers
2k views

What does 朱幂 and 黄幂 mean in this ancient illustration of the Pythagorean Theorem?

The above is an illustration of the Pythagorean Theorem from the work 周髀算经. On the left it says: 勾股幂合以成弦幂 Which I think is a 8-character statement of the Pythagorean Theorem, as follows: 勾 ("...
Becky 李蓓's user avatar
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1 vote
3 answers
103 views

How do you understand sentences like 你相信圣诞老人吗? Do they mean "do you believe Santa Claus?" or "do you believe *in* Santa Claus?"

CC-CEDICT: 相信 (xiāng​xìn​): to be convinced (that sth is true); to believe; to accept sth as true Recently I encountered the sentence 你相信鬼吗? which surprised me because it translated to "do you ...
Becky 李蓓's user avatar
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0 votes
2 answers
64 views

To Be - 变成 vs 当

In the song 学猫叫 (Xue Mao Jiao) are two lines that seem to have similar English translations: 我想要当你的小猫猫 - "I want to be your cat" 想要变成你的猫 - "I want to be your cat" Do 当 and 变成 ...
NullPointerException's user avatar
2 votes
6 answers
109 views

What exactly is supplied (供) in 供游人休息并欣赏黄浦江两岸的美景?

This is from an article about The Bund 外滩 in Shanghai in the textbook 新实用汉语课本5, page 79 (photo of original): “情人墙”建在黄浦江边,全长约1700米。观光台的地面是彩色的,有32个半圆形的观景阳台,还有很多方灯、花坛、方亭、六角亭和绿化带,供游人休息并欣赏黄浦江两岸的美景。 I don'...
Becky 李蓓's user avatar
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3 votes
1 answer
251 views

How does one express "truthfully", like at the beginning of a sentence in chinese?

In english I would use "actually", 其实,but the particular thing I am trying to convey is that previously, I gave information that was incorrect, but now I am correcting that information. “I ...
barnardr98's user avatar
1 vote
4 answers
306 views

What is the difference between 潜艇 and 潜航器?

是意味着乌克兰现在对于克里米亚的这个战术,发生了一些新的改变,呃应该说克里米亚地区的安全形势大幅的恶化,跟乌军战法的更新,有很大关系,首先,乌军,现在的这个从装备的角度讲呢,有很多选择比如说无人机,无人艇和无人潜航器,加上现在的北约援助给乌克兰的,这个远程的战术巡航导弹等等,那么,主要还是要看到就是这各种啊,所谓的无人机... This is from a news broadcast I ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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1 vote
4 answers
84 views

What is the meaning of 却 in 却可以使我们不会在错误的道路上走得太远?

我有一个体会:现实中,我们不一定知道正确的道路是什么,但时时反省、总结,却可以使我们不会在错误的道路上走得太远。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 26. What is the meaning of 却 here? 却(?)可以(can)使(let)我们(us)不会(will not)在(in)错误的(wrong)道路(...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
48 views

How to literally translate this: 第二种忙,忙得很主动,忙而不乱,人是工作的主人?

工作中的忙碌大概可以分为三种:第一种忙, ...;第二种忙,忙得很主动,忙而不乱,人是工作的主人;第三种忙,... This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 26. I want your help for the literal translation of this: 第二种忙,忙得很主动,忙而不乱,人是工作的主人 第二(...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
77 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 ...
wra's user avatar
  • 113
1 vote
2 answers
90 views

How to literally translate this: 正当水手们慌张得不知如何是好时, ..., 使劲儿朝里面放水?

有一位经验丰富的老船长,一次返航中,天气恶劣,他们的船遇到了可怕的巨大风浪。正当水手们慌张得不知如何是好时,老船长命令水手们立刻打开货舱,使劲儿朝里面放水。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, segment 25. How to literally translate this: 正当水手们慌张得不知如何是好时,...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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2 votes
4 answers
148 views

What is the meaning of 大事小事?

文文从小是个乖乖女,学习刻苦,遵守纪律。大事小事,尽管妈妈表示也要征求她的意见,但上哪所学校、念什么专业,甚至跟什么人交朋友,基本上都是妈妈说了算。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 23. What is the meaning of 大事小事? What does "big thing small thing&...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
44 views

Difference between 打电话给 and 打电话和?

如果只能活24小时,我会打电话和朋友们说再见。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, segment 21. What is the difference between 打电话给 and 打电话和?I would write it as: 如果只能活24小时,我会打电话给朋友们说再见。 So what is the difference? ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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2 votes
6 answers
482 views

Difference between 怎么办 and 做什么?

1994年,理查德得了心脏病,当时医生说他剩下的时间可能不多了。那时,他开始思考自己的人生,“我该怎么办? 我该做什么?” This is from the Standard Book of HSK5, section 21. I am in this point: 我(I)该(should)怎么(what)办(do)? 我(I)该(should)做(do)什么(what)? So what is ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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4 votes
5 answers
168 views

Differences between 知识,知,识,知感 and 认识?

“知识” 两个字我始终认为它是要分开来谈的,“知” 就是知感,“识” 就是认识。所谓 “知感” 就是别人告诉你、说给你听、要求你记住的那一部分。但只有这一部分是不够的,还要有认识、思考。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 22. I would appreciate if you explain the ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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2 votes
2 answers
117 views

Differences between 学生,学童 and 同学?

比如,他们讨论过《卖火柴的小女孩儿》是写给谁看的,还讨论过灰姑娘的故事。老师讲完故事之后,问同学们: ... This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, section 22. I don't understand why the word 同学 is used. Why not 学生 or 学童? 老师讲完故事之后,问学生们: ... ...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
37 views

What is the meaning of 看 in 比如,他们讨论过《卖火柴的小女孩儿》是写给谁看的?

我曾经听一位美国的小学老师说,他们十分重视和学生一起讨论问题。比如,他们讨论过《卖火柴的小女孩儿》是写给谁看的,还讨论过灰姑娘的故事。 This is from the Standard Course Book of HSK5, chapter 22. What is the meaning of 看 here: 是写给谁看的?Maybe to consider?: 比如 (for example)...
Konstantinos's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
39 views

100番PET Label Thickness Standard

What does 番 mean in the context of PET Label thickness? Is it 100 micron? Sentence: 标签面料厚度是100番PET。
Fredric's user avatar
  • 125
0 votes
3 answers
76 views

What is the meaning of 挥发 here?

Chemistry is not my thing. I like to make 拉面 at home, although I am not very good at it. Reading the advice for the use of 拉面剂 I saw this: 拉面剂加到面粉里后会挥发,所以用量有浮动。 I usually add the 拉面剂 directly to the ...
Pedroski's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
52 views

Paying directly to Alipay

Because of certain reason, I can't pay the seller through the marketplace platform. Is it appropriate to use: 我可以直接转你们的支付宝上吗? to ask to pay them directly to their Alipay account?
Fredric's user avatar
  • 125
2 votes
3 answers
153 views

What is the exact meaning of 着 and how to use it in a sentence?

What is the exact meaning of 着 and how can I use it in a sentence?
Ilyasu Abdullahi's user avatar
0 votes
4 answers
71 views

Exact Meaning of 左挑右选 and 前看后看

I'm reading 寓言故事 about the story of 郑人买履, and I found the phrase 左挑右选 and 前看后看, what does it means? Especially for the 前看后看, is it like before looking and after looking? It is kind of weird with the ...
Arren 翼挺's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
77 views

Can someone help my identity this silk painting please

Hello I inherited 4 silk Chinese paintings and would love to know who made them and what the red stamps mean?
Sandy Lawrence's user avatar
2 votes
6 answers
583 views

Could 三间房子 mean "a house with three rooms" rather than "three houses"?

I've seen this sentence in the book I'm reading (talking about a postman, so not a very rich person): 他在镇里盖了三间房子,还安了wifi…… So, since it would seem strange that a postman could have three houses ...
Cong Wei's user avatar
  • 141
1 vote
3 answers
182 views

Why does 老舍 in《猫城记》 use the phrase 不是没有 in 因为不是没有阳光?

远处有些小山,也是灰色的,比天空更深一些;因为不是没有阳光,小山上是灰里带着些淡红,好像野鸽脖子上的彩闪。 猫城记,老舍, p.7 (photo; alt) I'd translate this to: In the distance there are some small mountains, which are also gray, darker than the sky; ...
Becky 李蓓's user avatar
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