Questions tagged [meaning-in-context]

Questions concerned understanding of individual words or phrases, considering a context in which these words and phrases are expressed.

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3
votes
1answer
148 views

What does the 月 (moon/month) in the Taiwanese MRT platform's 月台 refer to?

On a recent trip to Taiwan, I noticed that the MRT platforms there are labelled 月台 (yuetai / yuètái). Asking a professional tour guide (Taiwanese local, native Chinese speaker) only revealed that he'd ...
2
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4answers
112 views

How to understand “有理数贯逼近实数”?

In this article, the phrase “有理数贯逼近实数” is used (see the second last paragraph). How to understand this phrase?
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8answers
1k views

What does 管 mean as in “他管我借钱.”?

And how do you translate 他管我借钱,但我没借给他 ?
1
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1answer
72 views

Difference between 余 and 多; the use of 岁 and 年

1. If I want to say "more than a hundred years", which one is correct? a. 百余年 b. 一百多年 One of the example in ichacha "五十余年: fifty odd years" makes me wonder why 余 is used instead of 多. So, when ...
5
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7answers
323 views

如何把名词形式的 'Nothing' 翻译成中文 How to translate the English noun form of Nothing into Chinese?

Here are 2 English sentences, both have the word 'Nothing' in it in the noun form. I am wondering if it can be translated into Chinese while preserving as much of its original meaning as possible. ...
3
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4answers
174 views

What is the meaning of 一看 in this sentence?

打开盒子一看,里面是一只小猫 Is it the same as 看看 or 看一看?
1
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1answer
81 views

Is “投个好胎” a proper set phrase/idiom? What does it mean?

I'm trying to understand it by finding the meaning behind each word but failed miserably. What I got from MDBG: 投 (tóu): to cast / to send / to throw oneself (into the river etc) / to seek refuge ...
3
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4answers
148 views

Does the word 肉 always mean pork (unless preceded by another word which means a different animal) in Chinese menus?

红烧肉、回锅肉、芹菜炒肉,肉夹馍…… Without the name of a different animal mentioned before 肉 (such as 孜然羊肉), does the word 肉 always mean "pork" without any exception? Edit: I have found the following ...
4
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3answers
1k views

What is the meaning of 一草一木 here?

宝钗说:“这么说,我也是和你一样的。” 林黛玉 did not agree. Part of what she said is: 我是一无所有,吃穿用度,一草一木,都和他们家的姑娘一样,那些小人岂有不多嫌的。 What does she mean with “一草一木”?
5
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4answers
270 views

A better translation of 假作真时真亦假,无为有处有还无。

In the Chinese classic 红楼梦 ("Dream of Red Mansions"), there is a famous couplet: 假作真时真亦假,无为有处有还无。 Pinyin: jiǎ zuò zhēn shí zhēn yì jiǎ, wú wéi yǒu chù yǒu huán wú. This has been translated into ...
1
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2answers
75 views

Could somebody explain the meaning of the sentence to me?

In my textbook there's an exercise where you're supposed to fill in the gaps: 今天的菜____________________到明天就没有人买了。 I'm a bit confused with it. What is meant here by "到明天就没有人买了"? P.S. The task is to ...
3
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2answers
199 views

What is the “ba” that 周恩来 used when speaking to Kissinger?

Dr. Michael Pillsbury, Senior Fellow and Director, Center for Chinese Strategy, testified before the US Senate (p. 9) on Nixon's visit to China: But there were glimpses even then that the Chinese ...
1
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3answers
59 views

What kind of appearance does 丰泽的肌肤 have?

“宝钗生得肌肤丰泽,宝玉看着她雪白的胳膊,不觉动了羡慕之心。” '丰泽的肌肤' looks like what?? Maybe just like her 雪白的胳膊?? Edit Thanks for the answers. So if we slip into a Yorkshire brogue: 宝钗生得肌肤丰泽, Bao Chai 'ad become a ...
1
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1answer
50 views

What is the meaning of 奴 this poem from 红楼梦?

Poetry is never easy to understand. 奴 is used twice in this poem. I think this 奴 means I or me, in a sense of 'me, this poor slave'. 怪奴底事倍伤神?半为怜春半恼春。 怜春忽至恼忽去,至又无言去不闻。 昨宵庭外悲歌发,知是花魂与鸟魂。 花魂鸟魂总难留,...
3
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1answer
81 views

Meaning of 的 and 之 when both are used in the same sentence

I’m reading a text in which 的 and 之 are sometimes used in the same sentence, in seemingly equivalent or exchangeable function and position. But I’m sure the author had good reasons to choose the ...
0
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1answer
50 views

Reduplication of the noun 小时 in this sentence

Chinese uses reduplication of verbs and adjectives all the time, but I can't find any explanation of reduplication of nouns to explain 小时小时 in this sentence: (from a Mandarin Companion reader, 地心游记, ...
3
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1answer
172 views

“Everywhere” as 到处都 or 到处都是

From this Mandarin Corner video: https://youtu.be/2JttZXFJrNg?t=28 (Transcript provided on their website:) 00:00:24,000 –> 00:00:28,000 Dàjiē shàng hěnduō shù bèi guā dǎo le, 大街上很多树被刮倒了,...
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3answers
83 views

Meaning of 如何 as a single-word declarative sentence?

In a 1933 silent movie, a guy is rejected by a girl who instead marries a rich guy. His friends tell him the marriage won't last long because rich guys have "easy come, easy go" lifestyles. Months ...
4
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2answers
104 views

How do expressions like “二嫂” work in Mandarin?

From what I've known from watching Chinese dramas, siblings or fellow disciples may refer to each other as "big brother/sister" (oldest/first), "2nd/3rd brother/sister" (in-between), or "little ...
2
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2answers
104 views

What does the word “于” mean when it's used along with "不容'?

Because of the word "于" here, I have a hard time understanding this sentence. 这是天地不容于此的缘故. In my attempt to understand it, I've searched for a few similar sentences to be compared. Unfortunately, ...
3
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3answers
105 views

What does 惊鸿 mean in this context?

I've read from Baidu that '惊鸿' has three meanings. However, I still don't understand what it means in this sentence: 惊鸿剑方向一变,竟然不理会儒袍修士,化为一道惊鸿,只是一闪就出现在白颖脚下,同时剑身一个狂涨,化为数丈大小。 "惊鸿" word in 化为一道惊鸿 is ...
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1answer
184 views

need help me translate this title and signature?

can someone help me with what this says, i've tried google image search and even looking for different signatures but no luck so far.
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1answer
43 views

Artistic characters?

Came across characters which appear to be written on parchment. Any idea why it’d be framed or the meaning of it? All I can tell is that it seems to be a [poetic] story. (The characters in red are a ...
1
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3answers
65 views

What does 都挺 indicate here?l

What does 都挺 in this sentence mean/indicate? 我一直都挺想学滑板的 The whole sentence is translated as : "I've always wanted to learn skateboard(ing)". I then opened my online dictionary and tried to look for ...
2
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1answer
271 views

Help me translate the red signature seal on this picture?

I inherited these pictures from my grandmother who bought them in China in 1980-81. I have had a difficult time trying to translate the red artist signature seals. I have tried image translator app, I ...
0
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2answers
83 views

What does 到 mean in this sentence?

What does 到 mean in this sentence : 哪里可以买到正版的这本书? Does 买到 here serve as a verb-object word? I doubt it though.
0
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1answer
146 views

How to understand “喝茶”?

In northern China, we can say "喝茶了吗?" to ask someone if they have already eaten. However, there are also 3 means of "喝茶":      1. drink hot water      ...
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2answers
741 views

How would I go about saying: “I am not at liberty to say” or “I am not at liberty to discuss”

It occurs to me that this would be an useful phrase to politely decline someone who is trying to pry. I'm l a beginner, so it's hard for me know how to translate this.
1
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1answer
66 views

The meaning of 开 in this sentence

When I was looking for a word in my dictionary, I found this sentence : 会开完了。which (in the dictionary) translated as "The meeting is over". I wonder what 开 means here... because when the sentence is ...
3
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2answers
118 views

What does this phrase mean?

What does this phrase mean? 我在包里。 In English this is slang for being drunk, but I wonder what it means in Chinese. I was told this last night, by my girlfriend last night and I am wondering if it ...
3
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3answers
91 views

In what circumstances can 呢 be interchangeable with 吗?

I a new to the Chinese language and something that really confused me is that in some circumstances 呢 and 吗 could be used interchangeably, but in others they cannot. For example you cannot say 你吗? ...
0
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6answers
192 views

Why 了 is not used in this sentence? And what's the meaning of 玩 in this sentence?

The sentence is : "上个星期天,我跟好朋友一起去林学院的农场玩。". I wonder why the writer doesn't add 了 after the verb to indicate that this action took place in the past. Also, what's the use of 玩 in that sentence? And ...
0
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2answers
217 views

How to ask for response and closing statement in a letter in cantonese and in traditional chinese?

I need help in writing a closing paragraph to my letter. What I need to write in cantonese is: Please, don't forget to reply back my postcard and letter I'm looking forward to get soon news from you. ...
1
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1answer
76 views

What does 会 mean in this sentence?

“为什么我((会))觉得历史课很无聊?”. The translation of the sentence is "Why do I think history lessons are boring?". I don't get why 会 is used since 会 means "to be able to" or is used to indicate future tense.
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1answer
68 views

Why is there 比率 in this sentence?

Chairman’s Bao has an article containing this sentence: 在上海淮海路K11购物艺术中心 , 一家名为 RATIO 比率的店面备受关注 。 I don’t understand the presence of 比率 here. I know it can mean rate and I am fairly certain the ...
0
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2answers
116 views

What does 再 mean if it's added after 后?

I wanted to chat my friend with "Let's chat together when (after) you are home!". First, I wrote this sentence : "你回家后咱们一起聊聊吧~" // But then when I tried to check my sentence with translation tools (...
0
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3answers
108 views

Why is 叫 (“call”) in 叫我马上到北极?

In the children's book 七色花, the girl 珍妮 (Jenny) instructs the magic flower as follows: 吩咐吧,叫我马上到北极! Fēnfù ba, jiào wǒ mǎshàng dào běijí! Command it, call me to the North Pole right away! [...
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1answer
170 views

How do i write Erobee in Chinesse?

I want to use Chinese writing of Erobee in my logo. Does someone tell me please?
0
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2answers
204 views

Difference between 学, 校 and 学校

你好! What's the difference between 学 (xue2), 校 (xiao4) and 学校 (xue2 xiao4)? I know the definitions but the thing with context is quite hard. The first one simply means 'to study' or 'academic'. ...
0
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3answers
89 views

Does 屁股 refer to the womens' bottoms in 几个包着头巾的女人正将棉秆拔出来,她们不时抖动着屁股摔去根须上的泥巴?

From the book 活着 (audio book, about 7 minutes 40 seconds into 第01集): 几个包着头巾的女人正将棉秆拔出来,她们不时抖动着屁股摔去根须上的泥巴。 I translate this to: Several [几个] women [女人] wearing [包着] headscarves [头巾] are [正将] ...
1
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4answers
149 views

What is the most appropriate English word to describe '面' in phrase like '看在A的面上, B…'

I think the form is the same with '份' in '看在A的份上, B...' which had been asked before. However, I'm not sure 'for one's sake', which is the preferable answer for '份', is the appropriate word to ...
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3answers
107 views

What does '根筋' in '一根筋' and '少根筋' mean?

The phrase I'm trying to understand is in fact '没那根筋', but I can't find the description for '根筋' in any dictionary. The search result only came up with '一根筋' and '少根筋'. If '一根筋' means one-track ...
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4answers
214 views

Why is both 盐 (salt) and 咸 (salty) in 尝尝他们的盐一样咸的咸菜?

From the book 活着 (on my Kindle): (large image) Transcribing this: 我最喜欢的是傍晚来到时,坐在农民的屋前,看着他们将提上的井水泼在地上,压住蒸腾的尘土,夕阳的光芒在树梢上照射下来,拿一把他们递过来的扇子,尝尝他们的盐一样咸的咸菜,看看几个年轻女人,和男人们说着话。 I'm interested in ...
4
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2answers
213 views

What are the prefixes for animal genders?

I know the male version when describing gender of an animal or pet is 公,but I have no clue with the female version.
0
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1answer
91 views

How to translate these inspirational phrases correctly?

I'm trying to make a label for my workbook but I'm not very sure how to write this phrase: If you can dream it you can do it!. Using google translate (traditional chinese) renders me this result: ...
3
votes
8answers
427 views

Is it common to call a waiter “朋友”?

I'm in China and many staffs at cafes or bars call me "朋友" to get my attention, for example to bring the food to my table or ask me to hand in my AliPay screen. But on the other hand, it seems always "...
0
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4answers
231 views

Is the non-literal interpretation of 浪漫是她想要月亮时,你不会给她星星 that young romance is selfish, particularly of women?

This dialogue is from the book Standard Course 标准教程 HSK4 上, page 8 (JD.com): I'm interested in this part: ... 年轻人说:浪漫是她想要月亮时,你不会给她星星 ... I (literally) translate this to: Young people [年轻人] ...
5
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4answers
717 views

Why does 定 (dìng) disable the monsters' movement in the movie 捉妖记 (Monster Hunt)?

In the movie 捉妖记 (zhuōyāojì), called Monster Hunt in English (Wikipedia, IMDB, Baidu, iQIYI), the movie's character 霍小岚 (Huòxiǎolán) attaches the Chinese hanzi 定 (dìng) to the head of monsters, and ...
11
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2answers
5k views

Why did my friend write 发发发 on her note?

Today I went to an ice-cream shop with my Chinese friend, and we wrote notes to stick on the wall. My friend wrote: 开心、健康、平安、发发发 kāixīn, jiànkāng, píng'ān, fā fā fā The first three items ...
1
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5answers
105 views

What does 无妨 mean in 即别人都过“低碳生活”,我自己过“高碳生活”也无妨?

In the following sentence: 我们每个人都是世界公民,千万不应该有低碳生活与己无关的想法,即别人都过“低碳生活”,我自己过“高碳生活”也无妨。 无妨 means "might as well", "there is no harm", or "no matter". However, it then makes no sense, since the ...