Questions tagged [meaning]

Questions about understanding the meaning of words, phrases, etc. For in-context meaning, use [meaning-in-context].

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6
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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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4answers
3k views

Difference between 我饿了 and 我很饿?

Someone tried to explain the difference in this answer https://chinese.stackexchange.com/a/43/38 saying that 我饿了 means "I became hungry", but I don't see the difference because we don't say I became ...
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3answers
3k views

Does 给你 mean “Here you go?”

I found a very short sentence on tatoeba.org. All it says is, "给你。" That literally means "Give you," but what does it really mean? My best guess is that I could say it as I give something to you, ...
6
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3answers
433 views

What is the difference between 人民 and 民族?

What is the difference between 人民 and 民族, for example in 中华人民 vs. 中华民族?
6
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1answer
217 views

What is the meaning of 不同而不同?

This is taken from the phrase: 口感依成分不同而不同 Sounds like it means "manifold" or something like that?
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2answers
1k views

Pattern in the Chinese numbers 1 to 9

I know a lot of Chinese characters are either a symbol of something or a combination of symbols in the space of one character, so what's the origin of the symbol for numbers 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9? since ...
6
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3answers
774 views

What is the meaning and proper usage of 凭什么?

I was watching a TV show and heard them using the expression 凭什么 to say 'why' - I hadn't heard this with this exact meaning before, so I'm wondering what the proper meaning is in English, and what the ...
6
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3answers
418 views

How should you start a letter in Chinese?

How should you start a letter in Chinese? More specifically, what's the difference between starters such as 尊敬的,亲爱的,and 敬爱的, and in which cases should you use which one? 写信的时候,“尊敬的”、”亲爱的“、与“敬爱的” ...
6
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3answers
1k views

How to come from 二百五 to 二百九?

I know 二百五 stands for foolish/stupid and I assume I have to add up 二百五, 三八 and 二 to it to obtain 二百九. Is this right and if so, what does 二 mean and where did it get it's meaning?
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2answers
1k views

Difference between 正在 and 在?

I am a beginner in Chinese (Mandarin), and I am following a phone app to learn. However I cannot understand what is the difference between 正在 and 在 ? For example: 你正在干什么? and 你在干什么? The app ...
6
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2answers
651 views

To 了 or not to 了

I'm Chinese learner and as everybody else I'm puzzled by the verbal aspect 了. My research into the subject gave such results: 了 belongs to a class of perfective aspect markers just as many other ...
6
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2answers
577 views

Usage and meaning of “占我的便宜”

My understanding of 占我的便宜 means something similar to 吃豆腐 and I have never heard it used outside of taking sexual advantage. Can this be used in other contexts? Google translate suggests it means "take ...
6
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3answers
286 views

What's the difference between 蝦 and 鰕?

I found there are two characters for "xia1" (ghra as in Middle Chinese), 蝦 and 鰕. Could someone explain what the difference is?
6
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1answer
11k views

The slang meaning of “Seven/七” in Cantonese

I have heard a few Hongkongers saying seven in a similar, likely identical, context. I assume they are addressing a person because when they say it, they make the L hand gesture. I could be wrong, but ...
6
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2answers
503 views

How to translate 'hyper-','super-' and 'ultra-' exactly?

The prefixes hyper-, super-, and ultra- seems all has meaning 'transcend' or 'upper class' and can all be translated to '超'. But they have a bit difference, e.g. hypergiant is larger than supergiant; ...
6
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1answer
913 views

Meanings behind “吹牛” and “拍马屁”

I would like to find out more about the two sayings "吹牛" and "拍马屁". How these sayings come about and get their current meanings? 吹牛 chuīniú meaning to brag 拍马屁 pāimǎpì meaning to excessively ...
6
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1answer
307 views

What does 触控 mean in 使用者将可轻松地以触控的方式浏览教科书内容?

I was busy reading about Apple's new textbook announcement on Engadget China, and I came across the following sentence: 使用者将可轻松地以触控的方式浏览教科书内容. What is the meaning of 触控 in this sentence? (My guess ...
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1answer
211 views

When was 华/華 first used as a reference to China?

E.g. as in 中华 or 华语, and other similar words.
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3answers
1k views

Why does 拉倒 mean “forget about it”?

拉倒 is a word that can mean "forget about it". For example: 鲁迅 《华盖集续编·马上支日记》:“现在这书既然借不到,只好拉倒了。” This seems strange though, because 拉倒 literally means "to pull over". What is the etymology of this ...
6
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1answer
132 views

Why is 相 pronounced with a fourth tone in some cases?

I notice that 相 is pronounced xiang1 in most cases, but xiang4 in a few, mostly less-common words and phrases. The most commonly-used examples seem to be 照相 zhàoxiàng 'photo'; 照相机 zhàoxiàngjī 'camera';...
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3answers
4k views

How is 马马虎虎 used?

I think it's used like 'so so' in English. Like 问题:你觉得怎么样? 回答:马马虎虎。 Am I correct in this? Are there other ways to use it?
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1answer
1k views

What is the difference between 竟然 and 居然?

As I know, 竟然 and 居然 both mean "unexpectedly". Do they have any difference?
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2answers
172 views

Function of 吧 in 循环吧代码

In this page for learning loops in JavaScript by Mozilla Developer Network the title "Looping code" is translated as 循环吧代码. What is the meaning/function of 吧 here?
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8answers
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How does “多” work in this describing sentence “多好看啊!”?

I know 多 means many. But in some cases, it is used as in this sentence, such as this one: "多好看啊!" How exactly does it work? Thanks!
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7answers
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Difference between 坏 and 破

Looking for some concrete answers on the difference between 坏 and 破 From what I have been able to understand: 坏 bad: as in 坏人 (bad person) or 鱼坏了 (rotten food) broken: as in 手机坏了 (broken mobile ...
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7answers
2k views

What does 尽信书不如无书 mean?

After pointing out the many bugs in an online Chinese "how to give a presentation in English" webpage, one of my colleagues wrote this on WeChat: 尽信书不如无书 Jìn xìn shū bùrú wú shū Question: What ...
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3answers
3k views

What does 狗改不了吃屎 mean?

What does 狗改不了吃屎 mean? I think it is a proverb. Something do to with god? In my research, is it similar to 江山易改,本性难移?
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3answers
754 views

What does j8傻逼 mean?

In the following picture: I understand the meaning of 傻逼 but what is the "j8" before it?
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4answers
258 views

了 usage conflict “now” vs “completion”

While learning about 了 usages, i confronted a headache conflict between it's usage or maybe it's an error so i need someone please to clarify this issue. 下雨了 If i go by it's use as action completion ...
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6answers
487 views

What is the difference in meaning between 应变 and 适应 here?

Is there a difference in meaning between 应变能力 and 适应能力 in this sentence? If so, can you please try to explain it? 公司领导人认为,在未来十年的商战中,最重要的武器是应变能力、适应能力和创新能力。
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4answers
1k views

What is the pronunciation of 行 according to its context?

行 can be pronunced háng or xíng. As far as I have seen, it means "OK, to go, profession", and many more other meanings. Could you briefly summarize the usage of it and its corresponding ...
5
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5answers
774 views

The meaning of 废柴码农

Someone called me a 废柴码农 after I made a silly mistake. I suppose it must be something negative but what does it actually means?
5
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3answers
455 views

What is the meaning of 子 in words like 菓子(과자), 帽子(모자), or 獅子(사자)?

I'm learning Sino-Korean vocabulary at the moment and have noticed that many words seem to end in a '子' that doesn't seem to add much semantically to the other character in the word. What should I ...
5
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3answers
847 views

What does “死党” mean?

My first impression to this word is something like "enemy" or "enemies", because the letter "死" is used and it means death. But when I do some search, it means "sworn followers"? I really doubt at it....
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2answers
2k views

Tree: 树 (shù) vs 木 (mù)

Is there any difference between 树 (shù) and 木 (mù), in the meaning of "tree", or they are interchangeable?
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4answers
550 views

What is the meaning of ㄝ?

From wikipedia: ㄝ是注音符号中的韵母之一,字形取自“世”字,发音则取“世”字之韵。 But I am not seeing how it should be used, and what is the meaning of this. Anyone knows what is the meaning of this, and when it should be used?
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7answers
981 views

Is Mandarin impossible for my goals?

Since years ago I have been studying some languages with the major goal of being able to read texts, complex or not, written under them. My native is Portuguese (from Brazil) and nowadays I have no ...
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2answers
641 views

What does 餅乾 mean in Taiwan?

I'm unfamiliar with the variety of Mandarin spoken in Taiwan, so I was surprised to see a chilli-snack 香脆椒 referred to as 餅乾: http://mall.tw100years.com/goods.php?id=9 真不敢相信這真是美味的餅乾!看起來是紅紅的辣椒,吃起來是香、...
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2answers
571 views

What’s the meaning of 会 in 你明天这个时候会是在做什么?

In this sentence: 你明天这个时候会是在做什么?, I find 会 useless, especially since its English translation on tatoeba.org does not seem to reflect its sense. What meaning does it carry here?
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3answers
808 views

Meaning of “不了” in “忘不了/喝不了/…”

I know that 了 after a verb means a completion or termination of a certain action, such as: 吃飽了 (I am) full. 開始了 (It) has started. 不動了 (It) is not moving anymore. But what about 了 ...
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5answers
1k views

你是我的小呀小苹果儿 What is the purpose of the second 小?

So I'm listening to this catchy song and the chorus goes 你是我的小呀小苹果儿. I'm wondering why the 小 is being said twice. Is that just something the artist is doing to play with the language in the song or ...
5
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2answers
345 views

What is the difference of use between 没空 and 没(有)时间?

As far as I can tell, they both have the same meaning: have no time, i.e.: 对不起,今天我没空帮你 对不起,今天我没(有)时间帮你 But the first one looks like a quasi-idiomatic expression (have no air?); is there a ...
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3answers
417 views

What is the difference between 嘗試,試圖,and 企圖?

I'm trying to translate this sentence to Mandarin: She's trying to recover the torn photo. So I was trying to find a meaning of "to try" in Pinpin Dictionary, and I came up with three different ...
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3answers
745 views

Meaning of '沒梗'?

你為什麼打我? 是沒梗了嗎? I'm wondering what 沒梗 means in this context. I know the literal translation is 'no stem', but I'm sure there should be an idiomatic meaning to it.
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6answers
231 views

What is the meaning of 方 in 方向?

Below was a question about the role of 方 in 貽笑大方. I'm sure our learnéd friends correctly advised. Just as a gut reaction, I would have said 大方 meant 'everywhere'. I would like to know about 方 in 方向。 ...
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3answers
163 views

Formality of “悲哀” as opposed to “悲傷” and “哀傷”

From what I have learned, or I remember I have learned, 悲哀, 悲傷, and 哀傷 all mean sadness and are interchangeable. However, as I remember, I have read 悲傷 and 哀傷 in academic/professional writings, but ...
5
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7answers
19k views

What does 牛逼 mean? Can anyone define it?

What does 牛逼 mean? Someone gave a presentation on it in my school. Can someone define it?
5
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3answers
249 views

Difference between 留神,留意,留心?

I am now learning 近义词 and got a problem with distinguishing the difference between 留神,留意,留心. The textbook says: 他干什么特别留心,看书时也常常做笔记 (留神and留意arent allowed here) 多亏我对他留了一点心,这个情况没有告诉他 (留神 and 留意 ...
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3answers
279 views

Can 弗 Mean Dollar In Chinese?

弗 means dollar (as in USD, $) in both Korean and Japanese. Korean 불 [弗] a dollar Japnese ドル noun dollar (from Dutch, orig. an abbr. of ドルラル; also written as 弗) (see also: ドルラル) Grand Ricci says ...
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3answers
661 views

What is the “Chinese Dream?” (中国梦) [closed]

Sorry if this is getting too non-language specific, but I think it still has language merits that fit the sites requirements. 中国梦 we really don't need a translation as it's clearly just a play on 美国梦 ...

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