Questions tagged [usage]

Questions about the use of expressions, parts of speech, words, verbs, etc.

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In my maths textbook, what is 和 doing in the question 两次所得的和相同吗?

This is a photo from my year-7 maths textbook (click to enlarge; alternative version): 两次所得的和相同吗?换几个加数再试一试. 从上述计算中,你能得出什么结论? I understand what it's saying: calculate 30+(-20) and (-20)+30 and check ...
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What is the difference between using "去 + place," versus using "要去 + place"?

For example, 我们去森林里探险。Translations for this will be pretty much the same as, "我们要去森林里探险。 I understand the difference may be subtle, but I'm curious as to the nuance of the difference. Thanks so ...
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2 votes
3 answers
139 views

Is 綴飾 being used naturally as a verb in 這件衣服綴飾了許多亮片?

Is the following sentence natural for native speakers of Mandarin? 這件衣服綴飾了許多亮片,適合在晚宴上穿著。 Is "綴飾" used naturally? I thought it's supposed to be used as a noun.
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Can “懂” be used (as a verb) before a place name?

For example, could the sentence ”我懂四川“ sound natural at all? If so, could it mean you know the place very well, possibly even in a nostalgic or essential sense?
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What does 行文至此 mean in 行文至此,北京市职业介绍部门传来令人欣喜的消息……?

行文至此,北京市职业介绍部门传来令人欣喜的消息:在招聘的85名保洁员中,有50人是北京人。 Short Term Reading Chinese (2nd edition): Advanced; photo (alternative site) I'm confused about why this sentence from my textbook begins with 行文至此. CC-...
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Honorifics used by students the same age

Can anyone tell me honorifics that would be used by high school aged students who are the same age? More specifically, is there any honorific that would be used by a student being extremely polite to ...
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How is the expression 恪尽职守, from a short story by Diao Dou, used? Is it used ironically?

恪尽职守 How exactly is this used? Is it often used ironically? I ran across it in a short story by Diao Dou 蹲着.
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3 votes
5 answers
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Does Chinese have 单词 ("words")?

This may seem like a strange question coming from someone who has studied Chinese for a number of years now, but I recall a teacher long ago saying I shouldn't call Chinese words CC-CEDICT: 单词 (dān​...
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Differences with 呢度,喺度,and 喺呢度

Can anyone explain any differences in usage between the three ways of saying 'here' in Cantonese? I anticipate that in many cases, these will be exchangeable. I'm looking for examples of sentences ...
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这段课文写对了没有? 请你们检查一下。谢谢

Please help me to check if my text for the video is correct. 大家好! 我是_, 我来自俄罗斯, 今年20岁。 目前还是一个_大学外国语学院的学生。 我是一个渴望知识的人, 学得很认真和努力。 我家不太富裕, 我从中学工作和帮助解决金钱问题。 从那时起,我试图了解金融和经济学是如何运作的, 觉得很有意思。 在我上学期间, ...
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What does 兮兮 mean?

According to the dictionary, 兮兮 means: 词的后缀。用在某些词后,表示一种情态。 脏兮兮 | 可怜兮兮 | 神经兮兮 I'm not sure what this has over just using the word (how can 情态 express adjectives to express a state, not people?). Does ...
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Can 同学 really be used as a separable verb?

Online, you can find this example of 同学 being used as a separable verb: 我和他同过三年学。 He and I were classmates for three years. I'm skeptical this is correct. (Sometimes databases have errors, and ...
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1 vote
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How to say wow in chinese and stretch it out? Woooaaaaah

How do you say "waaa~" in chinese? Woooaaaaaa~ To express being dazed by awe. I know 哇 exists but I'm not sure how to exaggerate it.
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4 votes
8 answers
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Why is there a 零 in 三年零九个月?

……大王,您所期待的长恒纪元就到来了,这个恒纪元将持续三年零九个月,其间气候温暖,是一个黄金纪元。 刘慈欣,《三体》 This is from the novel The Three Body Problem. I'm a little bit puzzled as to why there is a 零 added in 三年零九个月 = "three years and nine ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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Can kan4 be used to mean "to look after"? Or must it be first tone?

看 is a 多音字. With fourth tone it has many different and very common meanings. With first tone it is defined as "to look after", "to take care of", "to watch", and "to ...
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What is the function of 得 in 我聽日仲有得面試添 in Cantonese?

I would like to ask about the function of 得 in this sentence: 我聽日仲有得面試添。 I understood the sentence as: "Tomorrow I still have an interview (additionally, on top of something else that might not ...
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1 answer
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Usage and grammar points involving 嚟講

I would like to request for some insights on the usage of the phrase “… 嚟講”. I have heard this being used in so many ways, one being “對我嚟講” as speaking for myself. What could be other possible uses ...
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What is the semantic history of 会?

According to BCLCU's Chinese Grammar for Foreigners, auxiliary verbs cannot be followed directly by nouns. This makes sense with most auxiliary verbs, but there is one glaring exception: 会 when ...
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Is it acceptable to teach 看书 as a generic verb "To read"?

Of course there is 阅读, which specifically means "to read" and satisfies the prosodic preference for disyllabic words. However, if someone asked me what my brother was doing in the back of ...
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Difference between 一下(儿) and 一下子

The Commercial Press' 现代汉语词典 and many places on the internet say that 一下 and 一下子 are the same thing/meaning. But that's false, since the biggest use of 一下 is as a measure word and 一下子 is an adverb. ...
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3 votes
3 answers
76 views

What, if any, are the different usage cases for 就像 vs. 正如

I have always used 就像 when trying to say "just like" but recently came across 正如 while studying the various ways to use 如. According to the dictionary definition and some of the examples, it ...
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2 votes
2 answers
115 views

Can 呻吟 ("moan") be used to describe sounds resulting from pleasure?

CC-CEDICT: 呻吟 (shēn​yín​) to moan / to groan In English the word "moan" can be used in both painful and pleasurable situations. In Chinese, I've seen examples of 呻吟 being used in painful ...
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1 vote
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Can you use 或者 to express alternatives between more options than two?

In all the examples I have come across, 或者 is always used to express the conjunction or between two options in statements. My question is if you can still use it between three or more options. That is,...
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Can 陷害 ("to frame") be used to express e.g. "framed for murder"?

CC-CEDICT: 陷害 (xiàn​hài​) to entrap / to set up / to frame (up) / to make false charges against The example sentences I see are like: 被告说他被人陷害了。 The accused man said that he had been framed. 他被仇人陷害。 ...
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1 answer
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What is the function of “而” and “使” in this sentence?

all. I'm reading through a textbook and came across this sentence: “那些得益于畜牧农耕而使人类实现了定居的地方,大都成为人类文明的摇篮。” Overall, the sentence doesn't really give me much trouble except for that “而使” in the first ...
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3 answers
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Exact meaning of 都 in 刚刚你的担忧,我都听见了?

In 李芳,实不相瞒,刚刚你的担忧,我都听见了。 What is the real meaning of 都? Cause i think it can have the 都...了 pattern wich means "already" so the sentence can be translated as :李芳 ,to be honest i already ...
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-1 votes
3 answers
119 views

Can I call my game 三棋 Sān Qí?

I have created a board game based on the epic 'Three Kingdoms' by Luo Guanzhong. I can't call it 'Three Kingdoms' because there are too many games called that. I want to call it Sān Qí 三棋 because it ...
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2 votes
5 answers
166 views

Difference between 還沒 & 還不

For example, when you're talking to someone and asking them why they're still awake when it's really late. 你怎麼還沒睡覺? 你怎麼還不睡覺? I know both convey some meaning of asking the other person why they aren't ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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When is it okay to say 在……的时候 instead of 当……的时候?

I always see 在……时/的时候,but whenever I try to use this phrase, natives tell me to say 当……时/的时候 instead. Examples of 在……时/的时候 from natives: 如果我在讲话的时候用到这些词的话…… 在阅读某些文章的时候…… 我觉得在我给你发了修改的文章时说会更好一点。 在上班时…… ...
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0 votes
1 answer
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Please help me change these sentences using 不止

I'm not sure what I changed are correct or not. 我看陳太太那麼老,恐怕不會只有70歲吧? -> 我看陳太太那麼老,恐怕不止70歲吧? 愛闖紅燈的,並不是只有騎摩托車的,開車的也一樣。 -> 愛闖紅燈的,不止是騎摩托車的,開車的也一樣。 王小姐家不但她能幹,她兩個姐姐也是女強人。 -> 王小姐家不止她能幹,...
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5 votes
8 answers
412 views

Why is 上下 used in 这套房子是上下两层的?

I am confused by the use of 上下 in the sentence: 这套房子是上下两层的,楼下是客厅,楼上有三个房间。 This house has two floors, the living room is downstairs, and there are three rooms upstairs. I understand 上下 as up and down,...
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Does this phrase 斩草除根 exist in dramas only?

So, I have been watching quite a bit of 古代 dramas。 I will say most if not all of them have the situation where this phrase comes up. Does this phrase exist in the dramas only or did this actually ...
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1 vote
3 answers
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using 值得 in a phrase

I have seen the usage of 值得 (deserving) in the following way (Cantonese, colloquial) 值得一來 值得買 I wanted to ask why there is a '一' in the first phrase, and not 值得一買? What other alternatives are there to ...
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0 votes
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How would you translate "for just a moment" in Chinese?

I am wondering if there's a more accurate way to say "for just a moment", or "if not for just a moment" in Chinese? I am not certain because the translations I found sounds ...
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0 votes
3 answers
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The usage of 於 in this title

May I ask what function does the word 於 have in this title: 台北兩日兩夜「帶於媽遊台北」. I get the general idea of this title: Two Days and Two Nights in Taipei // Bringing my mum to travel around Taipei. Please ...
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1 answer
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The use of the particle de

How to answer this question 这是你弟弟?(朋友) Is this correct or we should omit 的?“不是。这是我的朋友。”
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1 answer
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What is the difference between 暍 and 热? [closed]

大家好 What is the difference between 暍 and 热 and when they are used ? 谢谢
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2 votes
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向 vs 对 to express the coverb 'towards'

I made a formulation along the lines of "他向你害怕着" and was told that 向 cant be used with 害怕 in this way. I felt that I was correct in this usage and tried to find instances on the internet ...
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3 votes
2 answers
530 views

Difference in meaning: 多了 vs 极了

I don't grasp the difference between 极了 and 多了. In what context are both to be used? Is 极了 a sort of superlative compared to 多了 ? All help is appreciated.
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0 votes
2 answers
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"總會" to mean "definitely", is this usage proper?

In the lyrics to 《寂寞寂寞就好》 there is a line which reads: 我總會把你戒掉 From context, I gather that “總會" means definitely, in other words: 我一定會把你戒掉 I have never seen this usage before, is this proper ...
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0 votes
4 answers
148 views

淦 as a swear substitute for 幹?

Just came across this comment on Reddit: Basically use more swear words. And the official hanzi. -official/more rude (replaced to be more pg) 幹 (淦) Calming that 淦 is a swear substitute for 幹. I can'...
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2 votes
1 answer
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Contranyms in the Chinese language

Some words in the English language are called 'contranyms', where depending on the context, the same word can have very opposite meanings. For example: leave - to go away from a certain place, but ...
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2 votes
2 answers
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是 assessing an overall situation

This is the title of a paragraph in the book "Chinese: A Comprehensive Grammar", by Yip Po-Ching and Don Rimmington, whose content I find really hard to understand. The explanation: 是 shì ...
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1 answer
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Is 今天的锻炼打卡了 correct usage of the phrase 打卡?

I've asked a question about the phrase 打卡 before. Today I was moving house and I walked in and out of the house with big boxes and bags for 3 solid hours. When I was finally done I thought to myself ''...
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2 votes
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Does the character 大 make a name seem "Unsophisticated"

Recently, I had someone from Taiwan help me create Chinese name for myself to use when writing/communicating with those in Chinese speaking areas. In our discussion, I had suggested 大恩 as a given/...
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1 vote
3 answers
58 views

Can 形象 be used as a verb?

In this definition “丑陋:难看。多形象人或事物的相貌、样子。”, 形象 seems to me functioning like a verb, but I can't find such a usage in MDBG, Wenlin, dict.baidu.com. Do I get it wrong or does it indeed function like a ...
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1 vote
2 answers
106 views

Is the use of 她 here unusual?

Do you find the use of 她 here unusual? 历史文化名城以她曾经有过的辉煌和今天日新月异的繁荣向世人表明, A famous city, in history known for its culture, uses its (her) former glory and today's ever-increasing prosperity to make clear ...
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1 vote
4 answers
273 views

How can I make sense of 落家里 within 张东把钥匙落家里了?

The following problem is from a mock exam question from HSK5级应试指南; we're meant to arrange the sentence fragments into a grammatical sentence: 钥匙、落、把、了、张东、家里 (image) I didn't get this answer correct (...
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0 votes
3 answers
345 views

How to use 次 with verbs

How do I use this with verbs with and without nouns, generally I can't find the grammar I tried googling and search on YouTube but I can't find anything in deep detail
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1 vote
3 answers
109 views

Use of 是 and 很 to express "I am not well"

Dear Chinese Language community users, I have the following question. During my learning I encountered the answer 我不是很好 in response to 你好吗?I was puzzled because I thought the correct negative answers ...
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