Questions tagged [usage]

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

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4
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4answers
189 views

Can I rewrite 德里克.帕腓特有一个极端得空前绝后的假设 using 的 or 地 instead of 得?

I'm not too sure what this 得 is doing here. If I rewrite as in 2. or 3. is that a) correct and b) still the same meaning? 德里克.帕腓特有一个极端得空前绝后的假设,。。。。。 德里克.帕腓特有一个极端的,空前绝后的假设,。。。。。 德里克.帕腓特有一个极端地空前绝后的假设,。。...
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3answers
131 views

What part of speech is 到 (to) when used in 两只饿到眼绿的老鼠正在房梁上打架?

I was having trouble with the sentence 两只饿到眼绿的老鼠正在房梁上打架 because I could not understand the usage of 到 here. After I spent some time thinking I figure the meaning is that the rats were hungry to ...
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3answers
2k views

Different Ways to Say "Hometown"

I have encountered both 老家 and 家乡 for referring to one's hometown. What are the differences? That is: When should each one be used? When should one or the other be avoided? When can they both be ...
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1answer
495 views

What's the difference between “问一下”,“查询”, “询问”?

In the context of phone conversations with vendors I often default to either: 我想问一下… 请问… I'm looking for a possibly more appropriate way to address someone in this context. Would it be appropriate ...
4
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1answer
331 views

六一 and short date format

In a calendar I saw this in reference to the Children's Day: 快乐“六一” Happy Children's Day! I guess 六一 is a shorter form of 6月1日. Is that form of writing dates only used for special dates? How ...
4
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2answers
175 views

Confusions about 虽然 and 即使

I'm a Chinese native, but even though I can't figure out the differences between 虽然 and 即使 clearly. Here're definitions of these two words in 现代汉语词典 (Modern Chinese Dictionary) (Edition VI). 【虽然】...
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3answers
192 views

Which one is more commonly used in Chinese speaking communities: 年轻 or 年青?

One of the elective projects on the study of Chinese culture given in my high school is as follows: 探讨中国传统文化如何助当今年青人走出困局。 I thought this was a typo so I asked our teacher to correct it to 年轻. But ...
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1answer
373 views

What's the difference between 缺乏 and 缺少?

Is there a meaningful difference between these two? I have seen that 缺少 tends to be used with towns (这个城市缺少一个泳池), while 缺乏 seems to be more on the small-scale (你缺乏合适的经验). But I'm not sure if this is ...
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2answers
149 views

Why is 有 used in 你的表有一点儿快?

I have the following sentence: 你的表有一点儿快。 I understand this sentence to have the meaning in English of "Your watch is a little bit fast." But if I were put this sentence into Chinese, I would say "...
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3answers
441 views

Can I use 在 with 一边... 一边?

我一边吃饭,一边做作业 I do homework while eating 我一边在吃饭,一边在做作业 I'm doing homework while eating Is the second sentence correct? Can I use 在 or does 一边...一边 already imply that the action I'm talking about ...
4
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2answers
184 views

In《命中注定我爱你》when someone calls out 陈欣怡's name, why does she reply 有?

I was recently watching the TV show 命中注定我爱你, episode 1. On Youtube at ~3:50 someone calls out her name 陈欣怡 and she responds "有". Could that just mean 'I'm here'?
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4answers
661 views

"She" (她) for inanimate objects in Chinese(?)

She in English (as this is the main language of the site) sometimes has the following function: Used in place of it to refer to certain inanimate things, such as ships and nations, traditionally ...
4
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3answers
164 views

When is it appropriate to use 剩女?

For the average Chinese woman approaching the age of 27-30, getting married is a fairly high priority, and a large motivating factor to this is the cultural pressure of avoiding becoming a 剩女, or ...
4
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1answer
160 views

How do I translate "context"?

是不是可以说: 在这上下文,这个生词不可以这样用。 还有, You've taken it entirely out of context. 或者比如有学生问老师个问题,可是问提不太清楚,老师会回答说: Can you give provide some context?
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2answers
480 views

How to use 了 as a modal particle?

I'm having a hard time understanding when to use 了 as a modal particle (instead of as an aspect particle). For example, what is the difference between the following two sentences. 现在几点? 现在几点了? ...
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2answers
649 views

到 vs 至, what is the key difference?

As if them sharing a common appearance isn't enough, yabla shows that they can for the most part be used interchangeably. Since they mean nearly the same exact thing with a few caveats, what is the ...
4
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1answer
328 views

What is the difference between 元 (圓), 幣, and 金?

In currency exchange booths, and in conversation, I've noticed this: US dollar = 美元, 美金. Hong Kong dollar = 港幣 Japanese Yen = 日元 Singapore dollar = 新幣 Euro = 歐元 There's also 英鎊 for the pound ...
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2answers
837 views

Does 再见 work for "goodbye forever"?

As a learner, when I see 再见 I see the literal "see you again" in the meaning of the characters. French has a similar expression for goodbye, "au revior", which also literally means "until (I) see you ...
4
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1answer
338 views

Can I use a verb+的 construction to imply an item/noun?

I'm often don't which noun to use, but I can think of a verb to describe it. I know that 吃的 (to eat + 的) means food, so I was wondering if I can use it with other verbs as well, like 洗澡的 (to bathe + ...
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1answer
267 views

What is the difference, if any, between 即使 and 無論?

Is there a big difference between 即使 and 無論? I was working on a couple of fill-in-the-blanks exercises and the following sentence came up: 你的畫很有特色,_______ 是畫家也不一定能畫得比你好。 I think the right answer ...
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2answers
252 views

Why can't 了 be used to complement 到?

I have been taught that the sentence 我刚到了 (wǒ gāng dào le) is not correct because 了 cannot be used as a complement of 到. Is this right? If so, why?
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2answers
274 views

筛选 is the correct filter for 'search filter'?

When searching for airline flights, for example, there may be an option to filter by ticket price, or filter by airline, or filter by flight duration. I am looking for the Chinese translation of "...
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1answer
101 views

Benefeciary : 受益者 vs 获得者

What is the accurate word for Beneficiary (Eg. A beneficiary of a bank account) in Mandarin Chinese ? What is the difference in usage of 受益者 and 获得者 ?
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2answers
184 views

What do the characters I've found on this old gun mean?

On an antique shotgun I was told had Korean origin I found the following (what I presume are Hanja?) characters†. Four out of five I believe I have correctly identified. One character I could not find ...
4
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1answer
120 views

can I use (女)孩子 even if the person in question is an adult?

I only want to point out the family relation and asking a parents about their daughter (who is ~40 years old herself). Still not sure whether using 孩子 is appropriate here. is it?
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1answer
413 views

What are a few alternative ways to say "to expect"?

There are many situations I'd like to say the following in Chinese: "That phone call was unexpected" "I did not expect that meeting to be so difficult" The only approach I know of is: "我没想到那个电话“ ”...
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3answers
432 views

Classical Chinese grammar help: 蓋將自其變者而觀之,則天地曾不能以一瞬

The second clause is translated as some version of: "If you look at it from the point of Change, then heaven and earth never stay the same for even a moment". Here's what I think I know: 不 negates a ...
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1answer
2k views

How to say things are different from one another

Lately I have been confused on how to say different in Mandarin. I learned 不同 and 不一样 but am not confident on their usage. I am also unsure of the grammar. I found 与众不同 but this seems to also have the ...
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4answers
501 views

Usage of word 到 in 我很高兴见到你

Why do one need to write a word 到 in statement 我很高兴见到你? Can we omit it? It's like being complete without that word for me. Why do we need to use it? I found this phrase in this book.
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3answers
167 views

How can you discern which meaning of 怎么 as an interrogative should be used in a sentence?

In Mandarin, 怎么 has three major meanings as interrogatives - how, what, and why. It is quite perplexing for me to understand which interrogative someone tries to ask in. For example, when I posted in ...
4
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3answers
691 views

How do I word a polite notice about toilets in Mandarin?

My friend has asked me how to translate a sign asking people using a bathroom (toilet) at the tourist attraction where she works. She wants to ask that they do not to throw toilet paper in the ...
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8answers
730 views

吃 Vs. 喝 in this sentence: 既然敬酒不吃那就吃罚酒

So I watched a movie, in this sentence why did they use 吃 rather than 喝?
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1k views

Why do people say "吃飽了嗎"

I have heard my Chinese-speaking friends asking each other 吃飽了嗎? several times when they are done or almost done with their own meal. And I have wondered, "Why would they ask others such question? ...
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3answers
906 views

Etymology of 奇 and 怪

I am going through the word 奇. Mandarin Temple had mentioned, learning hint as “a person riding a horse”. Is this only learning hint? Or is it also etymologically correct? What is the exact etymology ...
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3answers
3k views

What is the difference between 打算 (dǎ suàn) and 计划 (jì huà)

Are 打算 (dǎ suàn) and 计划 (jì huà) both synonyms for "plan," or are there some additional nuances here?
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2answers
394 views

Where do people use 来着 a lot?

Where do people use 来着 a lot? Is that typical of 北京 or where? 来着 seems to be a kind of substitute for 吗 (是几号来着?). Is that correct?
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2answers
475 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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4answers
206 views

Why add 左右 ("approximately") to the precisely stated time 25日17时15分左右?

当地时间25日17时15分左右,…… I was reading a newspaper, and stumbled upon the above. I'm puzzled as to why someone would state a time as precisely as 25日17时15分 then add 左右 (= "approximately") ...
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5answers
306 views

Difference between using 被 and the object in the topic position?

I just learned about the preposition 被 bèi to express passive voice. If we have a S-V-O sentence, we can reexpress it using the 被 structure as O-被-(S)-V. This introduces a passive voice into the ...
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6answers
184 views

Does the word '县子‘ exist?

I wonder if the word "县子" colloquially exists in the Chinese language. I’ve probably heard this word before, and I‘m not exactly sure, but I blurrily remember it was from a conversation ...
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2answers
105 views

How do I say "the school was sold to that big company"?

My question is related to the position of 给. Do I say: 学校被卖给那个公司了。 or 学校给那个公司被卖了。 Thanks!
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3answers
250 views

Can 丢 refer to people?

I'm looking for the right word to use in the situation where you are looking after a child and they wander off. In English I would say "I lost my child!" Is 丢 the proper word? Google wants to say "...
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4answers
332 views

Does 住 人 mean "people living in the area" or "real live people, as opposed to puppets and fictions"?

I see various written sentences that refer to 住 人 . The dictionary says this means "living people," but 住 seems to be "live" in the sense of "I live in Beijing," or "I reside in Beijing." So if the ...
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3answers
75 views

Is a reduplicated verb necessary after "ba3"?

In my textbook there's an exercise in which I must decide if a sentence is correct. There's this: 请把这些汉字练. In the answers they say it's incorrect because "lian4" should be reduplicated. Is it really a ...
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4answers
2k views

不比 vs 没有 comparison usage

If my understanding is correct, then: 他没有我高。= he's not as tall as me, i.e. he is shorter. 他不比我高。= he's either as tall as me or shorter, i.e. he's at most as tall as me. Is that correct? If so, in ...
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1answer
3k views

The real meaning of "傲嬌"

Until recently, I have known the meaning of this word as described on the wiki page. I thought it is used to refer to people, particularly female, who are cold on the outside and hot, as in intimate, ...
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3answers
301 views

Translating the word "feelings" for conversational use

When I look for a dictionary translation of "feelings", I see two translations: 情怀 and 情面. Which of these two would be better suited to translate the following sentence The woman rhetorically ...
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3answers
1k views

What does “射個三分波” mean?

I was watching a video from Hong Kong’s Apple Daily newspaper, and they mentioned the phrase in question as such: “港鐵就射個三分波 叫我們問政府”. My guess is that 三分波 refers to an action in some sport, possibly ...
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3answers
845 views

Usage of 万 (wàn): ten thousands or just a great number?

I noticed that very often the word 万 (wàn) occurs in poetry (e.g. poetry of the Tang dynasty). My dictionary reports its meaning as "ten thousands", but it looks like it's used in place of a generic "...
3
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3answers
953 views

Why is 点 in 光学硕士点?

I walk past this sign on the way to the lab: If I understand correctly, it says something like the optics Master's lab (?) was founded in 1984 by the supervisor Guoguang Mu. I'm interested in the ...

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