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Questions tagged [word-choice]

Questions about what word fits better in a certain context or situation.

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2answers
41 views

More common way to say “squared”, 二次方X or X的平方?

In English it's much more common to say "squared" than "to the second power", but the reverse seems to be true in Chinese. For example, m/s^2 is more commonly 米每二次方秒 (according to Google searches) ...
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2answers
48 views

Does this sentence make sense?

I'm trying to write a piece about sexism, that specifically discusses the gender wage gap and how it's affected by race. The sentence I'm trying to say is, "Latina women have to work until Nov. 20 in ...
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0answers
33 views

Difference between 一共 and 总共 [duplicate]

The English meaning for 一共 and 总共 is "altogether, in total". Is there any difference in usage of both words? If there is difference, what situation must I use 一共 and when do I use 总共?
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2answers
36 views

Why is my translation different from theirs?

So, I was was reading something and they provided me a translation. Here's the first one: 我不想要你因为我变得消极 I won't want you to become pessimistic because of me. Why didn't it translate to "I don't ...
1
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1answer
60 views

What is the difference between 可是, 但是, 但, 而, 不过, and 然而?

What is the difference between 可是, 但是, 但, 而, 不过, and 然而? All of these mean "but" and I can't find any information in my dictionary on what differentiates them.
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4answers
60 views

To express surprise with disappointment, if 卧槽 is vulgar, is 苦也 considered a decent alternative?

Many people say 卧槽 when something unpleasant happens surprisingly. However, this word is considered as vulgar. So how to express such feelings decently without using offensive words? Is 苦也 a good ...
1
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2answers
39 views

If 衔 means 'hold in the mouth', why bother adding '在嘴里'?

I was looking up 醒酒石. I found: 醒酒石:所谓醒酒石,即喝醉酒后,衔在嘴里可以醒酒解渴的石头。 When I look up 衔 I find: 用嘴含,用嘴叼:衔枚。燕子衔泥。 If 衔 means 'hold in the mouth', why bother adding '在嘴里'? (Also, I'd be ...
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2answers
44 views

Chinese honorifics + thanking familiar elders

From here. Honorific Verbs Like nouns and proper nouns, some Chinese verbs can also be complemented with an honorific modifier. For example, the verbs 告gào ("to tell"), 还huán ("to return"),...
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1answer
37 views

Most appropriate word for proxy/substitute/surrogate

Please forgive my lack of knowledge of Chinese. I'm doing book research and am looking for the most appropriate word for 'proxy' in the sense of a substitute or surrogate. For the sake of clarity, let'...
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3answers
99 views

Uses of interrogatives as pronouns

In English, interrogatives are occasionally used as not as interrogatives but as adverbs and relative pronouns. For example: I don't know why we moved; I don't know how that machine works; I know ...
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4answers
124 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?
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2answers
67 views

Can a Good Listener Help Me Translate?

I am translating a paragraph from English into Chinese, going by a recording a native speaker made. I am trying to use the same characters that they are using in their spoken translation, but am ...
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2answers
69 views

What is the difference between「唐人」and「漢人」in Cantonese?

I have noticed that people speaking Cantonese use the term「唐人」. I am unsure about the definition of「唐人」in Cantonese. Does「唐人」in Cantonese mean exactly the same thing as「漢人」, or are there subtle ...
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1answer
22 views

What is the difference between “博览会”, “交易会” and “展销会”?

I know there are 3 phrases used to describe exhibition/fair, namely "博览会", "交易会" and "展销会". Can those phrases be used interchangeably or is there any difference for each specific phrase?
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3answers
140 views

Difference between 一般 and 一样 meaning “same”

I want to know if there are any differences between 一般 and 一样 in expressing “same”?
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2answers
83 views

必/会, 这个句子为什么用”必“?必 vs 会? Why does this sentence use "必“?

我读圣经的时候看了这个: 你不要害怕,因为我与你同在;不要惊惶,因为我是你的神。我必坚固你,我必帮助你,我必用我公义的右手扶持你。(以赛亚书 41:10) 我看懂它的意思,可是我不看懂 “必”。我知道它想说“我会坚固你,我会,等等“,可是它为什么用“必”?我查资料了它和知道“必”的意思是“需要”或者“会”。”会“是比较简单的吗?还是是一样的?对不起我的中文不好! I was ...
0
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2answers
99 views

I looked for it “until” I found it.

How do I say “I looked for it until I found it “ or “I looked for (something) until I found it” what is the word that i use for “until”
3
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5answers
136 views

Difference between 很 and 挺

As far as I know, both means “very”. I would like to know if there are any further differences that exist between them
4
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4answers
199 views

What's the best translation to 「要看两千年的中国,去西安;要看一千年的中国,去北京;要看一百年的中国,去上海;要看十年的中国,去深圳」?

What's the best translation to 「要看两千年的中国,去西安;要看一千年的中国,去北京;要看一百年的中国,去上海;要看十年的中国,去深圳」? My version is To find two thousand years of China, go to Xi'an; To find one thousand years of China, go to ...
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5answers
130 views

照顾 vs 安慰 zhaogu vs anwei

Anyone know the difference between these two verbs? Both seem to mean 'to care for'. Google image search seems to show more Mother/children/illness care for 照顾, but 安慰 also seems to be largely person ...
2
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2answers
70 views

Ways of negating statements in Chinese

I'm looking at negation in Chinese. I know: 不:我不去。I don't want to go. 不多:他话不多。He doesn't talk much. 没:他没去美国。He didn't go to America. 未:未必:not necessarily 否:不管我们喜欢与否,Whether we like it or not, 无:...
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2answers
60 views

How to say “often” in an imperative sentence? (eg. “come back often baby”)

Can I just say 常常/经常....吧? Or should I use 多? 常常回来吧 / 经常回来吧 / 多回来宝贝 Or is there a better way of phrasing this? I tried searching the internet but couldn't find anything that resolves my query. ...
6
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4answers
221 views

Using phrase 打不死

I recently encountered 打不死 as the title of a column in a US Chinese language newspaper. Asking my Chinese language teacher, she gave the literal translation of "beaten but not dead", meaning something ...
2
votes
3answers
124 views

Difference between 厉害 and 利害

I see they have the same pronunciation but does they bear any differences. It seems like 利害 can be pronounced lìhài or lìhai while 厉害 can only be pronounced lìhai.
2
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1answer
59 views

When to use 相比 and 比?

I'm not sure to get the difference. If the two following sentences are correct, when should I use one over the other? 相比: 和打羽毛球相比我更喜欢打网球。 比: 我羽毛球比网球更喜欢打。
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7answers
743 views

Why is “纸“ used in ”肚纸饿”? 为什么说肚纸饿,不肚子饿?

I was online recently and saw an image saying "肚纸饿“ (although I cannot presently locate it). I know "肚子饿” means "I'm hungry", but the character 纸 used in the image means paper. Was it used instead of ...
2
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2answers
80 views

Difference between 忘 and 忘记

So is there any differences between 忘 and 忘记?They both mean to forget but do they have any other differences in terms of usage, location within a sentence, etc
4
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2answers
228 views

What is the best way to ask for a draw in chess?

I play in chess tournaments in China, and in the past, I've been unable to ask my opponent for a draw because I didn't know how to say it in Chinese off the top of my head (and we can't use electronic ...
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3answers
118 views

Difference between 必 and 一定

Both words kinda mean “must, necessarily, certainly”. Can someone explain the differences between the two?
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2answers
157 views

How do I translate the words “player” and “team” into Mandarin?

I have noticed there is a large number of words that translate as “player” and “team”. I've been trying to decipher those and so far it seems that: 玩家 wánjiā, 玩者 wánzhě – those two mean a player ...
3
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2answers
73 views

一会 vs 一下 vs 一时 vs 一时半会 vs 片刻

I wanted to say "I'm going to take a nap for a while" and looked for the phrase "(for) a while" in Chinese and came across these 5 : 一会,一下,一时,一时半会,片刻。 Could you please tell me the difference between ...
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1answer
71 views

Differentiating 着 (zhe/zháo) and 着/到

The character 着 has many readings, but I'm interested on 2 of them that have grammar usage: zhe and zháo. As zhe, 着 is used to express a continuous state, as in 门开着 (the door is opened) and 他跑着步听音乐 (...
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2answers
58 views

What's the difference between 在 and 于 as a preposition?

When I was writing a simple paragraph about 自我介绍, I wanted to say that "I was born in XXX." I wasn't sure about how to say it and then looked for some examples of how to say it in Chinese and came ...
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1answer
263 views

What's the difference between 恭喜發財 and 恭禧發財?

Today I visited a house that had Chinese New Year banners all over. On the stairs, one banner reads 「恭禧發財」, and above a door, another banner reads 「恭喜發財」. Both of these are pronounced exactly the same ...
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2answers
75 views

What's the difference between 我住在 and 還活著?

I think both 我住在 and 還活著 have quite the same meaning (I'm alive), can I use evenly one of them as I like or are there some rules that force me to distinguish their use according to different contexts?
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3answers
83 views

Difference between words that tell time

What are the difference between 时间 and 时候. They both means time as far as I know Also, what are the difference between 点 and 小时 which both means hour And can you give some examples?
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1answer
217 views

Difference between 好看、美丽 and 漂亮

All these words are used to describe beauty but which one is used for human, and which is used for things?
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2answers
120 views

Difference between 一顿饭 and 一碗饭

The measure word of 饭 is 顿 and 碗. But what is the difference between the two and how should I classify them? At first I thought 一碗饭 means a plate of food, for example if you have rice and chicken, ...
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3answers
44 views

What is the difference between 书呆子 and 迂夫子?

Both 书呆子 and 迂夫子 mean a pedant, and at least I know 书呆子 is usually used in derogatory tone. I have never seen the word 迂夫子 until just now, and it seems to mean the same thing as 书呆子. So I wonder if ...
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1answer
51 views

还 vs 也 for expressing multiple actions

Based on the structure: S V O, 还/也 V O When should I use 还 and when should I use 也? A Chinese friend told me that 还 often sounds better than 也 in sentences where the two verbs are different, such ...
3
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1answer
64 views

Is there any specific rules or, at least, common rules that can help us decide when to use “verb-object” words?

Before jumping into my question, please forgive me if this question has ever been asked by someone else (I didn't find one though), but could someone please explain to me the rules (or the way) of ...
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0answers
42 views

我 or 我的 to show possession? [duplicate]

你们好, In several language learning books for Chinese, I have seen 我 (wǒ)used rather than to mean “I” to mean “my.” Check the following example: 这是我爱人。 Literally: this be I love person. Meaning: This ...
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2answers
134 views

不能得到 vs 得不到 difference

When I was trying to make this sentence : "It seems like I can't get good score even though I study hard/我虽然努力学习,但是我好像还不能得到好成绩 (I don't know if my sentence is correct tho)", I found this word 得不到 (...
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2answers
83 views

what is the difference between 條 and 匹?

In the context of "classifier for long thing objects" how do 條 and 匹 differ?
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2answers
62 views

What is the purpose of “到” in 他在行窃时被当场抓到

I'm confused about 到 which means to arrive, or up until. How does it fit into the sentence "He was(is) caught in the act of stealing. " Also, how is past tense indicated here?
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1answer
144 views

What's the difference between 要 and 想 for “to want”?

Is one more common (要 vs 想)? Are there different situations to use each?
3
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4answers
161 views

To-do list words

I'm learning Chinese, and trying to use it more in my daily life, e.g. by making to-do lists in Chinese. What's the Chinese term for a to-do list, and what are words you might use if you finish ...
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6answers
174 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 ...
2
votes
5answers
138 views

How to refer to someone if he is younger than I (but not knowing his name)?

Here is the message I just sent out to my friend: 酒吧的哥哥也期待你再来。 I referred to the bartender as 哥哥, but the bartender saw my WeChat, and said the following (the exact sentence might not be same): ...
0
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1answer
103 views

What does 亲你一口 mean?

I thought 亲你一口 means “kiss you” but usually, I think verbs take 一下 to add the meaning of “a bit”. So why is it 亲你一口, not 亲你一下, and what does it differ from just say 亲你? Or is the relationship ...