Questions tagged [word-choice]

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

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3
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1answer
75 views

How can I ask “which one is your favorite/do you like more”?

I want to ask "which one is your favorite?", like between A and B, which one do you like more. Can I say "哪一个你最喜欢?" or "哪个你更喜欢?"? Is there a better way to ask? At this ...
-3
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2answers
64 views

I wanna get a tattoo in chinese, how would it look to native chinese? [closed]

處世若無毫末善 死將何物答冥候 it's from a poem. how does it sound and look? what would you think if you see a foreign guy tattooed with that?
4
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3answers
69 views

Difference between Verb + 不了 and Verb + 不动

My teacher gives me two examples to state the difference between 不了 and 不动 as follows. (A)我的腿受伤了,所以我走不了。 (B)我累得走不动。 I also read in Chinese Grammar Wiki but I still get confused. (1) My teacher said ...
4
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3answers
154 views

Trust/Believe : “信任” vs “相信”

How is the usage of 信任 and 相信 different ? According to my understanding the scope of 信任 is more than the scope of 相信 . For example if we are talking about a person or a few people , we might say 我相信你 ...
1
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1answer
53 views

Don't both 關心 and 在意 mean the same thing?

I recently learned a sentence: 大家都和關心也很在意這件事 However, don't both 關心 and 在意 mean the same thing -- to care about? Is there a difference?
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1answer
36 views

Which is correct:了 or 过 in 我去。。。他家,知道他住在哪里

我去。。。他家,知道他住在哪里. I do not know what to choose in this sentence: 了 or 过. In my opinion: (1) 我去了他家,知道他住在哪里. (I had been to his house) (2) 我去过他家,知道他住在哪里. (I had had the experience of being in his house) ...
3
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2answers
62 views

In which dialect of Mandarin can I see or hear 乳酪?

In this website they write "乳酪 ru3 lao4" is a word which is used in Taiwan to describe cheese. But my Taiwanese friend told me they don't use this word, they use "nai3 lao4" or &...
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3answers
75 views

What is the difference between 走路, 行走, and 步行?

Are these words perfectly synonymous, or are there rules to distinguish them? Google Ngram shows that they're all used with about the same frequency. I don't like it when several different words have ...
0
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2answers
91 views

Is 进 correct: 他喜欢进我的房间(来)和我聊天儿?

他喜欢进我的房间(来)和我聊天儿。A website gives me another option: 他喜欢到我的房间(来)和我聊天儿. It changes 进 into 到. Is 进 correct? Or are both 进 and 到 OK?
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3answers
85 views

真心 VS 认真 difference

I was trying to say “He made this with all his heart” and then looked for how to say “with all one’s heart” in Chinese. I found a lot of ways to express the sentence but I’m still not sure which one ...
5
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3answers
376 views

Percent: 成 vs 百分之

Is there any difference between 成 and 百分之 when it comes to telling about percentage? I've just encountered 成 for the first time and started wondering.
3
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1answer
170 views

What does 泉 mean in 道具泉, in the context of a handbill?

At 33:41, the Chinese Univ. HK Philosophy student below asks Dr Samson Kwok Pak-nin (in Cantonese) to hand him Dr Kwok's placard. He calls it 道具泉. I know 道具 means prop, but how does 泉 - Wiktionary ...
3
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1answer
108 views

Why 明 for tomorrow and next year but 下 for next month?

I would like to understand why you can say 明天 and 明年 but not 明月, or why you can't say 下天 and 下年 but you say 下月. From the dictionary, 明 and 下 both seem to mean "next". Maybe the logic behind is "just ...
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3answers
190 views

On a HSK6 test, why is 社会稳定,人民生活水平显著提高,这一切都给人留下了深刻的印象 the incorrect sentence?

In a YouTube video a native Chinese speaker answers questions on the HSK-6 test. He gets one wrong: to identify which "has grammatical errors or uses wrong words" below: A. 每个人都可以有所作为,...
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3answers
126 views

链接, 连接, 连结, 联接, 联结 - lianjie - is it a joke and if not, what's the difference?

Amongst 链接, 连接, 连结, 联接, 联结 - which one is the most correct to use in which situation? Is one more formal than others? Maybe the meanings are different? Please, write as much as possible about ...
5
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1answer
58 views

Why in the multiplication table, different characters such as 如,得,歸,中 are used?

It seems to me that the following rules apply: When the answer is a one-digit number, the character 如 is used. When the answer is 10, the character 得 is used. When the answer is a multiple of 10, ...
3
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3answers
127 views

Why is 人口 in this sentence 多, not 大?

中国是世界上人口最多的国家. Why is 人口 in this sentence 多, not 大? In English way of thinking (or my English way of thinking), a population is something that can be "huge" rather than "much"/ "many". Is Chinese way ...
1
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1answer
57 views

What's the difference between shǐ yòng 使用 and yòng 用?

Both mean to use. However, sometimes you need both and sometimes you can simply say yòng 用. Examples: 謝謝你使用拼音 , thank you for using pinyin 謝謝你用鉛筆 , thank you for using a pencil
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6answers
198 views

Is「天佑美國」the correct translation for “God Bless America”?

Look at this mural from Chinatown, San Francisco: Attribution: American flag in Chinatown San Francisco by Pedro Lozano. License: CC BY 2.0 It says「天佑美國」, but is that correct? Shouldn't it be「天祐美國」...
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2answers
95 views

Choosing between 能 and 会 when filling in e.g. 如果你 ______ 来参加这个聚会的话,她一定 ______ 很高兴的。

Can anyone answer a few questions for me? Please choose the best option to fill the blanks. A. 能 (Néng) B. 会 (Huì) 如果你 ______ 来参加这个聚会的话,她一定______ 很高兴的。 Rúguǒ nǐ ______ lái ...
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3answers
94 views

When speaking, how would one say “cannot study”? E.g. 不能学习 or 学习不了 or 无法学习

Recently, I've been turning my Chinese learning towards speaking and listening, rather than reading and writing. Now, I might say "cannot study" in a few ways: 不能学习 学习不了 无法学习 The sentence I have in ...
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3answers
186 views

Translating “很快就有人去了.” ? Confusing word order

Can anyone help me translate this sentence properly? 很快就有人去了. My attempt is “Very quickly and soon, some people left.” However I don’t really understand the 很快就 part. Like i thought if these were ...
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3answers
108 views

What is a suitable Chinese name for a fictional company called “The Unity Group”?

I'm currently writing a novel featuring Chinese characters, with one being among the protagonists. Some of them are employees of a corporation, and I simply don't trust Google translate enough. The ...
2
votes
5answers
141 views

What would a straight Chinese man say to describe another man as “very gay”?

My current story is about Kong Lin, from her husband's perspective. Kong Lin has a long-term male friend (among other friends). I want her husband (straight Chinese guy) to describe him by something ...
2
votes
1answer
43 views

What’s the difference between 制定 and 制订?

I see both terms being used quite often, and both seem to mean “to formulate/create/come up (with a plan)”. People often say 制定计划, but many others say 制订计划 too. Both look sound to me. What is the ...
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2answers
58 views

Why is there a 地 in (霉)旧地席的气味?

From the second chapter in George Orwell's 1984, using the translations at Douban: Original: The hallway smelt of boiled cabbage and old rag mats. Translation 1: 门厅里有一股熬白菜和旧地席的气味 Translation 2: ...
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2answers
62 views

How do you say 黑箱作业 in English?

It is literally translated as ”black-box operation(s)”. It refers to actions within an organization which are not transparent to the general public or the “masses” within the organization, which ...
3
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7answers
1k views

Why did my teacher say 判断 is wrong in 她意识到朋友判断她 (“she's aware that her friends judge her”) and what's a better choice of word?

This is a sentence of my writing: 她意识到朋友判断她、对她的感觉变了、不再想跟她在一起。 It's meant to mean something like: She's aware that her friends judge her, have changed feelings about her, and don't want to spend ...
3
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3answers
196 views

What is the difference, if any, between 开心 and 快乐

Dictionaries will give "Happy" for both. A Mandarin song has the title 你开心所以我快乐 https://youtu.be/Sb1ojccxvyw Question therefore is whether there is any signifying difference in usage? That is, ...
2
votes
2answers
94 views

Meaning of 一挺 in 雪人大肚子一挺,他顽皮地说:“我就是冬天。” [duplicate]

雪人大肚子一挺,他顽皮地说:“我就是冬天。” What is the meaning of 一挺 in this sentence? I know 挺 can describe something as straight or erect, but I am confused why 一 is said before it.
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2answers
92 views

Expressing “Both A .. and B”

I came across the following sentence: 我既是一个语言的从教者,也是一个语言学习的爱好者。 I understand that "既 A , 也 B" is a sentence structure for expressing "both .. and ..". I was wondering about what effect 既 has on ...
2
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2answers
77 views

什么事 vs 什么: what’s the difference

Both 什么事 and 什么 seem to mean “what” (well, maybe literally 什么事 means “what thing”). So why is it that in this sentence we employ 什么事? 发生了什么事? What happened? Is it incorrect to write instead: 发生了什么? ...
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1answer
52 views

Why characters with “口字旁” were chosen in this transliteration?

In 神天聖書 (a classical translation of the Bible to Chinese), the Fifth Book of Moses was translated as: 摩西之第五書名曰吐嘚咡挼咪啞譯言復講法律傳 I guess that 吐嘚咡挼咪啞 is a transliteration of Deuteronomy. But I failed to ...
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3answers
90 views

Using 到底, how could we naturally complete the sentence 虽然这是两棵不同的植物,…?

标准教程HSK4下 (p.79) has a "complete the sentence" exercise: 虽然这是两棵不同的植物,...。(到底) Although these are two different plants, ... Basically, the task is to complete the sentence using 到底 in a natural ...
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2answers
285 views

Difference between 问问 and 问

What’s the difference? I saw this sentence and was confused why there’s two 问s: 等他回来的时候问问他。
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4answers
156 views

Places where the use of 小姐 is inappropriate

Wikitionary has a cool feature that shows a dialectal map with word differences across all Chinese dialects, as in this example. The problem is that I was trying to see which places it was OK to use ...
0
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3answers
47 views

How to imply someone is terminally ill?

In English, you can say "My cousin is sick." And that sort of conveys a lot. Your cousin could have cancer and be terminally sick, but could also be crazy ("sick" as in slang for cool), or sick as in ...
2
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4answers
359 views

Is there a difference between 回转 and 掉头?

Is there a difference between 回转 and 掉头? I have heard them both used to describe a U-turn, so are there any subtle differences between the two words?
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6answers
66 views

要 to indicate “will [verb]” vs “need”

Consider the sentence: 我要去北京。 This means "I will go to Beijing". But 要 also means "need". So could this sentence also be translated as "I need to go to Beijing"? How would you make the distinction ...
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2answers
47 views

Is this clear? 我们等了一段时间,其间我们没观察到任何直接和明显的副作用, … (waiting around for side-effects)

From my writing in Writing critique request: Zhou Ziwang gets an injection from the "doctor", this part seems particularly problematic: Original version: 没有发现了立即而明显的后果,... I intended for ...
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4answers
809 views

To describe a man acting creepily towards a woman, is there a word that means 害怕 (afraid) but less strong?

Imagine a scenario where a man is acting creepily towards a woman. Writing from her perspective, she might say something like 他让我感到害怕 He makes me feel afraid but 害怕 seems too strong here. She'...
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2answers
38 views

Does 到了现在我才清楚了解当时的情况 imply that the situation is completely clear, or just that it's clearer than before?

This question is related to Writing critique request: Zhou Ziwang's father takes her to the "doctor". In particular: English version: These days I have a clearer understanding of the ...
0
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2answers
32 views

How do we trade-off succinctness for accuracy in 每当我爸忙的时侯他就让我吃?

I'm having trouble with one part of this answer from Tang Ho relating to the story Writing critique request: Zhou Ziwang was fat when she was young: 我爸忙时就让我吃, --> (每当)我爸忙(的)时(侯)(他)就让我吃, When my ...
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4answers
98 views

If I was fat, and now I'm not, which is better: 我长胖 or 我长胖了 or 我长了胖 or 我长了胖了?

Suppose in the past I was fat, and now I'm no longer fat. I'm wondering which 了 is appropriate: 我长胖 我长胖了 我长了胖 我长了胖了 I don't think we can just leave off the 了. It makes sense to put 了 at the end as ...
0
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1answer
53 views

What are the advantages of 人类将如何演变 over 人性会怎么改变?

I'm analyzing Writing critique request: Zhou Ziwang and the revolutionary new technology and in particular these two sentences: Intended English meaning: How will mankind change? My writing: ...
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2answers
93 views

Why use 碰头 (pèngtóu) to mean “meet” instead of say 见, 见面, or 看见? (In e.g. 过两分钟我们在外面碰头)

In the Chinese translation of Matilda (p. 195), we have: “好,你把东西收拾一下,过两分钟我们在外面碰头。” "Good. Gather up your things and I'll meet you outside in a couple of minutes." and on the next page: ...
2
votes
5answers
233 views

Difference between 什么都不 and 什么都没

Is it a difference in the tenses? Like one's a present and the other is future? Explain with examples please And can we say 什么也不 and 什么也没?
0
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1answer
62 views

What are the criteria used on dictionaries to decide word classes?

Mandarin is a complete MESS regarding word classes. I can't think of an example right now, but I'm completely sure there are some words that reach the point of being a noun, adjective, verb and adverb ...
0
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2answers
87 views

Is 批判 or 批评 better in 别人总是批判我?

I wrote this: 现在我觉得伊斯兰规矩太多了,别人总是批判我。 I currently feel like Islam has too many rules, other people are always criticizing me. My teacher and I had a somewhat long discussion as to whether it ...
2
votes
2answers
847 views

Is there a neutral way of saying “deliberately”?

I wrote a sentence which involved 故意 (gùyì; deliberately) and my teacher explained that 故意 is a negative word: you can't deliberately do something good using 故意. (I won't reproduce that sentence, ...

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