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5
votes
7answers
1k views

Can I use 我的上一辈子 when talking about an earlier part of my life which I almost don't recognize as mine anymore?

Context: I posted a photo on WeChat of an event that happened a long long time ago to me. I was living a completely different life back then. Different country, job, I was much younger etc. It's ...
1
vote
4answers
85 views

Is there a chengyu to mean “undeserved reward” or “undeserved luck”?

Let's consider someone who sits on their buttocks all day, but, in spite of not working hard, gets rewarded anyway. Some examples: a particularly lazy coworker who gets a promotion/raise even if they ...
2
votes
3answers
71 views

What is the meaning of 看场子?

"1997年,他到东莞打工,在一家木材厂给人看场子,在那里,他学会了汉族的生活方式,和朋友一起打台球,到歌厅唱歌。" Hi everyone! I'm trying to translate this sentence, but I don't understand what 看场子 stands for in this sentence. I know it could ...
3
votes
2answers
130 views

Translation and script type of Chinese calligraphy scroll (Characters identified: 高明配天 敬璧)

What is the translation of the text and seal on this scroll? What is the script type of the large main text? Initially I thought it was seal script since the characters looked quite similar to those ...
2
votes
1answer
72 views

What is the meaning of 元亨利贞 in the I-Ching?

Probably the most cryptic lines of the 周易 Book of Changes, it reads: 元亨利贞 yuan2 heng1 li4 zhen1 This is the Judgement to the very first hexagram, 乾卦 The Creative. The same characters also appear ...
0
votes
4answers
99 views

Why was I told 在什么情况下……吗? is wrong?

Under what circumstances can police use tear gas? I translate it as 在什么情况下警察可以使用电击枪吗? Someone told me this is not correct because it shouldn't end with 吗. But I don't understand, if can police use ...
4
votes
2answers
406 views

In 则无迟重之虞所谓顶头悬也, does 顶头悬 translate to “Incoming Danger”?

I stumbled across this word in an old Tai Ji Quan text, in the following context: 则无迟重之虞所谓顶头悬也。 I translated the main part of this sentence as "Don't be paralyzed by fear, which is referred to as....
3
votes
3answers
94 views

Why is 很早 after the verb in 我起床很早?

I came across the following sentence: 今天我起床很早。 Jīntiān wǒ qǐchuáng hěn zǎo. Today I wake up very early. I am confused about 很早 appearing after the verb. I think here 很早 (very early) indicates the ...
2
votes
1answer
65 views

What kind of party is 黑灯舞?

I heard that in the past, around the 1980s, people could be executed for this. But what does it consist of? Is there an english/american equivalent or something similar?
6
votes
3answers
887 views

What is 吗 doing in 你有什么事吗?

In a Chinese lesson, I came across these sentences: 你有什么事吗? Nǐ yǒu shénme shì mɑ? 你有什么事? Nǐ yǒu shénme shì? And both were translated as: What's the matter? I don't understand 1. Without 吗, I ...
1
vote
2answers
69 views

What is the meaning of 关心种子?

I was watching a YouTube video, and the guy in the very beginning said "关心种子" means: a type of species desperate for attention. Is that true? Here is the video for reference: https://www....
4
votes
3answers
70 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 ...
2
votes
4answers
86 views

How do you refer to multiple people with the same surname?

I was wondering if Chinese people ever get confused addressing multiple people with the same last name. For example, let's say you are at a gathering and you meet many people who are from the same ...
0
votes
1answer
51 views

Purpose of the reduplication in 一步一步地往上爬

(A)别着急,一步一步地往上爬,爬不动的时候就休息一会儿。 (B)我请田芳一句一句地给我纠正。 I learned about the reduplication of Measure words (e.g:个个,天天 ) but these sentences use a different structure. (1)What is the purpose of this ...
3
votes
4answers
319 views

Can I replace 可以不用 with 不需要?

This sequence: 可以不用 sounds odd to me. Maybe for Chinese ears it sounds perfectly natural. I suppose my brain immediately puts it in English, but I think the meaning is not 'you can not use' but rather ...
2
votes
1answer
49 views

Is “就快下雨了” correct Mandarin?

I've been watching Peppa Pig to improve my Mandarin, but here at 1:59, the mama pig says “就快下雨了” meaning to say that it will rain soon. However I thought that the phrase "就快" was Cantonese ...
4
votes
3answers
550 views

Can an adverb modify another adverb in Chinese?

I was wondering if an adverb in Chinese can be used to modify another adverb. I looked some resources but I could not find it. For example, in Adverb in resources.allsetlearning, they just say "...
0
votes
1answer
73 views

What do these wooden sticks mean? (Characters identified: 天然香樟木 防虫,防蛀,防臭) [closed]

A Chinese merchant sent me a parcel with an ordered item and unrelated five similar wooden sticks with white ropes attached: I did not order those sticks and have no idea concerning the usage of ...
1
vote
1answer
42 views

How to ask about career intentions/aspirations

I found this helpful post on the site outlining how to ask a child what they want to do/be when they grow up. Examples: 長大後你想做什麼? 你長大後想當什麼? 你长到以后想干什么啊? Are these questions equally appropriate for ...
1
vote
2answers
70 views

Why is 条 the measure word being used in 那条街名是以一个将军的名字命名的

I know that the measure word for 街 is 条, but in this sentence the subject being identified is 街名, a word for "street name". My understanding is that a "name" has measure word 个: ...
1
vote
7answers
189 views

How to translate “something separates me from other people” in Chinese?

I'm trying to translate a song lyric that reads "something separates me from other people". My translation is " 我从别人点儿什么分开“. Is this correct? Thanks in advance for your help!
3
votes
2answers
69 views

Why is 在 translated as “during” in this sentence rather then “at”?

This sentence 中国人喜欢在端午节吃粽子。 is translated as, Chinese People like to eat Zongzi during the Dragon Boat Festival. Why is 在 translated as "during" rather then "at".
3
votes
4answers
474 views

What is 了 doing in 这个表快了+time?

I am confused about the 了 in the sentence: 这个表快了五分钟。 Zhèɡe biǎo kuàile wǔ fēnzhōnɡ. This watch is running five minutes faster. Clearly there is no change of state. Is it for completion? I don't ...
1
vote
2answers
43 views

Placement of stative verbs

I notice that stative verbs tend to connect with the subject and then the rest of the sentence proceeds with normal word order. 我們喜歡在圖書館讀書 Why does 喜歡 precede the location-phrase 在圖書館? (why not 我們 ...
5
votes
3answers
143 views

Is there an idiomatic way to express 乱说 or 胡说八道 in an elegant way?

Essentially, let's say that during a polite conversation, I want to remark that someone 乱说 / 胡说八道 “talks rubbish", without sounding inelegant or unrefined (没素质). What's a good euphemism, a ...
1
vote
3answers
173 views

HSK6的第101题(缩写)请求反馈:富有爸爸和会花钱的儿子

我在练习HSK6里的第101题:缩写。我用了这个过去的考卷练习,而下面是我的写作(原始版)。我不可以用电脑、词典什么的,也作文400字数限制。据这个课程里的评论,我必须包括分段。 关于下面的写作,我请求反馈,想知道我最重要的缺点。我特别想知道前HSK6的学生的建议。(据我目前的知识,没有网站提供正确答案的例子。) 儿子只有自由才能成功 有钱的父亲担心他粗心花钱的儿子,虽然他劝儿子该负责自己,...
2
votes
1answer
61 views

Is it normal to not use abbreviation for titles in Mainland China?

I notice people in mainland China use abbreviation for almost all titles. Example: 習總裁 --> 习总 郎(平)教練 --> 郎教 任隊長 --> 任隊 This kind of abbreviation even appears in Hong Kong's TV dramas. ...
2
votes
1answer
64 views

先进个人奖, what is this?

I'm not really sure this is the correct website to ask for this, I'm sorry if it is not. Anyway, I'm trying to understand what this honour/award is (in English I often see it translated as "...
0
votes
3answers
71 views

如何了解「喜欢你,我也是」里写这个替代“秒怂”的词?

我在看着书时遇到了下面不认识的字: “呃,那个……”张侃侃听到“学姐”二字,秒~。她舔舔嘴唇尴尬地说,…… 喜欢你,我也是,12页 我无法输入这个词:除了我的手机,我也尝试用QHanzi和Chinese Input,可是都不能识别“秒”右边的那个字。 为了对比,下面是Kindle版的相同部分。奇怪的是,那两词不一样。 “呃,那个……”张侃侃听到“学姐”二字,秒怂。她舔舔嘴唇尴尬地说,…… ...
1
vote
3answers
113 views

Is this a valid riddle in Mandarin?

I came up with this 看图猜謎 based on Cantonese jyutping. Is it a valid riddle in Mandarin? 猜一句詩 (guess a verse in a poem) Answer:
5
votes
4answers
1k views

Are HSK6 questions 51 through 60 (语病) so difficult that it's reasonable to just guess?

Among the HSK6 advice I've encountered, I'm a bit surprised by some practical advice regarding the ten 语病 questions (51 through 60) wherein each question has 4 sentences A through D and exactly one ...
1
vote
8answers
576 views

Difference between 我一句汉语也没听懂 and 我一句汉语也听不懂

(1)刚来中国时,我一句汉语也没听懂。 (2)刚来中国时,我一句汉语也听不懂。 For me: (1) states the situation that "I cannot understand Chinese sayings" without pointing out any reasons (2) uses potential complement "听不懂&...
2
votes
3answers
358 views

What is the literal translation of the first line of the Tao Te Ching?

You see this: 道可道非常道 dào kě dào fēicháng dào Often translated as "The Dao that can be told is not the eternal and unchanging Dao". What is the literal translation? What's missing is, we ...
1
vote
1answer
79 views

Unable to find matching script for this artifact inscription

I need help getting this translated. I think it's a lesser seal or even Hong Shan era. Attempts to translate by myself have failed to match the script.
2
votes
3answers
839 views

Does Chinese require more context to avoid ambiguities than English?

After some time learning Chinese, I feel Chinese language is more ambiguous than English or Spanish, in the sense that a single sentence without some context can easily have multiple distinct meanings,...
0
votes
2answers
72 views

Difference between 问 and 让 “to ask”

How do 问 and 让 differ in meaning and in what sort of situations would you use either of them? In chinese.yabla.com there are a lot of different verbs with the meaning 'to ask'.
1
vote
1answer
40 views

What are these words in this video about how the snake (Satan) tricked Eve into eating the forbidden fruit?

Even though the priest in this video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pnMeISMY6eM)is speaking in Mandarin, he includes a lot of non-Mandarin words and expressions. Can anyone tell me what they mean? I'...
-1
votes
0answers
62 views

To decipher a Chop or Seal

I purchased a Painting of Egrets...there is an Asian style Mark or Seal at the bottom left. I would like to know what it means Any help will be appreciated. Best regards, Gary Hancock
4
votes
1answer
108 views

車轉 as “door knob”?

This a a bit of a follow up to 饰界 for "hinges"? I've got this translation here: Takes hold of the knob. Gives the knob a turn. 把車轉拿着 把車轉扭一下 I'm assuming 車轉 matches up with knob here. It'...
1
vote
1answer
55 views

Do any Chinese languages or dialects contain a rolled/trilled R?

From 20:00 to 22:00 of this video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pnMeISMY6eM), the speaker appears to pronounce the R sound with standard Mandarin pronunciation in 若 and 仍然. However, he rolls the R ...
1
vote
1answer
72 views

What is the concept of 华夏?

This paper talks about the concept of 华夏: At the core of this traditional Chinese identity is the concept of hua-hsia. By invoking a sense of Chineseness (hua) that is rooted in the shared ...
5
votes
2answers
133 views

饰界 for “hinges”?

I've got this translation here: The door turns on its hinges. 门靠着饰界转 I'm assuming 饰界 matches up with hinges. It's not a word I've encountered before or that's readily searchable online. The ...
-1
votes
1answer
52 views

Resources for Chinese in formal situations [closed]

I am looking for a comprehensive guide of formal Chinese for business emails, memos, laws, newspapers, etc. I am aware that some sentence patterns are only used in a formal context. For example, ....均....
0
votes
4answers
108 views

Meaning of 的 in 我十岁才到的美国

I do not understand the meaning of 的 in the following sentence: 我爸爸是美国人,妈妈是意大利人,我十岁才到的美国。 This sentence is in my Chinese textbook. At first, I had thought it may be wrong. Afterward, I run into ...
2
votes
2answers
602 views

How do you say “do a plank” in Chinese?

Here is a person doing a "plank". What would you say in Chinese?
4
votes
3answers
127 views

What does 不按套路出牌的脑回路 mean? “unconventional brain circuitry”?

I'm reading a Chinese novel and I'm having trouble understanding something I feel is rather metaphorical. 张侃侃 is resisting being 追求ed by the flirtatious 谈晋. 张侃侃 tore her clothes and as she is ...
1
vote
0answers
64 views

Classical Chinese education

Do you know why teachers of Classical Chinese in Taiwan typically teach hardly any grammar about the language? It seems that those in Mainland China and Hong Kong put more emphasis on it. Do you thnk ...
1
vote
2answers
56 views

When does 可 before a verb mean “willing to”, and when does it mean “can”?

In a sentence like this, 他遇到了一个好朋友, 可带他去很多酒吧 does the 可 mean the new friend “can” bring him to the bar, or that he is “willing to”? I’ve always thought of 可 as just “can” or “able to”, but I saw on ...
1
vote
1answer
44 views

Does Chinese distinguish in/on/to the south?

Does 在伦敦的南面/南边 is a mixture of in/on/to the south of London?
4
votes
3answers
155 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 ...

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