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17 votes
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What does "小" mean in "小炒牛肉"?

To understand the meaning of 小炒, you need some more background information. Chinese factories or companies normally employ chefs to cook for employees, and chefs need to cook with super big pot or ...
Henryfrombeijing's user avatar
9 votes

How to say "obscene": translate 下流 or 輕佻?

'Obscene' is not 下流(no class/ bad taste) or 輕佻 (frivolous) One definition of obscene is 不堪入目 , it is used to describe perverted, immoral act or behavior For example: Taking a child from his mother ...
Tang Ho's user avatar
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7 votes

Sentence with demonstrative without explicit subject - de required?

这个很好吃。 一般语气,可以不加'的'。 若要加强语气,加'的',而且念重一点。 这是黒的。 这猫是黒色的。 通常要加'的'。 这本书很好。 和第一例一様,平常可省略;加强语气时,加'的'。
Farnz Seager's user avatar
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5 votes
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What are the best Chinese terms for the correct sense of the English adjective "everyday"?

“日常” is the closest in most contexts. It conveys the sense of "commonplace, mundane" very well. Some example phrases: everyday life - 日常生活 everyday conversation - 日常对话/日常会话 everyday clothes - 日常服装 ...
Ben Yang's user avatar
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5 votes
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When does an adjective require 的 to describe a noun?

Single character adjectives do not need possessive 的 when it is connected to single character nouns 利刀, 大樹,好人 Single character adjectives do not need possessive 的 when it is connected to multiple ...
Tang Ho's user avatar
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4 votes
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Usage of 的 to refer to a generic class of things

Short answer: yes. Your understanding is mostly correct. Long answer: what happens in a sentence like 我喜欢吃好吃的 I like to eat delicious things is that you are omitting something that would ...
blackgreen's user avatar
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4 votes
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Can one use 热 and 冷 to describe people?

You may need words of 2 characters, but I'm sure Chinese can do that. Specifically, what do you want to express? Hot or cold: passion, zeal, enthusiasm, interest, love, desire, hate? Here are some ...
Pedroski's user avatar
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4 votes

When should I use 地 with an adjective and when should I not use it with an adverb (and why do some adverbs require 地)?

一个劲儿地 is not a standard adverb, It is an adverbial phrase 一个劲儿 (constant effort) is a noun. Adding 地 make it an adverbial phrase 一个劲儿地 (with constant effort) 刻苦 is not only an adjective, it can also ...
Tang Ho's user avatar
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4 votes
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Adj. + 到 to express an extent

Your understanding is mostly right “A 到 B 了” means "become so A that have got into the condition of B" A: adj, but used as a verb, which means "become A" B: a condition "...
River's user avatar
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4 votes

Why is it correct to omit 很 in 小男孩嫌小鱼儿丑?

When there's a verb before the object, you usually don't need 很 before the adjective Since 嫌(dislike) is a verb, 嫌鱼儿丑 ( 這鱼儿我嫌丑) is a perfectly acceptable sentence, More example: 天氣很冷 怕天氣冷 (天氣我怕冷) 這詩很好 ...
Tang Ho's user avatar
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4 votes
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How do you translate "美容的" for food?

美容:make oneself more beautiful 美容的食物:beauty foods, beauty-enhancing foods I even found this: 营养美容: nutritional cosmetology 关键是将有助于美容的食物放在手边”,他说。 He said, "The key is having beauty-enhancing ...
Pedroski's user avatar
  • 18.5k
4 votes

Compound Structure of Chinese Nouns

Edit: how should one say "an old tiger, a fragrant banana, a big garlic", an old tiger - 一頭年邁的老虎/ 一頭年老的老虎 a fragrant banana - 一根芬芳的香蕉 a big garlic - 一大棵大蒜 for compound word nouns, it ...
Tang Ho's user avatar
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4 votes

Compound Structure of Chinese Nouns

lǎo​hǔ=tiger (虎), which literally means "old tiger (老虎)". xiāng​jiāo=banana (蕉), which literally means "fragrant banana (香蕉)". dà​suàn=garlic (蒜), which literally means "big ...
r13's user avatar
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3 votes

Can all adjectives be transformed into adverbs with 地?

Check out these dictionary entries for 地[de5]: ABC (adv.-forming, like English -ly) 很快地 hěn kuài de very quickly Oxford AUXILIARY [used with an adverb or adverbial phrase] 合理地安排和使用劳动力 dispose of ...
Mou某's user avatar
  • 36k
3 votes

How can I tell apart which two-syllable adjective forms "ABAB" to emphasize it?

My take is ABAB expresses dynamically (表示动态感) or extent in degrees, while AABB is for statically (表示静态感). For example, 舒服舒服 vs 舒舒服服。 舒服舒服 is kinda like 'Wow, I feel great!', it might imply that you ...
dan's user avatar
  • 24k
3 votes

Where to put the adjective when asking for something that comes in multiple sizes?

I'm not a linguist, just a native speaker. My opinion is that 大 should go before 杯, i.e. 我要一大杯咖啡, since I have never heard anyone said 我要一杯大咖啡. Words like 杯 are called 量词(sorry I don't know the exact ...
louisedec's user avatar
3 votes

Using SHI4 for noun and adjective, exceptional rules

It is much easier if you know how your own mother language works, instead of trying to understand "grammar logic" of foreign language with your own understanding. Let's look at some example : the ...
mootmoot's user avatar
  • 1,362
3 votes
Accepted

比 comparison structures: positive adjectives?

Personally, I've never heard about this as a strict grammar rule. You can say both versions of the same sentence as: 他比我高 vs 他比我矮 or 他比我富有 vs 他比我穷 and they would be equally correct, even though I ...
blackgreen's user avatar
  • 5,452
3 votes

When should I use 地 with an adjective and when should I not use it with an adverb (and why do some adverbs require 地)?

Many Chinese grammar books imitate those grammar books on Western languages. That does not fit well in Chinese grammar. The details I am not going to discuss here. While Western languages transform a ...
OmniBus's user avatar
  • 2,014
3 votes

How to say "obscene": translate 下流 or 輕佻?

下流 describes indecent action or person, sexually harass is the typical 下流的行为, a voyeur is a 下流的人. 輕佻(轻佻) is slightly literary, only used for woman, it describes her characteristic. This word is not ...
sfy's user avatar
  • 6,277
3 votes

How to say "obscene": translate 下流 or 輕佻?

My Chinese friend says 下流 is very, very bad and out of proportion and recommended 輕佻, but dictionaries say this means 'skittish, flippant, giddy, frivolous'. These words seem much too cute to me, ...
lly's user avatar
  • 330
3 votes

In 你多吃点 and 多给他点时间吧, is 多 an adjective or an adverb?

"多" here functions just like "more" in English. It can be an adjective or adverb In "多吃点", '多' (more) is an adverb for the verb '吃'(verb). In English, "多吃点水果" means "eat fruit more" ~ In "吃多点"...
Tang Ho's user avatar
  • 79.3k
3 votes
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Adverbs of degree with reduplicated adjective phrases?

很 as an adverb (very) only applies to adjective, never noun A reduplicated adjective emphasizes itself similar to adding "quite" (颇/相当) A reduplicated adjective cannot also use "very&...
Tang Ho's user avatar
  • 79.3k
3 votes

Why is 人口 in this sentence 多, not 大?

Yes Chinese see "人口" as "number of people" and 人口 is measured in number, e.g. China's population is 14 billion. And 多 and (小) are appropriate adjective for 人口 English use big or small to describe ...
Tang Ho's user avatar
  • 79.3k
3 votes
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Why is it correct to omit 很 in 小男孩嫌小鱼儿丑?

丑 here denotes aspect, other than descriptive as a pure adjective does, so we should not add a modifier 很. 很丑 focuses on the aspect of "very or quite", whilst 嫌我丑 denotes the aspect of &...
dan's user avatar
  • 24k
3 votes

Adjective before classifier

大 or 小 before a classifier describes the size or amount of it Example: 一堆 = a pile of; 一大堆 = a large pile of; 一小堆 = a small pile of 堆 is not a measurement unit but a description of a form. The ...
Tang Ho's user avatar
  • 79.3k
3 votes
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What is the meaning of 再 before adjectives?

I think the best way to understand this is: 再 X usually followed by 也 / 还是 no matter how X as much as ... is X It is used in concessive clauses more or less equivalent in meaning to 不管 / 无论 ... 多少 / ...
blackgreen's user avatar
  • 5,452
3 votes

What is the structure of 这个道服好羞人?

这个 - this (determiner) 道服 - Taoist suit (n) 好 - quite (adv) 羞人 - embarrassing (adj) 羞人 literally means "to embarrass people" but it is actually a compound word for the adjective "...
Tang Ho's user avatar
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