19 votes
Accepted

Why do Chinese people always use Chinese subtitles?

There are Chinese-language-only reasons like the many mutually-unintelligible dialects/topolects, the huge difference between spoken and written Chinese languages, but this doesn't explain why ...
user avatar
  • 8,342
13 votes
Accepted

Is Learning and Memorizing Chinese Characters much different than English?

Chinese characters and phonetics You say: Unlike English, Chinese is not a spelling language, which means there is no hint from the characters for pronunciation!!! Luckily for us, that's not true! ...
user avatar
12 votes

How to get started learning Chinese?

Learn Chinese I could just assume you mean that you want to learn to speak Mandarin Chinese, but I'd like you to take a moment to share what you mean by "learn chinese." Since it will likely be the ...
user avatar
  • 2,284
9 votes

Is there a lot of value in learning to write Chinese characters?

Some reasons I'm surprised weren't mentioned above: 1) Written stroke order is still the primary system for looking up characters in a dictionary! Yes, you can break them down by radicals & ...
user avatar
  • 199
8 votes
Accepted

How to catch up with advanced group?

try "http://www.wannalearn.com/" search "chinese" "http://www.openculture.com/freelanguagelessons" scroll down to "chinese" section "https://resources.allsetlearning.com/chinese/grammar/Main_Page"
user avatar
  • 1,964
8 votes

Which Mandarin learning textbooks have the largest amount of practical exercises?

You can find some bookstores near the Elementary Schools (小學). If you see some signs like 國小參考書, go to find 參考書 (references) or 評量題 (examinations) for the first or second grade (一、二年級). 參考書 include ...
user avatar
  • 5,846
7 votes
Accepted

How many non-native speakers of Chinese are there?

I found this report provided by the institution that runs the Chinese Proficiency Test (HSK). The report was about the tests that took place in year 2010, which was ten years ago, so things may have ...
user avatar
  • 3,813
7 votes

Is there any proof that the Taishanese language is related to Gan? Is it from a linguistic perspective?

The Gan-Hakka hypothesis is most famously put forward by Sagart (2002), based on certain unique shared innovations in both Southern Gan varieties and Hakka: 屋下 as the usual word for "house",...
user avatar
  • 5,638
6 votes

Why do Chinese people always use Chinese subtitles?

There are not just different accents in different regions. There are different spoken languages, using essentially the same written language. And on this point, very distinctive English accents such ...
user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

Etymology of 奇 and 怪

「奇」 is not a person riding a horse - that is probably a learning mnemonic, meant to remind you of the word 「騎」. This character has received some attention in the question What is the glyph origin of '...
user avatar
  • 21.2k
5 votes

How to start learning Cantonese?

Old post, but those answers make the language hobbyist in me cry, so... Are you willing to pay for the privilege? If you are, I recommend Complete Cantonese from Teach Yourself, Basic Cantonese from ...
user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

Mnemonic for differentiating 买 and 卖

You can use 买进 and 卖出 to reduce the chance of being misunderstood. 买,卖 and 借 are the most bewildering Chinese words in modern commerce. He who can coin some new words and popularize them will be our ...
user avatar
  • 1,800
5 votes
Accepted

Word list for computer UI and technical. (Simplified character, pinyin, English)

I have done some software translation and there are couple of ways you can go about learning UI-related language. The first thing is to start using applications (including your operating system) in ...
user avatar
  • 2,940
5 votes
Accepted

How are Chinese people taught Chinese Hanzi?

I can give a short answer to this question. I would say both. When I entered primary school and started to learn Hanzi systematically, Pinyin is the very first thing to learn, and we learn the sounds ...
user avatar
5 votes

Etymology of 奇 and 怪

Tl;dr: Isolated use is largely impermissible (points 3. and 4.), because they are classical Chinese. Evidence for which is outlined in point 2. With other excellent answers detailing the glyph origin ...
user avatar
  • 5,455
4 votes

Is Learning and Memorizing Chinese Characters much different than English?

At a high level, the answer is yes, reading Chinese and an alphabetic writing system stimulates brain parts differently. For instance, in http://www.pitt.edu/~perfetti/PDF/Reading%20in%202%20writing%...
user avatar
  • 2,119
4 votes

What is the official total sum of all Mandarin pictograms?

the answer to your question turns out to be a complex one. firstly, when we talk about characters (i.e. 'squarish East Asian writing symbols with a certain shape, sound, and meaning'—not a good ...
user avatar
  • 609
4 votes

Why do Chinese people always use Chinese subtitles?

That is mainly to make sure deaf people can understand. 2012年实施的《无障碍环境建设条例》规定:公开出版发行的影视类录像制品应当配备字幕。 Ref: 为什么在中国流通的影视作品普遍显示字幕? - 知乎用户的回答 - 知乎
user avatar
  • 2,596
4 votes
Accepted

Does watching Chinese movies with English subtitles help in learning Mandarin?

From my experience, I would say no. The translations for movie subtitles are usually too loose to be of much use. However, if you watch a Chinese movie with Chinese subtitles, that definitely helps. ...
user avatar
  • 400
4 votes
Accepted

How to express that someone is old?

'他是個老人' - 'he is an old man' It is a plain statement. The classifier 個 should not be omitted because 老人 could be a noun or adjective. '他是老人' sounds like your sentence is incomplete. Using the ...
user avatar
  • 68.8k
4 votes
Accepted

if ... then ... in Chinese without any special words

你 高兴,我 也 高兴。 I interpret it as "You are happy, and I am happy too." It means your happiness may not be necessarily relevant to mine, but they just happen simultaneously for some or no reason. Think ...
user avatar
  • 23.3k
4 votes
Accepted

Is there an Android app that pressing on words translates them?

I found the Pleco app manages to do this task using the (free) option Screen Reader: For example, browsing online in a website: If we press on the button , the app recognizes the characters and ...
user avatar
  • 2,102
4 votes

How are Chinese people taught Chinese Hanzi?

Different from the other answers, I'm from Hong Kong and we don't really commonly teach using a phonetic system. The popular Chinese language in Hong Kong is Cantonese. And although there are various ...
user avatar
4 votes

Improve reading speed at advanced level

Hacking Chinese (by Olle Linge) mentions that the way to reading faster is to simply read more. Presumably extensive reading as opposed to intensive reading. That is, read many different texts that ...
user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

來鴻去燕 interpreting idioms

This was a bit of a challange. All the information is pretty much the same as Stan commented above. 词语解释 比喻行踪漂泊不定的人。 清 黄景仁 《稚存从新安归作此寄之》诗:“来鸿去燕江干路,露宿风飞各朝暮。” 成语解释 解释 ◎ 比喻行踪漂泊不定的人。 出处 ◎ 清·黄景仁《...
user avatar
  • 34.2k
3 votes
Accepted

Learn Chinese Step 1: Sounds (Pinyins). How different is it to English sounds and are there any good tips to learn?

Don't connect Chinese sounds to English sounds (or any other language, for that matter). It will only hinder your pronunciation. For example: A lot of learners want to connect 'xi' with the English '...
user avatar
  • 34.2k
3 votes

Is Learning and Memorizing Chinese Characters much different than English?

I'm so luck as a Chinese native speaker, that means I can skill that easily. even as a native speaker, I also can't write down to some Characters. in fact, We usually use a small part of these ...
user avatar

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible