老大 here is not the noun 'leader/ boss'
It is an adjectives phrase
老 = old; 大 = grown (in age)
'老大' in '老大徒伤悲' means "old"
Detail break down of this expression:
少壮 - young and in your prime
不努力 - not work hard
老大 - grown and old
徒伤悲 - only have sadness
少壮不努力, 老大徒伤悲 means "If you don't work hard when you are young, there will only be ...
见马克思 probably only works in China. 见阎王 or 去世了 is much more common. 去世了 is more formal and respectful.
There is another very interesting sentence(slang) to describe someone has dead.
他去蘇州賣鴨蛋了。 (Translate "DIRECTLY" -> "He goes to Suzhou selling duck eggs." Suzhou is a city in Jiangsu province in China.)
I have a feeling that 百年之後 suite your need. 百年之後 have ambiguous meaning when you don't know primary meaning of this component. It can be interpreted differently between interpreting it literally and considering the meaning in addition to its literal meaning.
When we interpret 百年之後 literally. We get 百年 means "a hundred year." 之後 means "after&...
Is this phrase really known/recognizable by an average Chinese person?
No. This expression is understandable (given a clear context), but it's rarely used and very informal.
If not, are there any better phrases with ambiguous meanings?
Yes, there are a lot. I think @River just gave a really good example: 他走了 could mean he has left or he has passed away, ...
Sohu has a news article dated from 2020-07-26, with a sentence that reads:
Here “见马克思” is used to mean “to die,” like what was mentioned in the question above.
The phrase in question is featured in a recent write-up by a large company that services the Chinese speaking world. I think it is fair to say that it is well known ...
No. The baseline is, the term "见马克思" is rarely used today. If used, usually not in a serious situation. It might also be found in historical texts or literature that reviews the points of view during that historical period.
Polite ways of mentioning people's death are:
他去世了 he left the world
他过世了 he passed the world
他不在了 he is not here anymore
EDIT: As mentioned by @dan and others, now I believe the correct answer is we need 是 in the sentence to change the meaning of 应该:
应该 should (requirement) → 应该是 should be ~ might be (possibility).
Discussion for the role of 是 in the sentence without 应该:
After consulting with the book Charles N. Li, Sandra A. Thompson, Mandarin Chinese: A Functional ...
I don't think there's much ambiguity here.
Consider this scenario: you had a hard week at work and it's Friday morning. You have one day left before you're done for the week. You want to express your eagerness to get this over with so you say "This week is finally about to be over. / 这周终于快结束了。"
I would say the simultaneous usage of "终于" ...
Some one: 你今天怎么了？
Me sniffling: 我可能感冒了。
Some one: 你是不是感冒了？
Add "是" when someone has referred to a specific state (catch a cold). You can also add "是" to emphasize the correct state if the answer is no.
Some one: 你弟弟今天是不是发烧了？
Note: it seems unnatural to me if the "是" in "我应该是感冒了" is ...
I would translate this sentence as:
I eventually reached the time point that I would arrive in China soon.
Seems redundant, doesn't it? So most people would just say:
我终于到中国了 -> Finally, I arrived in China
我快到中国了 -> I will soon arrive in China
As you can see, the word "终于" tends to imply past tense while "快" ...
I think this sentence is understandable, but it has a little difference with:
Let me explain why. First start with the simple one.
我快到中国了 ----> I will arrive in China soon.
This means you are out of China, and will arrive soon. In this time, you are in a peace mode. But If you use 我快到中国啦!, this may indicate you are ...
Finally, I'm about to arrive at China.
There's nothing fundamentally wrong about this sentence, it's just the scenario that this sentence can fit perfectly into, rarely exists. I can think of one example, that you are on a plane to China, there's still some time till landing, say 2 hours, you're so excited that you want to share this excitement with people ...
Depends on the the stress.
If the stress falls on "是", "是" could be translated as "do" for a double positive.
For example, I DO want a PS5.
If the stress falls on other words, the "是" could be transaled as "be" simply.
"是" here gives the reader a sense of "文绉绉", and has more literariness. We don't use it that way in spoken chinese. But It's very common in literature.
For a sentence, Shorter(without "是") means more efficient, like a soldier, and longer(with "是") means more emotional, like a literary writer.
On the other hand, our ...
“是” express that the speaker believe he is having a cold. The sentence translated into English should be "I must be having a cold" or "I believe I'm having a cold". If without “是”, it turns out to be expressing "I should catch a cold". It doesn't make sense since nobody wants to catch a cold.
the most common 2 cases:
我终于到中国了 i finally arrived to China.
我快到中国了 i will arrive china soon.
so the first one means the action is done, you arrived.
the second one means the action still going on, you still need to travel.
Usually we dont combine these 2 states together, and we usually seperate them in below's fashion:
我终于快到中国了 => 终于，我快到中国了 finally, I ...
是 is used to denote something is true. 是[component 1]. Where [component 1] is true. For example, 他是睡著了(他是[component 1], where [component 1] is 睡著了)(He has fallen asleep.) Because [component 1] is true, 睡著了(has fallen asleep) is true. We get 他是睡著了 means "He has fallen asleep."
應該 is used to denote something is possibly true. 應該[component 2]. Where [...
应该是 here denotes the sense of infer; conjecture; guess; reckoning:. That's why it has been translated as "I think I caught a cold".
是 itself denotes this sense:
Basically, 是 links to things. The latter explains or describes the former. In your case, 感冒了(got cold) explains or describes that 我 is in what ...
Let's simplify the sentence to make it easier to identify the role of 是
他死了 -- he died
他(是)死了 -- he (indeed) died
我输了 -- I lost
我(是)输了 -- I (indeed) lost
Adding 应该 make it complicated
应该 in 我应该 means "should"
应该 in 我应该是 means "probably be"
我应该输了 -- I should lose
我应该(是)输了 -- I probably (really) have lost
It is hard to apply ...
I do not agree that 是 is acting as the copula in the sentence. Because even without 是, the following sentences contain the same meaning and only differ in tone:
This answer comes after reading
「是」，「的」與動詞名物化 by professor 石定栩 of PolyU in Hong Kong. (The title roughly translate to: 是, 的, and Normalization of Verb)
感冒 should be acting as a verb ...
I must have caught a cold
The verb 是 is the copula.
It's used to express that the subject 我 has the qualities expressed by the predicative clause 感冒了。
Now, as many other Chinese words, 感冒 doesn't have a very clear-cut grammatical role. It can be either a verb or a noun, depending on the context. What's important to note is that 感冒 can be a verbal ...
是 is the copula in Mandarin. It conveys the meaning of the verb “to be”, but is not conjugated, since Mandarin is an analytic language and makes use of marker words to express ideas like grammatical tenses.
A 是 B means A is B, where B is something which describes A. 是 also “affirms” the asserted relationship between A and B.
This is an interesting question. Technically, there is nothing wrong with the sentence.
终于 is usually to imply that one is waiting or expecting something for a long time and it finally comes. What's one expecting in 我终于快到中国了? It's 快到中国了(arrive at China soon). In practice, I couldn't imagine one has been waiting for a long time just to "...
The sentence is good.
"终于" in Chinese grammar wiki:
终于 (zhōngyú) expresses that something has finally happened after a long wait. Usually the speaker is looking forward to what is happening at long last, and thus, 终于 (zhōngyú) typically carries a sense of joy or relief.
"终于" by itself can convey the meaning of "a long wait" (...
我快到中国了。 I will arrive in China soon (O)
我终于到中国了。 I finally arrived in China (O)
我终于快到中国了。I finally arrive in China soon (?)
'finally' refers to the present or past events (you cannot say 'I finally arrive tomorrow'), while 'soon' referring to the upcoming events (future). These two words are conflicting with each other
Some said 我终于快到中国了 is understandable. ...
If you put it into Baidu "我终于快到中国了", you'll see Chinese people sporadically use this sentence. Nevertheless, I believe the intended issue is the mismatch between:
终于 = "at last" (or "finally") implying the event is complete.
快到 = "soon arrive in" implying the event is incomplete.
In fact, the same question was asked ...
No, I think there is no need to correct this. It is totally understandable and acceptable. I interpret the meaning of sentence 我终于快到中国了 as "finally, I nearly arrive China."
There is no need to modify the sentence however if you want you can. After omit 终于 the sentence still complete, understandable and acceptable. I interpret the meaning of ...
"江南" has different meaning in different period. But in most period, it means the south bank of the lower reaches of the Yangtze River(长江南岸), which is the whole area of Zhejiang(浙江全部), southern Jiangsu(江苏南部), southern Anhui(安徽南部) and Shanghai(上海).
The most iconic city: Suzhou(苏州), Nanjing(南京), Yangzhou(扬州), Hangzhou(杭州), Shanghai, etc.
For me, &...
Wikipedia describes Jiangnan as:
Jiangnan or Jiang Nan (Chinese: 江南; pinyin: Jiāngnán; formerly romanized Kiang-nan, literally "South of the River" meaning "South of the Yangtze") is a geographic area in China referring to lands immediately to the south of the lower reaches of the Yangtze River, including the southern part of its delta. ...
We use 怎麼了 to express "what happened?" This happened when people find something wrong or expect something happened and want to know whether or not there is something wrong or something happened, or what wrong or what happened. For example, 怎麼了 妳累了 in this Mandarin song 說好的幸福呢. In this example there was something expected to happened or something ...
Interjection: What happened?; What's wrong?
你看起来很沮丧，怎么了？ (You look depressed, what's up?)
Depend on context '你怎么了?' could mean 'What happened to you?' or 'What's wrong with you?'
你怎么了？第三节才到学校。 - What happened to you? Came to school only when it was already the third period.
半天也找不到你，你怎么了？ - I can't find you for half a day, what happened to ...
Here, the person who asks infers that the person has some problems, such as sickness, sadness, etc., through some special behaviors of the person being asked (low voice). In other words, the first person already thinks that something bad has happened to the second person. He wants to know what is bad and cares about him. The response of "...
It's one of those fixed expressions whose otherwise regular meaning is significantly and conspicuously altered by the modal 了, that introduces change semantics.
The phrase 「你怎么（样）～」 in itself means "How do you...?". If you add a modal 了 signifying change, it becomes：
"How do you... now" (as opposed to before)
...which in an idiomatic ...
口吐莲花/口吐芬芳 originally means someone's speech is 1, literately nice 2, pleasing to listen to.
But it really depends on the context, because people these days use these words in an ironic way and can mean the exact opposite. When people say someone 口吐莲花, they probably mean his speech is 1, totally nonsense 2, full of swear words.
Other examples of expression ...
Is your teacher an anti-Trumpist? If so, she is ironicing(反讽) him, that is, deliberately describing Trump's "dirty" language as extremely pure.
The lotus flower in China always represents purity and nobleness, because it "is out of silt but not stained, and is clear and not gaudy" (Zhou Dunyi[周敦颐] in the Northern Song Dynasty[北宋], "...
口吐莲花 ( and 口吐芬芳） is a modern word online, e.g. in Dou Yin (TikTok Chinese version)
Mostly it's to show someone is saying dirty or ridiculous words.
Its original meaning is to say something is good, something is beautiful, or it is something that makes people happy.
口吐蓮花 means a person speaks in a well-versed and literarily appealing manner.
Its origin, according to Baidu (https://baike.baidu.com/item/%E5%8F%A3%E5%90%90%E8%8E%B2%E8%8A%B1/15258) is as follow:
Lotus is a symbol of Buddhism, it symbolises good fortune and purity. Speaking in a sophisticated manner could ...
「莲花出淤泥而不染」，象征纯洁 (lotus flower came from mud but not stained by it. Symbolizing purity.)
Your teacher described him as 口吐莲花 in an ironic way, mocking his foul mouth
Idiom 舌灿莲花: 譬喻说话的文采和美妙 ("the tongue sparks lotus flower" refers to having the literary talent to speak beautifully.)
Again, ironically, your teacher was mocking his lack of literary ...
To put it simply, The rice is more resistant to hunger than congee. In Cantonese, "eating rice or congee" is often used to describe the outcome of a thing. "开眉" means "happy" and "愁眉" means "unhappy". So this sentence can be interpreted as: Do you want to be happy to do what you want to do, or unhappy to do ...
開眉 implies 眉開眼笑 (happy expression)
愁眉 implies 愁眉苦臉 (sad expression)
One cup of raw rice can only make two bowls of cooked rice (飯)
One cup of raw rice can make up to eight bowls of congee (粥)
粥 is watered-down 飯
Poor families often only have enough raw rice to make congee for every member to have a full bowl of staple food
"寧吃開眉粥，不吃愁眉飯" literally ...
线上引流: 通过在线上(网络上) 做一些事情, 引入更多的客流.
线上: this is a adjective, not a noun. by the way of online...
引: 吸引, attract
流: 客流,人流. people, customers.
In English , its meaning is: to get more people/users/customers by doing something online. this word is widely and commonly used by the internet companies.
because some people would think wearing a flower would make people looks more pretty. so this "pretty" is the "你的美丽"
you can understand like this:
摘了我(花朵,放到你的头上)确实能让你美丽, 但是请不要为了达到"你的这种美丽的目的" 而做伤害我的事!
Not just "mainland-Chinese public service announcement type signs".
Remember Alice in Wonderland? (Or was it Through the Looking Glass?)
Probably Lionel Rowe is right, it's meant to discourage people from taking photos on the grass.
Maybe you grow to a great height if you tread on the grass, or disappear in ...
This is quite typical of language in mainland-Chinese public service announcement type signs, which tend to be quite "cutesy" in tone. Stuff like personifying inanimate objects (such as flowers) and writing it from the object's point of view fits with this tone.
The literal meaning is:
don't hurt me for [the sake of] your beauty
Which I suppose ...