Learn Chinese for Free - Lesson 299

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Today's Chinese characters:

且丽举亮传低共切却取吉品域基威完害屋强改望根格步死求河球白眼破育脸色苏莎记象跑达运队露风

This is step 4 of 5 of our review process. All characters are ordered according to their radicals. Below you find the interesting "The Meaning Of" and "How To" tables!

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Description and Examples

The meaning of: 你好!
Lesson 14

It means "Hi!", "How do you do?", "Hello!" It is an everyday greeting and is used at any time, on any occasion and by a person of any social status. The reply should also be "".


The meaning of:
Lesson 24

It is a respectful form of the second person pronoun . It is normally reserved for old people or elders. To show politeness, you may extend its use to people of your own generation, especially at the first meeting.


The meaning of: 你早!
Lesson 26

It is an everyday greeting that is used when people meet each other in the early morning (till 9 a.m.).


The meaning of: 明早见!
Lesson 38

再见 (literally: again-see) means "see you again". Similarly, 明早 (literally: tomorrow morning-see) means "see you tomorrow morning".


The meaning of: 不太好 and 太不好
Lesson 41

Note the different degree of goodness - or badness - that is expressed by the following phrases:

: extremely good.

: very good.

: good.

: not very good.

: bad.

: very bad.

: extremely bad.


The meaning of: 您贵姓?
Lesson 42

This is a respectful and polite way of asking the name of a person.

ATTENTION: The answer is never "", but "".


The meaning of: 他姓什么?
Lesson 44

It is used for asking another person's name. One shouldn't say "?".


The meaning of: 你叫什么名字?
Lesson 52

It is used by elders when they want to know the names of young people or between young people. One may also say "什么?"

One shouldn't use it, therefore, when he wants to know an elder's name or when he needs to show respect and politeness to his hearer. Use "?" instead.


The meaning of: 张家和王家
Lesson 57

after a surname indicates all the members of that family. So, we would translate as "the Zhangs and the Wangs".


The meaning of: “您是⋯⋯”
Lesson 68

It means "Who are you?" (literally "You are...") The hearer should respond with her name or social status. Such a sentence is used only when a stranger has started to speak to you.

Caution: "?" is a rather impolite inquiry. So normally one avoids asking a stranger "?"


The meaning of: 请问,您哪位?
Lesson 76

This is another polite way to ask about the identity of a stranger who has started to speak to us, or call us.

Like what we said about "", the meaning is "Who are you?" and the answer should be the name or social status.


The meaning of: 几个人?
Lesson 78

At the restaurant is a very common inquiry and often is the very first thing they ask you, not even giving you the time to say

? means "How many people?"


How to say: The two of you
Lesson 11

你们


How to say: How are you?
Lesson 16

Just add to the greeting formula "!" changing it into a question!

How are you?

literally: You good

Anyway, please be careful, because its usage actually differs from the English greeting "How are you?" While the English "How are you?" is also an everyday greeting, in Chinese you should ask ? only if you really want to ask about the state of health or condition of a friend, not just as a greeting.


How to say: Yes or No
Lesson 19

Maybe you've already read that one of the meaning of is "yes, right" and that one of the meaning of is "used alone as a negative answer". Anyway, about this simple subject, more must be said.

The most common way of simply and politely answering yes in Chinese is by repeating the main element (verb or adjective) of the question's predicate, or its negative form if you want to answer no.

Example

question: 认识

answer 1: 认识。 (meaning: Yes, I do)

answer 2: 认识。 (meaning: No, I don't)


How to say: How are you? - Part 2
Lesson 22

When you address two or more people, you should say "你们?".

你们


How to and when read 儿 as 'r'
Lesson 29

This is a feature, called erhua or erization, of Standard Mandarin Chinese.

When an erization occurs, is not pronounced as "ér" (an exception might be its pronunciation in lyrics for balance or euphony). It is just a phonetic notation suffix to indicate that the pronunciation of the preceding character must be changed by adding a final "r" sound.

For example, the pronunciation of 孩儿 is not "hái ér" but "háir" (please note that the vowel "i" is not pronounced, so the actual pronunciation is "hár").

How do you know when is to be read "ér" and when not? Sadly, you cannot know if you don't first memorize which words are made of the suffix .

Just for you to know, despite being a rule of Standard Mandarin, in the south of China (including Shanghai) it is definitely unknown or completely ignored. It seems that a lot of people really don't like it!


How to write and read a year
Lesson 35

Simply write the number followed by and read every single figure.

NOTE: Number zero () can also be written .

All the following examples are correct:

2000

The following example is wrong:

ATTENTION: Cannot read , must read er4 líng líng líng , every single figure.


How to write and read a month
Lesson 36

Simply write the corresponding number (from 1 to 12) followed by and read as normal.


How to write and read a day
Lesson 37

Simply write the number of the day followed by or and read as normal.

is mainly used in written Chinese, while is preferred in spoken language.


How to say: How do you spell it?
Lesson 51

"Smith, ess em i tee aitch!" The surname Smith is made up of five letters. To clear up all doubt on how to write it, we just read it letter by letter. Chinese surnames (actually all Chinese characters) are not made up of letters, but of strokes, figures, parts. How can we ask to and actually "spell" a Chinese character? Chinese people "spell" a character in two ways:

  1. refer to the character's component parts;
  2. refer to words composed by that character.

Example 1

Question:
什么 hu2
That is: Out of those characters whose pronunciation is hu2, which one?
Answer:

That is: The character, whose pronunciation is hu2, that is composed by the symbols and .

Example 2

Question:
什么 míng
That is: Out of those characters whose pronunciation is míng, which one?
Answer 1:

That is: The character, whose pronunciation is míng, that is composed by the symbols and .
Answer 2:
明天
That is: The character, whose pronunciation is míng, that is contained in the word 明天.

Exercise

Learn by heart the very common expressions just reviewed.


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Biaoyu Business Consulting Services LTD
Shanghai, China
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