Mandarin Weekly #53

Mandarin Weekly #53

大家好! (Hi, everyone!) Welcome to the latest Mandarin Weekly, with yet more links and information for those of us learning Chinese.

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Sentence structure

Chinese sentences have a specific structure. In this posting from Hollie at Written Chinese, we learn about simple and complex sentence structure:

Twitter: @WrittenChinese

Chinese nouns

When we first start to learn Chinese, we assume that there are the same word categories as in other languages — nouns and verbs, for example. But it turns out that the categories aren’t identical. In this article, we learn more about nouns, and how Chinese nouns are a bit special:

Twitter: @MandarinWManu

The two uses of 让 (ràng)

The character 让(ràng) can be used in two different (and almost opposite) ways, which can be a bit confusing for Chinese learners. In this article from DigMandarin, Sarah explains the differences, with many examples:

Twitter: @DigMandarin

Character bites

Chris, from Fluent in Mandarin, returns with more short introductions to Chinese characters: 自 (zì), 着 (zhe), and 去 (qù):

Twitter: @Fluent_Mandarin

Animal sounds

Every language represents animal sounds in a different way. What do Chinese animals sound like? This article from Winnie at FluentU, will tell you:

Twitter: @FluentU

Office vocabulary

Ever wonder how to describe simple office items in Chinese? LearnChineseNow provides a gentle introduction:

Twitter: @LearnChineseNow

Hungry? Or full?

How can you indicate that you’re hungry in Chinese? Or, perhaps that you have had your fill? LearnChineseNow provides the vocabulary

Twitter: @LearnChineseNow

Exceptionally hungry? Or exceptionally full?

Yeah, but what if you’re really, really hungry? ChinesePod provides us with a way to make something super-strong:

Twitter: @ChinesePod

On the other hand…

How can we say “on the one hand… on the other hand…” in Chinese? It’s surprisingly straightforward, as we see in this article:


We can also complain, or refer to problems, using a different construct:

It’s all about the children (radical)

All About Chinese continues its list of characters based on certain radicals, this time showing us those based on 子:

Snowman in summer

A short story about a (naïve and/or optimistic) snowman who wants to see the summer, with audio, characters, and pinyin:

Twitter: @ChineseAtEase

The most difficult characters

Ollie Linge describes and analyzes several of the hardest-to-learn, hardest-to-remember Chinese characters:

Twitter: @SkritterHQ

Turbocharge your Chinese learning

A list of eight tools, each of which can help to speed up your learning of Chinese:

Twitter: @Lingholica

The Force is still getting up

Mania over the latest Star Wars movie continues, and with it, we have the following famous lines translated into Chinese:

Twitter: @DuChinese


How would you say that you want Beijing-style food? This discussion provides some insights:

地 and 的

These two characters are pronounced the same… almost. What is the real difference between the pronunciations, and how can we remember it more easily?

Using 吧 at the end of a sentence

How do you use 吧 (ba) in Chinese? Is it considered rude or informal?

The envelope, please

Red envelopes are a traditional way to give gifts in China. How does the phrase look and work in Chinese, and what does it really mean?

Another use for 是

The verb 是 (shì), before a verb, can somewhat alter the meaning of the verb. How and why, is discussed here:

More, please

How can we say that we want to have more of something, or add to what we have? This discussion should make that clearer:

Components of 你

The 你 character is is one of the most common. This discussion quickly turned into a fascinating exposition on character components:


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