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Lesson 2 Chinese Word Order (Part 2)

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In this lesson, you will

  • Practice what you learned in the previous lesson (Word Order Part 1) with practical examples
  • Learn how to arrange different time phrases in one sentence
  • Learn how to write a Chinese address
  • Learn the word order of a full Chinese name

In this lesson, you will

  • Practice what you learned in the previous lesson (Word Order Part 1) with practical examples
  • Learn how to arrange different time phrases in one sentence
  • Learn how to write a Chinese address
  • Learn the word order of a full Chinese name

Comments (55)

老师好, 我有一个问题 如果我说“ 我明天和lili在图书馆一起学中问“。 错吗? 谢谢
monny 8 months 1 week ago
我明天和Lili在图书馆一起学中文, sounds okay. Even if you don't stick with the Golden rule of word order strictly, people will probably still understand based on context.
Jenny at Yoyo Chinese 8 months 1 week ago
Can you please explain the word order of 辛苦你了? Why is 你 (which I presume is the SUBJECT of the verb 辛苦, coming after the verb?
Ellen Paik 1 year 1 month ago
It's an often used phrase but its not a complete grammatically correct sentence. If you want to be grammatically correct, you'd say something like 这事辛苦你了 (zhè shì xīn kǔ nǐ le), the 你 here is the subject. Though most Chinese speakers would just say 辛苦你了 (xīn kǔ nǐ le)
Jenny at Yoyo Chinese 1 year 1 month ago
Hi sorry to keep bringing up the verb repetition in the Lily sentence, but I just want to make sure I am not mixing up my concepts. So in COS 26 the sentence, "ni xue zhongwen duo jiu shi jian le?" = how long have you studied chinese. In this sentence there is a verb + object and a time duration phrase, so why is there no repetition of the verb 'xue' ? thanks. Also, since people are having so much confusion about this, I really would recommend making a video!
fmartens 2 years 1 month ago
Both forms are correct. You may repeat the verb 学 (xué) here in this sentence as well, i.e. 你学中文学了多长时间了 (nǐ xué zhōng wén xué le duō cháng shí jiān le). You may refer to our intermediate course lesson 9 for other forms of saying "how long have you been learning Chinese". Hope that helps.
Yoyo Chinese 2 years 1 month ago
do you have to repeat the verb? Can't you just say "wo zai xuexiao he Lily yiqi xue le zhongwen liang ge xiaoshi"?
ralphmat123 2 years 5 months ago
You may choose not to repeat the word. The correct way to say without repeating the word is wo zai xue xiao he Lily yi qi xue le liang ge xiao shi de zhong wen. Or wo zai xue xiao he Lily yi qi xue zhong wen liang ge xiao shi le.
Yoyo Chinese 2 years 5 months ago
Yangyang can you explain about Golden rule in these 2 sentences ' wo zai xue xiao he Lily yi qi xue le liang ge xiao shi de zhong wen. Or wo zai xue xiao he Lily yi qi xue zhong wen liang ge xiao shi le." for me? I know the repeat-form is "....xue2 zhong1wen2 xue2 le liang3 ge xiao3 shi2" However, I'm confused about those two?
Serena Dinh 1 year 3 months ago
liǎng ge xiǎo shí is performing different roles in the 2 examples. But still indicates the amount of time spent studying. 1st example: SUBJECT (wǒ) + WHERE (zài xué xiào) + HOW (hé Lily yì qǐ) + ACTION. The ACTION is made up of: verb (xué) + 了 + NOUN PHRASE. The NOUN PHRASE is composed of: MODIFIER (liǎng ge xiǎo shí) + de + NOUN (zhōng wén). 2nd example: SUBJECT (wǒ) + WHERE (zài xué xiào) + HOW (hé Lily yì qǐ) + ACTION (xué zhōng wén) + DURATION (liǎng ge xiǎo shí) + le.
Micah at Yoyo Chinese 1 year 3 months ago
Hi Yang Yang, here are two sentences " wo3 zai4 zhong1 guo2 zhu4 le liang2 nian1" and "wo3 zhu4 zai4 zhong1 guo2". Why we put "zai4 zhong1 guo2" in front of "zhu4" in the first sentence , but the second one "zhu4" in front of "zai4 zhong1 guo2"? Please explain, xie4 xie. And also, is there any difference between the words "kai1 xin1", "gao1 xing4" and "kuai4 le4"? Can we say "sheng1 ri4 kai1 xin1"?
Yuet Ying 2 years 6 months ago
We have a previous comment that's very similar to yours. Would you please check out this link: http://yoyochinese.com/comment/9153#comment-9153. Hope it will help. Feel free to let us know if you have any further question. kai1 xin1 and gao1 xing4 is more for instant, temporary happiness, while kuai4 le4 is a more stable type of happiness. We never say sheng1 ri4 kai1 xin1. Sheng1 ri4 kuai4 le4 is a fixed phrase.
Yoyo Chinese 2 years 6 months ago
Yang Yang, why do you repeat xue in Zhong Wen? I know you do that in the berb-object form. Can you explain? Xie Xie.
Marlon Argueta 2 years 6 months ago
That's because there is both an object (zhōng wén) and a time duration phrase (liǎng ge xiǎo shí). When there is both an object and a time duration phrase, then the verb must be repeated. The pattern is "verb + object + verb + duration." And if it refers to a past event like in the example sentence, then the second occurrence of the verb is followed by a "le." So you have "subject (I) + time phrase (yesterday) + verb (study) + object (Chinese) + verb (study) + le + duration (two hours."
Yoyo Chinese 2 years 6 months ago
Xie Xie Yang Yang. Xin Nian Kuai le.
Marlon Argueta 2 years 6 months ago
Ni hao ! I am still confused with the repeating of the verb "xue". Is it only for actions in the past or can it be used also for future actions ? Can I say: " wo mingtian zai xuexiao he Lily yiqi xue Zhongwen xue liang ge xiaoshi " (Tomorrow I will study chinese at school with Lily for hours).Xiexie.
Hillig 2 years 10 months ago
You've made a great sentence. You are right, it can be used for both past and few action. For past action, you would have to add "le" after "xue", i.e. xue le liang ge xiao shi.
Yoyo Chinese 2 years 10 months ago
Would adding "for two hours" in the lesson example be placed at the end of the sentence in Chinglish OR after the 5 o'clock as part of when the action takes place?
slee65 2 years 11 months ago
At the end of the sentence.
Yoyo Chinese 2 years 11 months ago
why has xue2 been repeated in the sentence 我 昨天 学 中文学了两 个小时?? also, is it wrong if we say 我 昨天 学 中文两 个小时. Please explain. I understand that in chinese, if there are two objects in a sentence, then the verb is repeated. but it's a little confusing here. how is "for two hours" an object?
zaloniii 3 years 2 weeks ago
So sorry for the wait! When a verb takes an object and there is a time duration phrase, then the verb must be repeated as well. The pattern is "verb + object + verb + duration." And if it refers to to a past event like in your sentence above, then the second occurrence of the verb is followed by a "le." So you have "Subject (I) + time phrase (yesterday) + verb (study) + object (Chinese) + verb (study) + le + duration (two hours)."
Yoyo Chinese 3 years 2 weeks ago
Thank you very much. It makes lots of sense. But just for further clarification, whenever there is a duration phrase, does it always stick after the verb? (whether the verb holds an object or not.) secondly, how would we say, "i live in Delhi since 2 years only" and thirdly, can we use 为了for telling time duration? For example, 每天我为了两个时候学习汉语:。so can 为了be used like this?
zaloniii 3 years 2 weeks ago
Hi there, Corey is correct. Thanks, Corey! 为了 can be translated as "for," but not with time duration. There's no need to translate the word "for" in time duration phrases. The correct way of saying your example sentence is 我每天学汉语学两个小时. As Corey said, you'll learn about how to use time duration in the intermediate level, but the simple answer to your question is yes, time phrases that indicate the duration of a situation always occur after the verb.
Yoyo Chinese 3 years 2 weeks ago
Even if you don't have an object attached to the verb, such as "I studied for two hours," the word order is "subject + verb + le + duration," (我学了两个小时.) The verb that means "to live (some place)" is 住 (zhù.). The way to say "I've lived in Delhi for two years" is 我在德里住了两年了." That is an example of another sentence you'll learn more about in the Intermediate level.
Yoyo Chinese 3 years 2 weeks ago
Thank you very much. It's all crystal clear now.
zaloniii 3 years 2 weeks ago
Hi zaloniii, I'm another student here. In the intermediate lessons, you will learn another way of specifying duration, and it's easy too. I am pretty sure you cannot use 为了 in the way you asked, because it only has the sense of "in order to" or "for the purpose of". One other minor thing: I think you meant to write 两个小时,not 两个时候, right?
Corey 3 years 2 weeks ago
Thank you Corey. And yes, I meant 两个小时.:)
zaloniii 3 years 2 weeks ago
Please reply?
zaloniii 3 years 2 weeks ago
can I also say gen lily (跟)?Is it grammartically correct without the yi qi (一起)?
davidbassclark 3 years 3 weeks ago
Yes, you may use 跟. 和 and 跟 are interchangeable. It is grammatically correct without the yi qi. It just sounds a bit better with yi qi. :)
Yoyo Chinese 3 years 3 weeks ago
裎秧秧老師是妳的名字嗎?
Karlk9 3 years 6 months ago
Sorry. I was just practicing writing your name in a sentence, and brushed "post" by accident. 我不好意思。
Karlk9 3 years 6 months ago
Hehe, no worries. Yes, that's Yangyang's Chinese name. :)
Yoyo Chinese Development 3 years 6 months ago
If you only say "I studied for two hours yesterday" without specifying what you studied, you don't need to repeat the verb because it doesn't have an object here. In this case, you should say "wo3 zuo2 tian1 xue2 le liang3 ge xiao3 shi2". You don't need to repeat the verb. This is a very big concept and we will spend several lessons just to cover this in the future. Can you please advise where I can find these lessons ? Thank you
Nicola 3 years 7 months ago
Why is 'for two hours' not the same as 'with Lily'?? Isn't it a 'how' phrase???
Cynthia 3 years 7 months ago
"for two hours" is the duration of the action, and "with Lily" is how the action takes place.
Yoyo Chinese Development 3 years 7 months ago
Ok, the village idiot is back. Unfortunately, I don't have the vocabulary to ask a fantastic question. Instead, in my half dozen lessons so far, I was confused by the word choice. In looking for two hours, I was looking for "er4" for 2. I see 两个小时, but am confused as to why it isn't "二" then hours? I see the other answer regarding "两" but it is still a bit fuzzy for me. Thanks!!
FriscoJim 3 years 7 months ago
The digit 2 is 二. This is used generally in numbers, when counting to ten and so on. When specifying quantities, however, 两 is used. This is when you want to say two of something.
Yoyo Chinese Development 3 years 7 months ago
ehy have we used the word wu3 午 to denote time (in one of your sentence examples in the lecture notes)
Narang 3 years 9 months ago
Yes. 上午 means morning, 中午means noon, and 下午 means afternoon.
Yoyo Chinese Development 3 years 9 months ago
why have we used the word liang3 instead of the regular word for the number two which is er4
Narang 3 years 9 months ago
When we use the structure of “2 plus a measure word,” we use “两” instead of 二.
Yoyo Chinese Development 3 years 9 months ago
Thanks, I got the email. Makes much better sense now .. But I have another question .. In the example. Wo3 Zuo2 tian1 xue2 zhong1 wen2 XUE2 LElaing3 ge4 xiao3 shi2. Why do we use "Xue2 le" again when we have already said "xue2 zhong1 wen2 (which in it self means to study chinese)
Narang 3 years 9 months ago
That's a great question. We've a lesson that covers the usage of 了- le. Please refer to Chinese learning tip lesson 20. Hope it will clarify your question and let us know if you still have any question.
Yoyo Chinese Development 3 years 9 months ago
Hi Yang Yang.. As per the chinese dictionaries mei3 in itself means each or every then why do we need to use the measure word ge after mei3 to denote the expression of every month .. I mean why not only Wo3 Mei3 Yue4 ?
Narang 3 years 10 months ago
Hi Narang, we've sent you an email regarding the explanation to your question. Please check your email and let us know if there's any question.
Yoyo Chinese Development 3 years 9 months ago
Hi. I have the same question. Could you please explain for me as well? Thanks!
kellynguyen 3 years 9 months ago
Hi,can you tell me if the golden rule has been applied in this example from a flashcard program? Is the order correct in pinyin? 一对夫妻在公园里散步。 Yī duì fūqī zài gōngyuán lǐ sànbù. The couple are taking a walk in the park. I thought it should read(The couple in the park are taking a walk.)if the golden rule was applied.
stinger 4 years 6 months ago
Hi, I don't see anything wrong with the sentence "yi2 dui4 fu1 qi1 zai4 gong1 yuan2 li3 san4 bu4". The Golden Rule applies here. The location where the action takes place goes before the action. Does this answer your question?
Yoyo Chinese Development 4 years 6 months ago
Hi Yangyang, in this sentence, can I simply say "gong1 yuan2" instead of gong1 yuan2 li3? I wonder when should I add li3 after a location word?
Serena Dinh 1 year 3 months ago
在 + place + 里 (lǐ) indicates location in relation to another object. Where is the couple walking? IN the park: 在公园里 (zài gōng yuán lǐ). There are different words like 里 (lǐ) that you can use together with 在 (zài). These include "on" - 上 (shàng), "under/below" - 下 (xià), and others. Learn more about these words in Beginner Conversational 118: http://bit.ly/1YffNaz
Micah at Yoyo Chinese 1 year 3 months ago
This is a very good question. Basically, whenever you have a complement after a verb, you need to see if the verb carries an object. If it doesn't, you simply add the complement after the verb. If it does carry an object, you need to repeat the verb part. Here, "two hours" is considered a time complement after "learn Chinese - xue2 zhong1 wen2". Since you have a verb that carries an object, you need to repeat the verb and say "study Chinese study 2 hours".
Yoyo Chinese Development 4 years 8 months ago
For this sentence why is the verb xue used twice? If I take out the second xue is it wrong? wǒ zuó tiān xué zhōnɡ wén xue le liǎnɡ ɡè xiǎo shí 。
EugeneK 4 years 8 months ago
If you only say "I studied for two hours yesterday" without specifying what you studied, you don't need to repeat the verb because it doesn't have an object here. In this case, you should say "wo3 zuo2 tian1 xue2 le liang3 ge xiao3 shi2". You don't need to repeat the verb. This is a very big concept and we will spend several lessons just to cover this in the future.
Yoyo Chinese Development 4 years 8 months ago
Thank you. This is complex. I look forward to learning it in the future.
EugeneK 4 years 8 months ago
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