lesson 6   
are you busy today?
 
 

gRAMMAR

  1. Affirmative-negative question

Another common way of forming yes-no question in Chinese is to repeat the verb or adjective in its affirmative and negative form.

你今天忙吗?

Nǐ jīntiān máng ma? 

Are you busy today?

 

你今天忙不忙?

Nǐ jīntiān máng bù máng? 

Are you busy today?

 

你姓王吗?

Nǐ xìng wáng ma?

Is your surname Wang?

 

你姓不姓王?

Nǐ xìng bù xìng wáng?

Is your surname Wang?

 

  1. The usage of很

Unlike English, adjectives and verbs can’t be linked to nouns directly. When nouns is linked to adjectives “很”is always needed. Although “很”means “very” , because of this reason, it doesn’t always have the meaning as strong as that in English.

我今天很忙。

Wǒ jīntiān hěn máng.

I’m very busy today.

 

我家很大。

Wǒjiā hěn dà.

My house is very big.

 

 

  1. Conjunction 因为

Use 因为alone to explain causes. This is equivalent to “because or because of” in English. It often answers to the question of “为什么”.

你为什么请我吃饭?

Nǐ wèishéme qǐng wǒ chīfàn?

因为明天是我的生日。

Yīn wéi míngtiān shì wǒ de shēngrì.

 

  1. Time expressions

昨天

Zuótiān 

yesterday

 

今天

jīntiān 

today

 

前天

qiántiān 

the day before yesterday

 

明天

míngtiān 

tomorrow

 

上个星期

shàng gè xīngqí

last week

 

下个星期

xià gè xīngqí

next week