- I came across these few sentences in an article, which the author believes they are special in some way.
- These sentences are not exactly grammatically and structurally typical. And in most cases they stand-alone as in independent expression. Plus, many of them contain elements of Chinese culture that set them apart from regular sentences.
- I have listed a few here today. Enjoy!
1. 你吃饭了吗？ nǐ chī fàn le ma？
Literally: ‘”Have you eaten?”
Function: Greet someone when Chinese meet each other.
Near-equivalent phrase in English: “How’s it going?” or “How are you?”
2. 你多吃一点。 nǐ duō chī yì diǎn.
Literally: “Eat some more.”
Function: Expresses one’s hospility for a guest.
Near-equivalent phrase in English: “Have some more.”
3. 慢慢吃。 màn man chī.
Literally: “Eat slowly.”
Function: Expresses politeness to someone when eating.
Near-equvalent phrase in Ehglish: “BoN appétit” or “enjoy your meal”.
4. 慢走。màn zǒu.
Literally: “Walk slowly.”
Function: Expresses politeness to someone when leaving someone’s house or a hotel, restaurant, etc.
Near-equvalent phrase in English: “Take care.” or “Have a safe trip”.
5. 慢慢来。 màn man lái.
Literally: “Come slowly.”
Function: Expresses to someone to take it easy.
Near-equvalent phrase in English: “Take it easy”, “Take your time” or “Easy does it”.
6. 我跟你讲。wǒ gēn nǐ jiǎng.
Literally: “I speak to you.”
Funtion: Used to get someone to listen to you when you want you tell them something you think is important.
Near-equivalent phrase in English: “Look,…” or “Listen,…”
7. 我先走了。wǒ xiān zǒu le.
Literally: “I go first.”
Function: Used to tell someone that you’re leaving, and that they can stay in the same place if they wish.
Near-equivalent phrase in English: “I’m off.” or “I gotta run.”
8. 请问一下。 qǐnɡ wèn yí xià.
Literally: “Please [let me] ask.”
Function: Used when you wish to ask someone (usually a stranger) a question.
Near-equivalent phrase in English: “Excuse me.”