Popular Daily Chinese Words

by admin on 2012/05/30

wŏ de shén a
我 的 神 啊

Where does it originate?
“我的神啊 (wŏ de shén a)” first became popular from a hot Chinese TV series “武林外传 (wŭlín wàizhuàn ) My Own Swordsman” as a pet phrase of Tong Xiangyu, the owner of Tongfu tavern. Then it has been widely spread on the internet. Actually, “我的神啊 (wŏ de shén a)” is the assonance of Shaanxi dialect “额滴神啊 (é dī shén a).”

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Where is it used?
Because of its dialect-originated feature, “我的神啊 (wŏ de shén a)” is usually used in informal circumstances and among familiar people. You may not say it to someone whom you have never met before or who has a higher rank than you. It is impolite.

Examples:
Someone eventually gets an offer after a long time of job-hunting. He or she may say:

Wŏ de shén a, zhōngyú zhăodào gōngzuò le. (Biăoshì jīdòng)
我 的 神 啊, 终于 找到 工作 了。( 表示 激动)

Oh, God, I finally get an offer. (Express excitement)

A man and a woman got married, but people around them never thought it would happen. They may say:

Wŏ de shén a, tāmen jiéhūn le! (Biăoshì jīngyà)
我 的 神 啊,他们 结婚 了! (表示 惊讶)

My god, they got married! (Express astonishment)

nĭ tài yŏu cái le
你 太 有 才 了

Where does it originate?
First appearing in a sketch performed by Chinese actors Zhao Benshan, Song Dandan and Niu Qun in CCTV 2007 Spring Festival Gala Evening, the phrase “你太有才了 (nĭ tài yŏu cái le)” then became very popular among Chinese young people.

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Usage:
“才 (cái)” in this phrase means talent, ability to do something special. “太 (tài)” means too, excessively. And the whole phrase “你太有才了 (nĭ tài yŏu cái le)” means you are too talented or you are too competent.

Example:
Zhè bù diànyǐng hěn chénggōng, dǎoyǎn tài yǒucái le. (Biăoshì chēng zàn)
这 部 电影 很 成功, 导演 太 有才 了。(表示 称赞)

This movie is very successful. The director is too talented. (Express praise)

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Confucius’s Birthday

by admin on 2012/05/25

Confucius1

Confucius’s Birthday means a holiday commemorating the birth of Confucius, or the solar calendar to lunar calendar August 27 September 28. Full name of Confucius birthday.

Confucius was a famous educator Spring and Autumn Period, the title of "sage and teacher," was born in King Wuling of twenty-one weeks of August 27, according to the Western calendar of 551 BC on September 28. King Wuling of two decades or weeks November 21, according to the Western calendar is 552 years BC, October 3.

In the birth of Confucius, the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan, Republic of Korea, Japan and other places have celebrations. In the Temple held a "ceremony in his honor," the official celebrations are common. America’s "Teacher’s Day" is the birth of Confucius.

Currently, there are a lot of Confucian disciples of Confucius’s birthday as Christmas, but not statutory. In China has not yet been officially established as a statutory holiday (beginning in 1985 will be set September 10 as Teacher’s Day). Taiwan, on the Gregorian day of the birth of Confucius (September 28) as a statutory Teacher’s Day. In Hong Kong, the birthday of Confucius is not a statutory holiday or public holiday, only part of the school will leave, but in October 2006, Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Confucian and some religious groups that Confucius’s birthday on the day of the lunar calendar as public holidays to reach a consensus.

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In China, husbands often call their wives’ father "岳父 (yuèfù)." The meaning of "父 (fù) father" is rather easy to understand, but the Chinese character "岳 (yuè)" can be confusing. The following story explains why Chinese people "称呼 (chēnghū) call" their wives’ fathers "岳父 (yuèfù)":

In ancient China, emperors often went to the peaks of famous mountains to worship the mountains and rivers. Additionally, they also proclaimed promotions of other government officials there.

In the Tang Dynasty, Emperor "唐玄宗 (Táng Xuánzōng) Tang Xuanzong" promoted his subordinates at "泰山 (Tàishān) Mount Tai." He raised "张说 (Zhāng Yuè) Zhang Yue" to an official position of great power. After that, "张说 (Zhāng Yuè) Zhang Yue" used his power to help his "女婿 (nǚxu) son-in-law " "郑镒 (zhèng Yì) Zheng Yi" also get a significant government promotion. "唐玄宗 (Táng Xuánzōng) Tang Xuanzong" became aware of this and questioned "郑镒 (zhèngYì) Zheng Yi" on how he got such a good promotion in such a short time. "郑镒 (zhèngYì) Zheng Yi" remained speechless, but his colleague "黄幡绰 (Huáng Fānchuò) Huang Fanchuo" told Emperor "唐玄宗 (Táng Xuánzōng) Tang Xuanzong": "Thanks to the power of ‘泰山 (Tàishān) Mount Tai,’ he got the promotion." Then "唐玄宗 (Táng Xuánzōng) Tang Xuanzong" became to understand that "张说(Zhāng Yuè) Zhang Yue" had practiced nepotism to help his "女婿 (nǚxu) son-in-law" after his own promotion atop "泰山 (Tàishān) Mount Tai."

Many people heard of this and began to "称呼 (chēnghū) call" their wives’ father "泰山 (Tàishān) Mount Tai." Because "泰山 (Tàishān) Mount Tai" is the No. 1 among the "五岳 (wǔyuè)Five Famous Mountains," people also began to call their wives’ fathers "岳父 (yuèfù)."

In modern Chinese, this "称呼 (chēnghū) form of address" is still in use. Since Chinese people call their parents "父母 (fùmǔ)," they call their wives’ mother "岳母 (yuèmǔ)."

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How to prepare HSK test?

by admin on 2012/03/15

HSK Exam

As a standardized test of general language proficiency, HSK is not based on any particular textbook or course of study. Therefore, candidates may refer to any textbook in preparing for the test. Nevertheless, it is important that all candidates read the HSK Test Syllabus carefully. A guide for the pre-test preparation contains an introduction to HSK, a sample HSK test paper, answer key, HSK glossary, and a CD of the sample listening questions. Do you have trouble finding the HSK Test Syllabus?

Prepare for HSK Exam

The vital thing for the HSK exam is knowing the meaning of words. Understanding the general idea of the passage is not enough; it is essential to understand some background information about the book itself, like the author’s information and the year of publication. A clear definition of the differences between similar words is of paramount importance as this is a large part of the HSK exam. Last but not least, reading and writing play an important role in HSK exam. Having an extensive vocabulary will be a huge advantage as well as having some adept writing skills; these can be developed by preparing for the exam properly.

Tips for Taking HSK Exam

1. Prepare properly. Some Chinese learners feel they are ready but still fail the HSK exam; this is because they have not fully understood the structure or content of the exam and hence fail due to a lack of preparation.
2. Have a clear goal of what you want to achieve. The HSK exam should encourage learners to deepen their understanding of the language and continue to learn. If you pass the HSK test it does not mean you have peaked and cannot learn anymore. Use it as a way to learn rather than a definitive assessment of your level.

Helpful Books for HSK Exam

Good books are essential to getting a high score on the HSK test. Thus, some commonly used preparation books for the HSK are recommended to Chinese learners, such as Chinese Learning Cards for HSK, HSK Essentials, Say it in Chinese, HSK Growing Training, Express Way to HSK (tactics and highlights of HSK ), HSK Listening Key Words, An Intensive Course of HSK, HSK dictionary, etc. All the HSK books above will give you plenty of practice for the HSK exam while improving your Chinese.

HSK Test Preparation Course provided by HQ Learning is an pre-examination training course tailor-made for students who are planning to take the HSK test. Pre-test instructions will cover all the characters, words, and grammar points related to the HSK test. These Chinese Courses include reading, listening, grammar, and comprehensive exercises that are equivalent to the HSK test standard. Aside from providing a systematic guide to the exam, we also offer analysis of frequent errors and difficulties for foreign students.

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