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Learn the 20+ Most Useful Compliments in Chinese

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Most people like hearing compliments, and they allow you to express your liking for someone and provide an opportunity for people to open up to each other. When they’re heard in a sincere manner, people feel appreciated. With that being said, when you have the opportunity to compliment someone, do it. It’s the key to their heart!

There are many kinds of compliments in Chinese, and they need to be used in different situations. In addition, there’s a wide spectrum of tones and ways to say them. Don’t worry, though; they’re not difficult at all. As long as you follow our guide, you can become a master of giving Chinese compliments!

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Table of Contents

  1. Complimenting Someone’s Look
  2. Complimenting Someone’s Work
  3. Complimenting Someone’s Skills
  4. Other Compliments
  5. How to Make Your Compliments Sound More Sincere
  6. What to Expect After Giving Compliments
  7. Conclusion

1. Complimenting Someone’s Look

Compliments

1-

Example situation: Suppose your friend is dressing up today for a party, and you think they look very nice.
In Chinese: 你今天穿得怎么这么好看。
Pinyin: Nǐ jīn tiān chuān de zěn me zhè me hǎo kàn.
In English: “Your outfit looks great today.”

2-

Example situation: Suppose your friend did her makeup perfectly today.
In Chinese: 你今天的妆容好精致啊。
Pinyin: Nǐ jīn tiān de zhuāng róng hǎo jīng zhì a.
In English: “Your makeup looks great today.”

3-

Example situation: Suppose a guy is admiring the girl he likes and thinks she looks pretty while smiling.
In Chinese: 你笑起来可真美。
Pinyin: Nǐ xiào qǐ lái kě zhēn měi.
In English: “You are so pretty when you are smiling.”

4-

Example situation: Suppose your friend is wearing a suit today for a presentation, and he looks very nice in the suit.
In Chinese: 你这身西装穿起来非常绅士。
Pinyin: Nǐ zhè shēn xī zhuāng chuān qǐ lái fēi cháng shēn shì.
In English: “Your suit makes you look like such a gentleman.”

A Woman Dressed Up and Taking a Selfie

Compliment your dream girl with the best you’ve got!

5-

Example situation: Suppose your relative just had her baby, and you want to say something nice about the baby. You happen to notice that her eyes are pretty.
In Chinese: 瞧这双大眼睛,多么炯炯有神啊。
Pinyin: Qiáo zhè shuāng dà yǎn jīng, duō me jiǒng jiǒng yǒu shén a.
In English: “Look at these big eyes, how bright and full of life.”

6-

Example situation: Suppose your friend is going to have a football game, and you see that he looks very confident and ready for it.
In Chinese: 你今天可真是神采飞扬。
Pinyin: Nǐ jīn tiān kě zhēn shì shén cǎi fēi yáng.
In English: “Today you seem so full of spirit.”

2. Complimenting Someone’s Work

7-

Example situation: Suppose your teammate in a basketball match just scored for your team.
In Chinese: 干得漂亮。
Pinyin: Gàn de piào liang.
In English: “Good job.”

8-

Example situation: Suppose you did something good for your company and your boss wants to compliment you in front of other people so that they will learn from you.
In Chinese: 你是大家的楷模。
Pinyin: Nǐ shì dà jiā de kǎi mó.
In English: “You are everyone’s role model.”

A Slightly Blurred Photo of a Smiling Woman Giving a thumbs-up

When we have done something with genuine effort, we deserve to be appreciated.

9-

Example situation: Suppose your classmate offered a very creative and smart idea for a group project.
In Chinese: 你可真是个有想法的人。
Pinyin: Nǐ kě zhēn shì gè yǒu xiǎng fǎ de rén.
In English: “You have some good ideas.”

10-

Example situation: Suppose your friends were confused about what to do, and you offered a great idea that everyone liked.
In Chinese: 你简直就是我们的智多星。
Pinyin: Nǐ jiǎn zhí jiù shì wǒ men de zhì duō xīng.
In English: “You deserve to be called the most resourceful person among us.”

11-

Example situation: Suppose your friend taught you how to make a dish that seemed pretty hard for you.
In Chinese: 你这也太厉害了吧。
Pinyin: Nǐ zhè yě tài lì hai le ba.
In English: “I can’t believe you are so great at this.”

3. Complimenting Someone’s Skills

12-

Example situation: Suppose you’re asking your friend what to wear for a date and she gives you a good idea of what to wear.
In Chinese: 你的品味也太好了。
Pinyin: Nǐ de pǐn wèi yě tài hǎo le.
In English: “Your taste is so good.”

13-

Example situation: Suppose your friend invited you over to his house and cooked something delicious for you.
In Chinese: 你做饭好棒啊。
Pinyin: Nǐ zuò fàn hǎo bàng a.
In English: “You are a fantastic cook.”

14-

Example situation: Suppose you’re unsure about your future, and your friend showed great wisdom and helped you understand what you should pursue.
In Chinese: 你太有智慧了。
Pinyin: Nǐ tài yǒu zhì huì le.
In English: “You are such a wise person.”

15-

Example situation: Suppose you just saw your friend’s new photo shots on social media; you think they look great and want to say something nice.
In Chinese: 你照相技术好牛啊。
Pinyin: Nǐ zhào xiàng jì shù hǎo niú a.
In English: “Your photography skill is amazing.”

A Woman Taking a Picture with a Camera

How are your photography skills?

16-

Example situation: Suppose you just asked your friend for life advice, and what he told you was very helpful.
In Chinese: 你有着成熟的思想。
Pinyin: Nǐ yǒu zhe chéng shú de sī xiǎng.
In English: “You have an extremely mature mind.”

17-

Example situation: Suppose you asked your friend about philosophy, and he discussed something deep.
In Chinese: 你的见解很有深度。
Pinyin: Nǐ de jiàn jiě hěn yǒu shēn dù.
In English: “Your ideas are very insightful.”

18-

Example situation: Suppose your friend just told a very funny joke.
In Chinese: 你可真是富有幽默感啊。
Pinyin: Nǐ kě zhēn shì fù yǒu yōu mò gǎn a.
In English: “You are so full of a sense of humor.”

4. Other Compliments

19-

Example situation: Suppose your friend showed great talent for singing and you enjoy people who sing well.
In Chinese: 你简直就是我的偶像。
Pinyin: Nǐ jiǎn zhí jiù shì wǒ de ǒu xiàng.
In English: “You are like an idol to me.”

20-

Example situation: Suppose your friend received a high test score without even studying, but you received a lower score after studying so much.
In Chinese: 我可真是羡慕死你了。
Pinyin: Wǒ kě zhēn shì xiàn mù sǐ nǐ le.
In English: “I envy you so much that I could die for it.”

Someone Giving a Big Thumbs-up Sign

We should all strive to become a better person.

21-

Example situation: Suppose your friend is a very hardworking person, which motivates you to work hard.
In Chinese: 是你让我想成为一个更好的人。
Pinyin: Shì nǐ ràng wǒ xiǎng chéng wéi yī gè gèng hǎo de rén.
In English: “You make me a better person.”

22-

Example situation: Suppose your friend just helped you with a difficult math problem that you couldn’t solve, so you want to show your admiration.
In Chinese: 你可真让我自叹不如啊。
Pinyin: Nǐ kě zhēn ràng wǒ zì tàn bù rú a.
In English: “You are so good that it makes me feel like I am so far from your excellence.”

5. How to Make Your Compliments Sound More Sincere

Positive Feelings

Sometimes, compliments can sound pretentious if they’re not given properly, which can make the effect backfire. We want to express our compliments in a sincere manner to make the other person feel comfortable accepting the compliment. This is a great way to enhance a relationship.

The compliments in Chinese that we listed here are all in a sincere tone. If you notice, we sometimes add particles such as 啊 (a) and 呀 (ya) to emphasize the tone and make it sound more friendly. Moreover, you can add more personal details to specify why you want to offer the compliment while avoiding vague Chinese compliments such as 挺好 (tǐng hǎo) or 不错 (bú cuò), meaning “It’s good” or “Not bad.” Phrases like these don’t provide enough depth to the compliment.

6. What to Expect After Giving Compliments

Unlike in Western culture, where you’ll probably prefer to directly accept the compliment and say “Thank you,” the Chinese response to compliments is different. Chinese people like to shy away from compliments and appear to be modest. Traditionally, accepting a compliment without being self-deprecating would be impolite. But now, more and more people are learning to reply to compliments with a “Thank you.”

If you ever receive a compliment in Chinese, don’t panic! Here, we’ve prepared a list of phrases you can use to respond to compliments in an appropriate manner.

1-

Example situation: Suppose you’re receiving a compliment from your friend, and your friend’s skill on the matter is not bad, so you compliment your friend back by saying that the two of you are on the same level.
In Chinese: 彼此彼此。
Pinyin: Bǐ cǐ bǐ cǐ.
In English: “You are just the same as I am.”

2-

Example situation: Suppose you just showed that you have good skills in something, and you want to seem modest. You can say that your skill is poor.
In Chinese: 献丑了。
Pinyin: Xiàn chǒu le.
In English: “Sorry to show my poor skills.”

3-

Example situation: Suppose you’re receiving compliments from your friend, but you want to seem modest.
In Chinese: 哪有。
Pinyin: Nǎ yǒu
In English: “Not at all.”

4-

Example situation: Suppose you’re receiving compliments from your friend, but you want to seem modest.
In Chinese: 我还差得远呢。
Pinyin: Wǒ hái chà dé yuǎn ne
In English: “I’m still far from that.”

7. Conclusion

Want to win a girl’s heart with a good compliment? Do you feel awkward when you receive a compliment in Chinese? Now you’ve found all the answers in this article. As long as you keep practicing, you’ll definitely be able to produce a healthy social life, knowing when and how to say the right compliments.

Of course, a diligent Chinese language learner like you probably won’t feel content with only this article. We have more for you at ChineseClass101.com, where we deliver free, high-quality Chinese lessons to you every week, allowing you to enjoy an immersive and interesting learning experience with professional teachers! Why not give it a try right now?

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儿童节: Celebrating International Children’s Day in China

Do you remember being a kid? Growing up, I always looked forward to a day off from school (and dreaded most days not off school…).

Well, Children’s Day in China is a day off from school that children can look forward to all year long; it’s a holiday filled with fun and excitement for the little ones! In this article, you’ll explore how children and parents celebrate International Children’s Day, pick up some vocab, and learn the Chinese phrase for someone who’s still a child at heart.

Let’s get started.

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1. What is Children’s Day?

International Children’s Day, celebrated in many countries around the world, is a holiday dedicated to honoring and protecting children; it’s also a day for the little ones to have fun and 逃学 (táoxué), or “be off school.”

Let’s briefly look at some Children’s Day history. The holiday is thought to have started as early as 1857, when a pastor living in Massachusetts gave a special sermon for and about children. It wasn’t until 1920, however, that Children’s Day was officially declared a holiday; Turkey was the first country to make this declaration, and Mustafa Kemal Atatürk made it official in 1929. In 1950, the holiday spread rapidly to a number of other countries.

Children’s Day, as we know it today, started as a means of promoting children’s rights and protesting the killing and harming of children. The United Nations declared this holiday a way to mourn the loss of all the children who died as a result of poisoning from the Nazis during WWII.

Chinese Children’s Day started in 1932, initiated by the Shanghai China Salesian Society.

    → Learn the most important facts about Chinese Society with us, and be prepared for your visit or further studies!

2. When is Children’s Day in China?

A Group of Children Raising Up Their Hands

Each year, International Children’s Day is celebrated on June 1. This is when the majority of countries celebrate this holiday, though many countries have their own Children’s Day celebrations on other dates. For example, the United Nations celebrates World Children Day on November 20.

3. Chinese Children’s Day Celebrations

A Bunch of Different-Colored Balloons

Today, Children’s Day in China is a time for children to feel 欢乐 (huānlè), or “happy,” and loved. Most children get the day off school, though schools do put on fun performances or take children on field trips, where they can see a movie or engage in other exciting activities. Only children under the age of fourteen partake in Children’s Day activities.

Some of the most popular Children’s Day traditions in China include taking one’s child to the 公园 (gōngyuán), or “park,” making their favorite snack or dinner, and giving them a 礼物 (lǐwù), or “gift.” Some common gifts include candy, balloons, and toys.

The most important thing, though, is the opportunity for parents to show their children how much they love and care about them. Being loved really is the best feeling, isn’t it?

4. The Children at Heart

Did you know there’s a Chinese phrase for adults who are really children at heart? It’s 童心未泯 (tóngxīn wèi mǐn), which means “to be a child at heart.”

It’s no question that life in today’s world is hectic, crazy, and even full of sorrow at times. Children and adults alike are experiencing lots of stress and anxiety on a day-to-day basis. This makes the significance of being able to maintain a childlike outlook really shine through!

So next time you want to indulge in a favorite childhood dessert, run around outside in the grass, or act silly with your bestie, why not go for it? 😉

Do you consider yourself a child at heart? Or maybe an old soul? Both?

5. Essential Vocabulary for Children’s Day

Pretzels, Popcorn, and Potato Chips

Ready to review some of the vocabulary words from this article? Here are the essential words and phrases to remember for Children’s Day in China!

  • 零食 (língshí) — “snack”
  • 公园 (gōngyuán) — “park”
  • 糖果 (tángguǒ) — “candy”
  • 礼物 (lǐwù) — “gift”
  • 儿童 (értóng) — “children”
  • 气球 (qìqiú) — “balloon”
  • 家长 (jiāzhǎng) — “parent”
  • 天真 (tiānzhēn) — “innocent”
  • 逃学 (táoxué) — “be off school”
  • 欢乐 (huānlè) — “happy”

If you want to hear the pronunciation of each word and phrase listed above, visit our Chinese vocabulary list for Children’s Day.

Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed learning about Children’s Day in China with us, and that you took away some valuable information on Chinese culture.

Do you celebrate Children’s Day in your country? If you have kids, what activities do you do together on this holiday? Let us know in the comments!

If you’re itching to continue learning about Chinese culture and the language, check out the following articles on ChineseClass101.com:

This only scratches the surface of all that ChineseClass101.com can offer the aspiring Chinese-learner. To make the most of your study time, create your free lifetime account today; for access to exclusive content and lessons, upgrade to our Premium or Premium PLUS plans!

Good luck, stay safe, and Happy Children’s Day!

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The Anger Game: Phrases for Getting Angry in Chinese

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Question: If ordering food, asking for directions, and exchanging contact information are only beginner-level language skills, what makes an advanced-level Chinese learner?

Here’s my answer: Using the perfect Chinese phrases to express your anger. If you’ve experienced the frustration of not being able to defend yourself in a heated conversation because of your limited vocabulary, you know what I’m talking about.

In this article, you’ll find over thirty phrases and expressions to use in intense situations. These will help you understand what that angry Chinese man might be yelling about, as well as expand your vocabulary to help you express your own feelings and emotions more freely.

Before we proceed, I’d like to assure you that there are no overly vulgar or profane angry Chinese phrases below. That said, you should still be cautious when using any of these phrases—while they’re not too strong, they can still be offensive or rude, especially if used in the wrong context. If you’re curious about curse words in Chinese, you can read all about them in a separate lesson.

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Table of Contents

  1. Angry Imperatives
  2. Angry Warnings
  3. Angry Blames
  4. Describe Your Feelings
  5. Ways to Calm Down When You’re Angry
  6. Final Round: Apologizing
  7. Conclusion

1: Angry Imperatives

Complaints

When annoyed, we tend to give impatient and harsh imperatives. For example, in English, we say things like “Shut up,” “Cut it out,” or “Get out of here.”

In Chinese, some of these phrases have translations with the exact same meanings, while others vary a bit.

走开! (Zǒukāi!)

This phrase literally means “Walk away,” but it’s really a stronger phrase to tell someone: “Get out of the way!”

滚蛋! (Gǔndàn!)

The literal translation of this phrase sounds a little too cute (or yummy): “to roll an egg.”

滚 (gǔn), meaning “to roll,” here is asking someone to “get lost.” The word 蛋 (dàn), or “egg,” in Chinese slang is often associated with something indecent, such as 王八蛋 (wángbādàn), the equivalent of “bastard,” and 妈蛋 (mā dàn), the equivalent of “crap.”

滚 and 蛋 together is a common phrase that translates as “Get the heck out of here!”

闭嘴! (Bìzuǐ!)

Just like its literal translation, this phrase means “Shut your mouth!”

To make this command, or any of the others, stronger and angrier, stick the phrase 你给我 (nǐ gěi wǒ) before the verb.

你给我 (nǐ gěi wǒ) literally means “you give me,” but in imperatives, it’s short for “I’m ordering you to do …” This is a tone intensifier that presumably makes the speaker feel more powerful.

你给我闭嘴!(Nǐ gěi wǒ bìzuǐ!)

闭嘴 (bìzuǐ), as we mentioned earlier, means “Shut your mouth.” Adding 你给我 (nǐ gěi wǒ) doesn’t change the meaning. Instead, it only makes the tone stronger.

你给我滚蛋!(Nǐ gěi wǒ gǔndàn!)

As explained earlier, 滚蛋 (gǔndàn) means “Get the heck out of here!” 你给我 (nǐ gěi wǒ) only makes 滚蛋 more potent, similar to the English “Get the hell outta here!”

The subject 你 (), meaning “you,” can be omitted.

给我滚蛋! (Gěi wǒ gǔndàn!) has the same meaning and effect.

你给我听好!(Nǐ gěi wǒ tīng hǎo!)

This literally translates to “You give me listen well!” But it means something more like: “You better listen to me carefully!”

To sternly order someone not to do something, like a parent would tell a child not to interrupt, we can use the 不许 (bùxǔ) + verb pattern.

A Girl Getting Scolded by a Parent

不许 (bùxǔ) means “not allowed.” Here are some examples using the 不许 before verbs:

不许插嘴。(Bùxǔ chāzuǐ.)

This literally means “Interrupting is not allowed.” It translates as “No interrupting.”

不许胡说。(Bùxǔ húshuō.)

胡说 (húshuō) means “to talk nonsense.” 不许胡说 is telling someone to stop making stuff up.

不许说脏话。(Bùxǔ shuō zānghuà.)

This phrase is typically used by a parent telling his or her child not to say bad words.

脏话 (zānghuà) means “dirty words” or “bad words.”

2: Angry Warnings

When the angry imperatives don’t work, it might be time to upgrade to some intimidating warnings. These warning phrases are a great way to show someone you’re about to get very angry in Chinese.

Woman Pointing Finger at a Man with a Mug

别惹我。(Bié rě wǒ.)

The verb 惹 () means “to provoke,” but here it means “to mess with” or “to irritate.”

别惹我 is used to warn someone: “Don’t mess with me.”

你给我小心点。(Nǐ gěi wǒ xiǎoxīn diǎn.)

You just learned that 你给我 (nǐ gěi wǒ) intensifies an imperative. It also intensifies a warning.

小心点 (xiǎoxīn diǎn) literally means “to be a little careful.” Together, the phrase 你给我小心点 translates to “You better watch out.”

我警告你,这是最后一次。 (Wǒ jǐnggào nǐ, zhè shì zuìhòu yí cì.)

This is a firm warning that says: “I’m warning you, this is the last time.”

我的忍耐已经达到极限了。(Wǒ de rěnnài yǐjīng dádào jíxiàn le.)

This one means: “My tolerance has reached its limit.”

别怪我不客气。(Bié guài wǒ bú kèqi.)

The phrase 不客气 (bú kèqi) here has a different meaning than the 不客气 that’s used to say “You’re welcome.”

客气 (kèqi) is a unique and almost untranslatable word in Chinese. It has the positive meaning of being courteous, nice, and formal. Its negative form, 不客气 (bú kèqi), means “not nice” or “without any courtesy or etiquette.”

别怪我 means “Don’t blame me.” Together, the phrase 别怪我不客气 means something like “Don’t blame me for being mean.”

This is a common phrase used in trash talk.

3: Angry Blames

Two Girls Fighting

When it’s time to really get angry in Chinese, angry blames take the stage. During the exchange of angry words and phrases, putting blame on the other person and name-calling always bring tension to the next level. We’ll introduce these phrases, but hope you never have to use them.

The common blaming and name-calling phrases in Chinese we’ve listed below are in order from least harsh to most harsh.

你太过分了。(Nǐ tài guòfèn le.)

This phrase means: “You crossed the line.”

你这个人真是莫名其妙。(Nǐ zhège rén zhēnshì mòmíngqímiào.)

莫名其妙 (mòmíngqímiào) is a Chinese idiom, or 成语 (chéngyǔ), that means “confusing” or “can’t be explained.”

你这个人真是莫名其妙 translates as “You are such an oddball,” implying that you don’t understand why the person is doing what they’re doing.

你活该。(Nǐ huógāi.)

This phrase is just like the English “You deserve it.”

你算老几?(Nǐ suàn lǎojǐ?)

A little cultural background before we break down this phrase:

When a family has more than one child, the children are referred to not only by name, but also by their birth order. The firstborn is 老大 (lǎodà), the second is 老二 (lǎoèr), the third is 老三 (lǎosān), and so on. The oldest child, 老大 (lǎodà), is usually put in charge when the parents aren’t around. Therefore, 老大 also means “boss” in slang.

The phrase 你算老几? literally means “You are what number down the line?” implying “You’re not the one in charge.” Oftentimes, it’s translated as: “Who do you think you are?”

你脑子有病吧?(Nǐ nǎozi yǒubìng ba?)

The literal translation is “Is your brain sick?” It could also be translated as: “What the heck is going on with you?” but with a slightly stronger tone.

Calling someone 有病 (yǒubìng), or “sick,” is one of the most common ways in Chinese colloquial language to vent anger. This is by no means vulgar, but still serves the purpose of expressing your despise and disgust.

Another way of calling someone sick in the head is 神经病 (shénjīngbìng), meaning “psycho.”

After “sicko” and “psycho,” the list of name-calling slang words goes on. Below are some commonly used name-calling words, also in order from least to most harsh:

大嘴巴 (dà zuǐbā)

This is literally “big mouth,” but it refers to someone who can’t keep a secret.

铁公鸡 (tiě gōngjī)

This literally translates to “iron rooster,” referring to someone who is cheap and stingy.

This term comes from the 歇后语 (xiēhòuyǔ), or “two-part saying”:

  • 铁公鸡 — 一毛不拔
    Tiě gōngjī — yīmáobùbá.
    “An iron rooster — never pulls out a feather.”

It’s used to describe the same type of people.

自恋狂 (zìliàn kuáng)

This word literally means “self-love maniac.” This is someone who thinks the world of themselves, always posts their selfies on social media, and can’t stop staring at themselves in the mirror.

It could translate to “egocentric” in English.

戏精 (xìjīng)

This word is similar to “drama queen.” It refers to the type of person who likes to over-exaggerate and make a scene.

妈宝男 (mā bǎo nán)

The literal translation of this phrase is “mom’s baby man,” which is similar to “mama’s boy” in English. But it only applies to adult men who are spoiled by their mothers, and who still rely on their mothers whenever something comes up.

白痴 (báichī)

This refers to someone who knows nothing. An idiot.

二百五 (èrbǎiwu)

“Two hundred fifty” is not an ordinary number in Chinese. It’s a symbol for stupid people.

绿茶婊 (lǜchá biǎo)

This literally means “green tea b*tch.” It’s used to call the type of girl who appears innocent and harmless like a cup of refreshing green tea, but deep down they’re calculating or could even be evil.

脑残 (nǎocán)

This word literally means “brain handicapped” or “mentally disabled.” They’re the kind of people, usually young folks, who make stupid decisions.

To use the above name-calling words in sentences, you can use the 你就是个… (nǐ jiùshì ge…) pattern.

  • 你就是个妈宝男。
    Nǐ jiùshì ge mā bǎo nán.
    “You’re such a mom’s boy.”
  • 你就是个戏精。
    Nǐ jiùshì ge xìjīng.
    “You’re such a drama queen.”
  • 你就是个二百五。
    Nǐ jiùshì ge érbǎiwu.
    “You’re such an idiot.”

4: Describe Your Feelings

Negative Verbs

Arguing and fighting is exhausting, especially with all the yelling and name-calling. It may be hard to do, but always try to tell the other person how you feel instead of saying something you’ll regret later—or for the rest of your life.

Here are some examples of phrases you can use to express that you’re feeling angry in Chinese, or to tell someone about your other negative feelings:

  • 我实在是受够了。
    Wǒ shízài shì shòu gòu le.
    “I’m so fed up.”
  • 我对你太失望了。
    Wǒ duì nǐ tài shīwàng le.
    “I’m so disappointed in you.”
  • 我不想跟你吵架。
    Wǒ bùxiǎng gēnnǐ chǎojià.
    “I don’t want to fight with you.”
  • 我只想一个人静一静。
    Wǒ zhǐ xiǎng yīgerén jìngyījìng.
    “I just want to be alone and have some quiet time by myself.”
  • 你为什么要这样对我?
    Nǐ wèishénme yào zhèyàng duì wǒ?
    “Why are you treating me like this?”

5: Ways to Calm Down When You’re Angry

Yoga Namaste Pose

When none of the above actions can resolve the issue and you’re only finding yourself getting more angry, try to walk away and do something to distract yourself.

To calm yourself down, you can try:

1. 深呼吸。 (Shēn hūxī.)

“Take a deep breath.” Getting some cleansing air into your body usually helps to slow down your heart rate and lower your blood pressure.

2. 走一走。 (Zǒuyizǒu.)

“Take a walk.” Go for a walk outside to get your mind off the things that upset you. It gives you a chance to slow your mind down and think about what made you so mad and if it’s really worth being upset over.

3. 听音乐。(Tīng yīnyuè.)

“Listen to music.” Music has the power to heal. Either cry it out with some sad music, or crank up the dance music to let the negative energy out.

4. 写下来。 (Xiě xiàlai.)

“Write it down.” Write down in your journal, or on a piece of paper, about what happened, why it happened, and what you could have done better. When you read it back to yourself, you’ll be surprised to find how silly and trivial these things are.

You can also try to write a letter or message to the person you had a fight with. When people communicate through written words, it often turns out to be more calm and logical than the face-to-face confrontations.

5. 记住:生气就是用别人的错误惩罚自己。(Jìzhu: Shēngqì jiùshì yòng biérén de cuòwù chéngfá zìjǐ.)

“Remember: Getting angry is punishing yourself for the mistakes of others.”

6: Final Round: Apologizing

A sincere apology is magical. It ends fights, mends relationships, and heals wounds. After you manage to calm down, chances are you’ll feel sorry for being angry and using hurtful words that were totally unnecessary.

Couple Hugging

Here are some soothing apologies you can use:

  • 对不起。
    Duìbuqǐ.
    “I’m sorry.”
  • 我错了。
    Wǒ cuò le.
    “I was wrong.” Or “It was my fault.”
  • 我向你道歉。
    Wǒ xiàng nǐ dàoqiàn.
    “I apologize to you.”
  • 我也有不对的地方。
    Wǒ yěyǒu búduì de dìfang.
    Literally: “I also had improper places,” meaning “I also did something improper.”
  • 我们和好吧。
    Wǒmen hé hǎo ba.
    “Let’s make up.”
  • 我们以后都要有话好好说。
    Wǒmen yǐhòu dōu yàoyǒu huà hǎohǎo shuō.
    Literally: “We should always talk to each other peacefully,” meaning “Let’s communicate without yelling in the future.”

7: Conclusion

As much as we don’t want you to use the angry and strong Chinese words and phrases introduced in this article, they’re still something you need to understand and know how to use, just in case. Seeking peace and co-existence is one of the essential philosophies in Chinese culture. So try to avoid disputes and fights when you’re in China.

To learn more about the language, the people, and the culture of China, explore ChineseClass101.com for more hidden treasures!

Before you go, let us know in the comments how you calm yourself down when angry. We’d love to hear from you!

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International Labor Day: China’s Travel Holiday

On International Labor Day, China is known for its large number of travelers and tourists, massive sales, and other fun events. In this article, you’ll learn more about the Labor Day holiday, what to expect in China during this time, and some useful vocabulary!

Let’s get started.

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1. What is Labor Day?

You’re most likely familiar with International Labor Day. This is a special 假日 (jiàrì), or “holiday,” weekend during which workers and employees are allowed to take a 假期 (jiàqī), or “vacation,” from work. But how did it get started?

Labor Day History

Labor Day got its start in the United States in 1882. There’s some debate as to who came up with the idea, but in 1894, then-President of the U.S., Grover Cleveland, made it a national holiday.

It wasn’t until 1919 that people in China started celebrating Labor Day, and it didn’t become a national holiday here until 1949. When this holiday began in China, it was simply a day to honor and show appreciation for workers; over time, Labor Day has become more associated with time off work and fun activities.

5-1 Golden Week

For a while, the Labor Day celebration in China lasted for an entire week. The Chinese labeled it “5-1 Golden Week,” and this long holiday became a time of mass 旅游 (lǚyóu), or “travel.”

Unfortunately, in 2008, the Chinese government decided to transform this holiday into only a one-day celebration. This is because they added a few more holidays to the Chinese calendar:

Of course, depending on what day of the week Labor Day actually takes place, people may be able to take a full weekend off.

2. When is Labor Day in China?

A Man Riding His Bike in a Field with His Dog

Each year, Labor Day takes place on May 1. This is when most countries celebrate the holiday, with the exception of the United States, which celebrates on the first Monday of September for a full Labor Day weekend.

3. Labor Day Traditions & Celebrations

On Labor Day, Chinese workers and employees have the day off as the majority of businesses are closed. As mentioned earlier, during the Labor Day holiday, China is abuzz with travel as people enjoy a rest from their 劳动者 (láodòngzhě), or “labor.” This is one of the heaviest traveling times in the country, with hundreds of millions of tourists across the country!

Other Labor Day events include shopping and going out with family or friends. This is a great time to take advantage of a massive 打折 (dǎzhé), or “sale,” because many shops and restaurants see this as an opportunity to boost sales.

Those exploring the streets of China during Labor Day are likely to hear people playing music and see an array of lovely flower decorations. Also be prepared for crowds and the hustle-and-bustle that comes with them. Many people choose to stay at home (or close to home) in order to avoid the craziness of holiday travel!

4. Japanese Golden Week

Did you know that Japan was the only other Asian country with a 5-1 Golden Week?

Unlike China, the 5-1 Golden Week still exists in Japan. This is a period of time from late April to early March when a number of holidays take place, including Labor Day.

5. Must-Know Vocabulary for Labor Day in China

A Couple Going on Vacation Together

Ready to review some of the vocabulary words from this article? Here’s a list of the most important words and phrases for Labor Day!

  • 员工 (yuángōng) — “employee” [n.]
  • 打折 (dǎzhé) — “sale” [n.]
  • 周末 (zhōumò) — “weekend” [n.]
  • 假期 (jiàqī) — “vacation” [n.]
  • 旅游 (lǚyóu) — “travel” [n.]
  • 工人 (gōng rén) — “worker” [n.]
  • 工作 (gōngzuò) — “job” [n.]
  • 劳动节 (Láodòng jié) — “Labor Day” [n.]
  • 职业 (zhíyè) — “career” [n.]
  • 劳动者 (láodòngzhě) — “labor” [n.]
  • 工会 (gōnghuì) — “union” [n.]
  • 工作 (gōngzuò) — “work” [n.]
  • 权利 (quánlì) — “right” [n.]
  • 假日 (jiàrì) — “holiday” [n.]
  • 野餐 (yěcān) — “picnic” [n.]

To hear the pronunciation of each word, and to read them alongside relevant images, be sure to check out our Chinese Labor Day vocabulary list!

6. Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed learning about Labor Day in China with us, and that you took away some valuable information.

Do you celebrate Labor Day in your country? If so, how? We look forward to hearing from you!

If you’re curious about Chinese culture or the language, ChineseClass101.com has tons of fun and informative lessons on a variety of topics. Free vocabulary lists, grammar lessons, and insightful blog posts like this one are just the beginning of what we have to offer the aspiring (or returning) Chinese learner. Create your free lifetime account today, and start learning with us.

Happy Labor Day! 🙂

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China Life Event Messages: Happy New Year in Chinese & More

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Sometimes, a single sentence can allow humans to easily connect with each other, especially wishes phrases that everyone wants to hear. There are some unique life events, and different ways of celebrating them, in every single country even between the local people, and that’s where they share the same values and embrace each other’s traditions. So how do you wish someone well in Chinese? And what can you gain from learning how to say Happy New Year in Chinese, and other holiday greetings?

As a language learner, such events can establish a great communication channel with native speakers and provide a better look at the local culture so you can really be a part of it. In China, you can have a variety of opportunities to get involved, as long as you know the right thing to say. Now is the best time to learn those phrases of congratulations in Chinese that pave your way toward integrating into Chinese culture!

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Table of Contents

  1. Birthday
  2. Mid-Autumn Festival
  3. Chinese Congratulations: Graduation
  4. Lantern Festival
  5. Chinese New Year Congratulations
  6. Wedding
  7. Bad News
  8. Death/Funeral
  9. Injured/Sick
  10. Holidays
  11. Conclusion

1. Birthday

Happy Birthday

Undeniably, birthdays are one of the biggest events across all cultures! Traditionally, Chinese people like to eat longevity noodles, which is a type of noodle that’s all in one string. Nowadays, however, more and more people eat western birthday cakes. Now, imagine that you’re invited to a birthday party and don’t know how to say Happy Birthday in Chinese. How embarrassing is that? Don’t worry, though; the answer is here for you!

In Chinese: 生日快乐!
Pinyin: Shēng rì kuài lè!
In English: Happy birthday!
Usage: Natural for both speaking and writing; informal.

In Chinese: 恭喜你又长大了一岁。
Pinyin: Gōng xǐ nǐ yòu zhǎng dà le yī suì.
In English: Congratulations on growing a year older.
Usage: More natural for writing; formal.

In Chinese: 恭喜你又向成年迈出了一步!
Pinyin: Gōng xǐ nǐ yòu xiàng chéng nián mài chū le yī bù.
In English: Congratulations that you are one step closer to becoming an adult!
Usage: More natural for writing; formal.

2. Mid-Autumn Festival

Full Moon

Mid-Autumn Festival happens when there is a full moon.

Mid-Autumn Festival is another holiday where Chinese people like to unite together with their families. On the night of this holiday, the moon will be completely round. In ancient times, people appreciated the moon in an artistic way, which is why there’s so much Chinese old-style poetry about the moon during the Mid-Autumn Festival. The staple food for this holiday is called 月饼 (yuè bǐng), meaning “moon cake.” It looks round and golden like the moon, usually with a whole salted duck egg inside.

Eat mooncake and appreciate the moon with families!

In Chinese: 中秋节快乐。
Pinyin: Zhōng qiū jié kuài lè.
In English: Happy Mid-Autumn Festival.
Usage: Natural for both speaking and writing; formal.

In Chinese: 祝你们合家欢乐。
Pinyin: Zhù nǐ men hé jiā huān lè.
In English: Wish you a happy family.
Usage: More natural for writing; formal.

In Chinese: 你吃月饼了吗?
Pinyin:chī yuè bǐng le ma?
In English: Did you eat a mooncake?
Usage: More natural for speaking; informal.

3. Chinese Congratulations: Graduation

Graduation Cap on Stack of Books

Graduation means a whole new chapter in life!

Graduations in China are very similar to other graduation ceremonies. Students take pictures and wish each other a bright future. Despite celebrating academic achievements, people may shed some tears on their graduation, as it could be time to part with some of their close friends from school. One way to keep the beautiful memories alive is to sign each other’s uniforms.

In Chinese: 毕业快乐。
Pinyin: Bì yè kuài lè.
In English: Happy graduation!
Usage: More natural for writing; formal.

In Chinese: 祝你前程似锦。
Pinyin: Zhù nǐ qián chéng sì jǐn.
In English: Hope you will have a bright future.
Usage: Natural for both speaking and writing; formal.

In Chinese: 希望你毕业之后一切顺利。
Pinyin: Xī wàng nǐ bì yè zhī hòu yī qiē shùn lì.
In English: Hope everything goes well for you after graduation.
Usage: Natural for both speaking and writing; informal.

4. Lantern Festival

Red Lanterns

Let’s put on some lanterns for the Lantern Festival!

The fifteenth day of the lunar calendar is the Lantern Festival, a holiday that’s arranged very close to the Chinese New Year. On this special day, Chinese people eat 元宵 / 汤圆 (yuán xiāo / tāng yuán), a dessert made from glutinous rice flour, to celebrate. They also give each other riddles to solve with a theme associated with the holiday.

In Chinese: 元宵节快乐!
Pinyin: Yuán xiāo jié kuài lè!
In English: Happy Lantern Festival!
Usage: Natural for both speaking and writing; formal.

In Chinese: 我来给你出个灯谜吧。
Pinyin: Wǒ lái gěi nǐ chū gè dēng mí ba.
In English: Let me give you a riddle.
Usage: More natural for speaking; informal.

In Chinese: 祝您一家人团团圆圆。
Pinyin: Zhù nín yī jiā rén tuán tuán yuán yuán.
In English: Wish your family a great reunion.
Usage: More natural for writing; formal.

5. Chinese New Year Congratulations

Remains of Fireworks on the Ground

When you see these, you know Chinese New Year is running right now!

Wondering how to say “Happy New Year” in Chinese? Well, you better know that if you’re studying Chinese, because the Chinese New Year is like Christmas in western countries. On this important holiday, people celebrate it by eating dumplings, visiting family, and lighting fireworks. If you ever want to be a part of Chinese culture, learn how to wish congratulations on Chinese New Year with some must-know phrases for the Chinese New Year!

In Chinese: 新年快乐,恭喜发财!
Pinyin: Xīn nián kuài lè, gōng xǐ fā cái!
In English: Happy new year, (I) wish you prosperity.
Usage: More natural for writing; informal.

In Chinese: 祝您万事如意。
Pinyin: Zhù nín wàn shì rú yì.
In English: May all your wishes come true.
Usage: More natural for writing; formal.

In Chinese: 我在这给您拜年了!
Pinyin: Wǒ zài zhè gěi nín bài nián le!
In English: Allow me to give you my new year’s blessing!
Usage: More natural for speaking; informal.

6. Wedding

Marriage Proposal

Traditionally, Chinese couples wore red for their wedding. However, modern Chinese weddings are very similar to western wedding ceremonies. A special custom that Chinese people still like to do is to give 份子钱 (fèn zi qián), or “gift money,” to the newly married couple for a wedding. This Chinese congratulations gift is one of the defining aspects of a Chinese wedding.

What do you say at a Chinese wedding? Make sure to study the Chinese marriage congratulations below to have something to say when you’re invited to a wedding!

In Chinese: 新婚快乐!
Pinyin: Xīn hūn kuài lè!
In English: Happy new wedding!
Usage: Natural for both speaking and writing; formal.

In Chinese: 祝你们长长久久。
Pinyin: Zhù nǐ men cháng cháng jiǔ jiǔ.
In English: I wish you a long time together.
Usage: More natural for writing; formal.

In Chinese: 祝你们一生恩爱幸福。
Pinyin: Zhù nǐ men yī shēng ēn ài xìng fú.
In English: Wishing you a lifetime of love and happiness.
Usage: More natural for writing; formal.

7. Bad News

Of course, there are always dark sides of life as long as there are bright sides. Now that we’ve learned all the happy Chinese wishes phrases, it’s time to learn some comforting phrases to show your support when hearing bad news.

In Chinese: 一切都会好起来的。
Pinyin: Yī qiè dōu huì hǎo qǐ lái de.
In English: Everything will get better.
Usage: More natural for speaking; informal.

In Chinese: 节哀顺变。
Pinyin: Jié āi shùn biàn.
In English: Please save your sadness and let things slide (for someone’s loss).
Usage: More natural for speaking; formal.

In Chinese: 别难过了,有我在呢。
Pinyin: Bié nán guò le, yǒu wǒ zài ne.
In English: Don’t be sad, I’m here for you.
Usage: More natural for speaking; informal.

8. Death/Funeral

Death is an inevitable topic in every culture, China included. The Chinese have a holiday where people go to the graveyard of their dead families to clean the grave and awake the past family memories. If you ever accompany someone on this special holiday, or go to a Chinese funeral, here are some Chinese wishes phrases you can use for the dead.

In Chinese: 安息吧,你会永远在我们的心里。
Pinyin: Ān xī ba, nǐ huì yǒng yuǎn zài wǒ men de xīn lǐ.
In English: Rest in peace and know that you will always be in our hearts.
Usage: More natural for speaking; informal.

In Chinese: 一路走好。
Pinyin: Yī lù zǒu hǎo.
In English: Have a good trip.
Usage: Natural for both speaking and writing; formal.

In Chinese: 希望你在天堂一切都好。
Pinyin: Xī wàng nǐ zài tiān táng yī qiè dōu hǎo.
In English: Hope everything is good in heaven.
Usage: More natural for writing; informal.

9. Injured/Sick

We are all human, and we may get injured or sick once in a while. When we’re in such a vulnerable state, we need nothing more than a heartwarming wish from loved ones. Traditionally, staple foods for sick people are boiled chicken soup or some porridge; if you ever want to show your care beyond words, that’s the way to go. But for now, let’s first learn some basic Chinese phrases for condolences, such as “wishing you good health” in Chinese. Here are some phrases to show your friends and loved ones that you care!

In Chinese: 好好照顾自己。
Pinyin: Hǎo hǎo zhào gù zì jǐ.
In English: Take care of yourself.
Usage: Natural for both speaking and writing; informal.

In Chinese: 快点好起来啊。
Pinyin: Kuài diǎn hǎo qǐ lái a.
In English: Get well soon.
Usage: More natural for writing; informal.

In Chinese: 祝您身体健康。
Pinyin: Zhù nín shēn tǐ jiàn kāng.
In English: Wishing you good health.
Usage: More natural for writing; formal.

10. Holidays

More Chinese wish phrases? No problem! There are many more unique holidays in China that you may not know! For example, the Chinese traditional Valentine’s Day is on July 7, which originated from a romantic fairytale of the Weaver Girl. Now, modern Chinese couples like to celebrate Valentine’s Day on May 20 because the pronunciation of 520 in Chinese sounds very similar to “I love you” in Chinese. Holidays like April Fool’s Day are a huge thing in China as well. Many young people take advantage of this day to confess their romantic feelings for one another! Lastly, you’ll learn how to say Chinese Christmas greetings and happy holidays in Mandarin Chinese.

In Chinese: 情人节/七夕快乐。
Pinyin: Qíng rén jié /Qī xī kuài lè.
In English: Happy Valentine’s Day.
Usage: Natural for both speaking and writing; formal.

In Chinese: 愚人节快乐!
Pinyin: Yú rén jié kuài lè!
In English: Happy April Fool’s Day!
Usage: Natural for both speaking and writing; formal.

In Chinese: 圣诞节快乐!
Pinyin: Shèng dàn jié kuài lè!
In English: Merry Christmas!
Usage: Natural for both speaking and writing; formal.

In Chinese: 假期快乐!
Pinyin: Jiǎ qī kuài lè!
In English: Happy holidays!
Usage: Natural for both speaking and writing; formal.

11. Conclusion

Basic Questions

Now, do you remember how to say “happy holidays” in Mandarin Chinese? How about Happy New Year or Merry Christmas in Chinese? This article certainly is a life-saver when it comes to being involved in life events. Now you don’t ever have to worry about being awkward during such occasions.

We’re dedicated to fulfilling every language learner’s needs. If you have any more questions about Chinese in store for us, visit ChineseClass101 to start an adventure in finding those answers. You won’t regret it!

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Celebrating National Tree Planting Day in China

On 国际植树节 (guójì zhíshù jié), or International Arbor Day, China puts a special emphasis on the importance of caring for the environment. Volunteers from all over the country spend the day planting trees, and many people enjoy doing outdoor activities.

In this article, you’ll learn all about China’s National Tree Planting Day, from its origins to modern-day observations.

Are you ready? Let’s get started!

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1. What is Arbor Day?

Arbor Day is formally established as a national tree-planting campaign. As people become more aware of how important it is to protect the environment, they also realize the significance of National Tree Planting Day.

Since the 1980s, the Chinese people have voluntarily planted more than 35 billion trees. China is currently conducting six strategic forestry projects, including:

  • Windbreak construction in the “Three Norths” (northwest China, north China, and northeast China) and the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River
  • Restoration of farmland to forests
  • Construction of wildlife reserves
  • Protection of natural forests

The forest coverage rate in China rose from 8.6% in the early periods of the PRC to 16.5% at the end of 2000. For more recent estimates, check out this page on China’s forest coverage on Statista.com.

2. When is National Tree Planting Day?

Chinese Arbor Day Takes Place in March

The date of Arbor Day in modern China has changed three times over the years.

Because of the tradition of planting willows on Tomb Sweeping Day, during the early periods of the Republic of China, Tomb Sweeping Day served as Arbor Day. In order to commemorate Sun Yat-sen, who passed away on March 12, 1925, the Nationalist Government changed Arbor Day to March 12. After the People’s Republic of China was established, March 12 was recognized as Arbor Day at the suggestion of Deng Xiaoping.

Today, Arbor Day still takes place on this date in 三月 (sān yuè), or “March.”

3. Chinese Tree Planting Day Observations

A Group of People Working Together to Plant Trees

On Tree Planting Day, China hosts a range of widely organized tree-planting activities. Usually, universities, middle schools, elementary schools, and state-owned enterprises organize students or employees to plant trees in the suburbs. By planting seedlings, fertilizing, and watering, people learn to appreciate reforestation and further become aware of the environment in the process.

In China, Tree Planting Day has become such an important holiday that, in recent years, the “Internet Trees Planting” system has become popular. This system was initiated by the United Nations Environment Programme, China Population Welfare Foundation, and China Green Foundation. By simply logging onto the official website and clicking, people can donate one tree.

远足爬山 (yuǎnzú páshān), or “hiking and climbing,” is another popular way to observe International Arbor Day in China. Getting outside in the fresh air is a great way to internalize the importance of caring for the 环境 (huánjìng), or “environment.”

4. Sun Yat-sen

Do you know which politician in modern China first advocated reforestation and promoted the establishment of Arbor Day in China?

In China’s modern history, Sun Yat-sen was the first to realize the importance of forests and to advocate planting trees. The Nationalist Government set the day of his death to be Arbor Day.

5. Must-Know Vocabulary for Tree Planting Day in China

A Group of People Hiking in the Mountains

Ready to review some of the vocabulary words from this article? Here’s a list of the most important words and phrases for Arbor Day in China!

  • 志愿者 (zhìyuànzhě) — “volunteer”
  • 森林 (sēnlín) — “forest”
  • 树 (shù) — “tree”
  • 种植 (zhòng zhí) — “plant”
  • 三月 (sān yuè) — “March”
  • 环境 (huánjìng) — “environment”
  • 国际植树节 (guójì zhíshù jié) — “International Arbor Day”
  • 绿化 (lǜ huà) — “afforest”
  • 远足爬山 (yuǎnzú páshān) — “hiking and climbing”
  • 树苗 (shù miáo) — “sapling”

To hear the pronunciation of each word, and to read them alongside relevant images, be sure to check out our Chinese Arbor Day vocabulary list!

Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed learning about Arbor Day in China with us. Do you celebrate Arbor Day in your country? Have you ever planted trees with your community? We look forward to hearing from you!

If you would like to learn more about Chinese culture and holidays, you may find the following pages on ChineseClass101.com useful:

Whatever your reasons for developing an interest in Chinese culture or the language, know that ChineseClass101.com is the best way to expand your knowledge and improve your skills. With tons of fun lessons for learners at every level, there’s something for everyone!

Create your free lifetime account today, and start learning with us.

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Learn Chinese from Great Shows & Chinese Movies on Netflix

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This is probably one of the nicest ways to start your Friday night: Crawling into your soft bed with a comfortable blanket, watching some of the best Chinese movies on Netflix, and maybe indulge in some pizza or a scoop of ice cream? Right. Who doesn’t want this while still not falling behind on other priorities? After all, watching shows can be time-consuming.

Well, did you know that as a language-learner, you can have both? With a little more focus and effort, you can definitely turn your show-watching time into valuable learning time. If you really want to learn Chinese, Netflix can actually be a very valuable learning tool!

From the classic ancient battle scenes that flood your vision with vivid imagery to a bittersweet romantic love story that evokes your nostalgia for youth, here we have a list of the best Chinese shows on Netflix (and a couple of the best Chinese movies on Netflix) that will guide you straight to success in your Chinese learning. At least one of these best Chinese Netflix series or films will be your cup of tea.

Can’t wait to start another obsession and begin the binge-watching? Ready to learn Chinese on Netflix?

We’ve prepared a short guide to our favorite Netflix Chinese titles. Let’s jump right into our list of the best Chinese movies on Netflix and other great shows to help you enrich your Chinese skills!

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Table of Contents

  1. 致我们单纯的小美好 – A Love So Beautiful
  2. 画皮 2 – Painted Skin: The Resurrection
  3. 喜欢你 – This is Not What I Expected
  4. 西游记之孙悟空三打白骨精 – The Monkey King 2
  5. 香蜜沉沉烬如霜 – Ashes of Love
  6. 流星花园 – Meteor Garden
  7. 甄嬛传 – Empresses in the Palace
  8. 白夜追凶 – Day and Night
  9. 温暖的弦 – Here to Heart
  10. 天盛长歌 – The Rise of Phoenixes
  11. Conclusion

1. 致我们单纯的小美好 – A Love So Beautiful

A Love So Beautiful is a show based on Zhao Ganqian’s novel of the same name. This Netflix Chinese drama tells the story of Chen Jiang’s and Xiaoxi Chen’s journey of growing up together over the past nineteen years. Although it always seemed to be unrequited love, Xiaoxi never gives up on this love-pursuing journey with great perseverance and hope. Starting from an innocent childhood, the love story ends beautifully after all the ups and downs of life.

If you’re curious about how a school romance is in China, this Popular Chinese Netflix show is the perfect pick for you. Relive the golden years of youth along with the main characters in this lighthearted and relaxing show.

In this Chinese Netflix drama, you’ll learn some popular phrases that young Chinese people like to use; they’re casual and useful for daily life. Remember to take some notes!

  • In Chinese: 一辈子那么长,我才不会只喜欢你一个人;一辈子那么长,没想到我真的只喜欢你一个人。
    Pinyin: Yí bèi zi nà me cháng, wǒ cái bú huì zhǐ xǐ huān nǐ yí gè rén; yí bèi zi nà me cháng, méi xiǎng dào wǒ zhēn de zhǐ xǐ huān nǐ yí gè rén.
    In English: A lifetime is so long, I won’t only like you. A lifetime is so long, I can’t believe I really did only like you.
  • In Chinese: 感谢
    Pinyin: gǎn xiè
    In English: appreciate
  • In Chinese: 勇气
    Pinyin: yǒng qì
    In English: courage
  • In Chinese: 吵架
    Pinyin: chǎo jià
    In English: argue

2. 画皮 2 – Painted Skin: The Resurrection

Xiaowei is a yokai who is on a quest to receive a heart to become human, while Princess Jing is desperate to recover her ruined appearance to keep her lover, Huo Xin. When they’re all on the edge of death, the power of love awakens. Will a miracle happen to give the characters a happy ending?

This unique Chinese fantasy on Netflix depicts the concept of yokai in Asian culture. If you’re interested in such a mythical creature, be sure to check this one out!

  • In Chinese: 没有了心,我会怎样?
    Pinyin: Méi yǒu le xīn, wǒ huì zěn yàng?
    In English: What would I become without a heart?
  • In Chinese: 心
    Pinyin: xīn
    In English: heart
  • In Chinese: 相信
    Pinyin: xiàng xìn
    In English: believe
  • In Chinese: 换
    Pinyin: huàn
    In English: exchange

3. 喜欢你 – This is Not What I Expected

Gu Shengnan is an amazing chef who secretly has a relationship with the manager of the hotel. After being dumped, she becomes desperate and encounters a sophisticated and sharp guy named Lu Jin, who was on his way to buy the hotel. Although they have completely different personalities, the two of them eventually find their unique bond and happily hold hands together. If you want to enrich your expectation for relationships, this Netflix Chinese drama is a must-watch.

This show is also great if you’re a foodie. You can learn some food phrases in Chinese so that you’ll be a master while ordering food in a restaurant in China!

  • In Chinese: 爱情是不期而遇的,你不能计划这件事,碰到之后就自己说了算。
    Pinyin: Ài qíng shì bù qī ér yù de, nǐ bù néng jì huá zhè jiàn shì, pèng dào zhī hòu jiù zì jǐ shuō le suàn.
    In English: Love is always out of expectations, you cannot plan it, but you are your own boss once you encounter it.
  • In Chinese: 职位
    Pinyin: zhí wèi
    In English: position (for work)
  • In Chinese: 普通
    Pinyin: pǔ tōng
    In English: ordinary
  • In Chinese: 讨厌
    Pinyin: tǎo yàn
    In English: hate

4. 西游记之孙悟空三打白骨精 – The Monkey King 2

Have you ever heard of the classic literary work Journey to the West? The answer is probably yes, and this Chinese fantasy on Netflix is ready for you to watch now! In this movie, the original plot retains its character. The Monkey King’s priority is to protect the traveling monk from the evil White Bone Spirit, who seeks immortality through killing the monk and eating his flesh.

This is one of the best Chinese Netflix movies and is an interesting version of the classic. Watch this lovely piece to experience the gist of one of the most classic literary works in Chinese history. You won’t be disappointed!

  • In Chinese: 不要用你心中的对与错去衡量别人的对与错。
    Pinyin: Bú yào yòng nǐ xīn zhōng de duì yǔ cuò qù héng liàng bié rén de duì yǔ cuò.
    In English: Do not judge other people’s right or wrong based on your own standards.
  • In Chinese: 一世
    Pinyin: yī shì
    In English: a lifetime
  • In Chinese: 对
    Pinyin: duì
    In English: the right
  • In Chinese: 错
    Pinyin: cuò
    In English: fault

5. 香蜜沉沉烬如霜 – Ashes of Love

This is another great Chinese fantasy on Netflix that you definitely can’t miss! The Flower Goddess predicts that her daughter, Jin Mi will be tortured a great deal as she experiences love in the future, just like her own bitter experience. Determined to stop this tragedy, she gives Mi the Loveless Pill to prevent her from falling in love. And that’s how everything starts. This is a bittersweet love tale that depicts the struggles and love between Mi and Xufeng for three lifetimes in reincarnations.

The cultural aspect of this show is fascinating. You’ll be amazed by the concept of Xian (仙), which is an immortal being who lives above the sky in Chinese culture. This show reveals a glimpse of these interesting figures, as well as some poetic phrases about love to impress your other half with! Here’s some vocabulary for one of the best Chinese dramas on Netflix!

  • In Chinese: 遇我,在你懂爱之前。爱我,在你伤我之后。
    Pinyin: Yù wǒ, zài nǐ dǒng ài zhī qián. Ài wǒ, zài nǐ shāng wǒ zhī hòu.
    In English: You met me before you know love. You love me after you hurt me.
  • In Chinese: 爱
    Pinyin: ài
    In English: love
  • In Chinese: 伤害
    Pinyin: shāng hài
    In English: hurt
  • In Chinese: 曾经
    Pinyin: céng jīng
    In English: the past

6. 流星花园 – Meteor Garden

This is one of the most classic Netflix Chinese dramas of all time. Shancai is an ordinary girl, but with great perseverance to achieve something at her dream university. Unfortunately, it wasn’t easy at the very beginning. She was excluded by other rich students who looked down on her. Due to some misunderstandings, Shancai has made a terrible impression on four of the most popular guys at school. But later, as she shows her true character, one of the guys (Dao Mingsi), falls for her and starts to create an incredible bond with her.

Always fancying your own romantic relationship? Feeling nostalgic for your first love? Then you’re on the right track! This show will not only let you relive your youth, but also includes a variety of helpful daily phrases in Chinese for you to learn!

  • In Chinese: 如果道歉有用的话,还要警察干嘛啊?
    Pinyin: Rú guǒ dào qiàn yǒu yòng de huà, hái yào jǐng chá gàn ma ā?
    In English: If an apology is helpful, why would we need police officers?
  • In Chinese: 学校
    Pinyin: xué xiào
    In English: school
  • In Chinese: 上课
    Pinyin: shàng kè
    In English: go to class
  • In Chinese: 喜欢
    Pinyin: xǐ huān
    In English: like

7. 甄嬛传 – Empresses in the Palace

When it comes to Chinese history, Netflix has some great stuff, like this fascinating Netflix Chinese historical drama.

This is a story that highlights feminism. It successfully portrays the Royal Concubines in the Qing Dynasty, who have dedicated their entire youth and beauty inside the Forbidden City, and are in a constant struggle regarding battles of love, power, and wealth. One such woman is the main character Zhenhuan, who grows from an innocent young girl to a sophisticated woman in the pursuit of the queen of the kingdom.

If you’re obsessed with history, this will be a fabulous opportunity for you to understand how history played its role in feminism during the Qing dynasty, as well as the complexity of Chinese empires. You may hear some ancient phrases throughout the show, but most of the dialogue will be in modern language. Watch this show to learn how to speak with elegance and professionalism.

  • In Chinese: 人是活给自己看的,不是他人的一句话就能左右自己,让自己活出潇洒自我。
    Pinyin: Rén shì huó gěi zì jǐ kàn de, bú shì tā rén de yī jù huà jiù néng zuǒ yòu zì jǐ, ràng zì jǐ huó chū xiāo sǎ zì wǒ.
    In English: We live for ourselves, not for being manipulated by something that other people say, let yourself live like a free soul.
  • In Chinese: 少女
    Pinyin: shǎo nǚ
    In English: girl
  • In Chinese: 皇帝
    Pinyin: huáng dì
    In English: emperor
  • In Chinese: 结局
    Pinyin: jié jú
    In English: the end

8. 白夜追凶 – Day and Night

Guan Hongfeng, the head of the Criminal Investigation Department, solves a variety of complex cases to help his twin brother who has been accused of murder. If you’re a big fan of suspense and criminal shows, you’ll definitely fall in love with this show and always wonder what’s gonna happen next.

The intense and eye-catching scenes will give your eyes a feast! Don’t miss this show if you love Sherlock Holmes and other detective stories. Enjoy learning the most native Chinese while immersing yourself in the suspenseful atmosphere!

  • In Chinese: 人都是习惯的奴隶。
    Pinyin: Rén dōu shì xí guàn de nú lì.
    In English: Humans are the slave of habits.
  • In Chinese: 哥哥
    Pinyin: gē ge
    In English: older brother
  • In Chinese: 弟弟
    Pinyin: dì di
    In English: younger brother
  • In Chinese: 孪生
    Pinyin: luán shēng
    In English: twin

9. 温暖的弦 – Here to Heart

Best Ways to Learn

In the mood for a Netflix Chinese romance drama? Check this one out!

Wennuan, an accomplished professional woman, without hesitance quits her high-paying job in England to work as an assistant under CEO Zhan Nanxian Zhan, who was once her lover, in the determination to rekindle the love once shared. After going through all the struggles in the current dynamic market, they not only end up together with more connection and understanding in their relationship, but also improve the whole high-tech industry to thrive under a healthier environment.

The business background is a plus for this show if you’re interested in the field. Don’t hesitate to watch it and learn some professional phrases. Take advantage of this free lesson, and you’ll improve your career in both Chinese language and business fields!

  • In Chinese: 人遇到挫折,其实有的时候,是一件好事情,只有当你遇到挫折的时候,才会知道,谁对你不离不弃,一直陪在你身边。
    Pinyin: Rén yù dào cuò zhé, qí shí yǒu de shí hòu, shì yī jiàn hǎo shì qíng, zhǐ yǒu dāng nǐ yù dào cuò zhé de shí hòu, cái huì zhī dào, shuí duì nǐ bú lí bú qì, yī zhí péi zài nǐ shēn biān.
    In English: It’s actually a good thing to encounter setbacks because only when that happens, you will be able to know who will always stand by your side and never leave you alone.
  • In Chinese: 温暖
    Pinyin: wēn nuǎn
    In English: warm
  • In Chinese: 离开
    Pinyin: lí kāi
    In English: leave
  • In Chinese: 公司
    Pinyin: gōng sī
    In English: company

10. 天盛长歌 – The Rise of Phoenixes

Ning Yi, the ambitious sixth prince of the ruling kingdom, is used to putting his inner struggles and sadness behind a mask. Feng Zhiwei has tasted the bitterness of life and aspired to thrive in the empire. The two have battled against each other through love and hatred. Will Zhiwei eventually take revenge against her enemies—including her lover, Ning Yi—or will she decide to embrace the precious love she finally encounters?

This is an exciting and well-plotted Chinese action Netflix show based on the novel Huang Quan. Once you’ve started, you won’t stop wondering what twist the show will prepare for you. Of course, while enjoying the show, don’t forget to take notes on the well-crafted lines! It’ll boost your eloquence in speech to another level.

  • In Chinese: 向前看和放弃,是有区别的。
    Pinyin: Xiàng qián kàn hé fàng qì, shì yǒu qū bié de.
    In English: There is a difference between moving on and giving up.
  • In Chinese: 权利
    Pinyin: quán lì
    In English: power
  • In Chinese: 改变
    Pinyin: gǎi biàn
    In English: change
  • In Chinese: 国
    Pinyin: guó
    In English: country

11. Conclusion

Improve Pronunciation

By now, you must’ve found a show or movie you’re excited to watch! You should also have a better idea of what to expect from Netflix Chinese content, and how to use it for your benefit. Remember to take advantage of all these valuable Chinese shows on Netflix, and with some effort, you’ll find yourself absorbing the language at an incredibly fast pace. How better to master the language than to learn Chinese with Netflix?

What? You’ll finish them in an instant? Don’t worry. Stay hungry and visit us at ChineseClass101.com to acquire more fun resources and lessons for a thrilling journey of studying Chinese! This will be your paradise!

Until next time, let us know which of these Chinese language Netflix shows or movies do you want to see first, and why? We’re curious. 😉

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Celebrating the Magical Chinese Lantern Festival

The Chinese Lantern Festival celebration is one of China’s most exciting and traditional holidays, and it’s certainly an experience you don’t want to miss out on! Often labeled “Chinese Valentine’s Day,” the Lantern Festival is a time of getting together with family and loved ones and enjoying the beautiful lantern displays.

In this article, you’ll learn all about this almost magical Chinese Lantern Festival, from its traditional meaning to modern-day celebrations.

Are you ready? Let’s get started!

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1. What is the Lantern Festival?

It’s said that in ancient times, the Lantern Festival, or 元宵节 (Yuánxiāo Jié), played a similar role to Valentine’s Day. This is because, in ancient times, young girls in China were usually not allowed to go outdoors, but the Lantern Festival was an exception. It was a great opportunity for single young people to meet each other, and it wasn’t uncommon for lovers to reunite with each other.

While this romantic connotation has lessened over time, the Lantern Festival is still a major holiday in China and is lots of fun for everyone involved!

2. Chinese Lantern Festival Dates

Red Paper Lanterns for Chinese Lantern Festival

The Lantern Festival is celebrated each year on the fifteenth day of the first month in the lunar calendar, or 正月十五 (Zhēngyuè Shíwǔ) in Chinese. For your convenience, here’s a list of this holiday’s date on the Gregorian calendar for the next ten years.

  • 2020: February 8
  • 2021: February 26
  • 2022: February 15
  • 2023: February 5
  • 2024: February 24
  • 2025: February 12
  • 2026: March 3
  • 2027: February 20
  • 2028: February 9
  • 2029: February 27

3. Most Common Chinese Lantern Festival Traditions

There’s an old saying that “food is the paramount necessity of the people.” During the Chinese Lantern Festival, food is a huge deal. When we talk about the Lantern Festival, we can’t forget to mention the tradition of eating 汤圆 (tāngyuán), or Yuanxiao (which, as you may recall, is also eaten during the Winter Solstice).

Yuanxiao is a type of dessert made of glutinous rice with or without filling. Some common fillings include black sesame, bean paste, sugar, and hawthorn. There are various ways to make Yuanxiao, including boiling, sautéing, deep-frying, and steaming.

Glutinous rice balls are called Yuanxiao in the North, while in the South, they’re called Tangyuan. There are slight differences in making Yuanxiao and Tangyuan.

In Beijing, Yuanxiao is best characterized by its filling. People first prepare the dough with the filling and then put it in a machine. The machine gradually shapes the dough into a ball, and it’s a little bit like making a snowball. However, in the South, making Tangyuan is quite similar to making dumplings; they’re both molded and shaped by hand. Making good Tangyuan requires glutinous rice flour that is of high quality because it’s not easy to keep them fresh.

Besides eating, of course, there’s also playing. Popular traditional activities for the Lantern Festival include going to the fair, lighting lanterns, and guessing riddles. The fair is an open market held near a temple or in a park. You can taste traditional snacks from different areas of China and enjoy various folk performances.

As its name suggests, lighting lanterns involves lighting and hanging various types of beautiful lanterns. Guessing riddles also originated from lighting lanterns. People write riddles on the lanterns, and visitors can guess the answer when they pass by. At the fair, the first person who successfully solves the riddle may receive a prize.

During this holiday, you can not only eat delicious Yuanxiao, but you can also enjoy the traditional Chinese Lantern Festival lion dances, called 舞狮 (wǔshī). Dancers hide themselves in a lion costume, then roll up and down and move left and right to imitate a lion, which is very interesting to see. There are also Chinese Lantern Festival dragon dances, though the lion dances tend to be more popular.

4. Chinese Love Stories

Chinese Man Hanging Lantern with Grandson

How many people through the ages have looked toward the sky at night, hungering for love, and imagining their own future? And how many writers through the ages have wanted to express the genuine feelings of being human?

Some people say that Chinese people aren’t very romantic by nature. However, some of the most beautiful love stories come from Chinese culture and folklore.

Two of the most popular Chinese love stories are those of the Butterfly Lovers and of the Cowherd and the Weaver. Why not read up on these yourself?

5. Must-Know Vocabulary for the Chinese Lantern Festival

Chinese Dragon Dance Being Performed

Are you ready to review some of the Chinese vocabulary words and phrases we saw in this article? Here’s a list of the most essential vocabulary for this holiday!

  • 舞狮 (wǔshī) — lion dance
  • 灯笼 (dēnglong) — paper lantern
  • 舞龙 (wǔlóng) — dragon dance
  • 花灯 (huādēng) — colorful lantern
  • 月圆之夜 (yuèyuán zhī yè) — full moon night
  • 汤圆 (tāngyuán) — glutinous rice ball
  • 挂灯笼 (guà dēnglong) — hang lantern
  • 元宵灯会 (yuánxiāo dēnghuì) — Lunar New Year Lantern Carnival
  • 猜灯谜 (cāi dēngmí) — solve riddles that are written on lanterns
  • 正月十五 (Zhēngyuè Shíwǔ) — the fifteenth day of the first month in the lunar calendar
  • 元宵节 (Yuánxiāo Jié) — Lantern Festival

To hear the pronunciation of each vocabulary word, and to read them alongside relevant images, be sure to check out our Chinese Lantern Festival vocabulary list!

Final Thoughts

As you can see, the Lantern Festival is an essential component of Chinese culture, and it provides flavorful insight into the history of her people. We hope that you learned some new Chinese Lantern Festival facts with us, and gained valuable insight along the way.

Do you want to have a Chinese Lantern Festival experience for yourself? Is there a Valentine’s Day celebration in your own country? Let us know in the comments!

If you’re interested in learning more about Chinese holidays, you may find the following pages useful:

And for more information on Chinese culture in general, check out these pages:

Whatever your reasons for developing an interest in Chinese culture or wanting to study the language, know that ChineseClass101.com is the best place to expand your knowledge and improve your skills. With tons of lessons for learners at every level, there’s something for everyone!

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Master the Most Useful Chinese Grammar Conjunctions

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What’s the secret weapon to achieving more fluent Chinese?

You must have struggled with Chinese grammar as a beginner. But after all that sweat and hard work, you may have reached a higher level in Chinese grammar now and are eagerly looking for something more exciting to perfect your sentences. One of the keys is to utilize Chinese grammar conjunctions.

Conjunctive adverbs are a significant part of every language in both writing and speaking. They allow you to connect ideas, make comparisons, string together sentences, and most importantly, make your speech flow more smoothly and naturally. Without proper conjunctions, your speech may not function as effectively as it should. This makes Chinese conjunctions for intermediate language-learners a can’t-miss lesson!

Don’t panic just yet! Conjunctions in the Chinese language function just like English conjunctions. They indicate to the listener about different relationships between subclauses to help you better understand the sentence. Now, we’ve prepared for you a Chinese conjunction words list.

Let’s go straight to them, and enhance your Chinese learning!

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Table of Contents

  1. What is a Conjunction?
  2. Chinese Conjunctions to Correlate Similar Thoughts
  3. Chinese Conjunctions to Express Condition
  4. Chinese Conjunctions to Express Cause (Chinese Causal Conjunctions)
  5. Chinese Conjunctions to Express Opposition
  6. Chinese Conjunctions to Express Purpose
  7. Final Thoughts

1. What is a Conjunction?

Sentence Patterns

A conjunction is a phrase that’s used to connect ideas or related sentences to make them join smoothly together. In Chinese grammar, conjunctions are very similar to English conjunctions, although there are some special ones that don’t make much sense in English but are considered common Chinese conjunctions.

2. Chinese Conjunctions to Correlate Similar Thoughts

The most common conjunctions in Chinese are those that correlate similar thoughts. In this Chinese conjunctions list, you’ll find all the words and information you need to do so smoothly!

1- With / And

Person Hiking

Would you like to go hiking with your friends?

Meaning #1:

In English: With
Pinyin: hé / gēn / yǔ / tóng
In Chinese: 和 / 跟 / 与 / 同

Usage in a sentence:
In English: The weather today is very nice, so I decided to hike with my best friend.

Pinyin: Jīn tiān tiān qì hěn hǎo, yú shì wǒ jué dìng hé / gēn / yǔ / tóng zuì hǎo de péng yǒu chū qù dēng shān.

In Chinese: 今天天气很好,于是我决定和 / 跟 / 与/ 同最好的朋友出去登山。

Grammar Explanation:
In this case, the word indicates being accompanied by someone or something.

Meaning #2:

In English: And
Pinyin: hé / gēn / yǔ / tóng
In Chinese: 和 / 跟 / 与 / 同

Usage in a sentence:
In English: My sister and I went shopping yesterday.

Pinyin: Wǒ hé jiě jie zuó tiān yì qǐ qù guàng jiē le.

In Chinese: 我和姐姐昨天一起去逛街了。

Grammar Explanation:
In this case, it’s used to connect words that share the same part of speech.

Additional Notes:
These four words are basically the same, and can be replaced by each other. However, a slight difference between them is that 和 () and 跟 (gēn) are used more often in speech, while 与 () and 同 (tóng) are more suitable for writing and sound more formal.

2- Or

Pair of Baby Bottles with Mother and Child in Background

Drinking milk everyday is a good habit!

In English: Or
Pinyin: huò / huò zhě
In Chinese: 或 / 或者

Usage in a sentence:
In English: I like to add sugar or honey in my milk.

Pinyin: Wǒ xǐ huān zài niú nǎi lǐ jiā táng huò / huò zhě fēng mì.

In Chinese: 我喜欢在牛奶里加糖或 / 或者蜂蜜。

Grammar Explanation:
Here, the word is used to connect alternative words or clauses.

Additional Notes:
There isn’t really a huge difference between 或 (huò) and 或者 (huò zhě). However, 或 (huò) is used more frequently for connecting small words since it’s a simpler version of 或者 (huò zhě), while 或者 (huò zhě) can be used for a longer alternative clause.

3- As well as

Remember to wear formal clothing at a job fair!

In English: As well as
Pinyin: yǐ jí
In Chinese: 以及

Usage in a sentence:
In English: When you go to a job fair, it’s necessary to wear formal clothing and bring your notebook and pens, as well as the most important thing which is your resume.

Pinyin: Nǐ qù cān jiā zhāo pìn huì shí wù bì yào shēn zhuó zhèng zhuāng, dài shàng bǐ jì běn hé bǐ, yǐ jí zuì zhòng yào de jiǎn lì.

In Chinese: 你去参加招聘会时务必要身着正装,带上笔记本和笔,以及最重要的简历。

Grammar Explanation:
Here, the word simply means “additionally.”

4- Also

Cupcake with Sparkler In It

Do you like making wishes at your birthday party?

In English: Also
Pinyin: bìng qiě
In Chinese: 并且

Usage in a sentence:
In English: I am very sick today, I am afraid I cannot make it to your birthday party, also the time doesn’t allow either.

Pinyin: Wǒ jīn tiān bìng de hěn lì hài, qù bù liǎo nǐ de shēng rì pài duì le, bìng qiě shí jiān yě lái bù jí le.

In Chinese: 我今天病得很厉害,去不了你的生日派对了,并且时间也来不及了。

Grammar Explanation:
This word means “in addition to.”

5- What’s more

Flights That Are Cancelled

The schedule can be tight when you need to catch a flight!

In English: What’s more
Pinyin: hái yǒu
In Chinese: 还有

Usage in a sentence:
In English: You have to remember to bring your passport before you head to the airport. What’s more, leave a little bit early just in case.

Pinyin: Zài qù jī chǎng zhī qián nǐ yī dìng yào jì dé dài shàng zì jǐ de hù zhào, hái yǒu jì dé zǎo diǎn chū fā, yǐ fáng wàn yī.

In Chinese: 在去机场之前你一定要记得带上自己的护照,还有记得早点出发,以防万一。

Grammar Explanation:
To add something that has a greater degree of importance.

Additional Notes:
Unlike how we use this conjunction in English, remember to avoid putting a comma after 还有.

6- Both

Person Sitting On the Edge of a Cliff

Do you plan to travel to somewhere as beautiful as this?

In English: Both
Pinyin: dōu
In Chinese: 都

Usage in a sentence:
In English: Both my friend and I are looking forward to our trip this year on summer break.

Pinyin: Wǒ péng yǒu hé wǒ dōu fēi cháng qī dài jīn nián shǔ jià de lǚ yóu.

In Chinese: 我朋友和我都非常期待今年暑假的旅游。

Grammar Explanation:
This conjunction in Chinese is used to describe two subjects or objects that are identified in the same way.

7- Not only … but also …

In English: Not only … but also…
Pinyin: bú dàn…ér qiě… / bù jǐn…hái …
In Chinese: 不但……而且…… / 不仅……还……

Usage in a sentence:
In English: I not only enjoy eating delicious food but also love how proud I feel while cooking.

Pinyin: Wǒ bú dàn / bù jǐn xiǎng shòu chī měi shí de kuài gǎn, ér qiě / hái rè ài xià chú shí de chéng jiù gǎn.

In Chinese: 我不但 / 不仅享受吃美食的快感,而且 / 还热爱下厨时的成就感。

Grammar Explanation:
This Chinese conjunction is used to express ideas in parallelism, although the second conjunction usually indicates a more important idea.

Additional Notes:
The two sets of conjunctions mean exactly the same thing and can be used the same way. However, in English, we usually don’t put a comma between the two conjunctions; remember to put a comma between the two clauses that the two Chinese conjunctions lead, to make it sound more smooth.

3. Chinese Conjunctions to Express Condition

Improve Listening

The next Chinese language conjunctions we’ll look at are those used to express condition. This is an essential skill to have for fluent speech and writing!

1- If

In English: If
Pinyin: rú guǒ / tǎng ruò / yào shì / jiǎ rú
In Chinese: 如果 / 倘若 / 要是 / 假如

Usage in a sentence:
In English: If it doesn’t rain tomorrow, let’s have a picnic at the park.

Pinyin: Rú guǒ / tǎng ruò / yào shì / jiǎ rú míng tiān bú xià yǔ, wǒ men jiù qù gōng yuán yě cān ba.

In Chinese: 如果 / 倘若 / 要是 / 假如明天不下雨,我们就去公园野餐吧。

Grammar Explanation:
This Chinese conjunction is used to express a hypothesis.

Additional Notes:
These four words all mean the same thing and they can substitute one another.

2- As long as

In English: As long as
Pinyin: zhǐ yào
In Chinese: 只要

Usage in a sentence:
In English: As long as you promise not to tell anyone, I will share this secret with you.

Pinyin: Zhǐ yào nǐ bǎo zhèng bù gēn bié rén shuō, wǒ jiù bǎ zhè gè mì mì gào sù nǐ.

In Chinese: 只要你保证不跟别人说,我就把这个秘密告诉你。

Grammar Explanation:
This conjunction is only used when a particular situation is provided.

3- If not / Otherwise

In English: If not / Otherwise
Pinyin: bù rán / fǒu zé
In Chinese: 不然 / 否则

Usage in a sentence:
In English: I think she must be sick; if not / otherwise, she would never skip a class according to her hardworking personality.

Pinyin: Wǒ jué de tā yī dìng shì shēng bìng le, bù rán / fǒu zé yǐ tā qín fèn de xìng gé shì bú huì quē kè de.

In Chinese: 我觉得她一定是生病了,不然 / 否则以她勤奋的性格是不会缺课的。

Grammar Explanation:
This conjunction is used if a different condition is brought up than what was mentioned.

Additional Note:
Just like in English, these words indicate almost the same meaning. However, 否则 (fǒu zé) sounds more serious.

4- Only…then…

In English: Only…then…
Pinyin: zhǐ yǒu… cái…
In Chinese: 只有……才……

Usage in a sentence:
In English: Only when you develop confidence in yourself, then other people will recognize how good you are.

Pinyin: Zhǐ yǒu nǐ zì jǐ duì zì jǐ xiān yǒu le xìn xīn, bié rén cái néng rèn kě nǐ de yōu xiù.

In Chinese: 只有你自己对自己先有了信心,别人才能认可你的优秀。

Grammar Explanation:
This conjunction is used in a unique situation, where only in one particular condition can a specified result occur.

5- No matter

In English: No matter
Pinyin: bù guǎn
In Chinese: 不管

Usage in a sentence:
In English: No matter what happens, my friends will always stand by me.

Pinyin: Bù guǎn fā shēng shén me, wǒ de péng yǒu zǒng shì jiān dìng de zhàn zài wǒ shēn biān.

In Chinese: 不管发生什么,我的朋友总是坚定地站在我身边。

Grammar Explanation:
This conjunction can also mean “in spite of” or “despite.”

6- Unless

In English: Unless
Pinyin: chú fēi
In Chinese: 除非

Usage in a sentence:
In English: You are not allowed to park here, unless you are disabled.

Pinyin: Nǐ bù kě yǐ zài zhè lǐ tíng chē, chú fēi nǐ shì cán jí rén.

In Chinese: 你不可以在这里停车,除非你是残疾人。

Grammar Explanation:
This can also mean “except for the fact that…”

7- However

In English: However
Pinyin: wú lùn rú hé
In Chinese: 无论如何

Usage in a sentence:
In English: However, I can’t let you risk this.

Pinyin: Wú lùn rú hé wǒ yě bù néng ràng nǐ mào zhè gè xiǎn.

In Chinese: 无论如何我也不能让你冒这个险。

Grammar Explanation:
This can also mean “no matter what happens.”

4. Chinese Conjunctions to Express Cause (Chinese Causal Conjunctions)

Improve Listening Part 2

1- Thus

In English: Thus
Pinyin: yīn cǐ
In Chinese: 因此

Usage in a sentence:
In English: Yesterday the rain was incredibly heavy, thus I could not visit my grandmother as promised.

Pinyin: Zuó wǎn yǔ xià de shí zài tài dà le, yīn cǐ wǒ bìng méi yǒu rú yuē qù bài fǎng wài pó.

In Chinese: 昨晚雨下得实在太大了,因此我并没有如约去拜访外婆。

Grammar Explanation:
This can also mean “as a result” or “because of which was mentioned.”

2- Because…so…

In English: Because…so…
Pinyin: yīn wèi…suǒ yǐ…
In Chinese: 因为……所以……

Usage in a sentence:
In English: Because my brother is sick today, I had to stay at home and take care of him.

Pinyin: Yīn wèi dì di jīn tiān shēng bìng le, suǒ yǐ wǒ bù dé bù liú zài jiā lǐ zhào gù tā.

In Chinese: 因为弟弟今天生病了,所以我不得不留在家里照顾他。

Grammar Explanation:
This can also mean “for the reason of … which leads to…”

Additional Notes:
Unlike English conjunctions, we usually need to use “because” and “so” at the same time to make a reasonable sentence and explain the relationship more clearly.

3- Because of

In English: Because of
Pinyin: yóu yú
In Chinese: 由于

Usage in a sentence:
In English: Because of my personal mistake, it made our whole team lose the opportunity to be in the first position.

Pinyin: Yóu yú wǒ yī gè rén de shī wù, dǎo zhì le wǒ men zhěng gè duì wǔ shī qù le qǔ dé dì yī de jī huì.

In Chinese: 由于我一个人的失误,导致了我们整个队伍失去了取得第一的机会。

Grammar Explanation:
This can also mean “it comes from the thing that…” or “the reason of something particular.”

4- The reason why…it’s because…

In English: The reason why…it’s because…
Pinyin: zhī suǒ yǐ…shì yīn wèi…
In Chinese: 之所以……是因为……

Usage in a sentence:
In English: The reason why I couldn’t make my sister’s wedding, it’s because I just had a surgery a little while ago and had to rest at the hospital for some days.

Pinyin: Wǒ zhī suǒ yǐ méi néng qù jiě jie de hūn lǐ, shì yīn wèi zài bù jiǔ zhī qián wǒ zuò le yī chǎng shǒu shù, bù dé bú zhù yuàn xiū xi yī duàn shí jiān.

In Chinese: 我之所以没能去姐姐的婚礼,是因为在不久之前我做了一场手术,不得不住院休息一段时间。

Grammar Explanation:
The conjunction itself is pretty straightforward. The set of conjunctions introduce the result first, and then introduce the reason that caused the former clause.

5. Chinese Conjunctions to Express Opposition

1- But

In English: But
Pinyin: dàn shì
In Chinese: 但是

Usage in a sentence:
In English: I planned to learn how to cook a western meal today, but I forgot to buy the necessary ingredients.

Pinyin: Wǒ jīn tiān běn lái jì huá xué xí zuò yī dùn xī cān, dàn shì wàng jì mǎi xū yào de shí cái le.

In Chinese: 我今天本来计划学习做一顿西餐,但是忘记买需要的食材了。

Grammar Explanation:
This conjunction is used to introduce something that contrasts with what was mentioned before.

2- Yet

In English: Yet
Pinyin: kě shì
In Chinese: 可是

Usage in a sentence:
In English: My dad really wants me to become a doctor just like him in the future, yet it’s not what I’m passionate about.

Pinyin: Bà ba fēi cháng xī wàng wǒ néng xiàng tā yī yàng jiāng lái chéng wéi yī míng yī shēng, kě shì zhè bìng bú shì wǒ rè ài de zhí yè.

In Chinese: 爸爸非常希望我能像他一样将来成为一名医生,可是这并不是我热爱的职业。

Grammar Explanation:
This can also mean “but at the same time.”

3- However

In English: However
Pinyin: rán ér
In Chinese: 然而

Usage in a sentence:
In English: I thought there would be a happy ending for this TV show, however, it was not like I imagined.

Pinyin: Wǒ yǐ wéi zhè gè diàn shì jù zuì hòu yī dìng shì gè xǐ jù jié wěi, rán ér bìng bú shì wǒ xiǎng de nà yàng.

In Chinese: 我以为这个电视剧最后一定是个喜剧结尾,然而并不是我想的那样。

Grammar Explanation:
This conjunction is used to indicate a turning point or a different result from what was expected.

Additional Notes:
A comma can be used after this conjunction, if the sentence after it is long and there is a natural pause in speaking. If the sentence after it is short and there’s no pause needed in speaking, don’t use a comma after this conjunction.

6. Chinese Conjunctions to Express Purpose

1- So that

In English: So that
Pinyin: yǐ biàn
In Chinese: 以便

Usage in a sentence:
In English: I will put the backup key underneath the carpet by the door so that you can come in when I’m not home.

Pinyin: Wǒ huì bǎ bèi yòng yào shi fàng zài mén qián de tǎn zi xià miàn, yǐ biàn wǒ bú zài jiā shí nǐ kě yǐ jìn lái.

In Chinese: 我会把备用钥匙放在门前的毯子下面,以便我不在家时你可以进来。

Grammar Explanation:
This is used when describing how you’re going to make it convenient for something, or to serve a purpose for something.

7. Final Thoughts

If you’ve developed a great understanding of these Mandarin Chinese conjunctions, then congratulations! You’re officially an intermediate learner in Chinese now. If you’re still not content with what you’ve learned so far, and are desperate to enrich your Chinese skills, feel free to check out our website at ChineseClass101.com.

We offer a variety of fun Chinese lessons, both about interesting Chinese local culture and professional language teaching. You’ll find it extremely difficult to be disappointed with your Chinese learning when using our website.

We hope you enjoyed learning about conjunctions with us, and that you were able to take away something valuable. Which of these conjunctions do you plan on practicing soon? Were our Chinese conjunctions examples helpful, or are you still struggling to understand some of these Chinese conjunctions? Let us know in the comments!

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Everything to Know About Chinese Business Etiquette and More

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We’re all social animals, and we all interact with each other in a certain way in order to achieve the most harmony possible, depending on our cultural background and generational differences. Every country has a set of rules about etiquette for its own unique culture. China, a country that evolved over thousands of years of history, of course has its secrets for developing the great civilization it hosts today.

But what is Chinese etiquette?

Chinese etiquette (especially Chinese business etiquette!) can differ greatly from that of western countries. Some Chinese etiquette rules may be exactly the opposite, so don’t be surprised when you hear them. These unspoken Chinese etiquette customs help Chinese people build their respect, bonds, and understanding between each other. Some of the modern Chinese etiquette we’re going to introduce here is the heart of Chinese society, so be careful and keep them in mind so that you don’t embarrass yourself!

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Table of Contents

  1. How to Discuss Etiquette
  2. Chinese Table Manners and Etiquette: Do’s and Don’ts for Dining
  3. Do’s and Don’ts for Sightseeing
  4. Do’s and Don’ts for Greetings
  5. Do’s and Don’ts for Visiting a House
  6. Do’s and Don’ts When Riding Public Means of Transportation
  7. Do’s and Don’ts for Business Occasions
  8. Do’s and Don’ts for Celebrations
  9. Let ChineseClass101 Help You Master the Language & Culture!

1. How to Discuss Etiquette

If you’re wondering how to learn Chinese etiquette, first things first. Let’s have a little warm-up and start with the most useful phrases for discussing basic Chinese etiquette. Mastering these phrases is a wonderful place to start your learning journey in Chinese etiquette.

  • When talking about DON’Ts, use this sentence pattern:

    In Chinese: 你不应该[动词] -> 你不应该擤鼻涕。
    Pinyin: Nǐ bù yīng gāi [dòng cí] -> Nǐ bù yīng gāi xǐng bí tì.
    In English: Don’t [verb] -> Don’t blow your nose.

  • When talking about DO’s:

    In Chinese: 你应该[动词] -> 你应该带个礼物过来。
    Pinyin: Nǐ yīng gāi [dòng cí] -> Nǐ yīng gāi dài gè lǐ wù guò lái.
    In English: You should [verb] -> You should bring a present.

2. Chinese Table Manners and Etiquette: Do’s and Don’ts for Dining

Hygiene

Do’s:

  • Do join the toasts or initiate one at the table.

    In Chinese etiquette, dining usually requires toasts at the table, especially when it’s a formal occasion where you’re eating with elders or people you need to show respect to. If you’re new to the Chinese dining table, you’ll probably feel overwhelmed by the number of toasts Chinese people do. However, toasts in Chinese table etiquette is a tradition, and a way to show your respect and kindness to the people you’re eating with. While initiating a toast, you can simply say (the wishing words may be altered):

    In Chinese: 我来敬您一杯酒,祝您万事如意。
    Pinyin: Wǒ lái jìng nín yī bēi jiǔ, zhù nín wàn shì rú yì.
    In English: Let me raise a glass of wine to you and wish that all your wishes will come true.

  • Do show that you’re willing to try all the food.

    If a Chinese person is passionately inviting you to try the dishes, do feel free to try them to show that you’re embracing his hospitality.

Don’ts:

  • Do not stick your chopsticks perpendicularly on rice.

    In Chinese etiquette, chopsticks shouldn’t be put in the rice this way. This is considered bad etiquette in China, and is thought to bring bad fortune. Although it sounds superstitious, many traditional Chinese people do pay attention to details like this.

  • Do not mind sharing food on the same plate.

    Unlike in western restaurants, most of the Chinese dishes in Chinese restaurants are shared among everyone, which is the family style. Thus, be prepared for this when you’re eating with Chinese people. You’ll have to pick dishes that will please both you and your dining partners. Also, remember to always leave the last piece of a dish for other people to show your kindness.

  • Do not mind when others (especially elders) get food for your plate.

    Most Chinese elders are likely to have the habit of getting food for you with their chopsticks, sometimes even despite your own preferences. When this happens, remember not to refuse their kindness and just pretend that you’re glad to have the dishes.

3. Do’s and Don’ts for Sightseeing

Bad Phrases

Sightseeing is an area where Chinese culture social etiquette is important to keep in consideration. Here are a few Chinese etiquette tips to help you go sightseeing in a polite and respectful manner.

Do’s:

  • Do walk on your right side.

    As most countries do, Chinese people prefer to walk on the right side of the road to provide convenience for other people who walk in the opposite direction.

  • Do always stay in lines when it’s necessary.

    As you all know, China is a crowded country. As a tourist, it may be time-consuming to wait in line for things. However, it’s a basic Chinese social etiquette rule to do so. People who cut in line are considered extremely rude in China.

Don’ts:

  • Do not throw trash as you want.

    Considering that China is having a severe environmental problem right now, throwing trash on the road is especially prohibited. Choosing to litter anyway is totally against Chinese culture customs and etiquette today.

  • Do not touch property if it’s not allowed.

    China is a country full of ancient properties and a long history. Many properties are protected stringently to preserve their historical beauty. Remember to be careful when you touch a property, and treat them gently.

4. Do’s and Don’ts for Greetings

Shaking Hands is a Very Basic Manner When You Greet Someone In China.

When it comes to Chinese etiquette, greetings are an important aspect of the culture to keep in mind. Here are some Chinese introduction etiquette rules that you should follow when greeting.

Do’s:

  • Do shake hands, especially when you meet someone for the first time.

    In Chinese body language etiquette, shaking hands is a basic way of greeting someone you’re not very familiar with.

  • Do bow when it’s needed.

    Bowing is viewed as a formal way of greeting people who you show special respect to. For example, in China, students sometimes bow to their teachers.

Don’ts:

  • Do not ask people about age or income.

    In Chinese etiquette, money (income) and age are considered extremely personal topics. If these happen to be a taboo for the person you’re greeting, you may cause embarrassment for them and yourself.

  • Do not hug someone you’re not close with as a way of greeting.

    Hugging someone is very common in western culture, even when meeting people for the first time. Nevertheless, there is a huge difference here between China and western countries. In China, hugging is not a common way of greeting. If you hug someone who’s not close to you, your enthusiasm may overwhelm the person who’s not used to this method of greeting.

5. Do’s and Don’ts for Visiting a House

Thanks

Next up in our guide on Chinese etiquette: visiting friends. Here are some tips for how to act when visiting someone’s home in China.

Do’s:

  • Do bring a gift if you’re visiting someone important.

    It’s a great way to show your kindness by bringing a little gift when invited to visit a house.

  • Do arrive on time.

    Being on time is a way to show your level of respect for the person you’re visiting. This is also considered Chinese professional etiquette, so do keep punctuality in mind.

Don’ts:

  • Do not feel frightened if the family is hosting you with too much hospitality.

    Chinese people are very hospitable. You may never know how much preparation they’ve done for your arrival. They may buy lots of additional food and clean the house thoroughly just to welcome you warmly.

  • Do not go into bedrooms without an invitation.

    In China, it’s considered rude to visit the bedrooms in a house without the homeowner’s permission or invitation.

Remember that a Bedroom is the Most Private Place in a House.

6. Do’s and Don’ts When Riding Public Means of Transportation

Do’s:

  • Do care for elders, pregnant women, disabled people, and kids, by giving your seat to them if necessary.

    It’s a custom in China to give your seat to people who need more care when on a bus or subway. Elders, pregnant women, disabled people, and young children are all considered as such.

  • Do stay in line while waiting for a bus.

    There are usually bus numbers written on the ground for people who are waiting for different buses. Be careful to wait by the right numbers and stay politely within the line.

Don’ts:

  • Do not push other people when the place is crowded.

    Sometimes the public transportation in China can get incredibly crowded due to China’s huge population. When this happens, remain calm and try not to push people around by stabilizing yourself.

  • Do not lean against the doors on a bus.

    You’ll see this reminder on most of the buses in China because it’s extremely dangerous when the door opens. If you don’t follow this rule, it will not only put you in danger, but may also cause inconvenience for people who need to get on the bus.

7. Do’s and Don’ts for Business Occasions

Business

Now it’s time for Chinese business etiquette tips. If you plan on working in China, or are visiting for work-related purposes, knowing basic Chinese etiquette for business is essential.

Do’s:

  • Do prepare a business card.

    Although this is a digital era, in China, a business card is still of high value during a business occasion. Be sure to bring a professional business card that represents your personal expert profile.

  • Do dress professionally.

    If you notice, Chinese people have a focus on appearance in many things. A professional look will definitely serve as a crutch to help you succeed during a business occasion.

Don’ts:

  • Do not cross your legs while sitting down.

    When it comes to Chinese etiquette, businesses are often uncomfortable with you crossing your legs (even if most people in casual situations are totally comfortable with this). During a business occasion, it’s considered bad-looking and rude.

  • Do not overly use Internet slang.

    Many people in modern society may be used to speaking with Internet slang in daily life. However, it’s extremely unprofessional to do so during a business occasion and may damage your professional profile.

8. Do’s and Don’ts for Celebrations

Don’t Forget to Remain Good-Mannered While Enjoying a Fabulous Celebration!

Even when celebrating, there’s some Chinese traditional etiquette that you need to be mindful of. Here are the do’s and don’ts for celebrations in China.

Do’s:

  • Do pay great attention to how you present the package for a gift.

    Chinese people place heavy importance on the presentation of a gift. When you prepare a gift, be sure to wrap it carefully enough.

  • Do give out some money to the newly married couple when you’re invited to a wedding.

    Giving out money is a traditional gift for weddings in China. Even though you’ve prepared a gift already, the money as a gift for the newly married couple is still essential!

Don’ts:

  • Do not open your gifts in front of the giver.

    This is another huge cultural difference between western countries and China. In western countries, it’s considered good manners to show people how much you’re pleased with the gift by opening it in front of the giver. However, in China, it’s not appropriate to open a gift immediately in front of the giver (unless the person asks you to do so).

  • Do not accept a red packet without refusing it first.

    You may have the opportunity to visit people during the Chinese New Year. As a tradition, elders may give red packets that include money inside to youngsters as a way to celebrate the new year. In western cultures, it’s rude to refuse a gift, so this may surprise you. But it’s actually rude to accept a red packet immediately from the elders. To show respect, you’ll have to ask them to take it back, which is very unlikely for them to do so. But refusing the gift is still a necessary process before finally accepting it.

9. Let ChineseClass101 Help You Master the Language & Culture!

It’s great that you’ve made it through the whole article! I’m certain you’re now well-informed and almost an expert on basic Chinese etiquette. As long as you follow the guidelines in this article, you’ll most likely excel in performing your best of manners.

If you still don’t feel confident enough, why not try our lessons at ChineseClass101.com to gain more interesting knowledge related to Chinese culture and obtain professional teaching? You’re only one click away from the real adventure!

But before you go, let us know in the comments if you learned any new Chinese etiquette facts! What are they? Are there any situations we missed? We look forward to hearing from you. 🙂

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