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长城 The Great Wall (Advanced)

May. 19, 2010

长城 (Chángchéng) The Great Wall (Advanced)

 

Key Learning Point (Preview):不到长城非好汉 (bú dào Chángchéng fēi hǎohàn): He who has never been to the Great Wall is not a true man.

 

This popular Chinese saying originated from a poem 《清平乐•六盘山》 (Qīngpíngyuè • Liùpánshān) Qingpingyue • Liupanshan (Note: "清平乐 (Qīngpíngyuè) Qingpingyue" is a classical Chinese poem name and "六盘山 (Liùpánshān) Liupanshan" is the name of a mountain). This saying shows that a true man can overcome any difficulties.. The Great Wall is regarded as a symbol of China. Though the first emperor in Chinese history Qin Shi Huang wasn’t the first person to build the Great Wall, he was the first person who built it in a large scale and made a far-reaching "影响 (yǐngxiǎng) impact" afterward. Most of the Great Walls in the ancient times were left incomplete. . Now the Great Wall mainly refers to the Great Wall built in the Ming Dynasty. It expands from Jiayu Pass to Yalu River. And Badaling is a well-known and very "险峻 (xiǎnjùn) steep" part of the Great Wall which attracts many travelers abroad. So after climbing the Great Wall, you will feel that you have overcome many difficulties and reached your aim. That’s why there are so many people who want to climb the Great Wall. They believe that "不到长城非好汉 (bú dào Chángchéng fēi hǎohàn) He who has never been to the Great Wall is not a true man." Key Learning Point: 不到长城非好汉 (bú dào Chángchéng fēi hǎohàn): He who has never been to the Great Wall is not a true man.

 

In this common Chinese saying, there are two negatives "不 ()" and "非 (fēi)." Actually the negatives "不 ()" and "没有 (méiyǒu)" are also commonly used in the Chinese language. "不 ()" is used in present tense and future tense, while "没有 (méiyǒu)" is used in past tense. And the negative "非 (fēi)" is just used in some phrases, such as "非法 (fēifǎ) illegal" and "非主流 (fēi zhǔliú) non-mainstream."

Examples:

Dialogue 1:     

    Nǐ dēng guò Chángchéng ma?

A: 你   登    过      长城          吗?

 

    Have you climbed the Great Wall?   

   "Bú dào Chángchéng fēi hǎo hàn,"  wǒ zěnme néng bù dēng Chángchéng ne?

B:“不 到     长城            非 好    汉”, 我 怎么    能     不 登       长城            呢?

 

    "He who has never been to the Great Wall is not a true man." How can I have not climbed the Great Wall?    

    Wǒ hái méi dēng guò ne, búguò zhège yuè dǐ  wǒ jiùyào qù Běijīng dēng

A: 我   还   没  登    过    呢,不过    这个  月   底 我 就要   去   北京    登      

    Chángchéng le.     

    长城            了。

 

     I haven't, but I will go to Beijing to climb the Great Wall by the end of this month.

You might enjoy travelling around China, learn Chinese with our Travel Chinese Lessons!

Dialogue 2:     

    Chīfàn le ma?

A: 吃饭   了 吗?

 

     Have you had your meal?    

   Méiyǒu ne.

B: 没有     呢。

 

    No, I haven't.      

    Yì qǐ chī diǎn ba.

A: 一起   吃 点  吧。

 

     Let's have something together.     

    Xièxie le,   wǒ bú  è.

B: 谢谢   了,我 不 饿。

 

    Thanks, but I’m not hungry.

Want to know more about the Chinese character "饿 (è) hungry," please click here to learn more.    

    Nǐ zhè zhǒng xíngwéi shì fēifǎ de,   wǒ quàn nǐ háishì zài kǎolǜ xià ba.

3. 你 这   种      行为      是  非法 的, 我 劝    你  还是  再   考虑 下 吧。

 

    Your action is illegal. I advise you to think twice about it.

生词 (shēngcí) Vocabulary

 

建筑 (jiànzhù): n building

 

影响 (yǐngxiǎng): n impact 

 

险峻 (xiǎnjùn): adj steep 

 

考虑 (kǎolǜ): v to think 

 

   

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