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Chinese for Kids: An Old Man in the Frontier Lost His Horse (Intermediate)

Sep. 1, 2010

塞翁失马 (Sàiwēngshīmǎ) An Old Man in Frontier Lost His Horse—A Blessing in Disguise (Intermediate)

 

Key Learning Points (Preview):

邻居 (línjū): n.neighbor

 

听说 (tīngshuō): v. to hear

 

带来 (dàilái): v. to bring

 

Zhànguó shí, yí wèi xìng Sài de lǎorén yǎngle xǔduō mǎ.
战国         时,一位 姓     塞 的 老人     养了    许多   马。

 

During the Warring States Period, there was an old man who raised many horses.
 
Yì tiān, tā de mǎ qún zhōng hūrán yǒu yì pǐ diūshī le.
一天, 他 的 马   群    中     忽然 有  一 匹 丢失  了。

 

One day, he lost one of his horses.

Línjūmen tīngshuō zhè jiàn shì, dōu pǎo lái ānwèi tā.
邻居们        听说     这   件   事,都   跑   来  安慰 他。

 

After hearing the incident, his neighbors all came to comfort him.

Sài wēng què xiàole xiào shuō: "méi shì, yěxǔ huì dàilái shénme hǎoyùn ne."
塞    翁      却    笑了  笑   说:“没   事,也许 会   带来    什么     好运    呢。”

 

The old man smiled and said, "It's nothing. Perhaps it will bring me good fortune."

Guòle jǐ tiān, diūshī de mǎ bùjǐn zìjǐ  pǎo huí jiā,  hái dàihuí yì pǐ Xiōngnú de jùnmǎ.
过了   几天,丢失    的  马 不仅自己 跑   回 家,还   带回   一匹   匈奴    的   骏马。

 

A few days later, the lost horse came back and brought back a fine horse from Xiongnu.

Línjūmen tīngshuōle, dōu lái xiàng Sài wēng dàohè.
邻居们         听说了,  都 来   向    塞    翁     道贺。

 

Learning about this, the neighbors all came to congratulate him. 

Sài wēng què yì diǎn dōu bù gāoxìng, tā yōulǜ de shuō:
塞    翁      却一  点     都   不   高兴, 他 忧虑 地    说:
"zhè bù yídìng shì hǎoshì, yěxǔ huì rě chū máfan lái."
“这不   一定    是   好事,也许  会   惹  出   麻烦  来。”

 

However, the old man was not at all happy. "It is not necessarily a good thing. Perhaps this will soon turn out to be a cause of misfortune," he said worriedly.

Yǒu yì tiān, Sài wēng de  érzi  qízhe nà  pǐ Xiōngnú de jùnmǎ chūyóu,
有 一   天, 塞    翁   的 儿子 骑着 那 匹   匈奴     的  骏马    出游,
bùxiǎoxīn diàole xià lái,  bǎ tuǐ shuāi duàn le.
不小心       掉了 下  来,把 腿   摔      断   了。

 

One day, his son went out for a ride on the fine new horse. He accidentally fell from the horse and broke his leg.

Sàiwēng què shuō: "méi shénme, yěxǔ shì fúqi  ne."
塞翁         却    说:“没    什么, 也许  是 福气 呢。”

 

"Perhaps this will soon turn out to be a blessing," said the old man.

Key Learning Points:

邻居 (línjū): n. neighbor

 

Example:

Tā jīngcháng xiàng tā de línjūmen jièqián.
他    经常         向   他 的  邻居们    借钱。

 

He always borrows money from his neighbors.

听说 (tīngshuō): v. to hear

 

Example:

    Wǒ tīngshuō nǐ māma bìng le. Tā xiànzài hǎo diǎn le  ma?
A: 我     听说     你 妈妈    病  了。她 现在    好   点   了 吗?

 

     I heard that your mother was sick. Is she better now?

    Hǎo duō le,  xièxiè!
B: 好     多   了,谢谢!

 

     Yes, much better now. Thanks!

带来 (dàilái): v. to bring

 

Example:

    Nǐ  bǎ zuòyè dàilái le  ma?
A: 你 把 作业   带来 了 吗?

 

    Did you bring your homework?

    Duìbùqǐ,  wǒ hái méi zuò wán.
B: 对不起, 我 还   没   做   完。

 

    Sorry, I haven't finished it yet.

生词 (shēngcí) Vocabulary:

 

丢失 (diūshī): v. to lose

 

安慰 (ānwèi): v. to comfort

 

也许 (yěxǔ): adv. perhaps

 

福气 (fúqi): n. good fortune 

 

Learn more Mandarin for kids:

Mandarin for kids: 惊弓之鸟 A Bird Startled by the Mere Twang of a Bow String
Mandarin for kids: 盲人摸象 Blind Men and an Elephant
Mandarin for kids: 孟母三迁 Mencius' Mother Relocates Home Three Times to Improve Her Son's Education

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Comments

Frnkaly I think that’s absolutely good stuff.

Nice love this blog. I’m gonna share it on my twitter.

Yes, you are right. My daughter is taking online Mandarin lessons for kids this year, and sometimes my kid teaches me too. I know that “坏运气” can mean “bad luck,” but Chinese people tend to use “倒霉” to refer to “bad luck.”

In this Mandarin story for kids, “好运” means “good luck.” So does “坏运气” mean “bad luck?”

I always search Mandarin stories for kids online to teach my son. I know that in Chinese “congratulate” can also be “恭喜.” Is there any difference between “恭喜” and “道贺”? Or are the two interchangeable?

Take” can be translated as “拿走” or “带走” in Chinese.

An interesting story! As you mentioned that “bring” in Mandarin Chinese is “带来,” then how to say “take” in Chinese?

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