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Mini-Test Answer: just

Apr. 23, 2012

Beginner Level 初级 (chūjí)

The right answer to this question is A.

Translation:

         Tàitǎnníkèhào jìngrán chū 3D bǎn le.
Anne: 泰坦尼克号    竟然        出   3D 版 了。
         The movie “Titanic” is now in 3D!

         Shì a, nǐ cái zhīdao a.
 Tom: 是啊,你才 知道 啊。
         You’ve just realized this?

Analysis:

The Chinese word “才 (cái)” is usually used as an adverb. Generally, it has three meanings and usages. 

1. One meaning is “just” and is used to show something that has happened just now or very recently. 

Example:

Nǐ cái tīngshuō tā jiéhūn le.
我 才   听说     他 结婚   了。
I’ve just recently found out that he got married.

2. The second meaning is “only” and is used to represent a small quantity or degree of something.

Example:

Wǒ cái chīle yí ge hànbǎobāo.
我   才   吃了 一个 汉堡包。
I’ve eaten only one hamburger.

3. The third meaning is “not until” and is used to show that something happened or finished late.

Example:

Zhí dào zuótiān wǒ cái míngbai nǐ yìzhí zài bāng wǒ.
直    到     昨天   我  才   明白    你  一直 在 帮    我。
It wasn’t until yesterday that I realized that you’ve always been helping me.

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