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Say It Right Series

寧可 vs. 寧願

Posted by calkins January 20, 2011 in the Group General Discussion.

Hey all!

I'm curious if anyone (especially native speakers and foreigners living in China/Taiwan) has any insights into 寧可 níngkě and 寧願 níngyuàn.

I know they pretty much mean the same thing, "would rather / had better / would sooner", but I'm curious to know which one might be used more often.

A Taiwanese friend said that you could use them interchangeably, but that in certain rare situations it may be better to use one over the other.  She couldn't elaborate!  She also said that she's more likely to use 寧願 because it's a bit easier to say and a bit more pleasant to the ears.

Any additional insight would be greatly appreciated, thanks!

Oh, and here's an example sentence:

I would rather die than eat my brother's cooking, tastes too bad.

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