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Say It Right Series

(REVISED) Please give grammar help!!!

Posted by xiaophil July 23, 2009 in the Group General Discussion.

Tags: grammar, sentences, phrases, punctuation

What is this about? 

This is a continuation of my grammar post that can be found here.  The reason for this update is to consolidate and update what has been advised so far in order to easier facilitate further instruction.   Anybody who knows something about the nitty-gritty details of grammar is encouraged to give input on the accuracy of the examples below.  But of course, those who just got a good sense are also encouraged to contribute.

I especially hope to have these questions answered about the examples below:

  • Is the translation grammatically correct?
  • Does the translation convey the original English meaning?
  • Is the translation relatively natural (or at least not unbearably awkward)?
  • Do you know an easier way?

 

(Note: I changed many examples using because seems to present a unique problem in the present continuous.)

Thanks to anyone who can help me out.  If I made an error or missed one of your suggestions, a thousand apologies, and please let me know!

1) Present Tense (No comments thus far)

I read books.

我看书。


2) Present Continuous Tense (Received comments, but the more the merrier)

I am eating food. 

我吃着饭。

I am eating at 6 o'clock.

我六点会吃着饭。(我六点打算吃着饭。)

Question: I personally think that I am trying too hard to force English grammar into Chinese grammar, and that it would be good enough to say 我六点吃饭.  Am I right?


3) Present Perfect Tense (Received comments, but the more the merrier)

I have read that book.

我看过那本书了。

  • (It isokay to add 了 . But there is no need to add "了"since "过" and "完" both mean something has been done!) In fact, to add "了"at the end of this sentence just emphasizes加强语气.
  • (Is it okay to add 了 and say 我看过了那本书?) no need to add 了since 过 is an experiential marker.
  • (Is it okay to add 了 and say 我看过了那本书?) if you add 了,maybe you could say it 那本书我看过了

 


4) Present Perfect Continuous Tense (No comments thus far)

 

I have been watching a lot of TV.

我最近在看着很多电视。

 

5) Past Tense (No comments thus far)

I read that book.我看了那本书。


6) Past Continuous Tense (No comments thus far)

I was reading a letter.我以前写着一封信。

Question: I am never sure if 以前 carries the same exact meaning of ‘before' in English.  In English, ‘before' implies a significant amount of time has passed.  Is it the same with 以前?  If ‘before' and 以前 are the same, how would I rewrite this sentence if I meant I was writing a letter three hours ago?


7) Past Perfect Tense (No comments thus far)

I had read that book.

我已经看了那本书了。


8) Past Perfect Continuous Tense (Received comments, but the more the merrier)

I had been reading that book.

我之前一直看/读那本书。

  • ‘had been doing'表示这个状态一直持续。

 

9) Future Tense (No comments thus far)

I will read that book.

我会看那本书。

 

10) Future Continuous Tense (No comments thus far)

I will be listening to my MP3 player.

我会听着我的MP3。

Question: Again, is that 着 necessary or even wanted?


11) Future Perfect Tense (Received comments, but the more the merrier)

I will have finished reading that book by 10 pm.

我十点会看完那本书了。

  • No need to add "了" here since the sentence already uses "完" to mean "finish"

12) Future Perfect Continuous Tense (Received comments, but the more the merrier)

When the clock strikes 7, I will have been listening to that man for two hours.

到起点,我就会听着那位男人两个小时了。

Question: Again, is that 着 necessary or even wanted?

 

Again, thanks a billion to everyone who has contributed so far!

 

 

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