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Average Rating: 4.7

placing time words in sentences

Robert-C7 January 3, 2015, 9:28 pm
Rosetta Stone does it both ways (1) who (2) when (3) rest of the sentence -or- (1) when (2) who (3) rest of the sentence. For example:

zuótiān wǒ pǎo shí gōnglǐ
昨天我跑十公里
yesterday I ran 10 kilometers

tā zuótiān dǎ wǎngqiú le
她昨天打网球了
she played tennis yesterday

zuótiān wǒ mǎi ròu hé shūcài le
昨天我买肉和蔬菜了
yesterday I bought meat and vegetables

wǒ jīntiān zài hǎitān shàng
我今天在海滩上
I am at the beach today

I know in English, whether you specify the time at the beginning or end of the sentence does not change the meaning. It simply emphasizes different things depending on what appears first. Is this also the case with Chinese?
placing time words in sentences
Lin-Ping January 27, 2015, 7:58 am
Robert 你好!

Yes, you are correct. Because Chinese is a tonal language, putting stress and emphasis on syllables can often be difficult and has the potential to distort the meaning so we rely more where in the sentence we place words in order to be emphatic. We can also achieve this by adding markers at the end of sentences such as '吧' (in this case to soften the tone) etc.

Keep up the good work and 加油!

- Lin Ping
placing time words in sentences
Robert-C7 February 2, 2015, 6:04 pm
Thank you for explaining that. It is confusing initially to try to make sense of these sentences, and Rosetta Stone offers no explanation leaving it up to us to figure things out. As you say, word order, like in English, can emphasize different parts of the sentence. Due to the tonal nature of Chinese, this becomes more important.
placing time words in sentences
handyman March 24, 2015, 5:53 pm
Although I often see the time period at the beginning of the
sentence, my friend (who is from Hangzhou) always begins the
sentence with the subject then the time period.
placing time words in sentences

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