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How to use “差不多” in Chinese

rough approximations, Chinese words, learning Chinese

差不多 (chàbùduō), translated literally, means "the difference is not much". Essentially what it means in Chinese is "more or less," and is useful for expressing rough approximations. It can be used as a predicate or an adverb.

"差不多"的字面翻译是"the difference is not much",它的中文本质意义是"或多或少",对于表达粗略概数非常实用。它可以用作谓语或副词。

 

"差不多" as a Predicate

 

"差不多" can be used all by itself to complete a sentence after you tell us what subjects we're talking about.

"差不多"可单独使用,用于在你说完我们正在讨论的主题之后结束句子。

 

Let's first assume that the subject is an easily understood group of people or things.

我们先假设主语是较为容易理解的一群人或事物。

 

Subj. + (都) + 差不多

 

这几个地方都差不多。

zhè jǐ gè dìfāng dōu chàbùduō.

These places are all pretty much the same.

 

这两个词的意思差不多。

zhè liǎng gè cí de yìsi chàbùduō.

The meanings of these two words are pretty much the same.

 

我们的想法差不多。

wǒmen de xiǎngfǎ chàbùduō.

Our ways of thinking are pretty much the same.

 

那两家餐厅的菜差不多。

nà liǎng jiā cāntīng de cài chàbùduō.

These two restaurants' dishes are almost the same.

 

你们的中文水平差不多。

nǐmen de zhōngwén shuǐpíng chàbùduō.

Your Chinese levels are almost the same.

 

Let's add in a few different subjects now, using the Chinese character "和" for "and."

现在我们添加一些不同的主语,并用上意为"and"的中文字"和"。

 

A + 跟 / 和 + B + 差不多

 

上海和纽约差不多。

shànghǎi hé Niǔyuē chàbùduō.

Shanghai and New York are basically the same.

 

这里的天气跟台湾的天气差不多。

zhè lǐ de tiānqì gēn táiwān de tiānqì chàbùduō.

The weather here are pretty much like Taiwan.

 

你的工作跟我的工作差不多。

nǐ de gōngzuò gēn wǒ de gōngzuò chàbùduō.

Your job and my job are almost the same.

 

你的新手机跟我的旧手机差不多。

nǐ de xīn shǒujī gēn wǒ de jiù shǒujī chàbùduō.

Your new cellphone is pretty much like my old cellphone.

 

"差不多" as an Adverb

 

When using 差不多 (chàbùduō) as an adverb, place it before the adjective or verb.

当"差不多"用作副词时,需要将它放于形容词或动词之前。

 

差不多 + Adj./Verb

 

这两个孩子差不多大。

zhè liǎng gè háizi chàbùduō dà.

These two children are more or less the same age.

 

我跟我哥哥差不多高。

wǒ gēn wǒ gēge chàbùduō gāo.

My elder brother and I are more or less the same height.

 

我差不多到公园门口了。

wǒ chàbùduō dào gōngyuán ménkǒu le.

I'm almost at the entrance of the park.

 

电影差不多要开始了。

diànyǐng chàbùduō yào kāishǐ le.

The movie is almost about to start.

 

"差不多" with a Quantity or Time Phrase

 

After 差不多 (chàbùduō) you can also add a phrase that expresses quantity or time.

你可以在"差不多"的后面跟上表达数量或时间的短语。

 

差不多 +[quantity phrase] / [time phrase]

 

你儿子差不多五岁了吧?

nǐérzi chàbùduō wǔ suì le ba?

Your son should be about 5 years old, right?

 

他住在上海差不多三个月了。

tā zhù zài Shànghǎi chàbùduō sān gè yuè le.

He has lived in Shanghai for about three months.

 

我在这家公司差不多工作十年了。

wǒ zài zhè jiā gōngsī chàbùduō gōngzuò shí nián le.

I've worked for this company for almost ten years.

 

差不多两周前,我在北京见过他。

chàbùduō liǎngzhōu qián, wǒ zài běijīng jiàn guo tā.

About two weeks ago I met with him in Beijing.

 

Translated from: allsetlearning

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2016-06-21

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