Classical Chinese/Lesson 2

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Text[edit]

1:





荀子 (Xunzi).

Vocab & Translation[edit]

Grammar Notes[edit]

English sentence of the type: A is B (A was B, etc.), where A and B are nouns, is rendered in Classical Chinese this way: AB也

Note that (yě) is a particle, not a verb like and English is. (Were it verb, it would have been placed between A and B).

Construction «AB也» is used if A is always B in any case. So, for example, you can say «I am a man» — «吾人也», but not «I'm a minister», cause it´s something that can be taken from you.

In this case the verb 為 (wéi) is used, and it is a verb, not a particle (therefore it´s put between two nouns, line in English): A為B

For example, «吾為臣» — «I´m a minister».

Note that 為 (wéi) doesn´t change its forms like English verb does (am, is, are, be).