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Sam Thomas
Chinese-English false friend 中英假朋友(为友) I'm collecting a list of Chinese-English false friends. Vocabulary that looks similar but has different meanings. For example '食言' and 'to eat one's words' or  ‘儿戏’ and 'child's play'. I wondered if you have come across any when learning Chinese . Also examples where the characters that make up the word seem to have a different meaning to the full word. For example 生前 looks like it could mean 'before birth' but actually means 'before death'. Any help is appreciated.
Sep 12, 2018 10:57 PM
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Answers · 12
false friends?中文称为「同形异义词」 1.“pull one’s leg”looks like it could mean”扯后腿” but actually means开玩笑 "You're pulling my leg." 意思相當於是「 你是在愚弄我吧!」 扯后腿:比喻利用亲密的关系和感情牵制别人的行动。多含贬义。 例:正在这节骨眼上,你想扯后腿? 例:这样扯后腿的老婆,哪个会要! 扯后腿的真正意思是拖累别人还是陷害别人。 2.green bean looks like it could mean” 綠豆” but actually means四季豆 绿豆是 mung bean。 When you want to cook sweet mung bean soup in the United States, don't tell people that you want to buy green beans and cook soup! (Otherwise, you can only drink the green bean soup, haha ^__^ ) 3.drawing room looks like it could mean”画室(artist’s) studio” but actually means”客厅” 虽然 drawing 的确有画画的意思,但 drawing room 可不是用来画画的房间!其实,drawing room 是用来接待和娱乐访客的房间,意思较接近中文的「客厅」或「休息室」。 4. heavy-duty looks like it could mean”责任重大(have) great responsibility” but actually means”耐用durable; able to last a long time without becoming damaged” heavy(重)和 duty(责任或税) 这两个字你可能都认识,乍看之下很可能就会认为 heavy-duty 是责任重大或职务繁重的意思,但其实 heavy-duty 是形容衣服、机器或设备等东西很「耐用、坚固」,跟责任并没有关系。E.g., Heavy-duty shoes are usually expensive, but you can wear them for a long time before you need to buy new ones.
September 19, 2018
很火popular “在网上很火”It's very popular online". 网上购物非常火Online shopping is quite popular.
September 21, 2018
在英文中,eat one’s words: If you say that someone has to eat their words, you mean that they have to admit that they were wrong about something they said in the past的意思是某人过去说了一些话,或是预测了某些事,结果最后证实他说的是错的,于是被迫收回自己之前讲过的话;中文的「食言」意思则是「不遵守诺言Not following the promise、失信」,因此涵义和英文的 eat one’s words 并不相同。 So, they are Chinese-English false friends.
September 19, 2018
食言:Eat your said. 说出口的话,又吃回去 儿戏:儿童游戏。不认得对待。
September 17, 2018
牛逼 (cow cxxt)but it means awesome
September 13, 2018
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Sam Thomas
Language Skills
Chinese (Mandarin), English, French, German
Learning Language
Chinese (Mandarin), French, German