City University of Hong Kong CLASS CLASS
Making Sense of Grammar
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asked Aug 10 in Questions about Chinese Grammar by Mickey (7,400 points) | 16 views

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When functioning as adverbs, yuè (越) and (愈) are often used repeatedly in the pattern of “yuè X yuè Y(越X越Y)” and “ X Y(愈X愈Y)”, which translate to “the more X, the more Y”. The use of the pattern indicates that the degree of Y deepens with the change of the condition X. In contrast to yuè (越), (愈) is mostly used in written language. For example, yuè (越) and (愈) are not exchangeable in the Chinese idiom “měi kuàng yù xià (每况愈下)” (the situation becomes worse and worse). However, according to the corpus, yuè (越) is of high use frequency both in spoken language and writing language now.

这件事情我越想越生气。

zhè jiàn shì qíng wǒ yuè xiǎng yuè shēng qì.

The more I think about this matter, the angrier I get.

质量愈好,价格愈高。

zhì liàng hǎo, jià gé gāo

The better the quality, the higher the price

Yuè (越) also is often employed in the pattern “yuè lái yuè X (越来越X)” to convey the meaning of “ to become increasingly X with time”. (愈) is seldom used in this pattern.

希望你越来越好。

xī wàng nǐ yuè lái yuè hǎo.

I wish you could be better and better with time.

Another difference between yuè (越) and (愈) is that when modifying disyllabic verbs and adjectives, yuè (越) could form disyllabic words yuè fā (越发) and yuè jiā (越加), while(愈) tends to comprise yù jiā (愈加) as the modifier of disyllabic words. The three lexical items still express the meaning of “ more and more” or “even more”.

受到老师的表扬后,他越加/越发努力了。

 shòu dào lǎo shī de biǎo yáng hòu, tā yuè jiā /yuè fā nǔ lì le.

 After being praised by the teacher, he worked even harder.

由于他的干扰,这件事情变得愈加复杂了。

yóu yú tā de gān rǎo, zhè jiàn shì qíng biàn de yù jiā fù zá le.

Because of his interference, the matter becomes more and more complicated.

answered Aug 10 by Mickey (7,400 points)

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993 questions
1,285 answers
13 comments
7,389 users