City University of Hong Kong CLASS CLASS
Making Sense of Grammar
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asked Nov 19, 2020 in Questions about Chinese Grammar by Mickey (7,400 points) | 11 views

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没(méi) serves to negate the event is already happened or the change of the state of the event, while future tense has the same function, as we only can say an event is going to happen in the future. Therefore, generally 没(méi) can not be used in the future tense. For example,

1) *他明天没来

Tā     míngtiān          méilái

He    tomorrow        didn’t come

*‘He didn’t come tomorrow.’

However, 没(méi) can be used in the future tense when the event time is prior to the reference time in the future. For example,

2)明天这时我还没起床

Míngtiān          zhèshí       wǒ    hái   méi   qǐchuáng

Tomorrow   this moment   I      still   not    get up

‘I still didn’t get up at this moment tomorrow.’

From this example, we can see that 没(méi) is used in the future tense, but in fact it is still in the past tense when referring to the reference time ‘zhèshí 这时 this moment’.
answered Nov 19, 2020 by Mickey (7,400 points)

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1,073 questions
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