City University of Hong Kong CLASS CLASS
Making Sense of Grammar
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asked Feb 1, 2021 in Questions about Chinese Grammar by Ariel (34,480 points) | 379 views

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来着lái zhe is used in spoken Chinese at the end of a sentence to convey two separate meanings:

(1) To indicate that the action of the verb has only just taken place:


Tā gāng cái qù xué kāi chē lái zhe 。

She has just been for her driving lesson.


Shàng wǔ yǒu rén zhǎo nǐ lái zhe 。

Someone came to look for you just this morning.


Tā gěi shuí dǎ diàn huà lái zhe ?

Who did he ring just now?

(2) To form questions which indicate that the speaker once had knowledge of the answer, but is unable to recall the information exactly at the moment of speaking:


Nǐ gāng cái shuō shí me lái zhe ?

What did you say just now? (I can’t quite remember.)


Nǐ de diàn huà hào mǎ shì duō shǎo lái zhe ?

What’s your telephone number again?

[1] Yip, P. C., Rimmington, D., Xiaoming, Z., & Henson, R. (2009). Basic Chinese: a grammar and workbook. Taylor & Francis.
answered Feb 1, 2021 by Ariel (34,480 points)

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