City University of Hong Kong CLASS CLASS
Making Sense of Grammar
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asked Apr 18 in Questions about Chinese Grammar by Ariel (34,480 points) | 75 views

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请 is also a verb, meaning ‘to invite, to politely request’. When both 请 and 你 are used in an imperative sentence, ‘请你 + action’ may have a different connotation from ‘你请 + action’.

你请 or 请你 can imply an invitation:

啊,王老师,您好!您请进来坐。……请您喝杯茶。

A,wáng lǎo shī ,nín hǎo !nín qǐng jìn lái zuò 。……Qǐng nín hē bēi chá 。

Ah, Teacher Wang, how are you! Please come in and have a seat. . . . Please have some tea.

When a command (but not an invitation) is given in a polite way, 你请 is not appropriate.

Only 请你 is proper in this context:

王:请你给我去邮局买几张邮票。

Wáng :qǐng nǐ gěi wǒ qù yóu jú mǎi jǐ zhāng yóu piào 。

Wang: Please go to the post office and buy some stamps for me.

丁:好,不过请你先把买邮票的钱给我。

Dīng :hǎo ,bú guò qǐng nǐ xiān bǎ mǎi yóu piào de qián gěi wǒ 。

Ding: OK. But please give me the money for the stamps first.

When a command is given in a polite way, 麻烦你 can be used to replace 请你. 你 is not optional.

麻烦你给我拿杯水来。

Má fán nǐ gěi wǒ ná bēi shuǐ lái 。

Would you please fetch a glass of water for me?

[1] Yip, P. C., Rimmington, D., Xiaoming, Z., & Henson, R. (2009). Basic Chinese: a grammar and workbook. Taylor & Francis.
answered Apr 18 by Ariel (34,480 points)

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1,451 questions
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