City University of Hong Kong CLASS CLASS
Making Sense of Grammar
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asked Apr 29 in Questions about Chinese Grammar by Ariel (34,480 points) | 74 views

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Yes.

The 在+NP loc ‘zài + NP loc’ can also be used with stative verbs, indicating the location

where some state obtains:

1a. 孩子在沙发上睡着呢。

Háizi zài shāfā shàng shuìzhe ne.

(The child is asleep on the sofa.)

1a’ 孩子睡{在沙发上}。

Háizi shuì {zài shāfā shàng}.

(The child was sleeping on the sofa.)

1b. 他在北京住了{三年}。

Tā zài Běijīng zhù le sān nián.

1b’ 他住{在北京}{三年}。

Tā zhù {zài Běijīng} {sān nián}.

(He has lived in Beijing for three years.)

1c. 车在大门外停着呢。

Chē zài dàmén wài tíng zhe ne

(The car is parked outside the gate.)

1c’ 车停{在大门外}。

Chē tíng{zài dàmén wài}

(The car is parked outside the gate.)

With posture verbs like 睡‘shuì’ (sleep) or 住‘zhù’ (live (in a place)), 停‘tíng’ (stop, park (a car)), either the preverbal or postverbal 在‘zài’ phrase is acceptable. This is because there is no difference between naming the general location where the event described by a posture verb takes place (e.g., the location where the subject referent takes the action of sitting down) and naming the position where the subject referent assumes the posture (e.g., the position where the subject referent sits down). Hence, with verbs of this class, no essential difference exists between the meanings of the preverbal and the postverbal 在‘zài’ phrases.

[1] Loar, J. K. (2011). Chinese syntactic grammar: functional and conceptual principles. New York: Peter Lang.

answered Apr 29 by Ariel (34,480 points)

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1,439 questions
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