City University of Hong Kong CLASS CLASS
Making Sense of Grammar
0 like 0 dislike
39 views
asked Jun 10, 2021 in Questions about Chinese Grammar by Ariel (34,480 points) | 39 views

1 Answer

0 like 0 dislike

In addition, the speaker may put the focus upon a particular part of the statement; then the adverbial has the function of restriction:

1a. 他对工作认真。

Tā zhǐ duì gōngzuò rènzhēn.

(He has been conscientious only about his work.)

1b. 只有他工作认真。

Zhǐyǒu tā duì gōngzuò rènzhēn.

(Only he has been conscientious about his work.)

In (1a), his quality of ‘being conscientious’ is true only to his work, but not true, for instance, to matters about his family or friends, etc. The limit application of the predicate is due to the presence of the focusing adverbial ‘zhǐ’ (only). As shown by the examples, the adverbials expressing the information of modality reflects the speaker’s subjective attitudes and orientations toward the content of a statement, though they may be objective measures of factual status of the statements.

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

answered Jun 10, 2021 by Ariel (34,480 points)

1,612 questions

1,889 answers

42 comments

26,588 users

1,612 questions
1,889 answers
42 comments
26,588 users