City University of Hong Kong CLASS CLASS
Making Sense of Grammar
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asked Aug 15 in Questions about Chinese Grammar by Ariel (34,480 points) | 35 views

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‘zhù’ (live, reside, stay): The invariant meaning of ‘zhù’ is ‘to live (in a place)’. Its extended meaning is ‘to stop/cease/fix/hold on’, which suggests endpoint or goal. It often functions as a phase resultative complement, expressing that the action named by V1 is conducted to the extent of reaching one’s goal. Remembering the invariant meaning of ‘fix/hold on’, it is not difficult for one to understand and learn to use the RVCs formed by ‘zhù’. For instance ‘jìzhù’ (memorize-hold on = remember), the mental activity of memorizing finally fixes the thing that you try to remember in your mind. In ‘wènzhù’ (ask-hold on = stump somebody with a question), being baffled by a question, you are ‘stopped’ or prevented from answering the question; in the case of ‘nánzhù’ (stop somebody with a difficulty, put somebody in a quandary or dilemma), you are prevented from continuing your work by a difficulty, etc. Besides, there are ‘názhù’ (take-hold on = hold), ‘tíngzhù’ (stop-hold on = stop), ‘guǎnzhù’ (control-hold on = control), ‘liúzhù’, (keep-hold on = detain), etc. In short, ‘zhù’ signals reaching the endpoint of an action, thus a participant involved in an event is prevented from moving. Look at the examples:

沟被堵住/顶住困难/把握住好机会/忍住没笑/瞒住坏消息/被悠扬的音乐吸引住

gōu bèi dǔzhù/dǐngzhù kùnnan/bǎwò zhù hǎo jīhuì/rěnzhù méi xiào/mánzhù huài xiāoxi/bèi yōuyáng de yīnyuè xīyǐnzhù

the ditch was blocked/go against the difficulty/grasp firmly the good opportunity/force oneself not to laugh/hide the bad news/be attracted by the melodious music.

[1] Loar, J. K. (2011). Chinese syntactic grammar: functional and conceptual principles. New York: Peter Lang.
answered Aug 15 by Ariel (34,480 points)

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