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Making Sense of Grammar
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asked Dec 1, 2021 in Questions about Chinese Grammar by M (4,830 points) | 55 views

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Men 们 is a suffix that pronounced with neutral tone and is restricted to human nouns and pronouns only. A human noun becomes a plural noun if it takes on this suffix. It is optional. For example:

laoshi-men 老师们 ‘teachers’

xiongdi-men 兄弟们 ‘brothers’

The suffix -men cannot be used with a monosyllabic human noun. For instance:

*zei-men *贼们 ‘thieves’

*bing-men *兵们 ‘soldier’

The suffix -men can occur as a plural marker with pronouns:

wo-men 我们 ‘I-plural=we’

ni-men 你们 ‘you-plural’

ta-men 他/她们 ‘s/he-plural=they’

Reference

Li, C. N., & Thompson, S. A. (1989). Mandarin Chinese: A functional reference grammar (Vol. 3). Univ of California Press.

answered Dec 1, 2021 by M (4,830 points)

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1,611 questions
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