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Today I’d like to talk about two very important verbs in Chinese related to direction and how to properly use them in directional complements:
The first thing you’ll want to remember about these two characters is this:
Here are two examples of these words in action, which both happen to be very common questions you’ll hear as a foreigner in China:
The first question might come from someone on the street who sees you are lost, or it may come from a taxi driver. In either case, you’re eventually moving away from the speaker. The second one could come from anybody. Since you’ve left your home country to visit China, you’ve moved towards the speaker. If you’re talking about yourself moving, just think about the context:
Here are a few more examples for you to study:
Now that you have a basic understand of how to use these verbs, let’s expand on them a bit by adding other characters to form directional complements. These are used – not surprisingly – to describe the direction of the verb. Think about some of them in English – go away, come here, go down, come back, etc. Here are the words we’ll be adding on to form these directional complements:
Now, we can add 来 or 去 to each one of these to describe the direction of the verb. Let’s take a look at them one by one:
Note that there is not a word 起过 – it just wouldn’t make sense.
If you’d like to, feel free to save this table to help you study all of these directional complements:
In the next lesson, I’ll dive into these a bit more and provide some more examples for you to study. For now, let’s review a bit – answer the following questions simply with the directional complement that is most appropriate for the situation:
If you want to challenge yourself, try to make a sentence you would use in each situation. I’ll give you the answers and many more examples that will hopefully have you using these directional complements like a pro in the next lesson.