1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Chinese
  4. >
  5. "这个问题很难。"

"这个问题很难。"

Translation:This question is difficult.

November 17, 2017

23 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alison920660

I've noticed a few sentences where Duolingo includes 很 in Chinese but doesn't include "very" in the English translation. Does that come across as strange to anyone else, or is this normal?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AbunPang

Chinese adjectives normally cannot function as a predicate (verb) without a so-called “adverb of degree” (very, really, completely etc.). So you cannot say *这个问题难, you need to add an adverb of degree.¹ 很 is the weakest of those, more a placeholder than anything else. It only becomes equivalent to English “very” when it’s emphasised, otherwise it should not be translated at all.

¹ Technically you can say 这个问题难, but only under certain special circumstances, so I’ll ignore those for the moment and just talk about the default case ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hedwigechouette

Well explained. I agree. It sounds unnatural without it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/inacapache

well i guess it's only a slight difference for the advanced learner. for the beginner and intermediate it's relly hard to grasp why this shouldn't be accepted. Other pages have both translations with "very" and without "very" for this sentence.(这个问题很难)

http://ce.linedict.com/dict.html#/cnen/search?query=%E8%BF%99%E4%B8%AA%E9%97%AE%E9%A2%98%E5%BE%88%E9%9A%BE

i really think it's a style thing and it depends on the context. I mean some things that are difficult for one are very difficult for another and slightly more difficult than diffucult but not yet very difficult for a third one.. Perhaps one should invent a scale with numbers for every verb of degree. So one could say its's 5,6 difficult or something like that...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hippietrail

I don't know. For me this was probably the very first piece of Chinese grammar I learned and I never had a teacher, just learning from the Internet, travellers' phrasebooks, and trying to communicate in China. So for me this is the very definition of beginners level Chinese.

But all such questions should definitely accept both with and without "very" in the English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hedwigechouette

"this problem is very difficult" wasn't allowed but should be


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MsAWhit

That's what I wrote. I agree.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Riven333

"This problem is difficult" Still marked wrong as of 2019-04-01. Reported.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eric492387

"This problem is difficult" should be correct.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kuyaC

What's the difference between 问 and 问题?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LauraKarran

问题 ( wenti / wèntí ) is composed of these characters: 问 (wen) , 题 (ti) 问 to ask, to inquire, to inquire after, to interrogate, to hold responsible 题 topic, task, problem, to inscribe, subject, title https://dictionary.hantrainerpro.com/chinese-english/translation-wenti_problem.htm

Zhè bù shì yīgè wèntí. – English translation: This is not a problem.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IanMcFarla17

'This question is hard' should be accepted (obviously).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DBf9DF

The Chinese to English translations are inconsistent and often problematic. It is very frustrating.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TimothyVan831969

This is a difficult question is wrong? How?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ArtBurnap

Probably because in Chinese the adjective 难 is in the predicate, not before the noun.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EthanWang824851

My translation: "This problem is hard." Reported 3-30-19, 4-1-19


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NickNguyen299777

I always learned to say 很 for very. Duolingo is the first time I seen them use 很, then omit it from the english translation. I have reported the error every time since my teacher corrects me on this.

Ex: 我饿= I am hungry 我很饿= I am very hungry 我非常饿= I am extremely hungry.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mokuhazush

Your teacher is either wrong or you've misunderstood something. See the explanation above, 很 doesn't always mean "very".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RobertGoug6

I lived in China, I have studied Chinese in university (though I am still not very good at it). This is also the first time I have experienced 很 as a placeholder. It's new to me also. And I like your 'hungry' explanation. That being said, I am here to learn and will learn from the above explanation from AbunPang.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jacques439990

Here again 很isn't translated. Can you please fix this issue ASAP.???


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/beaudanner

I can't believe "This question is TMD difficult" is not accepted. It should be with all the BS you're putting us through. Seriously though; if you're going to use 很 you have to TMD accept "really" or “very" and I don't care if it's just a place holder or adverb of degree!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hedwigechouette

哈哈 我同意。I agree that an adverb of degree is required and it's unnatural without it, and consequently 很 may not be that strong. However it does depend on the degree to which it is emphasised, and can definitely mean "very". We can't tell to what degree it is emphasised just from what is typed, it can only be heard in speech. Also, even in English words are overused and can become weak. The essential meaning remains the same though. I'm sure it will be accepted and is merely an oversight, being just a beta release.


[deactivated user]

    It's no longer in beta; time to put on your pants Duo and take the diaper stink off this app!

    Learn Chinese in just 5 minutes a day. For free.