"I am happy."


November 17, 2017



Tips and notes

When we want to describe something we don’t use the verb “to be”, we have to put something else before an adjective. The most common word used to do this is 很 hěn, which literally means very. It goes between the subject (who or what we are describing) and the adjective (what we are describing it as). Since 很 is used so often like this, it oftentimes doesn’t mean “very”, just a link between a noun and an adjective.

*Pinyin in brackets is the actual pronunciation as a result of the change of tone.

Chinese ----- Pinyin ----- English

我很好。----- Wǒ hěn[hén]* hǎo. ----- I'm good.

你很高兴。----- Nǐ[ní] hěn gāoxìng. ----- You are happy.

The word for “also” or “too” is much less flexible in Chinese than in English. It must always come after the subject and before the verb.

Chinese ----- Pinyin ----- English

我也认识你。----- Wǒ[wó] yě rènshi nǐ. ----- I also know you. / I know you, too.

我也很高兴。----- Wǒ yě[yé] hěn gāoxìng. ----- I am happy, also. / I am also happy.

也 can also be used in the phrase "If X is... then Y is (also) ..." Here we don't need to use 很.

Chinese ----- Pinyin ----- English

你高兴,我也高兴. ----- nǐ gāoxìng, wǒ[wó] yě gāoxìng. ----- If you are happy then I am happy.

你很高兴,我也很高兴。----- nǐ[ní] hěn gāoxìng, wǒ yě[yé] hěn gāo xìng. ----- You are happy, I am also happy.

我高兴,他也高兴。----- wǒ gāo xìng, tā yě gāoxìng ----- If I am happy then he is happy.

November 22, 2017


Wait... so when should we use 很 and when is it okay to not use it? I mean, if 我高兴 and 我很高兴 are both correct, why do we bother using 很 in the first place? Also... does 我好 mean something else in Chinese, like 你好? Can I say 我好 (without the 很) to mean 'I am good'?

soooo many questions, sorry, I'm a noob....

January 6, 2018


Wait.. so when should we use 很 and when is it okay to not use it? I mean, if both 我高兴 and 我很高兴 are both correct, why do we bother using 很 in the first place? Also... does 我好 make any sense in Chinese, like 你好?

soooo many questions, sorry, I'm a noob..

January 6, 2018


我很高兴 - I am happy , 很 is to make the sentence smooth to express your emotion ,if saying 我高兴 ,is kinda weird ,

I am hungry - 我很饿 I am thirsty - 我很渴

我非常高兴 - I am very happy

October 24, 2018


This suggests that by leaving out hěn you get an "if/then" statement. Is this always the way to say if/then or are there words for if and then?

February 25, 2018


To clarify, is it correct that you still need the 很 in 我也很高兴 unless it's part of an "if X is... then Y is also..." statement?

July 12, 2018


This is incorrect. The Mandarin means "I am very happy", not "I am happy". Please fix this.

November 17, 2017


That's what you think, you are translating literally. In chinese you do say 很as a linker between adjective and the one that is modified. Please learn Chinese and don't translate literally.

December 13, 2017


Eh? But I tried 我高兴 which means "I'm happy" and it's correct

December 2, 2017


What about 快乐

January 20, 2018


I also learned kuai4le4 for happy when I took a Mandarin course many years ago. Any fluent speakers have comment on the nuance between the two?

May 2, 2018


Doesnt hen mean very?

June 2, 2018


In a lot of cases, yes, hěn means very. However, in Mandarin, there isn't exactly a need for the word "is" in a Noun + Adjective unlike in English, which makes sentences like "Nǐ máng ma?" ("Are you busy?") acceptable. Instead, the structure in mandarin in sentences describing something falls under a Noun + the degree of the adjective + Adjective, such as "Tā bù gāo" ("He is not tall"). Now this is where it gets a little confusing, when you don't want to put a degree on the adjective, hěn is used as a link between noun and adjective, because the word "shì" is only used when linking a noun with a noun. It takes a little getting used to, but I hope I helped a bit.

June 6, 2018


shi is used only for nouns? so for adjectives we use hen?

August 10, 2019


what is difference between 姓 and 兴 ?

December 27, 2018


They are essentially pronounced the same (xing4), but have different meanings. 姓 = surname, and of course, 高兴 means "happy".

July 4, 2019


would wo hen hao also work ?

November 18, 2017


我很好 means "I am well/good". I don't believe it can mean "I am happy."(我很高兴。)

For example, One may be doing well or feeling well but may not be happy at the same time. I suppose context would determine the meaning of one's vocabulary despite whether or not those terms are used accurately.

It is like "ignorant" and "rude" 90% of North America(in my experience) misuse the word "ignorant" in place of "rude". Ironically, making them ignorant of the vocabulary they are using.

November 22, 2017


Yes!! I always feel the need to explain myself when I (properly) use the word ignorant or say "excuse my ignorance".

January 20, 2018


No, that means you are well

December 13, 2017


That's I'm OK, I'm fine, but not happy.

December 13, 2017


That will change the meaning to "I am good", which is the answer for question "ni hao ma?"

November 27, 2017


This is incorrect

December 17, 2017


In this video they explain how to use 很

March 3, 2018


In this video they explain how to use 很

March 3, 2018


So, what would be the difference between "gaoxing" and "kaixin"?

March 19, 2018


Why are there so many repeats of comments?

December 27, 2018
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