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  5. "She gave me a bag of fruit."

"She gave me a bag of fruit."


November 20, 2017



is 一袋 and 一包 different?


There is no strict definition. Usually 一袋 is an open bag and 一包 is a closed bag, but it may vary.


Just wondering, is 了 really needed here?


Duolingo is trying to build an equivalence between 了 and English past tense, which is not true. I have no strong objection except that they should make a remark it's a simplified model for easier learning.

Both with 了 and without 了 can be a good sentence. Just an isolated sentence like this is insufficient to tell it is needed or not. Basically, just a description of the action does not require 了; to indicate a change of state of facts or the resultant state of facts due to the action, we need 了.


But wouldn't receiving a bag of fruit represent a change of state, though? Would the 了 therefore be necessary?


The explanation above is a bit off.

verb + 了 means bounded action. It can be bounded because you count how many times it happened, or because you say that it preceded something else.

sentence + 了 means currently relevant situation. Usually it's reporting on a past change of state that is relevant, but it can also describe realizing that something is relevant, apart from it changing.

verb + 了 can only mean change of state when the verb is last in the sentence.

But no, it's not a past tense marker either, and Duolingo should stop trying to treat it like one.

Reference: Li and Thompson, Mandarin Chinese: A functional reference grammar.


I was very much in doubt whether the 了 should maybe come later in the sentence to indicate closed action, could that be the case at all?


Why is this wrong: 她给我一包水果


It isn't. Duolingo is trying to pretend that 了 means past tense and past tense means 了. They overlap, but they're not the same.


What's the difference between 一袋 and 一包?


Is there any rule for where to put the 了?


It is placed after a verb (or an adjective when describing something).


But that's not the whole story though, is it? Sometimes when there's a clause or something after the verb, the 了 is after the clause or whatever.


Why no measure word before 袋?


Dai is the measure word

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