"你们不吃饭吗?"

Translation:Are you not eating?

November 20, 2017

86 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/msmith

"饭" does not have to mean rice. It usually means a meal. Please consider changing the English translation of the word "饭". Thanks

November 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/DorisHuang0916

I am a Chinese, taking this test for fun and I completely agree with this comment

November 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Emy__3

msmith: "饭" does not have to mean rice. It usually means a meal.

I agree partially and I'd like to make some additional notes:

  • usually in these general sentences "吃 + 饭" mean to eat in general, meal/food is unnecessary;

  • to eat rice is "吃 + 米饭" ( mǐ fàn ) but we can also use "饭" as cooked rice in some contexts, e.g. in contrast to other dishes ( I want to eat rice and not pasta. ) or when you're pointing at cooked rice ... i.e. when it's clear that you're referring to rice.

August 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Bostjan652824

I understand the explanation but this should be for higher grade of understanding.

January 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/EgadSaysI

I was confused on this too. This was the first instance that they hadn't used this character to represent rice in particular (for me).

December 5, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Charly154715

Great. I was looking for the word rice and had a wrong answer. So confused

January 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/SunnyWu46376

Native here. You can pretty much omit that word for this translation and it would still make sense...

March 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/camille.t.

Exactly what i was thiNking , thanks !

July 5, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Russell_Eire

As is the pressure to use the colloquial American English "you guys".

November 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sean_Roy

I agree. I'm American, and I think the use of "you guys" is idiotic. I wish they would remove it from the course.

July 5, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ElMeuNom

I don't think they should remove it, nor do I think it is idiotic. It's a pretty normal part of my everyday speech. Perhaps it shouldn't be the main translation, but it should certainly be accepted.

September 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/clashcityrocker

Why? English doesn't have a more elegant way of marking a second person plural. I think getting upset over this is childish, the meaning is clear. Y'all or you folks as others have suggested sound much more idiomatic (and cringeworthy) anyway.

October 17, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/BennyRenard

I prefer "y'all".

July 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/lauragecko1

´Y´áll is also used to indicated the singular second in colloquial English (I am American and grew up on the Mason Dixon line). I don´t see it as resolving the problem of a lack of plural second person. There doesn´t seem to be an elegant way of indicating plural second person in English. Though it may have a certain informal (immature) tone, at least "ýou guys" does clarify number, where "you guys" does not.

November 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/lauragecko1

I meant..."where "y´all´" does not.

November 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Timothy660313

English doesn't have a proper plural you, and speakers either don't differentiate or use a variety of phrases. For some reason this question accepts "you guys" and "y'all" but not "you folks".

August 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna316745

It is to make sure that you know that it is meant in plural form.

August 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Femi828913

I find it ridiculous myself. Why do we have to use that particular words "you guys". I took a Chinese class and the laoshi used thesame set of words to describe Ni men. It removes a level of seriousness from the translation i think.

September 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/AfamefunaO

How would you differentiate between you (singular) and you (plural)?

July 30, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/MattBush2

I would say "don't". It means both, so should accept it in both contexts.

August 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/sp.learner

I was taught to say "all of you". Examples: "All of you are not eating?" asks the hostess. You are all my students. All of you wore red for Valentine's Day!

February 22, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/KathySnyde6

you all

April 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/phong321023

I agree with you

September 17, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/LuisMayorg986653

or y'all

December 28, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/CvonD1

This chosen turn of phrase as the "correct" solution is a bad idea: when you build a test, you don't spring low-level vernacular (a.k.a. "relaxed" street-style talk) in the middle of a "standard-level, non-idiomatic" English translation. If you want to do that, you end up shepherding your students down to . . . . this page, with way too many people scratching their head, wondering what was wrong with the response they gave. If you want to introduce idiomatic Chinese, make a mini-module just for that and add it to the section. It then becomes very useful, because A. your student is forewarned; B. it becomes ok to venture away from "straight-laced English" answers. Your "Are you guys . . ." solution pays no attention to whom the speaker is speaking. It would be very bad form if you were to speak to an elder that way, or your teacher, or anyone who is not of equal age and equal socio-economic situation. Yep... language is that way, full of mini pitfalls. Especially with Chinese, the nuanced language "par excellence" , where addressing someone improperly is really frowned upon..... My five cents again.... :-)

January 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/MishaLavrov

The Chinese is not being idiomatic, the English is. I agree that it's not perfect, but it's more important to be able to indicate when "you" is supposed to be plural (otherwise we would never write 你们 when translating to Chinese). There's no good way to do that.

April 22, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Telisa7

I'm interested to know where you live. Where I live, to say "you guys" or even "y'all" would not be considered as low-level as it seems to be where you are, and most people would be fine to address strangers or elders that way. I'm from the middle of the United States.

August 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/praisethemoon

I answered "You guys aren't eating?" and it was marked as correct, just in case anyone's looking for a more casual/natural option.

November 30, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/linyanni

don't ... you...? and do you not...? what is the difference?

November 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Mr.rM
  • 1504

They mean the same. “don't you” is just shorter and more common in spoken English.

November 30, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Jamil_A

I think it have to be "do not you " because i have never seen sentence like this .

November 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Karuna8063

In English, you can say "do you not...." but it is awkward and rare. Its more common to "Don't you..."

December 6, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/ccuganda

My only issue with duolingo is sometimes they add words that they haven't taught you and expect you to know they have different meanings. I mean you'll figure it out just by getting it wrong. In the flash cards it would be useful to show the word for rice, also being used for meal.

April 26, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/mapeabody

Wouldn't "Are you not eating?" also be correct, given that "you" can be both singular and plural?

June 17, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Cake55555

"Are you all not eating!?!" "Yep. Were on a diet!" ; - )

October 30, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/AshleyBarn496105

The "correct" answer they have listed now is "Are you all not eating." If I wanted to say that in Chinese I'd say "Nimen dou bu zai chi fan ma?" The original Chinese sentence sounds to me like someone is asking a group, "none of you eat food???" Haha.

November 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/jehobu

It marked this solution incorrect: "Are all of you not eating?"

March 3, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Jamil_A

The sentence should be like this "dont you eat rice " or shouldnt ?

November 21, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/racerclc

If you see "吃饭" together, that usually means something like "eating". "饭" by itself means rice, meal, etc.

December 15, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/LarryBilli

I would agree. The word 饭 here is a little strange.

November 22, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/racerclc

See my comment on Jamil_A. Here it is anyway: "If you see '吃饭' together, that usually means something like 'eating'. '饭' by itself means rice, meal, etc."

December 15, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/CvonD1

And another thing, it seems we are forced to accept whatever is presented as the "correct" answer, no matter whether it has been flagged unanimously as "wrong" or not, if we want to move on to the next module. Why can't we choose to "move on" if we prefer not to parrot an inexact answer? Ding us one point, ok? But don't force us to copy what amounts to, in some cases, a plain incorrect answer.... Thank you!

January 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/sarahY656418

Why can't you say are you guys eating?

February 17, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/roman2095

You have omitted the "not" (不), but you could say "aren't you guys eating".

Your English sentence also has a different meaning - it is an open question asking for information. Including the "not" is asking for confirmation of a supposition the questioner has already made.

October 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Mandarinlord

Can we say '' 你们不在吃饭吗''?

May 21, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Mr.rM
  • 1504

Yes, the English sentence can mean that. The translation “Are you not eating?” is ambiguous, as it can be spoken before or during the meal. According to the context, 你们不在吃饭吗 can mean “Are you not eating at this moment?” or “Were you not eating at that time?” or “Will you be not eating at that time?”. 在 indicates the state at the moment.

May 21, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/wafa640828

How we pronunce it?

July 27, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ArtBurnap

你们不吃饭吗 -- Nǐmen bù chīfàn ma. If you're studying from the app, you probably can't simply copy the text and paste into Google translate, because my experience, at least in the Android app, is that copying is disabled in most places. However, you could try to input the characters either with camera input, handwriting input, or through radical + stroke count, depending on where you're looking. I know the latter two can be tedious, but it is a learning experience. Keep in mind you may to select the correct character from some alternatives shown if they misinterpreted what you wrote. Google Translate (GT) and some smart phone dictionaries allow camera input (that a couple of my friends really like!) as well as handwriting input. Depending on platform, the GT handwriting symbol / icon is either a pen or a squiggly line. GT can of course also pronounce input or output on demand. Most dictionaries also have radical + stroke count, and in some you can even search by selecting one or more component parts of a character.

The smart device Chinese dictionary app I absolutely love is Pleco. Even without paying for any add-ons, it has so many features, that makers of dictionaries for any language need to study it. My favorite online Chinese dictionaries are mdbg.net and yellowbridge.com. Mdbg has very good phrase and sentence translation as well as various options for the display of pinyin. Yellowbridge has several things besides the dictionary, most notably for language learners, a flashcard / memory matching game for vocabulary, characters, and pinyin pronunciation that you can do / play using any of a large number of different character / vocabulary sets: HSK levels, many textbooks, official grade level hanzi lists, etc.

Two final things to mention about when you look up the pronunciation of Chinese characters. Some have more than one tone, or even an entirely different pronunciation. Devices don't always choose the right one. Second, some tones change when placed next to others, but this is NOT usually shown in pinyin transcriptions -- You are expected to know the rules. The following source does a pretty clear job of explaining tone change (also called tone sandhi) rules: https://www.writtenchinese.com/rules-for-changing-tones-chinese/

July 27, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Mewcle

I actually put "you guys do not eat rice"... And it accepted it

July 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/mosesmwamba

Kindly look into the possible answers to this one. I am still a learner but i think there should be "zai 在" somewhere if its a present continous statement in english

August 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/TellTheSeal

In English, the difference between habitual (simple) present and continuous present is stricter. In Mandarin, including the 在 would clarify that the action is ongoing, but without the 在 the action could be either ongoing or habitual (simple). Note that the question also accepts the answer, "Do you not eat rice?" which is another possible translation. You are correct: you could add 在 to restrict the given exercise sentence to a question of continuous action, but the accepted answers (to the exercise as given, without 在) are also correct.

March 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/AshleyBarn496105

I agree. The way the question is asked now it sounds like the speaker is questioning whether the grouo eats food ever.

November 20, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/GeorgePerr1

Should "Do you (/you guys) eat rice" be correct? It marked it wrong

September 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/BosniaPM

Y'all ain't eatin? is a perfect translation

October 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/MUTAGANDAB

Can somebody please tell me the correct word for rice?

January 16, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/RazTaz2

Rice was missing from the options

January 19, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/MaryaBeijing

You have translated “chi fan” as “eat rice” in every exercise I have done prior to this...

February 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Tamara477335

а где же перевод слова "рис"? одним словом, перевод не точный!

February 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Sean_Roy

Перевод точный. The word "рис" is not generally translated. The phrase 吃饭 can mean simply есть (although it can also mean есть рис, given the proper context). Mandarin requires the use of a placeholder object in constructions like this.

February 11, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/BadiarTimu

I wrote, " dont you eat rice?" and it came correct, the difference is huge :P

February 17, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Samuel289470

do they not eat rice?

March 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/TellTheSeal

"You," not "they."

Common Mandarin Pronouns:

Mandarin (PinYin) English Subject, English Object (notes)

我 (wo3) I, me
你 (ni3) you, you (singular)
您 (nin2) you, you (singular formal, respectful, honorific)
他 (ta1) he, him (or generic: anyone, gender unknown)
她 (ta1) she, her
它 (ta1) it, it
我们 (wo3 men) we, us
你们 (ni3 men) you, you (plural, a group of you)
您们 (nin2 men) you, you (formal, respectful, plural you)
他们 (ta1 men) they, them (people of any gender, or men)
她们 (ta1 men) they, them (group of women only)
它们 (ta1 men) they, them (things, objects, entities, animals other than people)

March 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/SunnyWu46376

Honestly being a native speaker, you can just omit 饭 here...

March 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/orenishimo

The answer is "are you all not eating". How is it written if "are they all not eating"?

March 19, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/SunnyWu46376

“他们不吃饭吗?” or “她们不吃饭吗? “他们不吃吗?” or “她们不吃吗?”

Depending on the gender. If you don't know the gender natives usually use 他.

March 19, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/James299585

"Are you all not eating" feels like an awkward translation

April 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/DavidTvedt

"Do you 'guys' not eat rice?" is also valid

November 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Nemomeori

What do you think about "Don't you eat meals?"

December 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/2A2w3

it can be transrated 'did't you eat yet?', can't it??

January 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Programmer300889

This should be accepted: "Are none of you eating?" because "Are you all not eating?" does not flow sa well.

April 9, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Marina788827

There is a mistake

February 3, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/PilarMedin484094

the word rice is not in the answer. Wrong and confusing!!

March 2, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Richard405457

饭 is not a meal. It's rice, or a dish. (Any food)

早饭 (zao fan) breakfast Literally "morning food/rice"

中饭 (zhong fan) lunch Literally "middle food/rice"

晚饭 (wan fan) dinner Literally "night food/rice"

December 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Mr.rM
  • 1504

No. 饭 can mean meals, food, rice, but NOT dishes. Dishes is 菜 cài or 饭菜. Food is 食物 shí wù, 菜 or 饭菜. All translations depend on the context. Maybe it is your translations that make you think it doesn't mean meals, but I would like to elaborate here. (I'm a native.)

  • These are meals (or food) eaten in the morning, at noon, or in the evening, right?
    • 早饭 zǎo fàn (breakfast)
    • 午饭 wǔ fàn (lunch, rarely use 中饭) (Small Update: sorry! actually 中饭 is not rare ;-)
    • 晚饭 wǎn fàn (dinner, supper)
  • 吃饭 chī fàn — eat, eat meals/food, eat rice, earn one's living
    • 我在吃饭 wǒ zài chī fàn — I'm eating.
    • 只吃饭不吃菜 zhǐ chī fàn bù chī cài — only eat rice but dishes
    • 靠写字吃饭 kào xiě zì chī fàn — earn one's keep by writing
  • 饭菜 fàn cài — food, meals, or just dishes (菜). e.g.
    • 饭菜凉了 (fàn cài dōu liáng le) the food is getting cold
    • 饭菜很可口 (fán cài hěn ké kǒu) the meal is delicious
    • 饭菜不够 (fàn cài bú gòu) food/dishes are not enough
  • 菜 cài — dishes, cuisine, vegetables. e.g.
    • 青菜 qīng cài — vegetables, greens, a variety of Chinese cabbage
    • 中国菜 zhōng guó cài — Chinese dishes/food/cuisine
    • 两菜一汤 liǎng cài yì tāng — two dishes and one soup
    • 吃肉不吃菜 chī ròu bù chī cài — eat meat but do not eat vegetables
December 2, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/CvonD1

Love your post!!!!! I'm copy-pasting it to TextEdit for keeps! Thank you!

January 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Barry527413

That is helpful. Thank you!

June 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Pavel221503

太好了

August 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ArtBurnap

Consider that the word 'meal' itself is originally a reference to milled (=ground) grain, which is not necessarily regarded as an essential component of modern meals.

April 8, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/TellTheSeal

Interesting parallel.

August 17, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Karuna8063

You share doesn't make sense. You say "fan" is not a meal, and then follow that with three examples of "fan" being used to mean meal. I think you have contradicted yourself.

December 6, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/SunnyWu46376

A dish is 菜

March 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Naitik67077

It is bad

March 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Lenard_9999

tht s stpd

August 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/daniel18387

Just tried “Don’t you guys want to eat?” and it marked it wrong. This should be correct. Please update your accepted answers.

September 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/AkilSmith3

Rice is 米,cooked rice is 米饭。饭 can express meal, breakfast lunch dinner.

November 25, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Mr.rM
  • 1504

Not sure why you are so heavily downvoted. Everything is correct, except that you may mean that rice should not be translated as 米饭 instead of 米 or 饭? Both 米 and 饭 and 米饭 are possible translation for “rice”.

January 12, 2018
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