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  5. "What country are they from?"

"What country are they from?"


November 23, 2017



It seems this language doesn't really use a different syntax when asking questions compared to making an affirmation. So, for example, 你是学生 means "You are a student", while 你是学生吗 means "Are you a student?". But not all questions require 吗 to know they're questions. Sometimes 什么, meaning "what" creates a question too, for example 你喝什么, literally meaning "You drink what" but really meaning "What do you drink?" or "What are you drinking?".

In this case I assume 哪 is just one of those particles you use to "substitute" for the very thing you're asking in the question, like a "which" or something similar. 国 means "country" and 国人 means "from X country", so, as we don't know which country you're from, we can't say, for example, 我是中国人 ("You are Chinese") or 你是美国人 ("You are American"), so we ask 你是哪国人 instead (literally "You are from which country", meaning "What country are you from?")


It's good they have these comments so I can find out more information, as to why my answer was wrong.

I kind of wish though, that this website gave a little more of an explanation and had more info I could read and study, as opposed to just repeatedly doing these "tests".


I made a mistake, folks. In my example I put 我是中国人, which is, of course, "I am Chinese", not "You are Chinese". My sincerest apologies.


Right, pretty sure 吗 is used only to create yes or no questions.


Yeah, 哪国 means "which country" here. 哪 is for questions about place. I agree the presentation here is somewhat impenetrable. Check out the free program called Anki and a free deck called "SpoonFedChinese". I've only done 200 or so of those cards (out of 10000 and they keep getting more complex!) and they make everything here seem very simple, even when I don't already know the vocabulary. I think I would really have struggled to do this Duolingo course without that Anki list.


I made a mistake too, the question was about only the country but not to a person or citizenship. Now, Im confused.


I'm sorry, folks. I made a mistake here. I put 我是中国人 as an example and said it meant "You are Chinese". Of course, it means "I am Chinese" instead. My sincerest apologies. Happy learning.


Thanks so much makes it so much clearer


Just what i was thinking. Lol


What is the Na in this context?


哪國 is asking which country.


na is questions about places for example, 洗手间在哪里 (xi shou jian zai NA li) "where is the bathroom. "


na can be used mostly for yes/no questions


哪 In this context means "which", I don't think you're referring to the same thing... literal translation is like "they are which country's people?"


You're thinking of 嗎/吗, ma.


How you write 'ma' in cangjie samsung keyboard? I only get 马 instead of 吗


I did 他们是哪国?and it was marked wrong. Does anyone know why 人 is required here?


国 means country, and 国人 means citizen (or "country-people"). If my understanding is correct, your answer might be translated as : "What country are they?" I'm learning this for the first time, so please correct me if i'm wrong!


美國 = America and 美國人 = American. When you add the人 at the end of the county you get that's county's people. 中國= China, 中國人 = Chinese.


The last character by itself guo - 国 means country or nation, ren - 人 means person, so without the 人 you are saying which country are you? Rather than which nationality are you? (Literally: which countries person are you?) So you need the 人 to be correct


美国= America 人= Person 美国人 = America Person/American


Just from the literal meanings, I guess that would translate to "You are which country?".


It signifies someones nationality....i think may be wrong


Newbie question: how are you folks getting the Chinese symbols in your questions below? Do you have a Chinese keyboard?


sorry for the late answer; you can download and use a predictive keyboard with chinese characters in both windows and mac Os, i use both of them and they work fine


you don't have to download anything, it's already built in


What about ma in the end?


那 (na4) already shows that it is a question, so 吗 (ma) would be redundant. 吗 is only used for yes-no questions.


Ma 吗 is only required for yes/no questions. For example: 你是中国人吗?(Are you Chinese?) So you basically make a statement and add 吗.

In this sentence, the word indicating the question is 哪, which in this context means sth like which. So you don't need 吗. :)


I think my answer of 他是哪国人 should be accepted but i was marked as wrong. should this be marked as correct? they can refer to one person it doesn't have to be a plural therefore 他是哪国人 makes sense as the translation.

[deactivated user]

    I understand what you mean, but the main context of the question pertains to a plural of “them,” so your answer should’ve been《他们》instead of just《他》considering the questions in here are mostly being specific with their pronouns.


    Is there a difference between asking about nationality and what country someone is from? Because while the English translations ask about the country, doesn't 国人 mean nationality?


    It's sort of a loose translation. 国 (guo2) means "country" and 人 (ren2) means "person", so 国人 means "country-person" or "person from this country". 他们是哪国人?literally means "They are which country person?".


    他们从哪个国家来的?should be accepted.


    Why is ’他们都是哪国人?‘ wrong?


    that would mean "both of them are from which country", which was not what was being asked.


    我说:“你是什么国家来的” 它听不懂。


    Why doesn't the 哪 go on the end?


    "You are person from what country" when translated literally if I'm not wrong here.


    If they refers to a mixed group of males/females, which character takes preference? 他 or 她?


    Is it just wrong to add 吗 at the end?


    Yes. You can't use 吗 for any question, it's only used in yes/no questions. With 吗, you basically add it to the statement you want confirmed/falsified.

    It's wrong to put it if the question is where, what, which, why, when, ... (or if there is already a 是不是 in the sentence)


    Upon doing this one, I figured i wanted to know what 哪 meant. It is annoying that there's insufficient built-in dictionary compatibility in this kind of task.


    Ugh. You don't tell us what words mean and then ask us to put symbols in a sentence.


    You might benefit from first learning vocab with memrise


    I am so confused.


    I hate this language. Sometimes the interogative us at the and sometimes in the middle? Wtf


    I don't know which cases you're referring to, but the location of the interrogative in the sentence depends on what it is you're trying to say.

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