"我不能说中文,好在我的朋友可以。"

Translation:I can't speak Chinese, luckily my friend can.

December 5, 2017

27 Comments
This discussion is locked.


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

能说? not 会说? Never heard 能 when talking abour knowing languages. Is there a difference?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gabrielle145359

I learned that 会is for skills you learn/practice. Whereas 能 is for literal, physical ability to do something. By those rules, I agree with you that languages should use 会。


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CinnamonTe1

A: ability in the sense of “know how to” (会 is more common than 能)
B: permission/request (use 能 or 可以)
C: possibility (use 能 or 可以)
D: permission not granted (use 不可以)
E: impossibility (use 不能)

According to this website, 不能说 is correct for A and possibly E also.

https://resources.allsetlearning.com/chinese/grammar/Comparing_%22hui,%22_%22neng,%22_%22keyi%22


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

thank you for sharing this. It is helpful.


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

I learned that 会 is used when talking about an ability you have required, ex. a language. 能 is used when talking about ability caused by external factors you cannot control.


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

i could be wrong, but my understanding is that in this sentence, 能 would be saying you are not permitted to speak chinese, or that some circumstance prevented you, as the other commenter explained. so yes, 会 is the correct choice, as far as i know.


[deactivated user]

    "I can't speak Mandarin; it's good that my friends can" should be accepted.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Martin527096

    This seems to go against the all the chinese translationd of "can" i know: for skills, 会 ought to be used, and 能 and 可以 are for capabilities and permitted actions respectively... please inform


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sagitta145

    Yeah, same thought here and I think other people in the comments agree... "不能" sounds like something is preventing you from speaking Chinese x) Like, "I'm too drunk right now, so I 不能 speak Chinese" or "I just broke up with my Chinese boyfriend, and Chinese reminds me of him too much, so I 不能 speak Chinese" xD


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BrandonHu3

    Why do most of these not let me use "but" to combine the sentences? The comma seems to imply you should be able to.


    [deactivated user]

      That is an EXCELLENT point!


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dandyo12

      I understand there's some confusion about the 会/能/可以 issue, but I have a different related question -- why is 能 used at the beginning (我不能), but 可以 used at the end (我的朋友可以).

      Surely these two verbs are expressing the same thing (the ability to speak a language)? Or is it because 能 is being negated (不能) while 可以 is affirmative? Any clarification is much appreciated!


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/youarethebomb.ca

      How about "I cannot speak Chinese, so it is a good thing that my friend can."


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guest9001

      I can't speak Chinese. Luckily my friend can. S/HE SAYS IN CHINESE.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WilliamMcG588326

      In English..Luckily my friend can or Luckily my does. Mean the same thing.


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

      Can you use 幸亏 ? I've never seen anyone use 好在before Duolingo. Is that a region thing?


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OleJohanne4

      What is the difference between "Zhong Wen" and "Han Yu" ?


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

      cannot speak mandarin not accepted :/


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jason137255

      中文 can refer to Mandarin but it it typically refers to all of the major Chinese languages spoken by the Han Chinese peoples (the majority ethnic group in the PRC/Taiwan) often in written form. When referring to Mandarin itself you'll more typically see things like 普通话 (pǔtōnghuà).

      So, the program was correct to reject your translation.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fourthwall1

      Why is my answer "I am unable to speak.." wrong? Isn't "unable "interchangeable with " i can't" or i am not able?. Also, i have reported many times with the option that many of the words throughout the course have warped audio.


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

      不能 assumes you have no literal way of speaking Chinese, when in reality, it's possible to.

      不会 is more natural here, because 会 is a skill or ability that you learn


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mun14141414

      很奇怪。。。


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EwanHarris7

      The use of 能 is questionable but at least is used in this context by Chinese people. 可以 in this context is definitely wrong though


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

      ...she says in Chinese. Lol


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Nonhlanhla580166

      So the Chinese language and country is interchangeable?


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

      That sounded pretty fluent for someone who doesn't speak the language :P

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