"Look! I drew a panda."


January 26, 2018

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I would assume that "look!" as an imperative would be either 你看or some sentence ending in 吧 or with some particle. Can it really stand alone as in the example, and would that work in a sentence like 看那只熊猫 to mean it's an imperative form?


You seems to be pretty experienced in Chinese. Great! But your impression on imperative form of Chinese is not entirely correct.

  1. Most sentences with "we" and "you" as the subject can be used as an imperative sentence. But there are some intricate intonation difference between a declarative sentence and an imperative sentence, which I can't describe in a few words (but you will get it after practicing Chinese with native speakers). It's not recommended for Chinese beginners.
  2. Contrary to what you may believe, an imperative sentence can omit the subject if the subject is obvious. And people do it in most cases. Omission of subject is the most obvious feature of an imperative sentence.
  3. 吧 indicates the hortative mood. which softens the feeling of "commanding" a lot. But it is optional.
  4. Beside the omission of subject, another difference between the imperative and declarative sentences is that you need to use 别 / 不要 instead of 不 for negative imperative sentence.


This makes me remember my first semester Chinese teacher explaining the difference between answering a door with 谁 and 谁吧.


I think that's fine for the imperative form. You certainly wouldn't be wrong to use 吧. Personally, I would use 看一下,看看,or看一看 at the begining of the sentence if I wanted someone to "take a look" at something. However, those versions of 看 suggest a certain amount of leasure, and the particle 吧 is a suggestion, not a hard command, so they would not be suitable for an urgent situation like "Look! It's on fire!"


I think “看看!我画画了一只熊猫。” should be accepted.




"看!我画熊猫了。" was rejected. I do not understand what is wromg in the sentence.


I literally answered, "看! 我画了一只熊猫。" What can possibly be wrong with that

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