"I turned off the light."


March 17, 2018



Can someone explain to me the use of this ba2?

March 17, 2018


There are quite a few nuance variances but in general the structure is 把+ noun + verb where the noun is the direct subject of the verb.

In a lot of the cases you could rearrange the sentence to verb + noun order to convey the same basic meaning (but with different emphasis), like the sentence here, instead of 我把灯(noun)关(verb)了 you could say 我关灯了. The sentence with 把 put the emphasis on the verb.

March 20, 2018


I suspect "direct object", not subject?

May 25, 2018


Yes, I would think "object". However, it's almost as if the main verb becomes an adjective, e.g. in translation in my other comment that I used to mirror the structure, "I rendered the light closed (i.e. off)".

July 26, 2019


It literally means something like grasp or take and it's often used to introduce a direct object.

So think of this sentence as "I took the light. (I) turned it off."

April 5, 2018


Thanks, that really makes sense!

May 28, 2018


Simple and good explanation! A point to note is that it is pronounced ba3 (not sure what the audio pronounces since I usually turn it off).

September 25, 2018


An easy way of thinking of it, as LeiFeiRalf says, is "I took the light and shut it off", as one sense of "把" is "take hold of", and this is a more colloquial turn of phrase.

Another way of thinking about it is "I rendered the light closed (i.e. off)." This would be stilted in English but it mirrors the grammar of the Chinese more directly.

July 26, 2019


Is the 把 really necessary? Wondering since the "can I turn the light on? / 可以开灯吗" doesn't have it.

July 12, 2018


Yes, unless you change the structure to either 我关了灯 or 我关灯了.

September 25, 2018
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