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  5. "The cellphone was broken by …

"The cellphone was broken by my younger brother."


April 3, 2018



I don't understand why "用壞" is used here as opposed to just "壞". The former term isn't in my dictionaries and one would think that simply using the verb "to break" would be adequate.


Maybe 用坏 is transitive (i.e. requires an object – to break something) and 坏 is intransitive (i.e. cannot have an object – to break/stop functioning).


Yes, one way to think of "坏" is as an intransitive verb, and another is to think of it as an adjective meaning "broken". Still another is as a "stative verb", as Chinese "adjectives" are often called when used as complements.

A person can't 坏 something, but only make it 坏. "弄坏" and "用坏" should both work.


It must be because the subject is 弟弟, not 手机。弄坏 should also be acceptable.


Came here for the same reason. Don't understand why it is 用坏 instead of just 坏. There were some good thoughts below, but nobody has given a certain answer. Any native speakers or language experts, please help!


Is “手机被我的弟弟坏了” ok too?


坏 (broken/faulty) is an adjective. You need to add a verb, e.g. 弄坏 (lit. make broken) or 用坏 (lit. use [until] broken).


Why should we use 的 between 我弟弟? It should be accepted without too, as we tend not to use 的with family members, especially our own. It would be different if we talk about someone else's brother, 小王的弟弟, for example


It would be more formal and appropriate, if not accurate, to say '我的(whoever/whatever)' both in writing(especially) and speaking.


From the English sentence, I would say '用坏' should not be the translation as '用坏' has more meaning i.e he breaks it "by using it" whereas '弄坏' would just mean that he makes it broken. '弄坏'should be the only accepted translation. If not there's also 摔坏, 丢坏, 敲坏, 咬坏etc. as possible translations.


You can also put the 我 in the begining

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