Skip main navigation

Introducing Adjectival Predicate Sentences

In this video, Dr Li will introduce Adjectival Predicate Sentences.
Welcome to my Chinese class. Let’s have a look at what Xi Xi and Wang Xiaobao are talking about. Wáng XiǎobǎoJīntiān tiānqi hěn hǎo. Wǒmen qù dòngwùyuán bɑ Hǎode. Nǐ xǐhuan shénme dòngwù Wǒ xǐhuan tùzi. Tùzi hěn kěài. Nǐ ne Wǒ xǐhuan kǒngquè. Kǒngquè hěn měilì. Oh. They are going to the zoo. Well, what did they say? Yes. They said Tiānqi hěn hǎo; Tùzi hěn kěài; Kǒngquè hěn měilì.
This is the grammar we are going to learn. Sentences are with an adjectival predicate. In Chinese, it’s called xíngróngcí wèiyǔ jù.
Tiānqi, Tùzi, Kǒngquè are subjects. Hǎo, kěài, měilì are adjectives. This kind of sentence does not need a verb, as the adjectives follows the subject directly. Notice the adverb, hěn is usually placed before the adjective. Here, the meaning of hěn is not so obvious. Tiānqi hěn hǎo and Tiānqi hǎo are not so much different in degree. How should we describe the panda in the photo? Try it by using some sentences with an adjectival predicate. Xióngmāo hěn pàng.
Tā hěn kěài.
Tā de yǎnjing hěn hēi.
Tā de shēntǐ hěn yuán.
Well, I guess you have understood the sentence structure. Let’s listen to a dialogue. Try to find any xíngróngcí wèiyǔ jù. Wǒ hěn gāoxìng kàn dào le hěn duō dòngwù. Shì ɑ.Jīntiān hěn kāixīn.Dànshì wǒ yě hěn lèi.
Wǒ hěn è.Wǒmen qù chīfàn bɑ.
Hǎo de.Wǒmen qù nǎr Wǒmen qù nàjiā fàndiàn bɑ.Nàlǐ de hànbǎo hěn hǎochī.
Hǎo de. There are several sentences with an adjectival predicate. Wǒ hěn gāoxìng; īntiān hěn kāixīn; Wǒ yě hěn lèi; Wǒ hěn è; Hànbǎo hěn hǎochī. Well, we have learned the structure of sentences with adjectival predicates. In this kind of sentence, an adjective follows the subject directly, and it does not need the verb. hěn is necessary.

In this video we learn a basic sentence structure“sentences with an adjectival predicate”. In Chinese it is called “形容词谓语句xíngróngcí wèiyǔ jù”.

This kind of sentence does not need a verb, as the adjective follows the subject directly. You have to notice that the adverb “很hěn” is usually placed before the adjective.

S + 很 hěn +Adj.

Here the meaning of “很hěn” is not so obvious. “Tiānqi hěn hǎo” and “tiānqi hǎo” are not so much different in degree.

天气很好。Tiānqi hěn hǎo. The weather is fine.

We usually use this kind of sentence to describe something or somebody. For example:

熊猫很胖。Xióngmāo hěn pàng. Pandas are fat.

它很可爱。Tā hěn kěài. It’s cute.

它的眼睛很黑。Tā de yǎnjīng hěn hēi. Its eyes are black.

它的身体很圆。Tā de shēntǐ hěn yuán. It has a round body.

玛丽很漂亮。 Mǎ lì hěn piàoliang 。 Mary is beautiful.

王小宝很聪明。Wáng xiǎobǎo hěn cōngming. Wang Xiaobao is clever.

You can try to use this sentence structure to describe something or somebody.

The following is Chinese and English Version of Situational Dialogue in the Video:







Xixi: I’m glad that we have seen so many animals today.

Wang Xiaobao: Me too. But I’m also tired.

Xixi: I’m hungry. Shall we go to eat something now?

Wang Xiaobao: Sure. Where are we going to eat?

Xi Xi: The restaurant over there. The hamburgers they serve taste good.

Wang Xiaobao: OK.

© Shanghai International Studies University

This article is from the free online

Learn Chinese: Introduction to Chinese Grammar

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Reach your personal and professional goals

Unlock access to hundreds of expert online courses and degrees from top universities and educators to gain accredited qualifications and professional CV-building certificates.

Join over 18 million learners to launch, switch or build upon your career, all at your own pace, across a wide range of topic areas.

Start Learning now