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Which contraction is it?

Hofmann

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Background information

In Classical Chinese, the object of a negated verb is often transposed between the negating modifier and the verb if the object is a pronoun. For example, to say "The ancients cheat me," one might say "古人欺余." To negate this sentence, one might say "古人不余欺."

弗 is considered a contraction of 不之 ("not...it"), while 云 is considered a contraction of 曰之 ("say it").

Questions

How would one say "'Flower [花]', the ancients do not say it?"

Underlyingly, one might be thinking "花 古人不曰之 → 花 古人不之曰," but what if one wanted to contract something?
Is this a case similar to the English "that isn't it" and "that's not it?"
If it is, is it "花 古人弗曰," or "花 古人不云," or are both acceptable?

Trivia: In 《說文解字注》 is written 華 俗作花 其字起於北朝 按華字古韻在魚部 漢以後轉入歌部 後出之花字从化得聲 化字古韻正在歌部



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the object of a negated verb is often transposed between the negating modifier and the verb.

Yeah, only if the object is a pronoun.

e.g. 古之人不余欺也! 《石钟山记》苏轼

保民而王,莫之能御也。 《齐桓晋文之事》<孟子>

So, 吾不犬養 should be "犬,吾不之蓄/豢也" or "吾不蓄/豢犬"(I guess classical Chinese for raising dogs should be 蓄犬 or 豢犬)

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Thanks. I knew I was missing something there. I'll edit the entry. But is there anything wrong with 養?

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I'm not sure. I think it's grammatically ok, but I'v rarely seen 养犬 in classical literature, in stead, 蓄 is much more commonly used when 鸡、犬 are reffered.

e.g.

1\养猫以捕鼠,不可以无鼠而养不捕之猫;蓄犬以防奸,不可以无奸而蓄不吠之犬。-- 苏东坡<猫犬>

2\ 不敬祖先,不蓄鸡犬    -- 清碑类钞-在里教

anyway 养犬 souds like modern Chinese.

云 is considered a contraction of 曰之

if that is true, 花 古人不云 = 花,古人不曰之. Obveriously, it's not grammatically OK.

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There is one I could find:

野老歌 张籍

老农家贫在山住,耕种山田三四亩。

苗疏税多不得食,输入官仓化为土。

岁暮锄犁傍空室,呼儿登山收橡实。

西江贾客珠百斛,船中养犬长食肉。

So I think it should be fine. Just like 我是人. One may say it sounds like modern Chinese, but I think it is still okay to use in Classical Chinese writing.

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