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xuechengfeng

Grammar #1: 就

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sw2090

1. I only/just ate one piece of candy, may I have another? (只?)

2. That's just what I wanted. (就?)

3. I just want what's best for you, my dear. (只 and 就, but with different meanings?)

4. I was only/just being honest. (只 and 就, but with different meanings?)

5. I arrived only/just as the train was leaving? (只, 就, and 才 but with different meanings?)

6. It's just the telephone, not the fire alarm. (就?)

7. Oh, it's only/just the telephone. I was afraid it was the fire alarm. (就).

8. I was just tall enough to see. (?)(As a matter of fact, how would one say this in Chinese?)

I'll try to use 就 才 只 for each one.

1. 我吃了一块糖,让我在吃一个吧.

2. 那就是我要的.

3. 亲爱的,我只想给你最好的。(Only the best, I want to give you) or 亲爱的, 我就想给你最好的 (The best is precisely what I want to give you)

4. 我只是说实话 (I was only speaking the truth! [as in, I didn't mean to offend you for) 我就是说实话 (I am speaking only the truth!/ I speak exactly the truth/ I'll speak the truth [regardless of what you'll do to me!]

5. 我到了车就开了 (When I arrived, the train left [immediately: indicates that the train was already about to leave) 我到了车才开 (Only when I arrived did the train leave: Indicates that the train should have left earlier, or was expected to leave earlier, but for some reason only eleft when I arrived.)

6. 那只是电话,不是警报器.

7。 那就是电话?That's the telelphone? (indicates surprise)

8. 我身高正好能让我看得见 no jiu, cai, zhi here I don't think

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fireball9261

The "就" in "炒鸡蛋就饭" has the meaning of "to accompany" or "to go with". Therefore, the whole sentence is "Stir fry some eggs to go with the rice."

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roddy

Don't think I've ever seen that usage of 就 before (must have missed the original post in 2004 :mrgreen:). Is it common?

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fireball9261

I think it was more of a very old usage. I don't think it is that common any more. It would sound at little bit funny nowadays I think.

There is another phrase I remembered in the food category, but has a little bit different meaning: 以口就飯. It showed the action of (leaning forward and) put your mouth towards the rice. 

I found three examples of this phrase's usage:

1. 有一天,四体不勤了,首脑想吃,足不走,到不了餐厅,手不动,饭如何入口, 只有以口就饭了。

2. 吃的方法要正确,要以饭就口,不 要像狗一样,以口就饭.坐的姿势要平稳,吃饭时身体不要歪一边, 若右手拿筷,左手的手掌要放在桌上,以保持身体的平衡,反之亦然.

3. 不久他们的阿爸就端了两盘丰富的菜色过来, 接著又去帮他们盛饭. 两个小鬼已经开始耐不住性子的偷吃, 也不介意我看著他们嘴馋的模样. 仿佛在像我炫耀他们有两盘丰富的菜色, 模样真是可爱. 等不及他们的阿爸拿筷子来, 两个小鬼以口就饭的开动...

There is another phrase, "就範" or "就范". It means surrender. 範 (范) has the meaning of 規範 (rules). 就 also has the meaning of "towards". Therefore, the original meaning of "就範" is toward the rules => surrender to someone else's rules.

1. 你最好乖乖就范 - You better surrender nicely.

2. 恐吓逼其就范 - scare him to surrender.

3. 迫敌就范 - forcing the enemies to surrender.

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roddy

I'm pretty sure I've never seen (or at least noticed) it, but I thought it might be more common regionally or something. It's in my dictionary, but only at the end of the very long 就 entry,so it can't be that important :wink:

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fireball9261

Also, in the sentence, "他还不太熟练,你(迁)就着他点。" "就" also has a bit of the "toward" meaning as in "toward his actions or ways" or "go with his actions or ways". "迁" means moving yourself (toward his ways).

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fireball9261
The "就" in "炒鸡蛋就饭"
I'm pretty sure I've never seen (or at least noticed) it, but I thought it might be more common regionally or something.

I couldn't think of when I last heard about it either. I am sure I probably read it in some old 20th century literatures, etc. I think older people in country side might still use it this way.

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Guoke

It doesn't make sense to me how '就' could mean 'only'. Its meaning is closer to 'just' when 'just' is used to mean 'exactly'.

This confusion arises for English speakers probably because the word 'just' also means 'only' in English. However, in Mandarin, '就' doesn't mean '只' at all.

when 'just' = 'only', use '只' :

I'm just kidding. = 我只是在开玩笑。 (开玩笑罢了)

He is just a child. = 他只(不过)是一个小孩。(他还小。)

I was just trying to help you. = 我只在尝试帮助你。(我只是想帮你。)

I have just a pair of jeans. = 我只有一件牛仔裤。

when 'just' = 'exactly', use '就' :

Things turned out just as I expected. = 事情发生的经过,就如我所料。

This is just what I need now. = 这就是我现在所需要的。

Just then, the door opened. = 就在那个时候,门打开了。

I just couldn't control my temper. = 我就是不能控制我的脾气。

'就' is generally used for emphasis.

Boy: 妈,我要吃炸鸡和薯条!

Mother: 别老吃这些不健康的食物,吃粥吧!

Boy: 我不要!我就是要吃炸鸡和薯条!

Teacher: 全班考到最高分的是...牛顿同学!

Newton: 我就知道一定是我!(arrogant)

Peter: 你为什么那么任性......总是不听别人的劝告呢!?

Jane: 我就是这样!

Now, let me try to translate Altair's sentences.

1. I only/just ate one piece of candy, may I have another?

just = only : 只 =>

我只吃了一颗糖果,可以再给我一颗吗?

2. That's just what I wanted.

just = exactly : 就 =>

那就是我所要的。

3. I just want what's best for you, my dear.

just = only : 只 =>

亲爱的,我只是想让你得到最好的。

4. I was only/just being honest.

just = only : 只 =>

我只是想对你坦诚。/ 我只是不想骗你。

5. I arrived only/just as the train was leaving?

(Is it appropriate to use 'only' in this sentence?)

just as = at the exact moment as : 就 =>

就在火车正要离开的时候,我赶到了。

6. It's just the telephone, not the fire alarm.

just = only : 只 =>

只是电话响,不是火警。

7. Oh, it's only/just the telephone. I was afraid it was the fire alarm.

just = only : 只 =>

哦,原来只是电话响,我还担心是火警呢。

8. I was just tall enough to see.

just ... enough = 刚/正好(足)够...... =>

我刚好够高,看得见。

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xiaocai
1. I only/just ate one piece of candy, may I have another?

just = only : 只 =>

我只吃了一颗糖果,可以再给我一颗吗?

I think there is no problem if you say:

我就吃了一颗糖果,可以再给我一颗吗?

or

我就是想对你坦诚。

or

哦,原来就是电话响,我还担心是火警呢。

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Rhubarb
I think there is no problem if you say:

我就吃了一颗糖果,可以再给我一颗吗?

or

我就是想对你坦诚。

or

哦,原来就是电话响,我还担心是火警呢。

no, "there is no problem if you say" all of the above, except that it's not clear.

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chavalit

I don't understand the function of 就 in this sentence

布什行政当局和国会议员看来接近就刺激正在滑坡的美国经济法案达成协议

(The Bush administration and congressional lawmakers appear to be nearing an agreement on legislation to boost the slumping U.S. economy.)

To me, it makes more sense to replace 就 with 把, so that the sentence structure is like this:

subject + 把 + noun (刺激正在滑坡的美国经济法案) + verb (达成协议)

So my question is, why is 就 used like that? Could you give some other examples that use 就 in the same way?

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imron

Here, 就 is kind of like 对. It expresses the object or scope of an action.

From 现代汉语词典, one of the definitions of 就 lists:

就:(介词)表示动作的对象或范围, with the example it gives being: 他们就这个问题进行了讨论.

Other sentences include: 联合国安理会就伊朗核问题通过新决议.

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studentyoung

布什行政当局和国会议员看来接近就刺激正在滑坡的美国经济法案达成协议

就 here is used as preposition. It means “on” or “according to” in the sentence.

就 jiù

〈介〉

(1) 在 [in; at ;on]。如:就理(内情)

(2) 从 [from]

就其不忘一芋。——清• 周容《芋老人传》

(3) 又如:就中

(4) 组成介词结构,引进所要说明的对象或范围,常跟后面的“说”、“看”、“而论”等相呼应 [according to]。如:就字面上看

http://www.zdic.net/zd/zi/ZdicE5ZdicB0ZdicB1.htm

Cheers!

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SWWLiu

This sentence, which you correctly translated, is a mouthful. I'm sure there are ways to break it down and rewrite it into a couple of more legible statements.

One way to consider the role/function of "就" is perhaps to think of it as "針對" or "regarding" (or "addressing").

Anyone cares to take a crack at rephrasing the original statement in Chinese?

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monto

欢迎大家就此问题发表自己的看法。:mrgreen:

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roddy

Merged with the existing grammar discussion on 就. See the sticky at the top of the grammar forum for a list of these.

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putonghua73
Wow, not a one with 只, 就, or 才? When would you feel a need to use 只 or 就 to translate "only"?

Excellent discussion!

I'm working my way through the 'Chinese in Steps' series (used at SOAS), and the different uses of 只, 就, and 才 have caused me much bewilderment (Basic Chinese: A Grammar and Workbook - Yip Po-Ching is now on my 'must buy/read' list).

I was fairly comfortable with the usage of 只 for 'just' to mean 'only', but was / am puzzled at the wide usage of 就, particularly in relation to 才in sentences relating to duration / time.

The examples to demonstrate the usages and to tease out the nuances - as well as illustrate the difference between English and Chinese - have been a fascinating and educational read. I remember when Chinese finally started to make some sense for me, was when one of my teachers at SOAS explained basic grammatical structure. I immediately felt as though a switch had been flicked on in my head, and my mind was illuminated with understanding. A truly wonderful feeling when it felt like it all clicked into place.

I'll read, re-read and work my way through the examples in this thread.

Fantastic job, people! Looking forward to reading the rest in xuechengfeng's 'Grammar' threads.

Cheers!

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