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SunnySideUp

blablabla 好?

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SunnySideUp

I was doing a fill-in-the-blanks exercise that's supposed to be teaching you about 重要,只要,主要 and 要是。

One sentence threw me off because of its extra 好 at the end. The sentence in question:

我正想找你呢,你说让他学什么专业好?

Answer: 这 (blank, I opted for 主要)还得看孩子自己的想法。

 

So is the translation then "I'm thinking about coming to look for you right now, which major did you say did you let him study/want him to study?"

Is that a correct translation? What's with the 好?Does this mean study well? Or study a good major?

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陳德聰

What major would you say is a good one to have him study?

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889

Don't actually add it, but you may see the sentence clearer if you think that 是 precedes 好 in this pattern: 你说让他学什么专业[是]好?

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SunnySideUp

Thank you all!

 

I'd like to ask a follow up question @陳德聰 if you don't mind. How can I detect "would" in that Chinese sentence? Is there some kind of marker/pattern or is it just your many years of experience as translator so you "just" know? I realize I initially read it as past tense, but that's obviously wrong because there is no indication of past tense...Thanks again.

 

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Beelzebro

A simpler example sentence with the same grammar pattern would be: 你说哪个好?/ "which one would you say is best?" Does that help? It's a fairly set pattern, though you could of course use 觉得 or other alternative words instead of 说.

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陳德聰

@SunnySideUp

If you did a direct gloss it would be:

you - say - (causative) have - he/him - study - what - major - good

 

But “你說”+question is a pretty common way of asking for people’s opinions. I translated it as “what would you say” because that is something I might say in English, but as you rightly said, there is no indication of tense in the Chinese sentence. But from the context it seems apparent that the person has not yet said which major they think is best for him to study, “I was just thinking of coming to you.” Without context it could conceivably be in the past, e.g.

 

”我剛跟David的輔導老師通電話” (I was just on the phone with David’s counsellor)

“噢,他說讓他學什麼專業好呢?” (Oh, what major did he say was best for him to study?)

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