Learning Mandarin: Two – easy going or reckless?

This is the third in a series of posts where I'm looking at how the Chinese view numbers, often from a superstitious basis.

Two

The Chinese character for two (Èr) is shown on the right hand side of the main image above. It's two single lines (probably originally sticks).

Generally, the number two is regarded as a good number in Chinese culture. Similar to the English saying, the Chinese have an equivalent saying for "good things some in pairs".

Two suggests happiness, joy, and luck. However, two can also represent stupid and reckless.

Because the Cantonese word for two is similar sounding to the word for "easy", two is also often associated with "easy". A good example is that the number 24 is often regarded as "easy death" or "reckless death". We'll talk about 4 later.

Learning Mandarin

I'll write more soon on the best methods for learning. If you want to get a taste for it in the meantime though, my current favorite site is iTalki, and my favorite teacher by far is Amy He. If you decide to try it, click here and it's cheaper for both you and me.

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