Learning Mandarin: Saying "How"

In my last Learning Mandarin post, I described how to say "what". Another very common word in English is "how". And again, it also has a simple translation in Mandarin.

怎么 (Zěnme) is the word for "how".

Similar to what I mentioned for "what", you can use "how?" on it's own, the same way we do in English.

怎么? (Zěnme?) is equivalent to "How?"

Some more examples are:

你怎么样? (Nǐ zěnme yàng?) is "How are you?". (Again literally, it's "you how" and then a word that means "kind" or "type").

If we add the time period "today" to the sentence, it becomes:

你今天怎么样? (Nǐ jīntiān zěnme yàng?) and that's a reasonably common greeting, even though many would just abbreviate it to:

怎么样?(Zěnme yàng?)

If you need to add a verb to "how" to describe the action, it goes after it:

你怎么说"Hello"? (Nǐ zěnme shuō "Hello"?) is How do you say "Hello"? (Notice again that the order is different to English. Literally, it's "you how say Hello?").

Learning Mandarin

I'll write more soon on the best methods for learning Mandarin. 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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