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Mama Huhu 马马虎虎- Daily Mandarin Lesson

Time:2014-12-29Source:Internet
Profile:Mama Huhu - Daily Mandarin Lesson
(单词翻译:双击或拖选)
The rules of etiquette in Chinese culture state that compliments must be rejected. Therefore, if someone tells you that you speak Mandarin well, you should reply, “Not at all, my Mandarin is very poor.”

A good way to say this is with the Mandarin Chinese phrase ►mǎmǎ hǔhǔ. This could be prefaced with nǎli nǎli, which means “wher?” – as in, “wher is my good Mandarin? I don’t see it.”

Mǎmǎ hǔhǔ is made up of four Chinese characters: 馬馬虎虎. The first two characters mean “horse” and the second two characters mean “tiger.”

Why does “horse horse tiger tiger” mean “mediocre?” It’s neither one nor the other – it’s so-so, mediocre.
Example of Mama Huhu
 
    ►Nǐ de guóyǔ shuō de hěn hǎo.
    你的國語說得很好。
    你的国语说得很好。
    Your Mandarin is very good.

    ►Nǎli nǎli - mǎmǎ hǔhǔ.
    哪裡哪裡 馬馬虎虎。
    哪里哪里 马马虎虎。
    Not at all – it’s very bad.
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