9 September 2013

Grammar structure: 的 particle

The use of the 的 particle is one of the first rules to learn in Chinese. It has some different uses, but the most common structure is as particle between a modifier and a noun.




modifier + + noun


personal pronoun + + noun
This is the basic use of 的 particle. This structure indicates possession: the second noun belongs to the first.
电脑
Nín de diànnǎo
Your computer

手表
de shǒubiǎo
My watch



noun +  + noun
This is a very similar possession structure. Instead a personal pronoun, a substantive is used. This substantive can be a proper noun.
我朋友毛笔
Wǒ péngyǒu de máobǐ
My friend's brush

你朋友汽车
Nǐ péngyǒu de qìchē
Your friend's car

adjective + + noun
This structure is used to link an adjective to a noun. The adjective modifies and describes the noun properties.
汽车
de qìchē
Big car


漂亮女人
Piàoliang de nǚrén
Beautiful woman



clause + + noun
If instead an adjective there is a phrase that describes the noun, the 的 particle links this modifier phrase with the noun. It's very similar to the adjective behavior but with a more complex structure.


你最好考试
Nǐ zuìhǎo de kǎoshì
Your best exam

他喜欢那辆自行车
Tā xǐhuan de nà liàng zìxíngchēHe likes that bike