Home > Lessons > Chinese Grammar: How To Use Adverbs

Chinese Grammar: How To Use Adverbs

Adverbs are words that tell us when, how, why or where an action happens.

The adverbs in Mandarin Chinese are always before an adjective or a verb.

Note: In English, adverbs are usually formed by adding -ly to adjectives. In Chinese, many adverbs are formed from adjectives, simply by adding the suffix -de to adjectives.

 Slow - 慢 - MànQuick - 快 - Kuài
English AdverbsSlowlyQuickly
Chinese Adverbs慢 慢 地快 地
Pinyin AdverbsMàn man deKuài de

Adverbs of Time - - shí jiān  fù cí

EnglishChinesePinyin
yesterday昨 天zuó tiān 
today今 天jīn tiān
tomorrow明 天míng tiān
now现 在xiàn zài
then然 后rán hòu 
later后 来hòu lái
tonight今 晚jīn wǎn
right now马 上 / 立 即mǎ shàng / lì jí
last night昨 晚zuó wǎn
this morning今 早jīn zǎo
next week下 周xià zhōu
already已 经yǐ jīng
recently最 近zuì jìn
lately近 来jìn lái 
soon不 久bù jiǔ
immediately立 即lì jí
stillréng
yet还 / 仍 然 / 尚hái or huán / réng rán / shàng
ago以 前yǐ qián

Adverbs of Place - - dì diǎn  fù cí

EnglishChinesePinyin
here这 里zhè lǐ
there那 里nà lǐ 
over there在 那 边zài nà biān
everywhere到 处dào chù
anywhere任 何 地 方rèn hé de fāng
nowhere无 处wú chù
home在 家 / 回 家zài jiā / huí jiā
away离 开 / 走 开lí kāi /zǒu kāi 
out出 外 / 在 外chū wài / zài wài
out向 外 / 离 去xiàng wài / lí qù

Adverbs of Manner - - fāng shì  fù cí 

EnglishChinesePinyin
very很 / 非 常hěn / fēi cháng
quite相 当xiāng dāng
pretty相 当 / 颇xiāng dāng / pō
really真 正 地 / 确 实 地zhēn zhèng de / què shí de
fast快 速 地 / 迅 速 地kuài sù de / xùn sù de
wellhǎo / hào
hard努 力 地nǔ lì di / nǔ lì de
quickly很 快hěn kuài
slowly慢 慢 地màn màn de
carefully小 心 地 / 认 真 地xiǎo xīn dì / rèn zhēn de
hardly几 乎 不jī hū bù
barely几 乎 不jī hū bù
mostly大 部 分 / 主 要 地dà bù fēn / zhǔ yào de
almost几 乎jī hū
absolutely绝 对jué duì
together一 起yī qǐ
alonedān / chán

Adverbs of Frequency - - pín dù  fù cí 

EnglishChinesePinyin
always总 是zǒng shì
frequently常 常 / 频 繁 地cháng cháng / pín fán de
frequently经 常 地jīng cháng de
usually通 常 / 平 常tōng cháng / píng cháng
sometimes有 时yǒu shí
occasionally偶 尔ǒu ěr 
seldom很 少hěn shǎo
rarely很 少hěn shǎo
never从不cóng bù

Examples:

I play soccer sometimes.

有 时 我 玩 足 球

Yǒu shí wǒ wán zúqiú

I go to school every day.

我 去 上 学 , 每 天

Wǒ qù shàngxué, měi tiān


Author: Zoe Mei
"学一门语言,就是多一个观察世界的窗户。"
Learn Chinese here.

Make sure to subscribe.