How to express and receive gratitude
Common phrases for being polite in English might be inappropriate in Chinese culture. Here is a list of phrases which are more appropriate.
How to respond to praise
The common Chinese response to praise will be disagreeing. Many short phrases refute the compliment, and "no", "not at all", "it’s not true", can be used: — this answer is more common for girls.
您太棒了!—— 哪里哪里
You’re amazing! — That’s not true
nín tài bàng le! — nǎlǐ nǎlǐ
— use this response when you get high praise.
You’re flattering me, I'm not that smart
guòjiǎng guòjiǎng, wǒ méiyǒu nàme cōngming
— use this response when you think you haven’t done anything special.
你唱得太好!—— 一般一般
You sing so well! — Oh, it’s nothing special
nǐ chàng de tài hǎo le! — yìbān yìbān
— use this response if you think you don’t deserve the praise.
You’re flattering me, I just did what I was supposed to do
bù gǎndāng, wǒ zhǐshì zuò le wǒ yīnggāi zuò de shìqín
I don’t deserve the praise
zhèyàng de jiǎnglì wǒ zhēnshi bù gǎndāng
How to say "thank you"
The most common way is . We often mention the person we address, e.g. .
. Although it’s a verb, it is often used together with an adverb to express gratitude, e.g.
— it’s used to thank a person who did some work for you. You can add the addressee at the beginning, e.g. 你辛苦了 or 您辛苦了.
or "sorry for troubling you" is used to thank someone for a favour and apologise for troubling them. 麻烦你 can also be used to ask for a favour, e.g.:
Please give this letter to my wife
máfan nǐ bǎ zhè fēng xìn jiāo gěi wǒ fūrén
How to respond to "thank you"
or , or — it’s used as a response to someone who expressed gratitude for your gift.
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