"hungry"

So, what is the difference between…

餓[饿]

飢[饥]

餒[馁]
něi

And why do taiwanese like to say “Ni3 Qu4 Na3li3” more than “Ni3 Qu4 Nar3”.

[quote=“Mango”]So, what is the difference between…

餓[饿]

飢[饥]

餒[馁]
něi
[/quote]

First is common usage. I’ve only heard second as part of “飢餓” Never seen or heard third!

Because Taiwan is in (linguistically speaking) south China!

[quote=“Mango”]So, what is the difference between…

餓[/quote]
hungry. Your usual word to describe that sense of emptiness in the stomach.

[quote]飢
jī[/quote]
starve/starvation. In my non-native experience, I’ve only seen/heard it used in 飢餓, and only in a serious context, never as in “I’m starving! Let’s grab a bite to eat!” But I may be wrong.

[quote]餒
něi[/quote]
Never come across it. Perhaps it’s a more classical word.

Regional differences. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever heard a Taiwanese person say ni3 qu4 nar3, unless they’re (semi-mockingly?) imitating someone from northern China.

It may be worth mentioning that while 餒isn’t used in the spoken language to mean hungry,
it does commonly occur in the expression 氣餒, meaning “(to be) discouraged/dejected.”

Oops, double post…

While 飢can mean starving, it can also mean just hungry in combinations like 飢腸轆轆, meaning
your stomach is rumbling with hunger, and hunger in a metaphorical sense in terms like 飢渴, which
means to have strong desire or urge for something, or colloquially, to be horny.