Translation please

Ta1 chuan1shang4 zui4 ai4 de yi1fu

What does this translate to and is “ta1 zui4 ai4” possessive
of “yi1fu”?

“She put on her favorite clothes.”

Not possessive, descriptive.

Thank you. I thought it was possessive because of “de”. Care to help me understand the usage of “de” in the sentence? Much appreciated.

“de” is often used between an adjective and the noun it describes.

[quote]Ta1 chuan1shang4 zui4 ai4 de yi1fu[/quote] in Chinese words would be “她穿上最爱的衣服”. Here I put “她”, cuz I assume it implyed a female.

Surely, the meaning is “She put her favorite dress on.”

‘的’ is the main relativizer for Mandarin. It doesn’t just work for possessives/genitives.

It translates to almost any move that you might need to make for relative clauses (sentences that you turn into phrases to describe nouns): what, that, which, who, whom, when, where, how, why, and plenty of the “P rel” (in which, of which, to whom, etc.).

The best part about it is that it’s nearly impossible to screw it up, unlike how we can screw it up in English, whether we say “…的人” (“the person who/whom…”), “…的東西” (“the stuff that/which…”), “…的時候” (“the time when…”), “…的原因” (“the reason why…”), or the like…

  1. 她穿上最爱的衣服。She put on the clothes that most loves.
    1.1. 她穿上她最爱的衣服。She put on the clothes that she most loves.
    1.11. 她穿上衣服。She put on clothes.
    1.12. 她最爱衣服。She most loves clothes.
    1.121. 她爱衣服。She loves clothes.

(OP, note that other translators have poo-pooed my choice to use ‘the’ to keep the translations parallel, so I only cut them out to appease them.)

This is on a personal top-ten list of peeves that no Chinese textbooks ever teach to beginners, but that beginners could totally understand if an instructor thought to show them how it works.

My students handle all these patterns from the first day of class, though I do not bother with explanations as they are not needed. They comprehend and produce them, though. They are really quite easy, especially since there is a very short leap, really, from “Her book” and “The book she wrote” if you think about it as “Her writing’s book”.

In everyday life, you need this function badly or else you have no way of specifying which thing you’re concerned with. You can only talk about things in general or things you can point to. As I recall, my textbook covered this well, but later than it could easily have done and I desperately needed.

OP: The text called these “attributives,” so that’s another way to think of it: not just adjectives that describe a thing, but any general attribute of a thing. We called them “ding4yu3”–the ding4 that means to fix or define or establish something (like jue2ding4 or que4ding4). Adjectives, being “xing2rong2ci2,” only describe (xing2rong2), so are a less general notion than attributives.