Verb "endings"

I’m interested in better understanding verb endings (not sure if they are called that) and would appreciate any help or advice.

I think I have 完 down, as it means to complete an action…or finish it. 到 however means something simillar doesn’t it? To reach or finish something. 不了 seems to mean “unable to do” or express a lack of ability so I’m wondering when to use it and when to use 能 or 會. And lastly 掉 someone told me, means to use something up completely.

These phrases, words, etc seem to completely lack and discernable (to me at least) overlap with English and so I’m having a hard time working out when to use them. Any help would be much appreciated -especially if you could supply examples of common use!!

thanks :pray:

I think the technical term is resultative complement. If any native speaker wants to correct me feel free, I’m no Chinese language teacher.

You could probably could find some way to express many sentences only using 會 or 能 combined with 把 and doing some re-wording. F.ex. 掉 - 我忘不掉你 (I can’t forget you.) The equivalent 會 expression would be 我不會把你忘, or 我不會忘你 (this sounds weird to me, it may not be be correct). Yeah, there’s overlap, just like there are multiple ways in English to express the same idea. Being able to use a variety of sentence constructions signals fluency in the language.

You should use RC endings whenever possible. Using hui and neng leads to unnecessarily wordy sentences and lack of conciseness.

This means the speaker is an Aborigine. :smiley:

This means the speaker is an Aborigine. :smiley:[/quote]

he means 得了

I don’t think there are strict rules on this, as they are heavily used in oral languages.
Below are my thoughts, please forgive my poor English:

完 vs 到 完 means some actions are finished, while 到 means a action is taken and a target is reached, some consequences occured etc. Usually if you can use “finish” in English, you can use 完 otherwise, use 到.

我做家事了 – I have finished my houseworks.
我做家事做累了 – I was doing houseworks until I’m tired. (But I didn’t say I finished it)

This one is not that obvious:
他的故事之後… – After talked about his story…
一說他的故事… – Once talked about his story…

不了 VS 不能 VS 不會 不了actually means the target of action can’t be reached. 不能means an action can’t be taken and 不會 means an action won’t be taken.

壞人跑不了 – The bad guy can’t run away <because he will be caught some day?>
壞人不能跑 – The bad guy can’t run <because he hurt his foot?>
壞人不會跑 – The bad guy won’t run (away) <because he has something else to do?>

Confuse1 不了 VS不能
我吃不了這麼多 – I can’t eat that much <Because it’s really too much>
不能吃這麼多 – I can’t eat that much

Confuse2 不能VS不會 (不會 can also mean “don’t know how to do”)
不能說英文 – I can’t speak English <Because I’m practicing my Chinese>
不會說英文 – I can’t speak English

掉 means an action is taken that result in a loss/expiration etc. Note that most of the time you can replace 掉 with another verb ending (sometimes even omit it). 掉 just signifies the loss/expiration.

我喝了一瓶酒 – I have drank a bottle of wine.
The classical usage. Actually you can replace 掉 here with 完, if you still remember its definition. But 掉 really means a bottle of wine is expired. If the wine belongs to your father and you didn’t ask him before drank it, you better use 掉 to admit it’s your fault!

把垃圾丟 – throw the garbage away
Here 掉 does not mean “away”, but means “one is relieved from garbage.”

Hope I didn’t create more confuses :smiley:

poorjar, thanks that actually made a lot of sense to me. I had managed to pick up the meaning of verb+完 just by listening to people speak (I most commonly hear verb+完了), but was uncertain as to how it differed from verb+到.

thanks for the long explaination!! :notworthy:

poorjar, best explanation i’ve heard for those!! thank you!! :slight_smile:

Would “Once (As soon as) he started talking about (telling) his story” be a better translation?

[quote=“Tempo Gain”][quote=“poorjar”]
一說他的故事… – Once talked about his story…


Would “Once (As soon as) he started talking about (telling) his story” be a better translation?[/quote]

Yes, I stated that from the beginning. Please forgive my poor English :smiley:
But since I didn’t wrote the complete sentence, it may not be (As soon as) but can be (Each time) or something else I think.