Can someone please explain how the verbs work?
For example: I go, I went, I will go, I would go.
I have tried researching this but I find it difficult to comprehend.
Thank you in advance
darkstar94April 16, 2012, 12:52 AM
First of all, you must not analyse Chinese from a European language perspective otherwise you will end up speaking Engnese or whatever. Chinese is mainly an aspect language which means that markers are used to show completion. Also, Chinese is a language that is heavily reliant on context (which is relatively typical of an aspect language).
But if you just want to get a grasp of these ideas from a European language aspect, try looking at "Modern Mandarin Chinese Grammar (a practical guide) by Claudia Ross and Jing-heng Sheng ma".
For your examples, it helps to put them in context, so example:
I go to the gym on Tuesdays - 我每周二都去健身房
I went to the gym on Tuesday - 我周二去了健身房
I will go to the gym on Tuesday - 我周二要去健身房
I would go to the gym on Tuesday, but I'm busy - 我周二想去健身房，可是我很忙
But as I said, try not to look at Chinese in terms of tenses if you can. I can understand that when you begin it's natural to do this, but hopefully as you get more familiar with Chinese, you'll begin to forget about "tense".
Cool answer. Kind off topic here because the topic is tenses, but I'm wondering about 周二. I think that means the second cyclic day of the week or recurring Tuesday. I was [only] taught to say Tuesday by using 星期二 which I think is just the calendar way of referring to it.
In the past tense you are representing, do you think I could get away with 我星期二去了健身房 instead? If I did, would that change the meaning?