Word order in adverbial phrases (very sexy).

September 19, 2009, 06:21 PM posted in General Discussion
When at the Barbers shop you might say: "Liangbian jian duan yidian." (Cut the sides a little shorter), and this is a correct expression.
A chinese friend has told me that: "Liangbian duan yidian jian" is not quite correct; why is this ?  I ask this because both: "Qing man yidian kai." ( Please drive a little slower) and "Qing kai man yidian." are both perfectly acceptable.
At the same Barbers shop you might also say:"Qing nin nong ganjing yidian." (Please clean it up a little) quite correctly, but my chinese buddy says, without being able to explain the difference, that: "Qing nin ganjing yidian nong." is incorrect, and makes no sense at all.
I'm a bit flummoxed.
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December 17, 2009, 02:18 PM

hehe....yes,this situation is just like when I learn English.I'm also confused by the grammar.Nong in the sentence of "Qing nin ganjing yidian nong",it is a verb and it should be  put after the subject.

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December 17, 2009, 02:51 PM

A guess would be that "jian duan" and "nong ganjing" are both set expressions that can't be messed with, whereas "kai man" is not, it's just a verb plus adverb.

That is just, however, a guess.

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December 27, 2009, 05:37 PM

Dolphinsea:   Ah!  Are you saying that in a sentence where the pronoun is explicitly expressed, then the verb should follow the pronoun ? That would be a good rule to follow. I expect that it's not as simple as that :-(                                                       

You've noticed that English also can have hellish and unpredictable grammar ?    eg. "I'm so not into this." - what sort of sense does that make to a non-native speaker ? Don't worry, half the population of England wouldn't understand it either.  Haha !

Simonpettersson:  You might be right, but those don't look like set expressions to me.  There again, what do I know ?

Thanks for the replies, folks !