cháng 尝

February 26, 2010, 09:40 PM posted in General Discussion

Most of us know that 尝 (cháng) means 'to taste'.  But MDBG also describes it as a 'past tense marker'. Could someone explain what this means, with an example. I thought 了 and  过  were the only characters that could be described in this way.

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February 27, 2010, 01:18 AM

Hi go_manly

“尝” (in the sense of "once") is usually used in the form of “未尝” (not yet), just like “未尝见过” (have not seen yet), and it's a relatively formal word. “尝” (to taste) and “尝” (once) were originally two different characters, and both were simplified into the same character “尝”, which is sometimes seen in simplified Chinese characters.