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How to say “and” in Mandarin Chinese?

By: Grace Zhang Fri Feb 02 2024
Mandarin chinese

The word “and” can be translated into Mandarin in many ways, depending on the context in which it is used.The English word “and” is one-size-fits-all: it can link nouns (persons or things, e.g., “teacher,” “table”), verbs (actions, e.g., “to run,” “to walk”), and adjectives (descriptive words, e.g., “sweet,” “beautiful”), but these functions are accomplished using several different words in Mandarin.

Mandarin Chinese words for “and”
What these words connect

 (),  (gēn),  (),  ()

nouns (e.g., “teacher,” “table”) and pronouns (e.g., “I,” “you,” “he”)

又 … 又 (yòu),  ()又/也 ()

verbs and adjectives

 (),  (hái), 而且 (érqiě), 并且 (bìngqiě)


Excited for the challenge? Let’s dive in!

Table of Contents

    How to connect nouns and pronouns in Mandarin Chinese?

    noun A + 和/跟/与/及 + noun B

    The words  (),  (gēn), and  () connect nouns and pronouns, in the sense of “and” and “with.”  () can also connect three or more nouns.  () and  () tend to be used in a formal context. Let’s take a look at the various ways these conjunctions can be used.

    Connecting two nouns or pronouns

    When connecting two nouns or pronouns in Mandarin Chinese, you can have the interpretation “and” or “with.” Take a look:

    • A and B:


      (hé/yǔ wǒ dōu shì dàxuésheng. )

      He and I are university students.

    • A with B:


      (hé/gēn wǒ yīqǐ qù.)

      He will go with me.

    In the first example,  () or  () join A and B, while in the second example,  () or  (gēn) is used to mean A “with” B. Now, what might we do if we want to connect more than two items?

    Connecting more than two nouns or pronouns

    When we have more than two nouns, we can use  (). In this case, it only precedes the last noun:


    (Wǒ mǎi le píngguǒ, lí, pútáo.)

    I bought apples, pears, and grapes.


    (Xiǎo Wáng, Lǎo Zhāng, Lǎo Lǐ doū lái le.)

    Xiao Wang, Lao Zhang, and Lao Li all came.

    Formal context

    In formal contexts,  () tends to be used as well as  ():


    (Qǐng xiě shàng nǐ de dìzhǐdiànhuà.)

    Please write down your address and phone number.

    How to connect verbs and adjectives in Mandarin Chinese?

     (yòu)... (yòu), together with  ())…又/也 (), connect verbs and adjectives. When using 又... 又, no degree words (e.g. (hěn, very)) can be used. When there are degree words, we use 也. 既 … 又/也… tends to link adjectives.

    Now, let’s take a look at how these words can connect actions and descriptors (verbs and adjectives). Check out this helpful diagram below:

     (yòu) + verb/adjective A +  (yòu) verb/adjective B


     () + adjective A + 又/也 () adjective B

    Let’s see it in practice.


    (yòu chàng yòu tiào.)

    He sings and dances.


    (yòu cōngmíng yòu nénggàn.)

    She is intelligent as well as capable.


    Generally, the first can be left out.

    What to keep in mind

    When connecting verbs and adjectives, keep the following key points in mind:

    • When connecting verbs, one-syllable verbs are preferred over two-syllable verbs.

    • When verbs consist of two syllables, we add a comma in between, for example:


      (Tā chànggē, tiàowǔ.)

      He sings and dances.

    • There is no syllable requirement when connecting adjectives.

    • When connecting adjectives, both adjectives should be either positive or negative; they cannot be mixed. Otherwise, we say:

      她聪明, 不用功。

      (Tā cōngmíng, dàn bù yònggōng.)

      She is intelligent, but not working hard.

    • When using the
      又...又... structure to connect adjectives, we can't add degree words, e.g., (hěn, very):


      BUT if you want to use degree words, you need to use (yě) instead of .

      For example,


      (Tā hěn cōngmíng, hěn nénggàn.)

      He is very intelligent and very capable.

    • 既 (jì) … 又 (yòu) or 也 (yě)… tend to connect adjectives only:


      ( cōngmíng yòu / yě nénggàn.)

      She is intelligent as well as capable.

    • You can also use 和 (hé) to connect verbs. In this case though, verbs are often not used alone. For example, we can say:


      (Guānyú zhègè wèntí, wǒ huì jìn yībù liǎojiěshuōmíng.)

      I will get to know this issue better and explain it further.

    However, we don’t say,


    (Guānyú zhègè wèntí, wǒ liǎojiě hé shuōmíng.)

    I will get to know this issue and explain it.

    In the first example, 了解说明 (get to know and explain) are used together with 会进一步 (will further) which is another element that modifies 了解说明, so 和 (hé) can be used here. But the second example is not okay because the verbs are not used with any other elements.

    How to connect sentences in Mandarin Chinese?

     (),  (hái), 而且 (érqiě), and 并且 (bìngqiě) connect sentences when their subjects are the same. When the subjects are different, is the only suitable option, the other three are not.

    We’ve connected the various parts of a sentence with conjunctions. Now, let’s try connecting whole sentences together! There are plenty of options for which kind of Mandarin “and” we can use — take a look at the construction below:

    Sentence A, 也/还/而且/并且 + sentence B


    (Tā qù mǎi le xiē dōngxī, hái qù kàn le yīgè péngyǒu. )

    He bought some things, also visited a friend. (same subject, 他)


    (Tā gěi tā dǎ le diànzǐyóujiàn, tā huífù le.)

    He emailed her, and she replied to it. (different subjects, 他, 她)

    What to keep in mind

    When connecting sentences in Mandarin Chinese, keep the following grammar points in mind:

    • When used to connect two sentences with the same subject, 也/还/而且/并且 are preceded by a comma in writing.

    • When two sentences share the same subject, the second subject can be dropped.

    • When used to connect two sentences with different subjects, only 也 is used and it is placed after the subject of the second sentence.


     () does not connect sentences, so avoid the following mistake:


    (Tā cōngmíng, hé tā cōngmíng.)

    He is intelligent, and so is she.

    Can “and” be left out in Mandarin Chinese?

    You can actually drop “and” altogether, especially in informal and spoken Mandarin Chinese, including text messages, group chats, emails, twitter, etc.

    “and” dropped
    “and” added
    你我一起去吧。 (Nǐ wǒ yīqǐ qù ba.)
    你和我一起去吧。 (Nǐ hé wǒ yīqǐ qù ba.)
    你、我一起去吧。 (Nǐ, wǒ yīqǐ qù ba.)

    I think you and I can go together.

    他唱歌跳舞。 (Tā chànggē tiàowǔ.)
    他唱歌、跳舞。 (Tā chànggē, tiào wǔ.)

    He sings and dances.

    小王聪明能干。 (Xiǎo Wáng cōng míng nénggān.)
    小王(又)聪明又能干。 (Xiǎo wáng (yòu) cōngmíng yòu nénggān.)
    小王聪明、能干。 (Xiǎo Wáng cōng míng, nénggān.)

    Xiao Wang is intelligent and capable.


    Have you noticed the ability of the punctuation mark “、” to replace “and”? It’s called 顿号 (dùnhào); it’s used to list words, and is similar to an English comma. Even in the case where no “and” should be added, this punctuation can still do the trick. So, you may want to remember this very useful little punctuation mark. It has actually been suggested that the easiest way to connect two non-noun words is to omit “and” altogether (i.e., doing nothing at all is the best option).


    The comma, 顿号, is used in writing. When speaking, put a pause in the place of a 顿号.

    Below are the patterns to follow when you use the Mandarin Chinese “and” along with some tips:

    • Noun A + 和/跟/与/及 + Noun B

    •  (yòu) + verb/adjective A +  (yòu) verb/adjective B

    •  () + adjective A + 又/也 () adjective B

    • Sentence A, 也/还/而且/并且 + sentence B

    • When the subjects of the two sentences are the same, the second one can be omitted

    • You can drop “and” altogether in some situations

    Ready to give it a try? Here are some practice exercises on the Mandarin conjunction “and,” which will help you revise and reinforce your knowledge about “and” in Mandarin Chinese.

    Downloadable Resources

    Elevate your language-learning journey to new heights with the following downloadable resources.

    How to say and in Mandarin Chinese~Activities

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