Do you understand every occurrence of the Chinese characters “大 big” and “小 small”?

Posted by Grace Feng on August 30, 2012

Do you understand every occurrence of Chinese character "大 big" and "小 small"?Big and small, 大 dà and 小 xiǎo, are two of the simplest Chinese characters you’ve ever learned. Do you think you understand all of their occurrences? On this Learn Mandarin online blog, I will try to lead you go deeper into Chinese language through simple characters like these. I’ve done it once with another two high frequency Chinese characters 上 and 下.

First of all, let’s look at a few phrases that you might often come across on Chinese news media :

大方向 dà fāngxiàng (big vision)
大局 dàjú (the benefit of the majority )

You also could use the following words on a daily basis :

大家 dàjiā (we all, or you all)
大众 dàzhòng (general taste )
大体上 dàtǐshàng (overall )

Then some small phrases:

小家子气 xiǎojiāziqì (small-minded)
小人 xiǎorén (petty person)

You may also encounter the Chinese idioms with both characters in the following list.

大事化小 dàshì huà xiǎo (reduce major issues to minor ones)
以小见大 yǐ xiǎo jiàn dà (to get the big picture from small details)
大大小小 dàdàxiǎoxiǎo (big and small)
小巫见大巫 xiǎowūjiàndàwū (a giant in the presence of a super-giant; appear insignificant when compared with)

I’ll show you how to use the above idioms in the following examples:

lǐngdǎo duì zhè jiàn shì de chǔlǐ yìjiàn shì dàshì huà xiǎo。


Our boss’s opinion towards this is to reduce major issues into minor issues.


wǒmen yīnggāi xuéhuì yòngyǐ xiǎo jiàn dà de fāngfǎ qù fēnxī shìchǎng de zǒuxiàng。


We should learn to use the method of drawing big picture out of small facts in analyzing the trend of the market.


měi dào Zhōngqiūjié diàn lǐ jiù huì bǎimǎn dà dàxiǎo xiǎode yuèbǐng。


Every Moon Festival, there will be full of moon cakes displayed in the store, big or small.


nǐ shì yī gè hěn bàng de wǎngqiú shǒu, kě gēn nǐmen jiàoliàn yīduì dǎ jiù hǎoxiàngxiǎowūjiàndàwū。


You are a very good tennis player.  But comparing to your coach, you still have a long way to go.


Do you know any interesting Chinese words with both and in it? Feel free to share, thanks!




Related posts:

The expressions that Chinese like to use to express "I don't care!"
The more you fear it, the worse it gets - Chinese expression 怕什么, 来什么
The interesting usage of Chinese character "倒" [reverse]


Category: Chinese vocabulary

Tags: , , ,


You can share this post here:
Visit Us On TwitterVisit Us On FacebookVisit Us On Google PlusCheck Our Feed

4 Responses to “Do you understand every occurrence of the Chinese characters “大 big” and “小 small”?”

  1. nothing


    08-30-2012 6:56 pm



  2. nothing


    08-31-2012 4:31 pm

    哇,太不可思议!,虽然我学汉语快要六年了,但是以上的例子除了一两之外,我似乎都不知道…:( 看来在汉语文化中联最普遍的字都有很深深的意义!


    • nothing


      09-03-2012 2:04 pm

      白睿, 中文的组合词(compound words)确实很多, 这是需要通过很多中文接触(Chinese exposure)来一步步积累.不过只要你已经具备阅读中文的能力, 并且坚持阅读, 你的进步一定会很快的. :-)


  3. nothing


    09-03-2012 4:14 pm

    希望如此Grace! :)


Leave Reply

Copyright © 2016 Just Learn Chinese