会(huì) vs 能(néng)

会 vs 能

 

Both 会 and 能 can be used to indicate ability.

As a verb

can be used as a verb by itself, and also can be followed by an object or a complement.

e.g.

这个问题我不。你吗?(Zhège wèntí wǒ bù huì. Nǐ huì ma?) I can’t solve this problem. Can you?

 

汉语。(Wǒ huì hànyǔ.) I can speak Chinese.

 

A:你会不会汉语?(Nǐ huì bú huì hànyǔ?) Can you speak Chinese?

B:我一点儿。(Wǒ huì yīdiǎnr.) I know a little bit.

 

cannot be predicate alone. It is an auxiliary verb.

e.g.

✘ 我汉语。 (Wǒ nénɡ hànyǔ.)

 

As an auxiliary verb

#1

会 could stress the skills or abilities acquired through learning.

e.g.

开车。(Wǒ huì kāi chē.)

游泳,我不(Tā huì yóuyǒng, wǒ bú huì.)

 

能 stresses the possession of skills or inborn ability.

Only 能 is used when indicating “to lose or regain a certain ability.”

e.g.

看见。(Wǒ nénɡ kànjiàn.)

她的手好了,打篮球了。(Tā de shǒu hào le, néng dǎ lánqiúle.)

 

#2

  • 很/真/最 + 会 + verb
  • 很/真/最 + 能 + verb

Both means one is good at doing something.

会 indicates somebody is skillful in doing something.

e.g.

很会做饭,像一个专业厨师。(Tā hěn huì zuò fàn, xiàng yīgè zhuānyè chúshī.) He is good at cooking, like a professional chef.

 

真会聊天。每次和你说话,大家都很开心。(Nǐ zhēn huì liáotiān. Měi cì hé nǐ shuōhuà, dàjiā dōu hěn kāixīn.) You are really good at chatting. Every time talking to you, everyone is happy.

 

only 能 is used to indicate the efficiency or the extent to which one does something.

e.g.

很能喝,从来不醉。(Tā hěn néng hē, cónglái bu zuì.) She is able to drink much and is never drunk.

 

我姐姐非常能睡,每天都睡12个小时。(Wǒ jiějie fēicháng néng shuì, měitiān dōu shuì 12 gè xiǎoshí.) My sister is very good at sleeping, 12 hours per day.

 

#3

Something may happen or may be true. Possibility.

e.g.

我们一定/赢的。(Wǒmen yīdìng huì/néng yíng de.) We will definitely win.

我没想到他/这么做。(Wǒ méi xiǎngdào tā huì/néng zhème zuò.) I didn’t expect him to do it like this.

雨这么大,他会/能来吗?(Yǔ zhème dà, tā huì/néng lái ma?) The rain is so heavy, will he come?

 

Note: Oral Chinese in the north often use 能, other dialects often use 会.

 

#4

能 could indicates permission or prohibition. 会 cannot

e.g.

去公园吗?(Wǒ nénɡ qù ɡōnɡyuán mɑ?) Can I go to the park? 

 

>>permission

去公园。(Bù nénɡ qù ɡōnɡyuán.) It’s not allowed to go to the park.

 

>>Prohibition

 

去公园吗?Will I go to the park?不去公园。I won’t go to the park.

 

>> possibility

 

 

#5

不会不: highly possible, close to “certainly, definitely”

e.g.

这件事他不会不知道。(Zhè jiàn shì tā búhuì bù zhīdào) He certainly knew about this thing.

 

今天是妈妈的生日,他不会不来的。(Jīntiān shì māma de shēngrì, tā búhuì bù lái de.) Today is mother’s birthday, and he will definitely come.

 

 不能不: have to, should

e.g.

这件事他不能不知道,我们必须告诉他。(Zhè jiàn shì tā bùnéng bù zhīdào, wǒmen bìxū gàosù tā.) He should know about this thing. We must tell him.

 

今天是妈妈的生日,他不能不来的。(Jīntiān shì māma de shēngrì, tā bùnéng bù lái de.) Today is mother’s birthday, and he has to come.

1. 她 ___ 滑雪(ski)。(Tā ___ huá xuě.)
A.
B.
2. 经过医生的帮助,他又 ___ 走了。(Jīngguò yīshēng de bāngzhù, tā yòu ___ zǒu le.)
A.
B.
3. 我的汉语老师 ___ 剪纸(paper-cutting)。(Wǒ de hànyǔ lǎoshī ___ jiǎnzhǐ.)
A.
B.
4. 你 ___ 帮我请个假吗?(Nǐ ___ bāng wǒ qǐng gè jià ma ?)
A.
B.
5. 哥哥以前不 ___ 说法语,现在 ___ 了。(Gēɡe yǐqián bú ___ shuō fǎyǔ, xiànzài ___ le.)
A.
B.
6. 你 ___ 尝出来这道菜里面放了什么吗?(Nǐ ___ cháng chū lái zhè dào cài lǐ miàn fàng le shénme ma ?)
A.
B.
7. 你 ___ 什么?(Nǐ ___ shénme?)
A.
B.
8. 我 ___ 进来吗?(Wǒ ___ jìn lái mɑ?)
A.
B.

 

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