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Chinese Grammar: Lesson: 才 and 就

and are both extremely common in Chinese speech, so it's a good idea to figure out when to use which! Both words have similar meanings in English. But believe us, they are not used in the same way in Chinese. Here's how to distinguish these two.


Both and almost mean the same but they aren't used in the same sentences and carry different meanings.

means "just" but in the sense that something happened differently or later than you expected.

means something happened earlier than expected or as you expected, so everything is right on track.

is also used to link two parts of a sentence and then forms a "if something then () something".


If you're ok, then that's good.

This sort of sentence comes in especially handy when you've just bumped into someone, or fell onto them and smashed a cake in their face, as it can happen in some TV dramas.

is usually followed by at the end of the sentence, whereas when there's a , there usually isn't.

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