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U8L6 Cantonese grammar 呀 [aa4]

U8L6 Cantonese grammar 呀 [aa4]

In this lesson, the grammar of particle(助詞) 呀 [aa4] in Cantonese will be introduced.  Unlike the 啊 [aa3] that you have learnt in previous lesson, 呀 [aa4] can only be used in yes-no question(是非問句).

Grammar of using 呀 [aa4] in Cantonese

Particle 呀 [aa4] is used to ask the listener confirming a statement, as the speaker is doubted about it even after he has heard about that from someone.

nei5 mei6 zou6 gaa1 mou6 aa4

你未做家務呀?

You haven’t done the housework yet?

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectAdverbialPredicateObjectParticle
Part of speechNounAdverbVerbNounParticle
Words in sentence家務

 

nei5 hai6 siu1 fong4 jyun4 aa4

你係消防員呀?

Are you a firefighter?

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicateObjectParticle
Part of speechNounLinking verbNounParticle
Words in sentence消防員

 

nei5 m4 zung1 ji3 sik6 fu2 gwaa1 aa4

你唔中意食苦瓜呀?

You don’t like eating watermelon?

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectAdverbialPredicateObjectParticle
Part of speechNounAdverbAuxiliary verbClauseParticle
Words in sentence中意食苦瓜

 

Object of that sentence

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicateObject
Part of speech/VerbNoun
Words in sentence/苦瓜

 

nei5 hau6 jat6 wui5 tung4 ngo5 jat1 cai4 faan1 uk1 kei2 aa4

你後日會同我一齊返屋企呀?

Will you go home with me on the day after tomorrow?

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectAdverbialPredicate 1Object 1AdverbialPredicate 2Object 2Particle
Part of speechNounNoun; AdverbPrepositionNounAdverbVerbNounParticle
Words in sentence後日; 會一齊屋企

 

nei5 m4 sik1 gong2 gwong2 dung1 waa2 aa4

你唔識講廣東話呀?

You can’t speak Cantonese?

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectAdverbialPredicateObjectParticle
Part of speechNounAdverbAuxiliary verbClauseParticle
Words in sentence講廣東話

 

Object of that sentence

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicateObject
Part of speech/VerbNoun
Words in sentence/廣東話

 

nei5 zi1 cin4 heoi3 gwo3 faat5 gwok3 aa4

你之前去過法國呀?

You have been to France before?

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectAdverbialPredicatePredicative suffixCognate objectParticle
Part of speechNounAdverbVerbPredicative suffixNounParticle
Words in sentence之前法國

 

nei5 so4 zo2 aa4

你傻咗呀?

Are you nuts?

Type of sentence structureSubject-predicative
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicatePredicative suffixParticle
Part of speechNounAdjectivePredicative suffixParticle
Words in sentence

 

keoi5 dei6 m4 sik1 zaa1 faai3 zi2 aa4

佢哋唔識揸筷子呀?

Don’t they know how to hold chopsticks?

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectAdverbialPredicateObjectParticle
Part of speechNounAdverbAuxiliary verbClauseParticle
Words in sentence佢哋揸筷子

 

Object of that sentence

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicateObject
Part of speech/VerbNoun
Words in sentence/筷子

 

keoi5 bou6 din6 waa2 laan6 zo2 aa4

佢部電話爛咗呀?

His phone has broken?

Type of sentence structureSubject-predicative
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicatePredicative suffixParticle
Part of speechNounAdjectivePredicative suffixParticle
Words in sentence佢部電話

 

Subject of that sentence

Type of sentence structureSubordination
Modifier
Head部電話

 

ni1 tiu4 jau2 heoi3 gwo3 hoeng1 gong2 aa4

呢條友去過香港呀?

This guy has been to Hong Kong?

Type of sentence structureSubject-predicative
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicatePredicative suffixCognate objectParticle
Part of speechNounVerbPredicative suffixNounParticle
Words in sentence呢條友香港

 

Subject of that sentence

Type of sentence structureSubordination
Modifier呢條
Head

 

nei5 dei6 heoi3 hoi1 ni1 gaan1 zau2 lau4 aa4?

你哋去開呢間酒樓呀?

You used to go to this Chinese restaurant?

Type of sentence structureSubject-predicative
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicatePredicative suffixCognate objectParticle
Part of speechNounVerbPredicative suffixNounParticle
Words in sentence你哋呢間酒樓

 

Object of that sentence

Type of sentence structureSubordination
Modifier呢間
Head酒樓

 

nei5 bei2 keoi5 daa2 aa4?

你畀佢打呀?

You were hit by him?

Type of sentence structurePredicative expression in series
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicate 1Object 1Predicate 2Particle
Part of speechNounPrepositionNounVerbParticle
Words in sentence

 

Nei5 can3 nei5 aa3 maa5 m4 hai2 uk1 kei2 daa2 gei1 aa4

你趁你阿媽唔喺屋企打機呀?

You played video games when your mum is not at home?

Type of sentence structure Predicative expression in series
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicate 1Object 1Predicate 2Object 2Particle
Part of speechNounPrepositionSentenceVerbNounParticle
Words in sentence你阿媽唔喺屋企

 

Object 1 of that sentence

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectAdverbialPredicateObject
Part of speechNounAdverbVerbNoun
Words in sentence你阿媽屋企

 

Subject of that sentence

Type of sentence structureSubordination
Modifier
Head阿媽

 

Keoi3 dei6 zung1 ji3 gam2 waak6 waa2 aa4

佢哋鐘意噉畫畫呀?

They like to draw it like this?

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicateObject
Part of speechNounAuxiliary verbClause
Words in sentence佢哋鐘意噉畫畫

 

Object of that sentence

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectAdverbialPredicateObject
Part of speech/Pro-adverbVerbNoun
Words in sentence/

ni1 bou6 din6 daan1 ce1 faai3 gwo3 go2 bou6 din6 daan1 ce1 aa4

呢部電單車快過嗰部電單車呀?

This motorcycle is faster than that motorcycle?

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicateObjectParticle
Part of speechNounClauseNounParticle
Words in sentence呢部電單車快過嗰部電單車

 

Predicate of that sentence

Type of sentence structurePredicative-complement
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicateComplement
Part of speech/AdjectiveComplement
Words in sentence/

 

Nei5 dei6 sik1 zo2 saam1 go3 jyut6 aa4

你哋識咗三個月呀?

You have met for 3 months?

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicatePredicative suffixCognate objectParticle
Part of speechNounVerbPredicative suffixNounParticle
Words in sentence你哋三個月

 

Keoi5 zoeng1 nei5 di1 wun6 geoi6 dam2 zo2 aa4

佢將你啲玩具抌咗呀?

He threw away your toys?

Type of sentence structure Predicative expression in series
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicate 1Object 1Predicate 2Predicative suffixParticle
Part of speechNounPrepositionNounVerbPredicative suffixParticle
Words in sentence你啲玩具

 

Object 1 of that sentence

Type of sentence structureSubordination
Modifier你啲
Head玩具

 

Keoi5 ze3 zo2 jan4 dei6 fan6 gung1 fo3 caau1 aa4

佢借咗人哋份功課抄呀?

He has borrowed someone’s homework to copy?

Type of sentence structure Predicative expression in series
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicate 1Predicate suffix 1Object 1Predicate 2 Object 2Particle
Part of speechNounVerbPredicate suffixNounVerbNounParticle
Words in sentence人哋份功課(功課)

 

Object 1 of that sentence

Type of sentence structureSubordination
Modifier人哋份
Head功課

 

oi3 jan1 si1 taan2 hai6 cyun4 sai3 gaai3 zeoi3 cung1 ming4 ge3 jan4 aa4

愛因斯坦係全世界最聰明嘅人呀?

Albert Einstein was the smartest person in the world?

Type of sentence structurePredicative-object
Functions in sentenceSubjectPredicateObjectParticle
Part of speechNounLinking verbNounParticle
Words in sentence愛因斯坦全世界最聰明嘅人

 

Object of that sentence

Type of sentence structureSubordination
Modifier全世界最聰明
Head

 

Nei5 cam4 jat6 tung4 neoi5 pang4 jau5 naau6 zo2 gaau1 aa4

你尋日同女朋友鬧咗交呀?

You have fought with my girlfriend yesterday?

Type of sentence structure Predicative expression in series
Functions in sentenceSubjectAdverbial 1Predicate 1Object 1Predicate 2Predicate suffixObject 2Particle
Part of speechNounAdverbPrepositionNounVerbPredicate suffixNounParticle
Words in sentence尋日女朋友

Reference

  1. 鄧思穎(2017)。粤語語法講義。香港:商務印書館,頁 221, 234

That’s it for this lesson on the grammar of 呀 [aa4] in Cantonese!  If you appreciate our work, sign up now and give us a LikeCoin by clicking the LikeCoin button below 5 times.  It will empower us to create more useful contents for you in the future!

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