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Responding with ‘好的hǎo de’, ‘好啊hǎo a’, ‘好吧hǎo ba’, ‘好嘛hǎo ma’, ‘好啦hǎo la’

September 19, 2018

‘好hǎo’ originally means ‘good’, and when it’s used as a response or reply, it automatically transforms to mean ‘fine’, ‘sure’ or ‘ok’. Yet, with various words and interjections following ‘好hǎo’, it shows different emotions or tones. In this article, let’s have a closer look at the use of ‘好的hǎo de’, ‘好啊hǎo a’, ‘好吧hǎo ba’, ‘好嘛hǎo ma’, ‘好啦hǎo la’.

 

 

 

1. 好的hǎo de

  • ‘的de’, when placed at the end of sentences, it suggests a confirming sound, therefore ‘好的’ equals to ‘sure’ or ‘ok’, with a sense of confirmation.

  • ‘好的’ is often used when you agree to a request or suggestion without hesitation, while showing your understanding to it.

 

Example

jīnglǐ : nǐ míngtiān 9 diǎn qián dào gōngsī bā!

经理:你明天9点前到公司吧!

Manager: Arrive to the company at 9 tomorrow.

Xiǎogāng: hǎo de.

小刚:好的。

Xiaogang: Sure.

 

māma: nǐ néng bāng wǒ mǎi diǎnr jīdàn má?

妈妈:你能帮我买点儿鸡蛋吗?

Mum: Can you help me to buy some eggs?

érzi: hǎo de, méi wèntí.

儿子:好的,没问题。

Son: Sure, no problem.

 

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2. 好啊hǎo a

  • ‘啊a’, when placed at the end of sentences, it shows exclamation and enthusiasm, therefore ‘好啊’ means ‘sure’ or ‘ok’, in a keen expression.

 

Example:

 nǐ xiǎng qù nà jiā fànguǎn ma?
A:你想去那家饭馆吗?

   Do you want to go to that restaurant?

   hǎo a! 
B:好啊!

   Sure!
 

   wǒmen yìqǐ tī zúqiú, zěnmeyàng?
A:我们一起踢足球,怎么样?

   Let’s play football together, how’s it?

   dāngrán hǎo a!

B:当然好啊!

   Of course it’s great!

 

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3. 好吧hǎo ba

  • ‘好吧’ often used when you agree to a request or suggestion, yet with an indifferent or relatively less passionate tone.

  • It’s similar to the way English uses ‘ok…’, ‘fine’, and ‘alright then’.

     

Example:

Mama: nǐ xiān bǎ zuòyè xiě hǎo cái kěyǐ chūqù wán.

妈妈:你先把作业写好才可以出去玩。

Mum: You can then go out to play only after you finish with your homework first.

ér zǐ: hǎo ba!

儿子:好吧!

Son: Ok, fine.

 

lǎoshī : xià ge xīngqī wǒmen yǒu kǎoshì, dàjiā qǐng jìdé

老师:下个星期我们有考试,大家请记得。

Teacher: There’s an exam next week, everyone please remember it.

tóngxué: hǎo ba

同学:好吧!

Class: Fine.

 

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4. 好嘛hǎo ma

  • One function of ‘嘛ma’ makes the tone sound more ‘cute’ when specifying your expectation, therefore ‘好嘛’ is often used when you’re seeking help from others, and hope they’d say ‘yes’, ‘sure’, or ’ok’.

  • It’s similar to the meaning ‘please’, ‘say yes, please’

     

Example:

érzi: wǒ zhēnde hěn xǐhuān zhè ge diànnǎo yóuxì, nǐ mǎi gěi wǒ ba

儿子:我真的很喜欢这个电脑游戏,你买给我吧!

Son: I really like this computer game, buy it for me!

māma: zǒu ba, bié kàn le

妈妈:走吧,别看了。

Mum: Let’s go, stop looking.

érzi: mā, hǎo ma! jiù mǎi gěi wǒ ma!

儿子:妈,好嘛!就买给我嘛!

Son: Mum, yes please! Just buy me for me.

māma: bù xíng.

妈妈:不行。

Mum: No.

 

tóng xué: Xiǎolì, jiè wǒ kàn yíxià nǐ de zuòyè, xíng ma?

同学:小丽,借我看一下你的作业,行吗?

Classmate: Xiaoli, lend me your homework for a look, is it ok?

Xiǎolì: zhè ge a, ràng wǒ xiǎng xiǎng.

小丽:这个啊,让我想想。

Xiaoli: For this thing…let me have a thought.

tóngxué: hǎo ma!

同学:好嘛!

Classmate: Yes, please!

Xiǎolì: nà hǎo ba! kàn wán le mǎshang huán wǒ

小丽:那好吧!看完了马上还我。

Xiaoli: Fine, then! Return it to me once you’ve finished looking.

 

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5. 好啦hǎo la

  • ‘好啦’ is often used when you agree to a request, yet with a relatively less passionate tone showing unwillingness.

  • It’s similar to the way English uses ‘fine’, ‘ok…’and ‘alright then’.

  • The application is similar to ‘好吧’, but the ‘reluctant’ emotion is often perceived to be stronger.

     

Example:
péngyǒu: hǎo la, bié kū le, wǒmen chūqù sàn sàn bù ba!

朋友:好啦,别哭了,我们出去散散步吧!

Friend: Fine, don't cry anymore, let’s go out for a walk!

Xiǎohóng: hǎo ba!

小红:好吧!

Xiaohong: Ok.

 

nǚér: bà, kěyǐ dài wǒ qù guàng shāngchǎng ma?

女儿:爸,可以带我去逛商场吗?

Daughter: Dad, can you bring me to the mall to go shopping?

bàba: hǎo la, hǎo la

Dad: Ok, fine, fine.

爸爸:好啦,好啦!

 

 

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