A while back I started a Friday column of my own titled Mandarin Love, covering how to express your love in Chinese with some special Chinese idioms. (My Mandarin Love post on Chinese phrases on love and destiny is one of the 10 most popular posts on this site.)
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Firstly, sincere thanks to Jocelyn for inviting us from Learn Mandarin Now to write a guest blog post.
Following on with Jocelyn’s own theme of phrases and of love and affection in Mandarin Chinese, we’d like to highlight several more very well known Chinese phrases dealing with matters of the heart and highlighting the yearning and passion lovers can have for each other…
One of our favourites is:
Jin Yu Liang Yuan (金玉良缘, jīnyù liángyuán) which literally means: a perfect couple, with a shining, ideal future.
This phrase often appears with reference to Chinese weddings and refers to the prospects for a good marriage. It is originally from the Dream of the Red Chamber（红楼梦）, one of China’s Four Great Classical Novels. This novel was written sometime in the middle of the 18th century during the Qing Dynasty and is considered to be a masterpiece of Chinese literature.
With its inferences for a good future and a successful marriage, Jin Yu Liang Yuan is also a popular name for many TV shows and dramas in China.
Then there is Fei Cheng Wu Rao (非诚勿扰, fēichéngwùrǎo) which literally means: “If you are not sincere, don’t bother me.”
There are two main reasons this phrase is so popular in China, and both relate to the cinema and TV.
The first reason relates to the name for the popular love story/romantic comedy movie, from 2008: ”If You Are The One” which starred two famous Chinese movie stars, Shu Qi（舒淇） and Ge You（葛优）, and was also directed by one of China’s best known directors, Feng Xaiogang（冯小刚）.
The other reason is that Fei Cheng Wu Rao is also the name of a TV show produced by the Jiang Su television station and is the Chinese version of the well known dating TV show “Take Me Out”. This Chinese version is hosted by famous TV host Meng Fei（孟非） although, in fact, in recent years, more and more single foreigners, including overseas Chinese, have also joined the show, and some of them have even found the right partner.
Another very popular expression (shown below) literally means “Once, true love was placed before me, but I didn’t cherish it. After I lost it, I regretted it. This was the most painful thing in the world and if heaven could give me another chance, I would say to that girl three words, “I love you.” If I had to place a time limit on this love, I hope it would be 10,000 years.”
This expression originated from a Stephen Chow (one of Hong Kong’s most famous film stars who combines kung-fu style action with comedy) movie and most Chinese growing up at the time this movie was released know this line well. Although not so popular at first in Hong Kong, the movie finally became well known in Mainland China and became recognised as one of the best movies made by Stephen Chow—especially for these classic lines.
Of course, there are many other Chinese phrases which convey the feelings of cherished love and you can find some more of them with a little research or, if you simply wish to brush up on your Mandarin, take a look at our site Learn Mandarin Now．
Yang is a serial web entrepreneur whose latest website is www.learnmandarinnow.com. He is passionate about learning new languages and cultures. Yang is currently working on researching the preferred ways 50 international bloggers learn Chinese, and will share the results in his blog shortly.