Expressing "thanks to" with "duokui"
多亏(duōkuī) can be translated as "thanks to" and is used to express that, due to somebody's help, a negative result has been averted. 了 is often placed after it as it's about something in the past. Note that 多亏(duōkuī) can be placed in the beginning or the middle.
[Good Outcome] ，多亏 (了) + [Lucky Incident]
- 我 能 这么 快 做完 ，多亏了 你 帮 我 。I can finish doing it so soon. Thanks to your help.
- 我 没 迟到 ，多亏了 你 开车 送 我 。I'm not late. Thanks to your ride.
When the good outcome comes before 多亏, there is no need to add in 才. But if the good outcome comes after 多亏, you need to add in 才 to indicate "as a result...(the good outcome happened)."
多亏 (了) + [Lucky Incident] ，Subj. 才 + [Good Outcome]
A few examples:
- 多亏了 你 开车 送 我 ，我 才 没 迟到 。Thanks to your ride, I'm not late to get here.
- 多亏 你 的 伞 ，我 才 没 淋湿 。It started to rain all of a sudden. Thank God I brought an umbrella.
- 多亏 你 帮 我，我 才 能 这么 快 做完 。Thanks for your help, I can finish doing it so soon.
And if you want to add in 不然 for an "otherwise... (this really bad thing would have happened)" explanation, use this structure:
多亏 (了) + [Lucky Incident] ，不然 + Subj. + [Bad Outcome]
- 这 件 事情 多亏了 你 的 提醒 ，不然 我 肯定 忘 了 。Thank you for your reminding me about this matter! Otherwise I would definitely forget.
- 多亏 你 送 她 去 医院 ，不然 情况 会 很 严重 。Thanks to you taking her to the hospital, otherwise her condition can be really severe.
- 多亏了 你 的 建议 ，不然 我 真 不 知道 怎么 办 。Thanks to your advice, otherwise I really don't know what to do about it.
Difference between 多亏 and 幸亏
多亏 is similar to 幸亏 in meaning, the major similarity is both can be used with "不然" or "才." But there are a few big difference between them:
语义： 多亏(duōkuī) emphasizes a feeling of gratitude towards a specific person for the outcome, rather than attributing it purely to fortune.
搭配： 多亏＋noun phrase / sentence 幸亏 / 幸好＋sentence (不能加noun phrase)
位置： 多亏 can be placed in the beginning or the middle while 幸亏 can be only placed in the beginning.
Sources and further reading