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Expressing "a little too" with "you dian"

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At times you may want to politely diss something using the phrase "a little too." For example, if you are getting lunch with a friend who wants to be seated outside, you might say, "It is a little too hot" to suggest you sit inside. In a case like this, you can use 有一点 (yǒuyīdiǎn) or 有点 (yǒudiǎn). The two are interchangeable.

Structure

To say that something is "a little too..." or "a bit too...," 有一点 (yǒuyīdiǎn) is often used. Its northern Chinese version is 有一点儿 (yǒuyīdiǎnr).

Subj. + 有一点(儿) + Adj.

In spoken Chinese, the 一 (yī) in 有一点 (yǒuyīdiǎn) is often dropped, leaving 有点 (yǒudiǎn). In northern China, that's usually pronounced 有点儿 (yǒudiǎnr).

Subj. + 有点(儿) + Adj.

Examples

  • 有点 饿 。yǒudiǎn è.I'm a little hungry.
  • 这个 菜 有点 辣 。Zhège cài yǒudiǎn là.This dish is a little too spicy.
  • 昨天 有一点 热 。Zuótiān yǒuyīdiǎn rè.Yesterday it was a little too hot.
  • 上海 的 冬天 有一点 冷。 Shànghǎi de dōngtiān yǒuyīdiǎn lěng.Winter in Shanghai is a bit too cold.
  • 我弟弟 有点 胖 。Wǒ dìdi yǒudiǎn pàng.My younger brother is a bit fat.
  • 今天 有点 累 。Jīntiān yǒudiǎn lèi.Today I am a little bit tired.
  • 这个 月 公司 有点 忙 。Zhège yuè gōgnsī yǒudiǎn máng.This month the company is a little bit busy.
  • 这 个 地方 有点 吵 ,我们 走吧 。Zhège dìfang yǒudiǎn chǎo, wǒmen zǒu ba.This place is a little too noisy. Let's go.
  • 爸爸 回来 有点 晚 ,妈妈 有点 不高兴 。Bàba huílái yǒudiǎn wǎn, māma yǒudiǎn bù gāoxìng.Dad came back home a bit too late, so mom was a little unhappy.
  • 老师 今天 有点 不 舒服 ,所以 没 来上课 。Lǎoshī jīntiān yǒudiǎn bù shūfu, suǒyǐ méi lái shàngkè.Today, the teacher felt a little unwell, so she didn't come to class.

Negative Connotation

Note that for the speaker, the adjective after 有点 (yǒudiǎn) expresses an unpleasant or undesirable meaning, so you won't hear things like 有点高兴 (yǒudiǎn gāoxìng), 有点舒服 (yǒudiǎn shūfu), 有点好玩儿 (yǒudiǎn hǎowánr), etc., because "happy," "comfortable," and "fun" are all adjectives with positive connotations.

See Also

Sources and further reading

Books