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Appearance with "kanqilai"

One of the most common ways to express how something "looks" is to use 看起来 (kànqǐlái). This is what we would use if we wanted to express something like "he looks tired."

Used for Judgement

This pattern is most commonly followed by an adjectival phrase. This can include regular adverbs of degree like , or negative adverbs like .

Structure

Subj. + 看起来 + Adj.

Examples

  • 蛋糕 看起来 很 好吃 。Dàngāo kànqǐlái hěn hǎochī.The cake looks really tasty.
  • 这 家 餐厅 看起来 不错。Zhè jiā cāntīng kànqǐlái bùcuò.This restaurant looks good.
  • 你 男朋友 看起来 很 成熟 。Nǐ nánpéngyou kànqǐlái hěn chéngshú.Your boyfriend looks very mature.
  • 老板 看起来 有点 不 高兴 。Lǎobǎn kànqǐlái yǒudiǎn bù gāoxìng.The boss looks a little unhappy.
  • 你们 看起来 差不多 高 。Nǐmen kànqǐlái chàbuduō gāo.You look to be about the same height.

Used for Analogy

If you want to state what something looks like, you'll also need to follow 看起来 with 像 (xiàng), and then the noun phrase.

Structure

Subj. + 看起来 + 像 + Noun Phrase

Examples

  • 你 妈妈 真 年轻 !看起来 你 姐姐 。Nǐ māma zhēn niánqīng! Kànqǐlái xiàng nǐ jiějie.Your mother is so young! She looks like your older sister.
  • 看起来 大 老板 ?kànqǐlái xiàng bu xiàng dà lǎobǎn.Do I look like a big boss?
  • 你们 俩 看起来 情侣 。Nǐmen liǎ kànqǐlái xiàng qínglǚ.You two look like a couple.
  • 他们 看起来 有钱 人 。Tāmen kànqǐláixiàng yǒuqián rén.They don't look like rich people.
  • 那 个 喝醉 的 男人 看起来 你 老公 。Nà gè hēzuì de nánrén kànqǐlái xiàng nǐ lǎogōng.That drunk guy looks like your husband.

See also

Sources and further reading

Books

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