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Expressing "if…, then…" with "ruguo…, jiu…"

One of the benefits of Chinese is that the grammar is often very logical and concise. In this article, we look at the "如果 ⋯⋯,就⋯⋯" (rúguǒ..., jiù...) structure. We will also look at uses "的话" (dehuà).

Standard Pattern

Structure

"如果⋯⋯,就⋯⋯" is an often-used pattern that is utilized in the same way that "If…, then…" is in English.

如果 ⋯⋯ ,就 ⋯⋯

Examples

  • 如果 有 困难 , 给 我 打 电话 。 Rúguǒ yǒu kùnnan, jiù gěi wǒ dǎ diànhuà.If there is any difficulty, give me a call.
  • 如果 你 输 了 , 给 我 一 百 块 。Rúguǒ nǐ shū le, jiù gěi wǒ yī bǎi kuài.If you lose, you need to give me 100 kuai.
  • 如果 真的 找 不 回来 , 再 买 一 个 吧 。Rúguǒ zhēnde zhǎo bu huílái, jiù zài mǎi yī gè ba.If you can't find it back, then buy a new one.
  • 如果 他 再 来 ,我们 报警 。Rúguǒ tā zài lái, wǒmen jiù bàojǐng.If he keeps showing up, we'll call the police.
  • 如果 你们 已经 不 爱 对方 了 , 分手 吧 。Rúguǒ nǐmen yǐjīng bù ài duìfāng le, jiù fēnshǒu ba.If you no longer love each other, you should break up then.

Pattern with 那么

“那么”的功能是让这个句式显得不那么拘谨,起舒缓句子节奏的作用。口语里常常省略为"那"。

Structure

如果 ⋯⋯ ,那么 / 那 + Subj. (就) ⋯⋯

Examples

  • 如果 他 知道 , 他 一 定 会 告诉 我 。Rúguǒ tā zhīdào, tā yīdìng huì gàosu wǒ.If he knew, he would definitely tell me.
  • 如果 大家 都 不 感兴趣 , 我 就 不 说 了。Rúguǒ dàjiā dōu bù gǎn xìngqù, wǒ jiù bù shuō le.If none of you are interested, I will just stop talking.
  • 如果 还 想 跟 我们 合作 ,那么 我们 就 好好 谈 一 谈 。Rúguǒ hái xiǎng gēn wǒmen hézuò, nàme wǒmen jiù hǎohǎo tán yī tán.If you still want to work with us, we will have a good talk then.
  • 如果 能 顺利 拿到 签证 ,那么 这个 月底 我 就 可以 了 。Rúguǒ néng shùnlì nádào qiānzhèng, nàme zhège yuèdǐ wǒ jiù kěyǐ le.If I can get my visa without any problem, I'll be able to .
  • 如果 你 想 申请 ,那么 你 现在 就 要 开始 准备 。Rúguǒ nǐ xiǎng shēnqǐng, nàme nǐ xiànzài jiù yào kāishǐ zhǔnbèi.If you want to apply, you need to start to prepare right away.

See also

Sources and further reading

Books