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Yihou, zhihou, houlai and ranhou


以后/后来


后来 can express only past. 以后 can express also present or future.


对 - 本来他以为不喜欢吃,后来他吃了一口,就无处不吃。

对 - 本来他以为不喜欢吃,他吃了第一口以后就无处不吃。


对 - 我明天下班以后去接她。

错 - 我明天下班后来去接她。


后来 can stand alone. 以后 can not. It must be acompanied by a time expresion.


对 - 我以前在Intel工作,后来就去了Microsoft。

错 - 我以前在Intel工作,以后就去了Microsoft。


后来/然后


后来 is a noun, 然后 in a conjuction


后来 can express only past events

然后 can express alsi present and future.


然后 is not used to express time, but to express continuity of some actions. It is often used in combination with „First (than)“,



实用对外汉语教学语法(pp. 54)

对外汉语教学语法释疑201例 (pp. 3, 5, 7)