Basic comparisons with "meiyou"
In Chinese, there is another way to make comparisons. You can use 没有(méiyǒu) to express that something is "not as" as something else.
As well as with 比 (bǐ), you can also use 没有 (méiyǒu) to make basic comparisons. You could think of 没有 (méiyǒu) as the opposite of 比 (bǐ) - it works in the same way, but rather than expressing "more... than..." it expresses "not as... as...":
Noun 1 + 没有 + Noun 2 + Adjective
In this structure, the noun that's placed first is less "adjective" than the second noun (hence 没有 (méiyǒu) being like 比 (bǐ) in reverse). So in the sentence:
- 小张 没有 小李 高 。 Xiao Zhang is not as tall as Xiao Li.
小李 (Xiǎo lǐ) is taller. The same situation could be described as:
- 小李 没有 小张 矮 。 Xiao Li is not as short as Xiao Zhang.
- 你 没有 我 胖 。 You are not as fat as me. (You do not have my fatness.）
- 他们 没有 我们 酷 。 They are not as cool as us. (They do not have the coolness we have.)
- 火车 没有 飞机 快 。 Train is not as fast airplane. (This car does not have the speed of that other car.)
- 上海 没有 北京 冷 。 Shanghai is not as cold as Beijing.
- 我 没有 你 聪明 。 I am not as clever as you.
- 中国 没有 美国 大 。 China is not as big as the USA.
- 这 本 书 没有 那 本 书 有意思 。 This book is not as interesting as that book.
- 中国 菜 没有 西餐 好吃 。 The Chinese food is not better to eat than western style food.
- 学 中文 没有 学 英文 容易 。 Studying Chinese is not easier than studying English.
- 住 在 东京 没有 住 在 香港 方便 。 Living in Tokyo is not more convenient than living in Hong Kong.
Sources and further reading
- Integrated Chinese: Level 1, Part 2 (3rd ed) (pp. 69- 71) →buy
- Chinese: An Essential Grammar, Second Edition (pp. 54-5) →buy
- New Practical Chinese Reader 3 (新实用汉语课本3) (pp. 33-4) →buy