121 Basic Chinese Words - Most Used Words in Mandarin Chinese (2023)

121 Basic Chinese Words - Most Used Words in Mandarin Chinese (1)

written by
Shannon Kennedy

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Would you like to understand significantly more Mandarin Chinese? Improve your listening skills with these 121 most important Chinese wordsespeaking skills.

Does it sound too good to be true? Don't worry, these 121 essential Chinese words are so common that they will make up most of what you will hear in Chinese. It's about spending time with the most important Chinese words first.

Here inFluent in 3 months, we love this approach to learning new vocabulary in our languages. That's why we've collected posts that use this method tomain Japanese words,basic words in spanish,Top Italian Words,Important Korean Wordseuseful french words. It's proven to help us not only improve our listening comprehension, but improve our speaking skills too!

It's like learning an instrument. You must learn where to place your fingers to play the notes before you can piece those notes together to create music. But once you focus on finding out, you'll be making music with your instrument in no time. The same goes for learning Chinese. Once you build your basic vocabulary, you'll see a huge improvement in your communication, and you'll see it fast.

This list is not an introduction to Chinese, so you won't get the types of Chinese word lists that you would see in the first chapter of a textbook. No class vocabulary here! Instead, you will learn Chinese words that you will use in everyday life. And if you join this list with thesebasic phrases in chineseechinese numbers, you might be surprised at the progress you make.

I also recommend that you continue this method beyond the top 100 Chinese words to the top 1000 Chinese words and order the list to include the words that are most relevant to you personally. It will go a long way.

In general, you will reach about 50% proficiency with your first 100 Chinese words. Your first 1,000 words will help you get about 70%. Amazing right?

But this is where things start to change. Anything after those first 1,000 words has a little less impact. When you get to around 10,000 words, just add another 20% - you'll get around 90% fluency. When you do math, only 20% better fluency with 10 times the vocabulary? meh It's best to focus on the important first 1,000. Of course you'll want to get to those 10,000 words later, but that just means you should pick the right 1,000 first!

Please note that I do not includeChinese measure wordsin this post. They are important and common, but could easily take up too much of this post. For now, I only recommend learning 个 (Guerra). You can use it in a variety of cases, and even if you don't know the "correct" measure word, you can use 个 and people will understand what you mean.

I'll write the words in this list in Chinese and Pinyin characters so you can focus on the vocabulary itselfNOthe writing system, for now. Learning to read and write Chinese is important, but it is not the focus of this article.

Top 15 Chinese Pronouns

Similar to Japanese and Korean, Chinese is considered a "pro-drop" language, meaning it often omits pronouns. Nevertheless, you must learn them! Because they are important for emphasis and clarification.

  • EU (w) - "I i"
  • Of () - "Of"
  • Of (away) – „you“ (formal)
  • Is (Then) - "is is"
  • she (Then) - "you them"
  • us (Women) - "we we"
  • Of (nǐmen) – „you“ (formal)
  • She (However) - "you them"
  • The (Then) - "The"
  • be (zhè) - "be"
  • Was (NO) - "Was"
  • This (zhèxiē) - "this"
  • Those ones (nàxiē) - "Those ones"
  • Ter (zìjǐ) – "himself, alone"
  • at (dajia) - "at"

Top 5 Chinese titles

To be more polite, don't use "you" in Chinese. Instead, use the person's last name and title in very formal situations, and their first name and title in slightly less formal situations. There are many different titles in Chinese, but here are some of the most common ones.

  • Herren (xiānshēng) - "Lord, Lord"
  • lose (xiǎojiě) - "lose"
  • Sra (Führer) - "Madam", note that this is only used outside of business situations
  • Professor (lǎoshi) - "Professor"
  • Physician (yīshēng) - "Physician"

8 important question words in Chinese

  • Was (shenme) - "Was"
  • Several () - "how many"
  • WHO (she I) - "WHO"
  • If (shénme shíhòu) - "If"
  • Wo (nǎlǐ) - "Wo"
  • Weil (wèishéme) - "Weil"
  • if (zěnme) - "if"
  • What about it (zěnme yáng) - "How are you doing"

12 Essential Chinese Words

Here is a selection of common words you should know in Chinese. It's a mixed bag of words, but they're all high-frequency Chinese words that are incredibly useful to know.

  • NO (compensate) - "NO"
  • above (Ö) – a marker used to indicate changes
  • very (Her) - "very"
  • von (von) - "von"
  • turning back (Selection) – "still, still, also"
  • for (if) – "for, because of"
  • once again (Of) - "once again"
  • von (freeze) - "out of"
  • Once again (Wille) - "once again"
  • Then (zhèyàng) – „so, so“
  • possible (To the right) - "possibly"
  • To the right (Dui) – “correct” or “is correct”

38 basic Chinese nouns

As aFluent in 3 monthsreaders (or if you hear themPodcast on language hacking, You may be familiar with the methods Benny Lewis uses to speak from day one. It focuses on the words that are whatOfpersonal use in everyday life.

The best nouns and verbs to learn are these words. And the most effective way to do this is by creatingscripts. This is also my favorite method, which I have used successfully countless times in the past.Flowing challenge in 3 months. And it's something I definitely think could work for you, too.

Let's move on to the following words. These are all Chinese words that you will hear a lot because they are words for things that come up frequently in conversation. They are the Chinese nouns for time, places, locomotion, people, etc. Some of these words may not be familiar to you personally, but they might be familiar to the people you are talking to, so it won't hurt you to learn them !

14 Chinese words for time

  • Heaven (Money) - "Is"
  • Week (xīngqí) - "Week"
  • Lua (of) - "Month"
  • Once again (Nian) - "once again"
  • Today (jīntiān) - "Today"
  • yesterday (zuótiān) - "yesterday"
  • morning (mingtiān) - "morning"
  • Hour (xiǎoshi) - "Hour"
  • Protocol (fēnzhōng) – „Minute“
  • Tempo (Shijian) - "Tempo"
  • Before (yǐqian) - "Before"
  • after (yǐhòu) - "after"
  • Now (xianzai) - "Now"
  • second category (Was) – “time, occasion”

11 Chinese words for places

  • Here (zhèlǐ) - "Here"
  • Leaves (leaves) - "Leaves"
  • Ort (defender) - "Ort"
  • School (xuéxiào) - "School"
  • compare (diàn) - "compare"
  • Work (gongzuò) – "to work", also the verb "to work"
  • bathroom (xǐshǒujiān) - "bathroom"
  • City (cupgshi) - "City"
  • Nation (guójiā) - "Land"
  • China (Zhōngguó) - "China"
  • Company (gongsi) - "Company"

5 Chinese words for things

  • Ding (dongxī) - "Ding"
  • Fall (what) – “thing, thing, circumstance”
  • Lar (jiā) - "Lar house"
  • Auto (chē) - "Auto"
  • Ask (wèntí) - "question, problem"

8 Chinese words for people

  • Frau (anything) - "Frau"
  • Mann (not monastery) - "Mann"
  • Kind (it is not) - "Kind"
  • Freund (pengyǒu) – „amigo“
  • People (called) - "Person"
  • Family (years) - "Family"
  • Name (my mind) - "Name"
  • Student (xuéshēng) - "Student"

20 Common Chinese Verbs

These are the 20 most common Chinese verbs you should know. You can say a lot with just these 20 verbs, especially verbs like 要 (sim, "want") and tun (zuò, "make, create").

  • exist (Wille) - "convenient"
  • Ter (yǒu) - "Ter"
  • explain (shuō) - "Speak, tell"
  • want (sim) - "want, must"
  • meet (huì) - "know how to do it"
  • e (ob) – “reach, achieve”
  • capable (new) - "be able"
  • He can (kěyǐ) - "he can"
  • For (to lead) - "for"
  • expected (deng) - "Wait"leave (delete*) – "allow"
  • Make (zuò) - "make, create"
  • think (xiǎng) – “want, wish, miss”
  • And (QUOTE) - "And"
  • Espresso (biǎoshì) - "Demonstrate"
  • see (influence) – "see, watch, observe"
  • feel (juéde) - "think"
  • use (shǐyòng) - "use"
  • saber (zhīdào) - "saber"
  • NO (meiyǒu) – "do not have, do not have, do not"

11 Simple Chinese Adjectives and Adverbs

Adjectives and adverbs are useful words when speaking another language as they can really add something to your communication and the depth of your conversations. Here are 11 to get you started:

  • at (do you) - "at"
  • large (But) - "large"
  • majority (zuì) - "majority"
  • born (To) - "bom"
  • Bis (gèng) - "further"
  • at (mei) - "at"
  • Only (zhǐ) - "Only"
  • Klein (xiǎo) - "klein"
  • Novo (xin) - "novo"
  • already (yǐjīng) - "already"
  • Alt (gāo) - "Alt"

4 important Chinese prepositions

Prepositions are very common in Chinese because they are used in a variety of contexts. You see them when you talk about the weather, location, and other situations.

  • Superior (save on computer) - "On top"
  • quite (zhong) - "Center"
  • by () - "within"
  • Under (xia) – "under, under"

8 main Chinese conjunctions and connectors

Conversational Connectionsare some of the best words and phrases you can learn in another language to become more fluent in sounding fast. These 8 will give you a head start in Chinese:

  • e (is is) - "e"
  • at once (jiù) - "Then"
  • But) (staging (shì)) - "but anyway"
  • or (huò) - "or"
  • Why (yinwei) - "Why"
  • Then (suǒyǐ) - "that's why"
  • with (rúguǒ) - "with"
  • e (gen) - "com"

Do a lot with little with your Chinese vocabulary

Now that you've gone through this list of 121 basic Chinese words and phrases, you'll be ready to show off your Chinese vocabulary. You are now ready to move on to more advanced topics and even dive into your first onesChinese language exchange.

121 Basic Chinese Words - Most Used Words in Mandarin Chinese (2)

Shannon Kennedy

Language facilitator, fluent for months

Shannon is the head coach ofFlowing challenge in 3 months. She currently resides in Southern California where she performs as a professional musician. Her passions are cooking, reading, traveling and sharing her language learning adventures.

He speaks:English, French, Mandarin, Russian, Croatian, Japanese

View all posts by Shannon Kennedy

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