3 ways to say 'but' in Chinese - difference between 不过 bù guò - 可是 kě shì - 但是 dàn shì

I have heard several different ways to say 'but' in Chinese and asked my teacher to explain the different ways that they are used.  


The easiest way to represent the difference is like this: (or remember based on photo)

不过 bù guò = ~~

可是 kě shì = :(

但是 dàn shì = -><-

 

Here are the differences in how they are used with example sentences.

不过 bù guò is generally a 'softer but', hence the wishy-washy ~~.  Basically you want to use this when you aren't sure or it's not that strong of a conflict. (~only, ~merely, ~anyway)

我很想去北京...  不过  ... 我还有学习.

wǒ hěn xiǎng qù Běijing búguò wǒ háiyǒu xuéxí.

I want to go to Beijing but I still have to study.

 

可是 kě shì is used frequently in spoken Chinese and is usually associated with something unfortunate, hence the unhappy face :( - I want something but unfortunately...

我很想去北京...  可是  ... 我没有钱  

wǒ hěn xiǎng qù Běijing kě shì wǒ méiyǒu qián.

I want to go to Beijing but I don't have any money.

 

但是 dàn shì is more formal, you'll hear it on the news and is usually used when the 'but' is very strong or the two are incompatible = -><-.

我很想去北京...  但是  ... 我的妈妈不让我去  

wǒ hěn xiǎng qù Běijing dàn shì wǒde māma bù ràng wǒ qù.

I want to go to Beijing but my mother won't let me go.



 

And just in case this post gets traffic from the photo or a misspelled word, here is how to say 'butt' in Chinese:


屁股 pì gu - butt / ass / bottom

And pì gu sounds a little like Pikachu.

 

Perhaps someone can explain the different uses of these butts in the comments - 

腚 dìng - butt

臀部 tún bù - butt / buttocks

 

Related post: How to say 'Either' 'Or' in Mandarin - difference 或者 and 还是

 

Image credits:

Attack of Titanic Asses Color by Omeganaruto34

Pikachu likes big butts by ryuskrew

 

You should follow me on Twitter or add me to a circle on Google Plus → Brandon

What do you think of this post?  

 

Add your comments, like or share below.

Views: 7688

Tags: arse, ass, but, butt, buttocks, , chinese, difference, dàn, gu, More…guò, how, intermediate, , language, learning, mandarin, , say, shì, 不过, 但是, 可是, 屁股

Comment

What do you think? If you would like to comment you can join free

Join Study More Chinese

Comment by Roger Y Dunn on March 7, 2013 at 11:21am

可 can also be used on it's own.  and 不过 is softer than the others because it sounds softer.  Two fourth tones Dan4shi4 is very strong.  不过 is like saying "on the other hand" (fan3guo4lai2shuo1). 可是is the most neutral of all "buts"....an advanced but is 反而 fan3er2, fan3 is "opposite", er2 is like "thus", therefore.

Comment by Fearchar I MacIllFhinnein on September 13, 2012 at 3:13am
但 also gets used on its own.

Recommended Resource

Recommended Company

Recommended App

Try HelloTalk Chinese Language App to find language partners. Download.

Recommended Site

Recommended Resource

Recommended Flashcards

Sponsored Links

Members

Latest Activity


Top Member
Thomas Doherty commented on Thomas Doherty's video
Thumbnail

No Car, No House - English Subtitles - by Golden Left-over Girls 没有车 没有房 黄金剩女 英文

"Han Keat Lim 林汉杰 's English translation of the Golden Leftover Girls' version:    …"
6 hours ago
Jim Wu replied to Pat's discussion Can you explain 就 jiù, 相 xiang ?
"as of 没有“相”的意思吧? 相亲 就是“date” ,  请去掉blind,否则外国朋友不好理解。"
7 hours ago
Jim Wu replied to Brandon's discussion New Members - What Chinese app do you use the most?
"OICQ, namely QQ"
7 hours ago

Top Member
Thomas Doherty commented on Thomas Doherty's video
Thumbnail

No Car, No House - English Subtitles - by Golden Left-over Girls 没有车 没有房 黄金剩女 英文

"The associated Pinyin: méiyǒu chē méiyǒu fáng zuòqǔ: Sūn huī. Lián wěi zuòcí: Sūn huī. Lián wěi duōqíng de yángguāng sǎluò zài wǒ de liǎnpáng kàn…"
7 hours ago

Top Member
Thomas Doherty commented on Thomas Doherty's video
Thumbnail

No Car, No House - English Subtitles - by Golden Left-over Girls 没有车 没有房 黄金剩女 英文

"The Chinese lyrics posted at ( http://mojim.com/twy109619x1x1.htm    ) : 沒有車沒有房    作曲:孫輝.連偉    作詞:孫輝.連偉    多情的陽光 灑落在我的臉龐    看看周圍的姑娘個個挺漂亮   …"
7 hours ago

Top Member
Thomas Doherty commented on Thomas Doherty's video
Thumbnail

No Car, No House - English Subtitles - by Golden Left-over Girls 没有车 没有房 黄金剩女 英文

"The Chinese lyrics for the male version of song 沒有車沒有房 ( méiyǒu chē méiyǒu fáng ) No Car No House   by 孫輝 ( Sūn Huī ) and 連偉 ( Lián Wěi )  are posted at this link:    …"
7 hours ago

Top Member
Thomas Doherty commented on Thomas Doherty's video
Thumbnail

No Car, No House - English Subtitles - by Golden Left-over Girls 没有车 没有房 黄金剩女 英文

"Fauna on the Chinasmack site has posted lyrics and an English translation to the Golden leftover Female version of "no car no room" song at this link:   …"
8 hours ago

Top Member
Thomas Doherty commented on Thomas Doherty's video
Thumbnail

No Car, No House - English Subtitles - by Golden Left-over Girls 没有车 没有房 黄金剩女 英文

"The associated Pinyin: Huángjīn shèngnǚ bǎn “méiyǒu chē méiyǒu fáng” gēcí:Duōqíng de yángguāng sǎluò zài wǒ de liǎnpángkàn kàn zhōuwéi de…"
8 hours ago

Get daily Chinese learning updates