Chinese grammar:Tag questions with "ma"

As well as yes / no questions, you can also form tag questions with 吗 (ma). Tag questions are quick questions that are tagged on the end of a sentence to ask for /confirm/iation. In English, this is often done with "right?", or by adding the negative form of the verb phrase – e.g., "isn’t it?".

The easiest way to do this in Chinese is to add an adjective and 吗 on the end of the sentence.

Basic Pattern

1. ……, 好 吗? …, all right?
2.……, 对 吗? …, right?
3.……, 是 吗?.., is that it?
4.……, 可以 吗? …, is that OK?

By placing these on the end of a sentence, you can soften a suggestion or request /confirm/iation.


Gěi wǒ men shí èr pínɡ pú tɑo jiǔ , ké yǐ mɑ?
Give us twelve bottles of wine, OK?
Nǐ xǐ huɑn tā , shì mɑ ?
You like him, right?
Tā shì nǐ ɡē ɡe , duì mɑ?
He is your older brother, right?
Wǒ men hē chá , hǎo mɑ?
我们 喝茶,好吗?
Let’s drink some tea, OK?

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