"Before" • Chinese-English Dictionary

CHARACTERS : Simplified Traditional
PHONETIC : Pinyin Bopomofo EFEO Wade-Giles Yale
» Search by Radical
 yǐ qián before / formerly / previous / ago
 xiān qián before / previously
 zhī qián before / prior to / ago / previously / beforehand
 qián lái to come (formal) / before / previously
 zǎo xiān previously / before
 xiān tóu in advance / ahead / before / previously
 qián front / forward / ahead / first / top (followed by a number) / future / ago / before / BC (e.g. 前293年) / former / formerly
 nà ge that one / that thing / that (as opposed to this) / (used before a verb or adjective for emphasis) / (used to humorously or indirectly refer to sth embarrassing, funny etc, or when one can't think of the right word) / (used in speech as a filler, similar to "umm", "you know" etc) / (euph.) menstruation / sex / also pr. [nei4 ge5]
 céng jīng once / already / former / previously / ever / (past tense marker used before verb or clause)
 yī rán still / as before
 yǎn qián before one's eyes / now / at present
 bù jiǔ not long (after) / before too long / soon / soon after
 yī jiù as before / still
 jiā yǐ in addition / moreover / (used before a disyllabic verb to indicate that the action of the verb is applied to sth or sb previously mentioned) / to apply (restrictions etc) to (sb) / to give (support, consideration etc) to (sth)
 shì xiān in advance / before the event / beforehand / prior
 cóng lái méi yǒu have never / never before
 cǐ qián before this / before then / previously
 nián qián before the end of the year / before the new year
 shàng tiān Heaven / Providence / God / the day before / the sky above / to fly to the sky / to take off and fly into space / to die / to pass away
 fú xiàn to appear before one's eyes / to come into view / to float into appearance / to come back (of images from the past) / to emerge / it emerges / it occurs (to me that..)
 qián jǐ tiān a few days before
 zhào yàng as before / (same) as usual / in the same manner / still / nevertheless
 qián tiān the day before yesterday
 àn shí on time / before deadline / on schedule
 hùn dùn primal chaos / formless mass before creation in Chinese mythology / muddled / innocent as a baby
 qián xī eve / the day before
 gēn qián the front (of) / (in) front / (in) sb's presence / just before (a date)
 qián bù jiǔ not long ago / not long before
 shǒu yìng to premiere (a movie or TV show) / premiere (of a movie) / first-run (movie) / to greet (the eye) before anything else (e.g. when entering a room)
 dì jiāo to present / to give / to hand over / to hand in / to lay before
 qián yī tiān the day before (an event)
 lín zǒu before leaving / on departure
 yī rú jì wǎng just as in the past (idiom) / as before / continuing as always
 shì qián in advance / before the event
 qián rì day before yesterday
沿 yán yòng to continue to use (old methods) / to apply as before / according to usage
 qián nián the year before last
 yìng rù to appear before (one's eyes) / to come to (one's mind)
 tā he or him / (used for either sex when the sex is unknown or unimportant) / (used before sb's name for emphasis) / (used as a meaningless mock object) / other / another
 zhè this / these / (commonly pr. [zhei4] before a classifier, esp. in Beijing)
 Dà hé Yamato (possibly 3rd century AD), Japanese state before written records began in 7th century AD, its real dating is controversial
 wèi yǔ chóu móu lit. before it rains, bind around with silk (idiom, from Book of Songs 詩經|诗经) / fig. to plan ahead / to prepare for a rainy day
 bǎo zhì qī date of use (on foodstuffs) / best before date
 jù jīn before the present / (a long period) ago
 qián yè the eve / the night before
 shuì qián pretax / before taxes
 pò tiān huāng unprecedented / for the first time / never before / first ever
 rú chū as before / as ever
 Qǐ míng Classical Chinese name for planet Venus in the east before dawn
 jiào bǎn to signal the musicians (in Chinese opera, by prolonging a spoken word before attacking a song) / (coll.) to challenge
 chèn zǎo as soon as possible / at the first opportunity / the sooner the better / before it's too late
 céng jǐ hé shí just a while before / not so long ago / everyone can remember when..
 de -ly / structural particle: used before a verb or adjective, linking it to preceding modifying adverbial adjunct
 yuán yàng original shape / the same as before
 yuán chù original spot / previous place / where it was before
沿 yán xí to carry on as before / to follow (an old custom etc)
 Dì zàng Kṣitigarbha, the Bodhisattva of the Great Vow (to save all souls before accepting Bodhi) / also translated Earth Treasury, Earth Womb, or Earth Store Bodhisattva
 rú gù as before / as usual / (to be) like old friends
退 tuì bù to do less well than before / to make a concession / setback / backward step / leeway / room to maneuver / fallback
 wèi rán in advance / before it happens (cf preventative measures) / forestalling
 zhào jiù as before / as in the past
西 Lù xī fǎ Lucifer (Satan's name before his fall in Jewish and Christian mythology)
 lín zhèn just before the battle / to approach the front line
 suǒ xiàng pī mǐ to sweep everything before one / to be invincible (idiom)
 nà that / those / then (in that case) / commonly pr. [nei4] before a classifier, esp. in Beijing
 shì kě ér zhǐ to stop before going too far (idiom) / to stop while one can / don't overdo it / stop while you're ahead
 chéng huáng chéng kǒng in fear and trepidation (idiom) / in reverence before your majesty (court formula of humility)
 pī dòu to drag sb before a public meeting to denounce, humiliate and physically abuse them (esp. during the Cultural Revolution)
 qù to go / to go to (a place) / (of a time etc) last / just passed / to send / to remove / to get rid of / to reduce / to be apart from in space or time / to die (euphemism) / to play (a part) / (when used either before or after a verb) to go in order to do sth / (after a verb of motion indicates movement away from the speaker) / (used after certain verbs to indicate detachment or separation)
 wèi jǐ soon / before long
 shì shī to vow before one's troops
使 gōng shǐ minister / diplomat performing ambassadorial role in Qing times, before regular diplomatic relations
 zhě (after a verb or adjective) one who (is) ... / (after a noun) person involved in ... / -er / -ist / (used after a number or 後|后[hou4] or 前[qian2] to refer to sth mentioned previously) / (used after a term, to mark a pause before defining the term) / (old) (used at the end of a command) / (old) this
 dǎ dǐ to lay a foundation (also fig.) / to make a first sketch / to eat sth before drinking / to apply an undercoat
 dōng sǔn winter bamboo shoots (smaller and tenderer as a result of being dug out before they come out of the soil)
 Cháng Jiāng hòu làng tuī qián làng lit. the rear waves of the Yangtze River drive on those before (idiom) / fig. the new is constantly replacing the old / each new generation excels the previous / (of things) to be constantly evolving
 lín zhàn just before the contest / on the eve of war
 Xiǎo chéng Hinayana, the Lesser Vehicle / Buddhism in India before the Mayahana sutras
 Xiǎo shèng Hinayana, the Lesser Vehicle / Buddhism in India before the Mayahana sutras / also pr. [Xiao3 cheng2]
 wǔ dì Five Emperors from legendary times / possibly tribal leaders before the historiographers got working on them / usually taken to be the Yellow Emperor 黃帝|黄帝[Huang2 di4] and four of his sons Zhuan Xu 顓頊|颛顼[Zhuan1 Xu1], Di Ku 帝嚳|帝喾[Di4 Ku4], Tang Yao 唐堯|唐尧[Tang2 Yao2], Yu Shun 虞舜[Yu2 Shun4]
 míng zhé bǎo shēn a wise man looks after his own hide (idiom) / to put one's own safety before matters of principle
 xiàng variant of 向[xiang4] / direction / orientation / to face / to turn toward / to / towards / shortly before / formerly
 bèi quilt / by / (indicates passive-voice clauses) / (literary) to cover / to meet with / (coll.) (since c. 2009) used before a verb that does not accurately represent what actually happened, to describe with black humor how sb or sth was dealt with by the authorities (as in 被自殺|被自杀[bei4 zi4 sha1])
 Bān mén nòng fǔ to display one's slight skill before an expert (idiom)
 wéi lì shì tú to seek nothing but profit (idiom) / personal profit before everything / self-seeking
 jiā to add / plus / (used after an adverb such as 不, 大, 稍 / etc, and before a disyllabic verb, to indicate that the action of the verb is applied to sth or sb previously mentioned) / to apply (restrictions etc) to (sb) / to give (support, consideration etc) to (sth)
 jì jiǔ to offer a libation / person who performs the libation before a banquet / senior member of a profession / important government post in imperial China
 sù mèi píng shēng to have never met sb before (idiom) / entirely unacquainted / a complete stranger / not to know sb from Adam
 lǎo prefix used before the surname of a person or a numeral indicating the order of birth of the children in a family or to indicate affection or familiarity / old (of people) / venerable (person) / experienced / of long standing / always / all the time / of the past / very / outdated / (of meat etc) tough
 kāi dāng kù open pants (for infants before toilet training)
 shì hūn trial marriage / to live together before deciding whether to marry
 gǎn zǎo as soon as possible / at the first opportunity / the sooner the better / before it's too late
 dà yì miè qīn to place righteousness before family (idiom) / ready to punish one's own family if justice demands it
 pín xià zhōng nóng (category defined by the Communist Party) poor and lower-middle peasants: farmers who, before land reform, possessed little or no land (poor peasants) and those who were barely able to support themselves with their own land (lower-middle peasants)
 sān sī ér xíng think three times then go (idiom) / don't act before you've thought it through carefully
 yīn xún to continue the same old routine / to carry on just as before / to procrastinate
 yuè guāng zú lit. moonlight group / fig. those who spend their monthly income even before they earn their next salary (slang)
 é ér (literary) very soon / before long
 wú hé nothing else / soon / before long
 mǎ qián zú lackey / errand boy / lit. runner before a carriage
Chinese Tones