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Watch out!

Walking around in Chinese cities presents many dangers, motorists, bicyclists, and even other pedestrians. It is a good idea know how to warn people, and know when you are being warned.

 

Dialog

PinyinChineseEnglish
Xiǎo xin!小心!Watch out!

 

Vocabulary

PinyinEnglish
xiǎosmall
xīnheart;mind;feeling;intention

 

Why does “small heart” means “watch out”? Well, the thinking goes like this: when you have a big heart you are very open and accepting of your circumstances. In Chinese the expression 心大 (heart big) indicates inclusiveness. So, to the Chinese way of thinking, 小心 means to narrow the scope of your attention to the danger at hand.

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