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Easy or Difficult - 好容易

Hi,can anyone explain why 好容易 hao róngyì seems to mean with difficulty where as the characters would seem to indicate east.



Hi Roy,

It’s an interesting but difficult question. Let’s try to make it simpler. The basic grammar rule is
好=好不=very. So, let’s take a look at some examples.

  1. 好不容易=好容易
  2. 好不开心=好开心
  3. 好不热闹=好热闹

From the examples I listed here, you might think that there must be ambiguity. Yes, somehow there is; however, you can always tell what it means according to the context.

Hope this would help.


Thanks Betty, I think its a bit like 如果。。。的话 or 是。。。。的 or 当。。。的时候 you just have to learn them as in “context” and not try to merge them into an English structure, ie that’s how it is said in Chinese.



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