posted by hans.castorp.tahiti on September 27, 2012 | 26 comments
I've just learnt a new character today: 做 (zuo4 right?)... but I remember 作 also means zuo4... and both mean "to do, to make".So, what's the difference between the two characters?Thank you! And sorry, it is probably a quite basic question I'm asking :)
@hans.castorp.tahiti,This is a tricky question. Both of them have several different meanings. Here are some most useful ones:做: 1) to make sth, such as 做衣服，做菜. 2) to play a role, such as 做母亲，做官. 3) to be used as sth, such as 这里可以做办公室. 4) to start a kind of relationship, such as 做朋友. 5) to do some kind of work or activity, such as 做生意，做事.作: 1) to do some kind of work or activity, this looks like the 5th meaning of 做, but here the work is not as specific, like 作报告. 2) to do written works, such as 写作. 3) works of art, like 作品. 4) to regard sth as sth, such as 作为.--Echoecho@popupchinese.com
@Echo,I wasn't familiar with 3)做. Are 做母亲，做官 the same as 当母亲，当官？
Oh... thank you Echo!! I guess I'll get used to both of these by using them in context :)
Is there any chance that questions such as this will be added to he reviews So that we have a chance to improve our grammar?
Thanks for asking this, and the clear explanation - I didn't know there was 2 different characters until I started learning to read recently!
"作" means the action is not strong, meaning more abstract generalization; "do" means that the action is strong, meaning more specific, it is.
"作" means the action is not strong, meaning more abstract generalization; 做 means that the action is strong, meaning more specific, it is.也有特殊的情况。比如“做”and“作”同时出现。do homework ,such as 做作业 做is a verb,and 作业 is a nounI am a Chinese .Please forgive me that my English is not good.
@hafrans 谢谢！ How would one say: thank you for your input/contribution? 谢谢你的功劳/贡献 is probably wrong. Anyone?
@huyilin Hi, Many common responses in Chinese are not as specific as their counterparts in English. So for "Thank you for your input", you could just say "谢谢" or "非常感谢". If the input was very helpful, you could say "谢谢你帮忙". For "Thank you for your contribution", you could say "感谢你（您）的付出／贡献" which is only used in fairly formal contexts. Hope this helps out ;) - Grace
I found this thread was very helpful. For my own memory, I could say '作' is what an learned people does, make poem, make reports, and '做' is what the ordinary people does, make clothing, prepare food, do the work and so on. It is not the accurate definition, but it could do the trick.