¥ 0.50 五毛

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sb70012

Senior Member
Azerbaijani/Persian
¥ 0.50

Hello,
I asked my Chinese friend that how ¥ 0.50 should be said since I'm looking for it's equivalent in English.
My friend said it can be said as the following:

五毛 (Wǔmáo)

But something makes me confused. As you know less than 1 yuan should be Jiao or fen. Why don't you use these two words when your money is less than 1 yuan?

Thank you.
 
  • sb70012

    Senior Member
    Azerbaijani/Persian
    Jiao or fen. Why don't you use these two words when your money is less than 1 yuan?
     

    Lamb67

    Senior Member
    China/Mandarin
    Google wumao and a lot of information would come through. In our case I think it is just colloquialism
     

    Youngfun

    Senior Member
    Wu Chinese & Italian
    jiao and fen are not the same thing.

    角 jiao is 1/10 of a yuan, i.e. ¥ 0.1 - equivalent to English 10 cents or dime. People say 毛 mao in speech
    分 fen is 1/100 of a yuan, i.e. ¥ 0.01 - equivalent to English cent.

    About 元 yuan, people also say 块 kuai in speech.
     

    philchinamusical

    Senior Member
    Chinese-Mandarin and Shanghai dialect
    Back in 1940's, there once was banknote of 一毫, which is 0.1 分.

    I saw one of those dated 1946, when I was little. My Dad kept several old banknotes then. Unfortunately, they were all lost when we moved around.
     

    SimonTsai

    Senior Member
    Taiwanese Mandarin
    I am 22 years old. Here most young people know of but rarely say '毛', '角', or '分'. (The terms '五毛黨' and '五毛小粉紅' are exceptions. They are set phrases. No one says '角' instead.)

    NTD 0,34 is read as '新臺幣零點三四元'. (I prefer the decimal comma to the decimal point.)
     

    petrokov

    New Member
    English - USA
    I am 22 years old. Here most young people know of but rarely say '毛', '角', or '分'. (The terms '五毛黨' and '五毛小粉紅' are exceptions. They are set phrases. No one says '角' instead.)

    NTD 0,34 is read as '新臺幣零點三四元'. (I prefer the decimal comma to the decimal point.)
    I'd like to add to this so as to show the difference in speech patterns between different locations. I lived in 鄭州 until two years ago, and for amounts below 1元, the word 毛 was almost always used. For example, 水煎包是五毛一個 is a very natural sounding sentence to me. I never heard anyone say 角 or 零點啥啥 in spoken Chinese. No one used 分, because people don't usually care about dividing money into such small amounts, but I've seen the word 分 used in books written by mainland authors that take place a few decades ago, back when 1分 was actually worth something.
     

    SimonTsai

    Senior Member
    Taiwanese Mandarin
    I think that young people here are unfamiliar with '毛' because today, '元' is the smallest monetary unit in everyday life. Decades ago, '一粒餃子五毛' was possible.
     

    philchinamusical

    Senior Member
    Chinese-Mandarin and Shanghai dialect
    “毛” is more common in the northern and western parts of China, while “角” in the eastern and southern parts of China.
    “分” used to be a more common unit while I was little, like 40 some years ago. We had a famous kid song called 《一分钱》, almost all kids in school would learn that song, singing that "I" picked up 1 cent and handed it to the police as a good kid would do.
     

    tinsh

    Member
    Chinese-Traditional
    这个问题难倒了我。或许可以这样读:
    thirty four Chinese cents
    fifty Chinese cents
     

    Erebos12345

    Senior Member
    Canadian English
    这个问题难倒了我。或许可以这样读:
    thirty four Chinese cents
    fifty Chinese cents
    :thumbsup:

    Yeah, but it's hard to imagine a context where you'd have to specify that they're Chinese cents. Usually, fifty cents is enough.
    -I went to the market in Beijing and got a tofu skewer for fifty cents. [price accuracy not guaranteed]
    -Fifty cents American/Canadian? (Fifty cents in American/Canadian currency?)
    -No, fifty cents Chinese. (<-although it follows the same pattern as the sentence above and therefore should be technically correct, this sentence just doesn't roll off my tongue as easily.)
     

    tinsh

    Member
    Chinese-Traditional
    Yes, fifty cents is enough. I mistakenly assumed that cent was only used for US currency.
     

    sb70012

    Senior Member
    Azerbaijani/Persian
    ¥ 0.34
    ¥ 0.50

    Why didn't you say "thirty-four fen" or "fifty fen"? Why didn't you use "fen" instead of "cents"?
     

    SuperXW

    Senior Member
    ¥ 0.34
    ¥ 0.50

    Why didn't you say "thirty-four fen" or "fifty fen"? Why didn't you use "fen" instead of "cents"?
    1. We doubt that many English readers don't have the concept of "fen". "Cent" is easier to understand.
    2. We have a unit for 10 Fen/0.1 Yuan, which is Jiao, and its colloquial name "Mao". That's why in Chinese, we call ¥ 0.34 ¥ 0.50 - 3 Mao 4, 5 Mao, but never 34 Fen, 50 Fen.
     

    tinang

    New Member
    Cantonese - Hong Kong
    For the price and values, it is better to considerate the location.

    It is formal in written for 1 元( dollar), 1 角 ( 10 cents), 1 分 ( cent) widely in Chinese Culture. 1 毛 (10 cent) is colloquialism mainly in china.

    In the structure of Chinese language to present value, it is quite specification for every digit with different term / unit 元角分.

    In English, 34 is thirty-four. "Thirty" is one word and means 30 units. In Chinese, 34 is 三十四. 三十 is two characters. 三 is value of 3 and 十 is unit of 10.
    ( Please note that the writing form 0.34 is Arabic numerals. It is not originally in Chinese for long long ago.)

    To present the price locally, no need to specify chinese dollar. To talk with foreigners, use the district currency instead such as RMB / CNY, TWD & HKD. You can say "thirty-four cents" in English and add RMB /CNY to specify the currency. You also can say 3 Mao 4 in Mandarin in China.
     

    Helloword

    New Member
    Chinese
    "MAO" is originally read "hao", for the convenience of bookkeeping, often "Hao" save pen for "MAO". Over time, practice becomes practice. There are still places where the word "millio" is read instead of "MAO". Such as 10 cents used in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.
    “毛”本是读“毫”,为记账方便,往往将“毫”省笔为“毛”。久而久之,习非成是。现在仍然有的地方读“毫”不读“毛"。如香港特别行政区使用的一毫硬币。
    ref wu mao
     

    tinang

    New Member
    Cantonese - Hong Kong
    i am a native chinese. only people like me could answer this.
    In chinese,成语,is a very important part.
    and one of them says: 一毛不拔。。。。
    which means:not willing to lose a tiny profit。
    see,mao means a tiny amount of money that not worth caring。。
    with Internet goes on,五毛党(people who get paid a tiny amount of money to send out ADs) became very popular,and 毛 became even more negetive。
    毛 is neutral character and the meaning is hair in any time. It also a unit of China currency.
    For the word, 五毛 is modern word and used for internet as 只為中國政府說好話的網絡評論員 50 Cent Party - Wikipedia
     

    tinang

    New Member
    Cantonese - Hong Kong
    "MAO" is originally read "hao", for the convenience of bookkeeping, often "Hao" save pen for "MAO". Over time, practice becomes practice. There are still places where the word "millio" is read instead of "MAO". Such as 10 cents used in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.
    “毛”本是读“毫”,为记账方便,往往将“毫”省笔为“毛”。久而久之,习非成是。现在仍然有的地方读“毫”不读“毛"。如香港特别行政区使用的一毫硬币。
    ref wu mao
    "毛"和"毫 is two different Chinese characters and the pronunciation is not the same in Cantonese.

    "毛" is hair as noun and can be adjective as the light weight such as 毛髮, 羽毛, 毛遂自薦
    "毫" is unit as measurement for very little bit such as 毫升, 毫髮, 毫米, 明察秋毫, 差之毫釐

    "毫" is the unit (=10 cents) in in Hong Kong currency over 100 Hundred years and there is no related to "毛".

    "差之毫釐,繆以千里" means "The difference in little bit, it will give big false."
     
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