So you fell in love with a Chinese boy or girl, adopted a cute little Chinese child, or plainly just want to speak to your pet cat/dog/hamster in Chinese to let him or her know how you feel.
Chances are, you’re going to want to tell your object of desire exactly how you feel in the Chinese language.
I love you in Chinese is: Wǒ ài nǐ
I love you in Chinese characters is: 我爱你
The Chinese character for love is: 爱 (ài)
This is explained in the video below:
As above, if you want to say ‘I Love You in Chinese’, you can say:
Wǒ ài nǐ
Literally, ‘I love you’
But it is never that simple is it? Let’s break this down…
The tones! What’s with these ‘ǒ’ ‘à’ and ‘ǐ’ characters?
There are four ‘tones’ in Mandarin Chinese. Using the Han Yu Pin Yin system, the tone of the word is marked by the symbol over the word… usually on the vowel sound. As seen in the following examples:
First Tone: nī.
The first tone is the high and flat tone which has no rise or dip from start to finish.
Second Tone: ní.
The second tone is the rising tone. Your voice should rise when you say the word.
Third Tone: nǐ.
The third tone is the dipping tone (and a difficult one to master).
The tone of the word ‘dips’ down before rising up again.
Fourth Tone: nì.
The fourth tone is the falling tone. To an English speaker this might sound like the word is being cut off abruptly.
Tones in Chinese can be quite challenging at first, as they require a lot of listening and practicing to master.
Take some time to try saying the tones out loud to master how you will say wǒ ài nǐ (third tone, fourth tone, third tone). Thankfully there are tonnes of pop love songs in Mandarin Chinese which repeat the words ‘wǒ ài nǐ’ over and over again. So you can view one on YouTube here to listen to how it sounds!