Goodbye in Chinese
Let's take a look at all the "goodbye" scenarios.
Pronouncing "goodbye" in Chinese
You might not know this, but you only say "bye" seriously to departed ones. To all living people, we prefer "see you again" in Chinese. So the most common way of saying "goodbye" is actually 再见 zàijiàn, which literally means "again see". Her e are some basic ways of saying that in an everyday conversation.
Goodbye (literal: again see)
Goodbye (literal: again meet)
See you next time (literal: next time see)
For a casual twist, you can also say "see you soon" in Chinese. In addition, more and more young people use the direct phonetic translation of "bye" to bid goodbyes to friends and families as well. One interesting aspect is how the Chinese character works out for "bye". It is pronounced bāi and written like this: 掰. If you take a closer look, this character can actually be divided into three vertical parts: 手 + 分 + 手. Here, 手 shǒu means "hand" and 分 fēn means "to part"; so if your hand is to part with another person's hand, you two are indeed bidding goodbye.
Incidentally, to "break up" with someone or a relationship is called 分手 fēnshǒu.
See you soon (literal: turnaround head see)
To bring the goodbye scene to the next level, here are some phrases that come in handy when you are seeing someone off. It may be that a friend is leaving town for a new job, a family member moving to another country; or a sibling is starting boarding school. Or, the sad and ultimate goodbye to a deceased loved one......
Have a lovely day (literal: wish you have a lovely one day)
Take care (formal)
Take care yourself (casual)
So long, farewell
Goodbye forever (formal, to a deceased one)
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