Chinese grammar rule #2: Words do not change
Unlike in European languages, words in Chinese do not change. They have a fixed form that is the same no matter what they’re used for or where the appear in a sentence. In Chinese, you don’t conjugate verbs and you don’t make adjectives agree. According to Chinese grammar rules, a word is a word.
Have a look at these examples that illustrate this point:
Tā qù gōngzuò.
She goes to work.
Wǒ qù gōngzuò.
I go to work.
Tāmen qù gōngzuò.
They go to work.
Wǒmen qù gōngzuò.
We go to work.
These simple sentences show that verbs do not change in Chinese, whereas they do in English. The verb 去 (qù) is the same in every sentence and doesn’t change. These sentences would be even more varied in a language like French, but in Chinese the verb is the same every time.
It’s not just verbs that never change according to Chinese grammar rules. Adjectives are also fixed in their form and are the same no matter what noun they modify. Let’s see some examples:
这是一辆 黑色的 车。
Zhè shì yī liàng hēisède jū.
This is a black car.
我看到了一些 黑色的 猫。
Wǒ kàn dàole yīxiē hēisède māo.
I saw some black cats.
这是一件 黑色的 衬衫。
Zhè shì yī jiàn hēisède chènshān.
This is a black shirt.
The adjective in these sentences, 黑色的 (hēisède) , is the same for each of the items. There is no gender or grammatical number in Chinese grammar rules.