Contents

ChineseEdit

 
can; may; able to; certain(ly); to suit; (particle used for emphasis)
 
ability; can; may; capable; energy; able
simp. and trad.
(可能)

EtymologyEdit

From (, “can, may”) + (néng, “able, ability”) Attested in Old Chinese; original meanings were "to be able to, competent", "can be achieved, possible".

PronunciationEdit



Rime
Character
Reading # 1/1 2/4
Initial () (29) (8)
Final () (94) (129)
Tone (調) Rising (X) Level (Ø)
Openness (開合) Open Open
Division () I I
Fanqie
Reconstructions
Zhengzhang
Shangfang
/kʰɑX/ /nəŋ/
Pan
Wuyun
/kʰɑX/ /nəŋ/
Shao
Rongfen
/kʰɑX/ /nəŋ/
Edwin
Pulleyblank
/kʰaX/ /nəŋ/
Li
Rong
/kʰɑX/ /nəŋ/
Wang
Li
/kʰɑX/ /nəŋ/
Bernard
Karlgren
/kʰɑX/ /nəŋ/
Expected
Mandarin
Reflex
néng
Baxter-Sagart system 1.1 (2014)
Character
Reading # 1/1 3/3
Modern
Beijing
(Pinyin)
néng
Middle
Chinese
‹ khaX › ‹ nong ›
Old
Chinese
/*[k]ʰˤa[j]ʔ/ /*nˤə(ʔ)/ (~ *nˤəŋ)
English may; acceptable able; ability

Notes for Old Chinese notations in the Baxter-Sagart system:

* Parentheses "()" indicate uncertain presence;
* Square brackets "[]" indicate uncertain identity, e.g. *[t] as coda may in fact be *-t or *-p;
* Angle brackets "<>" indicate infix;
* Hyphen "-" indicates morpheme boundary;

* Period "." indicates syllable boundary.
Zhengzhang system (2003)
Character
Reading # 1/1 3/4
No. 7446 9415
Phonetic
component
Rime
group
Rime
subdivision
1 0
Corresponding
MC rime
Old
Chinese
/*kʰaːlʔ/ /*nɯːŋ/

AdjectiveEdit

可能

  1. possible; probable; likely

Usage notesEdit

Chinese does not have different words for possible and probable in the way that English does. To express the sense that something is probable - i.e. likely to happen, as opposed to just being a possibility among others - consider adding (hěn) before 可能 (kěnéng) or 有可能 (yǒukěnéng).

AdverbEdit

可能

  1. maybe; perhaps; probably; might, may
    可能 / 可能  ―  Kěnéng wǒ huì qù.  ―  Perhaps I will go.
    可能開除 / 可能开除  ―  kěnéng bèi kāichú le.  ―  He may have been fired.

SynonymsEdit

NounEdit

可能

  1. possibility; probability   (Classifier: )
    什麼發生可能 [MSC, trad.]
    什么发生可能 [MSC, simp.]
    Shénme shì dōu yǒu fāshēng de kěnéng. [Pinyin]
    Anything has a possibility of happening.

VerbEdit

可能

  1. (literary) to be competent to; to have the ability to
    其他可能 [Classical Chinese, trad.]
    其他可能 [Classical Chinese, simp.]
    From: The Analects of Confucius, circa 475 – 221 BCE
    Mèng Zhuāng zǐ zhī xiào yě, qítā kěnéng yě. [Pinyin]
    The filial piety of Meng Zhuang, in other matters, was what other men are competent to.
  2. (literary) can be achieved; to be possible
    可能 [Classical Chinese, trad.]
    可能 [Classical Chinese, simp.]
    From: The Book of Rites, circa 4th – 2nd century BCE
    Yǎng, kěnéng yě, jìng wéi nán. [Pinyin]
    One may be able to support them; the difficulty is in doing so with the proper reverence.

Derived termsEdit

DescendantsEdit

Sino-Xenic (可能):

JapaneseEdit

Kanji in this term

Grade: 5
のう
Grade: 5
on'yomi

EtymologyEdit

From Middle Chinese compound 可能 ‎(khaX nong, literally may, can + able, ability).

PronunciationEdit

AdjectiveEdit

可能 ‎(-na inflection, hiragana かのう, romaji kanō)

  1. possible
  2. feasible

InflectionEdit

Derived termsEdit

SynonymsEdit

AntonymsEdit

(possible):

NounEdit

可能 ‎(hiragana かのう, romaji kanō)

  1. possibility, good chance
    可能 (かのう)
    kanō no
    possible
  2. feasibility

AntonymsEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ 2006, 大辞林 (Daijirin), Third Edition (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Sanseidō, ISBN 4-385-13905-9
  • 1988, 国語大辞典(新装版) (Kokugo Dai Jiten, Revised Edition) (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Shogakukan
  • 2002, Ineko Kondō; Fumi Takano; Mary E Althaus; et. al., Shogakukan Progressive Japanese-English Dictionary, Third Edition, Tokyo: Shōgakukan, ISBN 4095102535.

KoreanEdit

Hanja in this term

NounEdit

可能 ‎(ganeung) ‎(hangeul 가능)

  1. Hanja form? of 가능, “possible”.

VietnameseEdit

Hán tự in this word

NounEdit

可能

  1. Hán tự form of khả năng, “ability; capability; competence”
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