13. DURATIONAL

(le) + durational complement + (le)

Stating how long the object has been being dealt with as a result of the action or how long one anticipates it will be being dealt with.

 

13.1 Tāmen zhi ge wnt ynjiū-le nin duō.  

他们把这个问题研究了五年多。

They studied this problem for over five years.

 

13.2 yǐjīng ru kǎo-le fēnzhōng le. Zi kǎo ji gāi kǎoh le. 

我已经把肉烤了五分钟了,再烤就该煳了。

I have grilled the meat for five minutes so far. If I continue, I will burn it.

 

13.3 shuǐ r fēnzhōng. 

把水热五分钟。

Heat the water for five minutes.

 

13.4 mintio zhǔ-le y huǐr, rnhu ci wng fng ci. 

我把面条煮了一会儿,然后才往里放菜。

I boiled the noodles for a little while before putting vegetables in it.

 

Note: Only verbs that imply certain forms of processing, such as shāo(to heat), kǎo(to bake/to roast), r(to heat). zhǔ(to boil), lěngqu 冷却(to cool off), can take a durational complement in sentences. This is why the following example is ungrammatical.

 

13A. shū kn-le sān ge xiǎosh. (Ungrammatical)

我把书看了三个小时。

(I read the book for three hours.)

If the speaker intends to state how long the action knreading lasted, the construction should not be used.

 

13B. kn shū kn-le sān g xiǎosh. (Grammatical) 

我看书看了三个小时。

I read the book for three hours.