To Have Nothing Left at All – No-Nonsense Chinese Idioms

Welcome back to no-nonsense idioms, let’s get right into it:

一無所有(一无所有)

Pinyin: yī wú suǒ yǒu
English: to have nothing left at all

Usage

Traditional
他除了身上的衣服一無所有

Simplified
他除了身上的衣服一无所有

Pinyin
tā chúle shēnshàng de yīfú yīwúsuǒyǒu

English
He’s got nothing left except the clothes on his back

See if you can remember this meme

Sad Keanu Chinese

Traditional
我已經一無所有但是我至少有這個三明治

Simplified
我已经一无所有但是我至少有这个三明治

Pinyin
wǒ yǐjīng yīwúsuǒyǒu dànshì wǒ zhìshǎo yǒu zhègè sānmíngzhì

English
I’ve got nothing at all, but at least I’ve still got this sandwich

6 responses to “To Have Nothing Left at All – No-Nonsense Chinese Idioms

  1. Pingback: Hao Hao Report
  2. Where did you get “left” from “一無所有”. I don’t see the “left” part at all from that phrase. My feel for it is simply “Have nothing”, or, more literally “Have not even one thing”.

  3. Cheers Rich, you’re right. The Chinese is more vague than that. I suppose for the example it could be argued that it’s alright, but not for the definition. Anyway, thanks for spotting this and saying something. Dave has updated it now I believe.

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