Come and claim your bike – Beginner Chinese

The following photo is of an actual police notice in Taiwan regarding a stolen bicylce that was found in the area. The notice requests that the owner of the bicycle should come forth and claim it. Within the notice are a lot of words relating to criminal investigations and theft, making it very useful for learning some new vocabulary.

Stolen Bicylce Recovered


Some words of note that aren’t specific to criminal investigation and that are very common for describing place and purpose are 於(于),在此處(在此处)and 為(为), so these have been listed first. You’ll find these words used all over the place so it’s worth remembering how to use them.


English: on; at; in


Pinyin: zài cǐ chù
English: here; at 在 this 此 place 处. 此 literally means ‘this’ and is used just as the English would be, though is usually only seen in written form or formal speech.


Pinyin: wèi
English: for the purpose of


Pinyin: jǐng fāng
English: the police


Pinyin: chá huò
English: to track down; to investigate and recover


Pinyin: shī qiè
English: stolen; to lose by theft


Pinyin: xíng àn
English: criminal case


Pinyin: zhēn bàn
English: investigation


Pinyin: chē zhŭ
English: vehicle owner 主人 (zhŭ rén)


Pinyin: běn suǒ
English: Though not a specific phrase this warrants explaining. 本 refers to ‘this’ or something belonging to the writer, while 所 is short for 派出所 (police station). So the literal translation of this is something like ‘this station’ or ‘our station’ referring to the station of the officer who wrote the notice.


Pinyin: rèn lǐng
English: to claim ownership; to claim and identify






jǐng fāng yú 99 nián 12 yuè 17 rì shàng wŭ 09 shí 25 fēn, zài cǐ chŭ suǒ chá huò shī qiè yǐ jiǎo tà chē yǐ liàng, wèi xíng àn zhī zhēn bàn, qǐng chē zhŭ qián lái běn suǒ rèn lǐng.


A police investigation in this area on the 12th of December, 99 at 9.25am recovered a stolen bicycle, for the purposes of the criminal case investigation can the owner of the bicycle please come to the station to claim it.

Can you help?

Something which I’m not sure is a typographical error, is the usage of 乙 in the above notice. My thinking is that this should be 一輛 and not 乙輛, but if you know different please post below!

3 responses to “Come and claim your bike – Beginner Chinese

  1. Nice post Dave. I thought the 乙 was unexpected too, so did some digging and found this explanation:


    So 乙 is used to prevent people fraudulently altering 一 in official notices, but this is no longer done in the mainland.

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