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lián ... dōu ...
phr. even ...
Discussion of 连...都.../連...都...
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The conjunction 连 is often used to introduce the element that is to be emphasised. For example:
Example 1. 连我都知道了，你怎么还不知道啊？ [phr] Even I already knew about this, why didn't you know?
Example 2a. 他很吝啬，连一分钱都不肯借给我。 [phr] He is so stingy that he doesn't want to lend me even one penny.
In Example 1, this matter is so well-known that even I, who normally am not that quick in learning news, know about it — expressing a surprising tone that “you still do not know about it”; In Example 2, one penny is very little money, even so, he refuses to give me that — emphasising how stingy he is.
Note that the emphasised elements should always be placed between 连 and 都. Beside 都, sometimes 也 is used instead in this structure:
Example 2b. 他很吝啬，连一分钱也不肯借给我。
In speaking, the stress of the sentence should be put on the element to be emphsized, between 连 and 都(也). The preposition 连 can be omitted but 都 or 也 must be used.
Example 2c. 他很吝啬，一分钱都(or 也)不肯借给我。
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