This is a corpus-based study of the near-synonymous pair Guān 關 and Bì 閉 in Mandarin. We adopt the Module-Attribute Representation of Verbal Semantics (MARVS) to analyze the differences between this pair of words. There are three shared senses: ‘to close the opening of a specific object’ (hereafter ‘close an opening’), ‘to stop a machine by using a switch’ (hereafter ‘stop a machine’), and ‘to close stores or agencies’ (hereafter ‘close a store’). The event of ‘close an opening’ in Guān 關 is a composite event of a dual process-state, while Bì 閉 is a composite event of a completive resultative. The event relating to ‘stop a machine’ was not found for Bì 閉. The events of ‘close a store’ for both Guān 關 and Bì 閉 are simplex events of an inchoative state. However, Guān 關 often appears in collocates such as Guānchǎng 關廠, while Bì 閉 has collocates such as Bìguǎn 閉館. It is also discovered that Guān 關 emphasizes not only the process of the activity but also the state after the activity. However, Bì 閉 emphasizes only the state after the activity.
Chinese Lexical Semantics 19th Workshop Revised Selected Papers: Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence, pp.358-371