不求有功,但求無過

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Chinese[edit]

(negative prefix); not; no
 
to seek; to look for; to request; to demand; to beseech
 
to have; there is; there are; to exist; to be
 
merit; achievement; result; service; accomplishment
 
but; yet; however; only; merely; still
 
to seek; to look for; to request; to demand; to beseech
 
-less; not to have; no; none; not; to lack; un-
 
(experienced action marker); to cross; to go over; to pass (time); to celebrate (a holiday); to live; to get along; (surname); excessively; too-
trad. (不求有功,但求無過)
simp. (不求有功,但求无过)

Etymology[edit]

Literally: does not seek merit, only seeks a lack of errors

Pronunciation[edit]

Idiom[edit]

不求有功,但求無過

  1. (somebody who) does not try to accomplish anything, but rather avoids doing things that would end up in his making a mistake and getting yelled at by others; color inside the lines; a complacent attitude