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Talk:Chinese phrasebook

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Revision as of 22:33, 3 February 2009 by (talk) (Pinyin pronunciation)
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>number measure word _____ "number" here means not a cardinal number (eleven buses) but an ordinal (the eleventh bus), e.g. in Charlotte the eleventh bus goes on North Tryon, the 17th goes on Commonwealth and down Independence, etc. -phma 15:36, 1 Jan 2004 (PST)

Oh, I c, thanks for reminding. Besides, I think I am a little unneutral writting this article: there are a lot of romanized systems for Chinese, pinyin is just one of them. Do I need to make a note for that since people from Taiwan or Hong Kong might not know them at all! :O --yacht(Talk) 20:56, 1 Jan 2004 (PST)

Odd Choice of example words

I don't know enough Chinese to correct, but I thought it was worth of comment - a couple of the words chosen to highlight pronunciation are often not words in English, like "spall" and "ping" and I have no idea in what dialect the g in genre is pronounced the same as the r in fair. Credit to whoever did it, it's very good, but they might want to think about those ones.


Big mistakes! I'm gonna start working on pinyin first, but maybe someone can help me.

  • 1) There many pinyin phrases where the tones are missing (I can garantee you, a traveller neglecting the tones will not be understood!)
  • 2) In the end of the article, traditional Chinese is used. It's clearly said, simplified charachters are being used! LiangHH 09 Jan 2006

Edit: I solved the Pinyin problem. Now, there are only the traditional characters to be converted into simplified. LiangHH

Edit: Everything solved. 3h of work. LiangHH

谢谢你。加油! Jpatokal 02:21, 9 Jan 2006 (EST)
"Mandarin Chinese is the official language of ...Hong Kong, Macau...". 
It's an official language, but just beside Cantonese Chinese and English:

"Chinese and English are the official languages of Hong Kong. Committed to openness and accountability, the Government produces important documents in both English and Chinese. Correspondence with individual members of the public is always in the language appropriate to the recipients. Simultaneous interpretation in English/Cantonese/Putonghua is made available to meetings of the Legislative Council and Government boards and committees as needed." (from the Hong Kong governmental web site: )

Macau: Chinese (Cantonese) and Portuguese are the official languages of Macau.


Note, please put tone above the correct letter (e.g. xièxie instead of xìexie):

  • ai
  • ao
  • ei
  • ie
  • iu
  • ou
  • ue
  • uo
  • ui


Why did someone just change words like hùi to hui4??????????

hùi is incorrect, which should be huì.

Someone please revert the page


Apologies, I\'m operating behind a proxy and it appears that when I save a page it adds three /// signs after an open or end quote symbol. Whoever gets to the page first, please revert it back to the last revision by Stephen Mok. Thanks,


Done. Thanks. — Ravikiran 03:41, 26 August 2006 (EDT)


Is this country to be ignored? Their populace generally speaks Mandarin and government functions are in Mandarin. They do not use the simplified script. Therefore, perhaps shouldn't the traditional characters be offered in parentheses, as well as the occasion where there is a Taiwanese specific tone difference? 15:28, 14 June 2007 (EDT)

See Chinese phrasebook - Traditional for a version using traditional characters. Jpatokal 23:12, 14 June 2007 (EDT)
Oho, thanks for pointing out what my eye missed! 04:46, 16 June 2007 (EDT)

Fixed some jumbled typing stuff...

I don't edit Wikipedia that often, except when I find vandalism or whatnot. Anyways, I found some jumbled "asdlfkjadlfkjdlfkjadflkjdsaflfkj (etc.)" on the front of this page and deleted it. I'm not sure if I need to make one of these entries for that, but I figured I should be on the safe side. Thanks for the wiki entry on this, :D

No need to make a talk entry when fixing something, but unfortunately you removed quite a bit more than just the garbage. I rolled back your change and removed the junk text --Nick 13:26, 31 January 2008 (EST)

Pinyin pronunciation

Chinzh, I'm genuinely weirded out by some of the additions you're making to the pronunciation guides.

j as in jeer if followed by 'u' or 'ü', but like zebra if followed by 'i'

AFAIK pinyin j is always IPA [tɕ] and never [z], which is a voiced alveolar fricative not found in Chinese -- "Beijing" is definitely not pronounced "Beizing" with an English voiced "z"! [tɕ] doesn't exist in English, but Wikipedia describes it as "unaspirated q, not unlike the j in jingle".

q as in cheap if it is followed by 'u', but as in cent if followed by 'i'

Again, always IPA [tɕʰ]. Doesn't exist in English either, but usually equated to the ch of cheap/cheek, strongly aspirated. It's certainly not "t", or are you saying that the Qing Dynasty is actually the Ting Dynasty!?

x as in shoot if before 'u' or 'ü', but as in sag if before 'i'

IPA [ɕ], and AFAIK never [s]. Wikipedia: "Like she, with the lips spread as when you say ee.". Jpatokal 23:17, 8 January 2009 (EST)

I get your point. I think it's a problem of how the sounds are produced with different Chinese accents! For I live in Singapore, and most people from Southern China/Taiwan do not pronounce the Chinese words with the "American 'r' " sound that is present in 'jing', 'qing' and 'xi' which is pronounced as 'zheeng', 'cheeng' and 'shee' (although it is very prominent in the Beijing accent), and so it can be pronounced both ways without causing misunderstanding. chinzh 00:19, 9 January 2009 (EST)
I live in Singapore too, and I prefer the "southern" accent of Mandarin without 儿 all over the place, but for better or worse, standard Mandarin is based on Beijing style, so I've reverted. Might be good to have an infobox on the differences though... Jpatokal 04:07, 9 January 2009 (EST)
As a Chinese language student studying in Beijing, I think it is very important to make sure all of the pronunciation guides (pinyin) on this page on done in southern-accented guoyu instead of Beijing mandarin. After traveling throughout China, I find that it is easier for people to understand me when I speak with a southern accent (not Taiwanese accent, but more of a Shanghai "r-less" accent). Not only is the southern accent easier to pronounce for newbies, but it also easier for people in the south to understand, especially Cantonese speakers that are not proficient in putonghua. With the 'er' thrown in there they get really lost, at least they have a shot at understanding without it, and the Taiwanese give me attitude when I speak Standard/Beijinghua to them. Also, people in Beijing and Standard Mandarin provinces understand southern accent perfectly because of the influx of Taiwanese media and national media coverage, also the large amount of migrant workers. More people speak and understand "r-less" Mandarin, like you both said in Singapore. The Standard Mandarin (r) that is present on some words could be confusing to someone who doesn't understand the mechanics of the language. Chuan4 is much easier to pronounce than chuan(r)4 (串). I agree, get rid of the 儿.