Questions on specific points regarding the ability to use the correct consonants, vowels, tone, stress, rhythm and intonation of a word in a spoken Chinese

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2
votes
3answers
173 views

How can I improve my tonal range?

While people in China generally understand my tones (unless I use the wrong tone by mistake), I find I do not match either the height of their highs or the drop-off of their falling tones. My voice ...
4
votes
1answer
109 views

Help with pronouncing 道 precisely

Practical conclusion from the responses: No digital media currently focus on the precise pronunciation of Pinyin Dao, or Beijing for English speaking students of Chinese. You must look to sources on ...
2
votes
1answer
97 views

How is 着 pronounced here?

In Mo Yan's Red Sorghum there is a line saying: 曾外祖母做了好饭好菜,说着甜言蜜语, The meaning is clear, and could be translated either "Greatgrandmother made good foods and said honeyed words" or "Greatgrandmother ...
4
votes
2answers
285 views

b and p, d and t, k and g etc. in English and Cantonese

Many words in Cantonese which I think should be pronounced as b, d, g, are translated by the British to p, t, k, respectively. For example, a place in Hong Kong called 大埔 and is pronounced as Dai Bo ...
4
votes
1answer
134 views

What difference(s) does it make to use the citation tone instead of the neutral tone, for the tail character in these words?

Here’s my list: 队伍, 成分, 身分, 才力, 呼噜, 亮堂, 好处, 种子, 妥当, 爽快, 痛快, 记性, 出息, 佩服, 分析, 哈欠, 寒毛, 活泼, 鼻涕, 道理, 滑稽, 考究, 讲究, 打算, 正经, 裁缝, 得罪, 意识 (and also意识 形态), 熟识, 见识, 体谅, 兴趣, [东/西/南/前/后/那/上/下/头/里/外/左/右]边, 知道, 父亲 and ...
1
vote
0answers
47 views

Why the long-short romanization system (长短音) for Chinese dialects?

Most Chinese dialectical/topolectical dictionaries use the long-short romanization system (长短音) to write out pronunciations. Wikipedia mostly just mentions Shanghai, Wu and Suzhou for using the ...
3
votes
1answer
136 views

Bigrams ending in third tone where first syllable is second tone vs. third tone

This is regarding tone sandhi for consecutive third tones. I notice CC-CEDICT has over 200 bigrams with tone pair 3-3 where there also exists a separate bigram 2-3. One such example is: 白果 bai2 ...
9
votes
5answers
1k views

A Complex Chinese Character

I randomly saw this character on the blog a while ago and saved a image of it as shown below. Is this even a character? If so, what does it mean? When is it used? What was the origin of it? How do ...
15
votes
4answers
2k views

血: xuè , xiě, what's the difference?

Is there some sort of logical rule for when 血 is xuè and when it is xiě?
2
votes
2answers
72 views

How might 'pidgin' have represented a Chinese pronunciation of 'business'?

[Etymonline:] pidgin (n.) 1876, from pigeon English (1859), the reduced form of the language used in China for communication with Europeans, from pigeon (1826), itself a pidgin word, ...
2
votes
4answers
107 views

Any “fai” (zy: ㄈㄞ) pronunciation record in Mandarin?

Chinese seem to have no problem pronouncing Wi-Fi. Wi has a similar Chinese pronunciation with pinyin: wai. This got me wondering, is there any “fai” (zy: ㄈㄞ) pronunciation record in Mandarin?
6
votes
2answers
373 views

The development of rhotic vowels in Mandarin

Schuessler's reconstruction of the Old Chinese reading of 二 is *ńźi. It seems there is a correspondence between OC syllables beginning in *ń or *ńź and Mandarin syllables romanised as er. However, ...
7
votes
4answers
961 views

Is “biang” a phonologically possible syllable in Mandarin Chinese?

One of the local specialty favourite dishes in Shaanxi province where I am now is Biángbiáng miàn. Photo by hippietrail The hanzi character for "biáng" is usually the focus of discusssions of this ...
1
vote
3answers
188 views

How many Chinese characters have multiple readings/pronunciations in Mandarin?

I'm wondering how many Chinese characters have more than one pronunciation in Mandarin. I understand this could be a difference in tone, initial, final, or some combination of these. Has anyone come ...
17
votes
8answers
12k views

How is the “r” sound pronounced?

One of the most trickiest sounds to pronounce correctly in Mandarin seems to be the "r" sound, as in 日本 (rì běn). It's not uncommon to hear people pronounce that like "urban." I have been told it's ...
0
votes
0answers
89 views

Does /Ĩ/ *really* exist in Southwestern Mandarin?

成都话方言词典 (1987) lists a bunch of words under the IPA initial /Ĩ/. Southwestern Mandarin doesn't seem to actually have this initial according to most other resources who put all the /Ĩ/ listed words ...
0
votes
2answers
114 views

Chinese characters by sound similarity

Serveral chinese characters sound extremely similarly to me, not only because of their vowel's tone, but, often, also because of their starting consonants. For example, I find it's very difficult to ...
1
vote
2answers
102 views

How to pronounce words with double fourth tones?

So I know for certain words, such as 不对, the fourth tone changes, but I believe 不 may be a special case. Some words such as 部队 seem uncomfortable to pronounce if I strictly follow 4th and 4th ...
4
votes
1answer
128 views

words where it is important to distinguish between the neutral tone and the citation tone

I'm working through the HSK vocab lists, and sometimes I find it hard to remember if a character should be pronounced with the neutral tone or with the citation tone. It would help if I knew when ...
2
votes
2answers
93 views

Rhyme and tones

In rhymes, is only the sound of syllables concerned (see: Rhyming in modern Mandarin), or also the tone is somehow involved? Thanks!
1
vote
1answer
140 views

Numbering for mobile verification call to China in Chinese

I am making a chat application , so for number verification I need to make calls (your verification code is 1234) on the number. I want to know if I called to China in Chinese then how the numbers are ...
3
votes
5answers
263 views

Correct pinyin and pronunciation for 太阳

What is the correct pinyin and pronunciation for 太阳? Most dictionaries put it as: tai4 yang2, but I noticed cc-cedict uses tai4 yang5. There is also a discussion in the change log around colloquial ...
3
votes
1answer
234 views

I need help translating >how< a word would be spoken

I am trying to find someone that will help me take words that are spoken in Spanish, such as Hola, and represent the sounds made by hola in Chinese Pinyin so someone who doesn't speak Spanish could ...
7
votes
5answers
291 views

Is "一“ in 一线城市 first or second tone?

Quick question: Is "一“ in 一线城市 first or second tone? If it is first tone, is this because it is being used as a number? Cheers, Stephen
1
vote
0answers
55 views

Why some characters have different sounds? [duplicate]

My translator (Pleco) says that 乐 is pronunced as le. However, 音乐 seems to be pronunced as yīnyuè. Why? Is it possible to know if a character has different sounds depending on the context?
14
votes
1answer
464 views

How do non-native speakers get to perceive tones in Chinese?

Recently I've been teaching an English-speaking friend some basics about Chinese, but inevitably he got stuck with the tones. I've demonstrated to him the 4 tones with audio files, yet it seems hard ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

How do you say “Do you speak Chinese?” in Mandarin and Cantonese?

I realize that it's fairly easy to Google it but I'd never know how to pronounce it. Are there any audio recordings out there? Thanks!
9
votes
6answers
640 views

When is the spelling and the pronunciation different?

I noticed that sometimes certain finals in Chinese sound differently when combined with different initials. For e.g., what is spelled "u" sometimes is pronounced "ü". Other times, I think the final ...
1
vote
2answers
123 views

Does Cantonese have a falling tone?

In all Cantonese romanization systems I could find, tone 4 is labelled the falling tone. However according to http://www.freehongkong.net/cantonese-pronunciation-cantonese-tones/ Cantonese does not ...
3
votes
2answers
424 views

How is pronunciation discussed in Chinese?

Here's an English example: Learner: Wait, how is c-o-w pronounced? Native: COW, like a K sound followed by ow. But in Chinese there are no phonetic letters. So how are children taught how to ...
0
votes
2answers
75 views

Pronunciation of 内容

The standard pronunciation of this is nèiróng. However, I often hear (and sometimes myself pronounce, especially when speaking quickly) it as nèiyǒng (perhaps closer to a neutral tone on yong). Is ...
4
votes
2answers
435 views

Hokkien pronunciation of `白头偕老`

白头偕老 is a set expression in Mandarin, meaning to get old together, in a loose translation. I found it in a Hokkien song called 牵阮的手 (Mandarin 牵我的手, English While you hold my hand). In the linked ...
2
votes
2answers
58 views

Cantonese Pronunciation of 户珥 (Hur)

Hur (Ex. 17:12) in the Bible is translated as 户珥. Does anybody know for sure how to pronounce 户珥 in Cantonese? 珥 has two variants (Jyutping) nei6 餌, 鈮, 膩 and ji6 二, 樲, 潩 I just wonder ...
1
vote
2answers
69 views

解 Read as Jiai?

from《四川方言词典》: 解 jiai3 Originally, I just figured it was a topolectical reading but then I found this: “解”的准确读音是“jiai” ...
4
votes
3answers
184 views

The two pronunciations of 粘

粘 can be read as either "nian" or "zhan", but in both way it can be translated as "sticky", so what is the difference? In other words what should I take in mind, when reading a text , in order to ...
3
votes
2answers
96 views

Pronunciation Of 佛 in 四川话

The 1986 edition of《四川方言词典》has the following entry: 乐山的大佛——老石人 Lo2 san1 ni1 da4 fu3——nao3 si2 ren2 乐山大佛距今已有一千多年历史, 所以是“老石人”。谐“老实人”。 ▷你以为他是~嗦? 他才阴倒不老实。 佛 is given the ...
5
votes
1answer
72 views

Were 蒸 and 祯 homonyms?

Wu Dalang, a character in Water Margin, which takes place during the Song dynasty, sold steamed buns called "炊饼". These buns were originally called 蒸饼: 凡以面為食具者,皆謂之餅,故火燒而食者呼為燒餅,水淪而食者呼為湯餅,籠蒸而食者呼為蒸餅。 ...
7
votes
4answers
270 views

Rhyming in modern Mandarin

What syllables rhyme in modern Mandarin, according to the native speakers? I'm looking for some rules or rhyme tables. I have found some, but I'm confused by the fact that 韵 may both mean "rhyme" and ...
1
vote
3answers
122 views

How is the meaning of 不得已 formed?

I am under the impression that Chinese multi-character words form their meaning from that of the characters that form these words. (Let me know if I am mistaken!) I know that 不得已 means "to have to". ...
1
vote
3answers
120 views

Is Pronunciation As Important As It Used To Be?

Recent "puns" are showing a big change in pronunciation: 神马 [play on 什么 | me -> mǎ] 妹纸 [play on 妹子 | zi -> zhǐ] 歪果 [play on 外国 | wài -> wāi && guó -> guǒ] 肿么 [play on 怎么 | zěn -> zhǒng] We ...
0
votes
0answers
39 views

The pronunciation of 的 [duplicate]

I have always pronounced 的 as "dė", regardless of the context, but I have heard people pronouncing it as "di"(fifth tone). For instance, 我的(di)姑娘 暖暖的(di) 漫長的(di)歲月 I do not remember ...
4
votes
1answer
187 views

Zhuyin (bopomofo) vs Pinyin

I have learnt to use both zhuyin and pinyin for spelling out the pronunciation of a character. As far as I know, the two systems serve the same purpose and are interchangeable in terms of syllables. ...
5
votes
2answers
171 views

In which Chinese topolect might 門 be transcribed as <mum>?

There's a Cantonese restaurant in Mountain View, CA called Fu Lam Mum -- the characters are clearly 富臨門. But 門 has always had a -n final, in any topolect I know of, and back to MC and OC according to ...
6
votes
7answers
1k views

Written Cantonese Pronunciation

I recently attended a Cantonese reading class in Hong Kong and discovered that pronunciation of the spoken form of written Cantonese can be very different from normal speech. The teacher was not able ...
5
votes
4answers
468 views

Chinese Words that Accurately Reflect English Phonemes

I'm a retired computer science professor who helps Chinese graduate students master English. The students have a good background for reading and writing scientific papers but struggle with their ...
0
votes
1answer
111 views

节期: jiéqī vs. jiéqí

I have always ever known 节期 as jiéqī. ABC: festival season 汉语大词典 犹节日 CC-CEDICT festival season Recently though I've heard 节期 pronounced as jiéqí and it threw me off guard a bit. ...
4
votes
8answers
1k views

How to pronounce the “的” in “他妈的”?

How usually native chinese speaker pronounce the “的” orally in “他妈的”? Is it "Ta Ma De" or "Ta Ma Di"?
7
votes
1answer
211 views

How does tone sandhi apply in people's names?

Like the title says, the question is simple: what's the proper way to handle tone sandhi in names? Is there something like "pronounce the family name as-is, apply tone sandhi to given name"? Or is ...
3
votes
4answers
215 views

酵: jiào vs. xiào

I'm always hearing the pronunciations jiào and xiào being used interchangeably by native speakers for the character: 酵. What's the deal? Is there a standardized pronunciation for 酵? What's the ...
2
votes
4answers
194 views

When is 我 pronounced ě?

Grand Ricci 我 wǒ (or ě) When is 我 pronounced as ě? Haven't even able to find any examples.