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
1answer
151 views

How do you pronounce “太监” in Mainland China?

Could someone explain how to pronounce 太监 in China and Taiwan? I've heard it be tai4 jian1 as well as seen it (in Pleco) as tai4 jian4! Thanks for any clarification!
3
votes
1answer
147 views

What is the Old Chinese Pronunciation for the Character 兮?

I recently bought the book ABC Etymological Dictionary of Old Chinese in an effort to get minimally smart about old phonology. But the #1 character I'm curious about, with regard to old poems, is 兮 - ...
3
votes
1answer
212 views

Medieval Chinese Pronunciation

It's here! The A Student's Dictionary of Classical and Medieval Chinese dictionary is finally out! Language Log says: A Student's Dictionary of Classical and Medieval Chinese All of the ...
2
votes
1answer
83 views

How Should I Pronounce the Character 說 In This Lyric?

Reading the following lyric (詞) of Nara Singde (納蘭性德), set to the tune 念奴嬌, where rhyming characters are enclosed in parentheses according to this reference: 怕見人去樓空,柳枝無恙,猶掃窗間(月)。 無分暗香深處住,悔把蘭襟親(結)。 ...
5
votes
2answers
160 views

Character 瞓: where did the pronunciations come from?

The character 瞓 is a Cantonese character meaning "sleep". It is pronounced xùn in mandarin and fan3 in Cantonese. I was wondering how two so different pronunciations (I would expect xun to match syun ...
10
votes
6answers
601 views

Do acronyms borrowed from English use neutral tone (aka tone 0 or tone 5) for all syllables?

I was just reading a Q&A here about Chinese words for DVD and the discussion also included other acronyms from English. It struck me that nobody wrote the pinyin for any of the terms which made ...
-1
votes
4answers
150 views

How to pronounce “论”

I"ve been trying to figure out the tones for the character 论. It seems like it is fourth tone in 讨论. However, in something like 一概而论 I'm not entirely sure. Is this a taiwan/Mainland division? Or is it ...
6
votes
2answers
185 views

How Does One Pronounce/Define the *Chinese* Character 𦨻

For browsers unable to display that code point (U+26A3B) as anything other than a box, the question concerns this character: Per http://ctext.org/dictionary.pl?if=gb&char=%F0%A6%A8%BB - there ...
1
vote
2answers
82 views

How long a lack of practice does it usually take to forget the intricacies off the learnt Chinese?

Particularly, intricacies of pronunciation. I am just starting to learn the language, and what bothers me is that after finally managing to learn proper pronunciations of the language sounds, I may ...
2
votes
3answers
496 views

What is the difference in pronunciation between saying “jin” and “jing”?

I speak Chinese natively (我讲中文,普通话) but my pronunciation is borrowed from Jiangsu parents, so I was wondering what is the difference between "jin" (今) and "jing" (京)? Is there any difference in ...
2
votes
1answer
222 views

When making j, x, and q consonant sounds, where in the mouth does the sound get created?

This page clearly shows the difference in tongue position for forming these consonants. However, I find that what I'm doing is placing the tip of my tongue against my lower teeth as directed, but the ...
7
votes
4answers
8k views

Where can I find audio recordings of every word?

Where can I find audio recordings (i.e. individual MP3s or WAVs) for every Chinese word? I have found some recordings of Chinese, but these only contain individual phonemes, not entire words. I am ...
8
votes
7answers
2k views

What software can correct pronunciation?

What software is available which can record my voice and warn me about problems with my pronunciation and tones?
5
votes
1answer
242 views

Strange pronunciations in Hakka song

I have stumbled upon Zhang Shaolin's Hoi-nam kai-fan. I asked three translation questions about it: 1, 2 and 3. THere you find the lyrics and a link to a video, and my translation attempt. This ...
4
votes
2answers
331 views

When saying Japanese place names like “秋叶原”, do people always use the respective Chinese pronunciation?

When I hear people talk about Tokyo in Mandarin, they always pronounce it as "dōng jīng" because it's written as 东京. Similarly for Osaka and "dà bǎn" (大阪), and other such places. Are there any names ...
11
votes
10answers
7k views

Tips for pronouncing X vs SH in Mandarin?

I'd like to think my Mandarin pronunciation is generally pretty reasonable, but I often get tripped up with X and SH - for example words like 雪 and 水, or 虾 and 莎. Even with different tones, I find ...
2
votes
1answer
90 views

Mandarin chinese: syllable pronunciation training

Is there free mp3 resources of all combinations of syllables (1consonnant + 1vowel) in different tones? Here an example of syllables: All Possible Syllables in Mandarin Chinese
4
votes
3answers
138 views

Tourists in China but can not understand Chinese

How about someone visiting China in the next few months, who does not understand their language? Is there a way to learn common words and sentences with the correct pronunciation quickly? Thanks in ...
2
votes
2answers
190 views

pronunciation: j/q/x/y + ün

Here in the south (mainland) ün has a similar pronunciation to the English -ean as in 'wean' or even the -een in 'ween', though it seems like northerners pronounce it more like -uin in 'ruin'. jün, ...
5
votes
3answers
325 views

说服: shuìfú vs. shuōfú

I've been trying to find some sort of indication as to the differences between these two pronunciations for 说服: shuìfú vs. shuōfú. I used to always read it: shuōfú, until I was corrected by a ...
4
votes
2answers
283 views

阿: when is it pronunced 'a' when is it pronunced 'e'?

阿 sometimes pronounced 'a' sometimes pronounced 'e'. I've noticed specific instances for both. Are there any rules as to how to pronounce 阿 in different circumstances/contexts?
5
votes
5answers
360 views

Why do Chinese “extend” the last word when speaking?

I've hear on many occasions that Chinese prolong the last word in a sentence, for example: ni hao ma ? becomes ni hao maaaaa ? (I'm not sure that's clear enough but can't think of a better ...
6
votes
5answers
279 views

Why do I see 我 for I, but is pronounced WAH

I'm corrected to pronounce WAH instead of "wǒ." Is it the same and I just hear it wrong in my head? Or is there a difference in dialect?
6
votes
4answers
2k views

How to convert from hanyu pinyin to IPA?

Where can I find a table showing the relation between Hanyu pinyin spelling and IPA for all phonemes in Mandarin?
5
votes
7answers
1k views

Accidentally Saying Chinese Swear Words

So I saw a video on youtube about a guys experience in china. He said that people can often accidentally say swear words if they say the tones wrong. Like the word "ma" It can heard as mother but ...
2
votes
3answers
165 views

Which tone is it (in pinyin)?

Following on from this question Asking "what's the pinyin/character for X?". I've had difficulty previously asking native speakers which tone I should use for a particular character if ...
13
votes
3answers
254 views

Character Pronunciation Clues

Is there any way to know what a character's pronunciation or tone is, based on the strokes or radicals that make up the characters?
6
votes
5answers
940 views

Are there any free fonts designed to help learn/read Chinese?

Problem As a Chinese student I found that one of the first barrier is reading. Indeed, when trying to acquire new vocabulary one might be faced with the opacity of the Chinese character as opposed to ...
3
votes
2answers
218 views

Written Cantonese Pronunciation 2

this is a follow up question regarding Cantonese Pronunciation. Previous question here. Does anyone know how people from Guangdong, who would speak Cantonese at home but be taught in Mandarin at ...
4
votes
2answers
389 views

Pronouncing pinyin “c” in Shanxi dialect

I had thought I knew how to pronounce pinyin "c," like the English "ts" in "cats." But on a trip to Shanxi it seemed like most of my friends were pronouncing it like pinyin "ch." Village names ending ...
9
votes
3answers
543 views

How is the 儿 ending pronounced outside Beijing?

When Beijingers use words like 一点儿, the ending syllable will be very pronounced as far as I understand, and I'm aware that this is a typical feature of the Beijing dialect. But how is it pronounced in ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Pinyin tones pronunciation cheat sheet

I've just started taking Chinese lessons, and I've been trying to find a "cheat sheet" for pinyin pronunciation. All the sites I've found is either incomplete (only having some tones), only having the ...
1
vote
1answer
150 views

Tips to remember pronounciation of these words: 旅,斿,施,旋,族?

I often misread these words and got mistaken between each other: 旅 = Lǚ 斿/游 = Yóu 施 = shī 旋 = Xuán 族 = zú as each of them doesn't have related phonetic indicator that I can use as clue to remember ...
26
votes
7answers
2k views

Techniques for improving pronunciation

Are there any recommended resources or methodologies to improve ones Chinese pronunciation? Besides having a native speaker at your disposal, are there any tools that can help to correct ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

Does ancient Chinese have tones (声调)?

This question has puzzled me since I have no training in ancient Chinese and ancient phonetics. What is puzzling me is the following facts: The tones in different regions are quite different. If ...
6
votes
2answers
485 views

What is considered to be the most difficult sound for native English speakers to pronounce?

When I was first learning Chinese, I found the e4 - 饿 & ü3/ü4 - 女/绿 sounds to be the most problematic. Has there been any research into this? If so, what sounds are generally the most problematic ...
1
vote
4answers
249 views

Pronunciation of 山 (in Taiwan)

I'm a newbie Chinese student and I have a question about the pronunciation of the word shān (山), meaning mountain. When I went to Taiwan recently, friends there pronounced it as sān, not shān. For ...
7
votes
5answers
284 views

地 pronunciation variation

May I know how the rules governing the pronunciation of 地? In the song, 吻别, the singer pronounces 地 as di. 冷得连隐藏的遗憾都那么地明显 leng de lian yin cang de yi han du na me di ming xian However, a ...
5
votes
3answers
308 views

pronunciation of 着 in 怎么着

As most of you will probably know, 着 can be pronounced in many ways (depending on the context). I'm wondering how the 着 in 爱怎么着就怎么着 (meaning: do as you like) should be pronounced. Is it zhe or zhao1, ...
5
votes
1answer
261 views

Why is “小小” pronounced as “xué xiǎo”?

In the classic 相声《卖马》, near the beginning is a line that goes: 在下王老好的便是,就在这潞州天堂县开了一个*小小*的店房 but in that line, "小小" was pronounced as "xué xiǎo". Here's a clip: ...
5
votes
2answers
305 views

Chinese [Topolectical] IPA Placeholder: Ẓ

I've asked this elsewhere before but without much luck so I'm just gonna paste what I wrote before: I ran across "Ẓ" use some what in some old texts used as a sort-of "IPA" then to make sure I ...
3
votes
6answers
225 views

“an” final pronunciation

I have had eight mainland Chinese teachers over the time I have spent studying, and I am still confused, because I find there are inconsistencies between my textbook's audio CDs, my teachers' ...
3
votes
2answers
253 views

How do you pronounce 盛开?

The phrase 盛开 means to bloom, as in, "池塘里的荷花盛开." Is this pronounced as "shèng kāi", or is it pronounced as "chéng kāi"?
18
votes
7answers
936 views

How do native speakers of Chinese pronounce Latin characters?

I hear that "Windows XP" is commonly called "Chā P" because the letter "X" may be pronounced "Chā". Are there other Latin characters that have similarly peculiar pronunciations?
3
votes
3answers
320 views

How do current Mandarin speakers usually pronounce 阿Q正传?

This is the story named in English "The true story of Ah Q." Author Lu Xun transliterates the pronunciation of Q as Quei, and suggests that the Q could stand for 桂, or 贵, which are today pinyin Gui4. ...
1
vote
1answer
158 views

How to pronounce Zengyang? [closed]

My friend's Chinese name is Zengyang and I want to surprise her by being able to pronounce it properly when she visits me in a few weeks. Thanks!
1
vote
2answers
155 views

Learn Chinese Step 1: Sounds (Pinyins). How different is it to English sounds and are there any good tips to learn? [closed]

Many Mandarin Chinese teachers claim that the step 1 for Learning Chinese is: Sounds (Pinyins). How different is it to English sounds and are there any good tips to learn?
7
votes
4answers
261 views

Regional variations on 三更半夜

A couple years ago, I was at a Chinese(-American) gathering and the topic of 成语 came up. One of them was 三更半夜. My family is from Hangzhou, and previously I had always known of it as 深更半夜. On the other ...
13
votes
6answers
2k views

How do Chinese speakers pronounce unknown characters?

I'm wondering what do Chinese speakers do when they are reading aloud and encounter a character they don't know (sometimes it happens, isn't it?). In phonetic languages, there is a possibility to ...
6
votes
1answer
306 views

Strategies to discourage uptalk in Chinese language learners?

In my beginning Chinese class, many students consistently pronounce tones incorrectly when answering questions aloud. I realize this is expected of beginners, but I've noticed that it happens most ...