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16

Even for educated Chinese people who know English fairly well, they do not use the same method that native English speakers use (the one mentioned in your question). The common methods Chinese use include: 1 - Read a small sequence of letters from the alphabet that contains the letter in question. “Theodore怎么拼?” “T-H-...” “等一下,是T还是P” ...


14

None of the other answers are really relevant to the question asked. The poster asks WHY the word 的 is sometimes pronounced "di"; not when and how you use it. And saying that "some people just do it" is not an answer, it's a tautology. The true reason why there are many distinct pronunciations is a historical/cultural phenomenon called 文白异读 ...


12

Search online to try and find sites that provide language exchange. These are a good opportunity to have regular lessons and give at the same time as receiving. Try and find or organise meet-ups in your area. I know a friend who is learning at the moment and he catches up every Saturday morning with about 3 or 4 others. This was organised by putting up a ...


11

"其实" or "其实呢" is more similar to what you wanted, casually. E.g. 其实我没有兄弟姐妹. "事实上" is not wrong, but it is literally "in fact" or "as a matter of fact".


10

等等 is the official and only globally recognized way to read ellipsis in Chinese, unlike in English there are more than one (et cetera, and so on, and so forth, etc.) In casual occasions you can also say 等 for short. In formal speeches like news broadcast it's always 等等. (Note I am talking about the pronunciation of ellipsis; I am not saying single 等 or ...


10

Learn Chinese I could just assume you mean that you want to learn to speak Mandarin Chinese, but I'd like you to take a moment to share what you mean by "learn chinese." Since it will likely be the hardest thing you've ever tried to do, I'd recommend you consider the following: Mandarin is the most popular dialect and the official language spoken ...


8

Their meanings are somewhat different. In a few situations, they are interchangeable, but there are many others where you can only use one and not the other. The key difference is that 呗 is much more assertive, even rhetorical, whereas 吧 can be used to express doubt or uncertainty as well. For completeness I'll cover them all. Definitions taken from ...


7

First, the de/di phenomenon is not 文白异读 (literary-colloquial distinct readings). The term "文白异读 (literary-colloquial distinct readings)" have strict academic definition. Not every homograph is 文白异读 (literary-colloquial distinct readings). Not every literary-colloquial distinction is 文白异读 (literary-colloquial distinct readings). Books on Chinese phonology ...


6

Following on from Flake, I also often hear people saying 那么 (那) or just as a way to begin sentences, or 那个 when stopping to think in mid sentences. Is that the sort of thing you mean?


6

The shape of your mouth and the muscles you need to speak effect the way that you speak another language. So you will naturally find yourself tripping over certain sounds or combinations of words. The only way you can improve this is by practicing. I have been casually teaching overseas students for over 10 years and the best way to do this is by doing two ...


5

There isn't really a difference in the two if you are using it to mean "soon", except that 快要 is more formal than 快. For example: 他快死了。 他快要死了。 Both mean: He is dying soon. 快 is just a shorten form of 快要 when used in such context and it is quite commonly used in speech.


5

This kind of case is usually occurs on these occasions: When you are standing at top of the mountain, you feel very exciting, and shout out with prolonging the each word(like niiiiiii haooooooo maaaaaaa) or just the last word(like ni hao maaaaaaa). Mum, so exciting! :p It usually occurs in young people, especially the female. Some cute girls will often ...


4

I agree with fefe and I would like to show my experience on how to read these acronyms. A native Chinese speaker will read it as he reads these letters in English, however, There is no standard way to pronunce these acronyms. Different people would read them differently, as every one has his own preference (also effected by his dialects,I believe) to read ...


4

I don't believe there is a standard for it. But from news and gameshows it is quite common to pronounce the first few letters of the alphabet (ABCD..) in first tone as part of a Chinese sentence. For other letters like HXZ that do not go well in first tone, the fourth tone is used. Like I said I don't believe this to be a standard, but a result of people ...


4

In short: the standard pronunciation is the English pronunciation. There's no Chinese standard way to pronounce English letter (how they are pronounced when they are used as pinyin should not be counted here, I think). Tone does not exist for English letters, as they are English, not Chinese. English intonation should take effect(in English, when 'DVD' is ...


3

In my experience, taking a class, and watching/listening to Chinese media truly helps. I have taken classes on Chinese, and Chinese media can test if you understand Chinese. Using media also helps you "exercise" your brain; much like taking a jog once in awhile. In order to retain knowledge on the Chinese, you should practice saying the word, or at least ...


3

1) 杀人游戏 Well, I used to play a game called 杀人游戏 that involved nothing but listening and talking. It's not exactly a board game (you use one or more decks of cards), but as far as language practice goes, it's extremely useful. In the basic game you have a judge, killers, policemen and bystanders, and it's the policemen's job to work out who the killers are. ...


3

Dixit is a great choice for practicing Chinese. In this game, one person describes a card (without show it), and then everyone including him/her take out one card. At last, everyone else guess which card is his/her. If everyone or no one get the right answer, he/she get no score. So, he/she should describe it in a suitable way in order to make someone right ...


3

An addition to other great answers: 反正 can be used as "actually" too sometimes. Example: 谢谢你过来帮我 (Thanks for coming over to help me) Xièxie nǐ guò lái bāng wǒ 反正我刚好在这边附近而已 (Actually, I happened to be just around the corner) fǎn zhèng wǒ gāng hăo zài zhè biān fù jìn ér yǐ


3

Rossetta Stone has that feature standard. I've not used it, but I have friends who have with great success. Unless you get the tone correct, the software doesn't let you advance to the next word. It's pretty impressive. Don't know of any free options, though.


3

NS.X. answer is correct. I am just going to add one extra point about <<……>> in writing. If one is to convert <<……>> to words in writing, other than 等等 One can use 等+category Using OP example 北海、頤和園、香山…… 北海、颐和园、香山…… 北海, 頤和園, 香山 are all places/location Can be converted to (1) 北海、頤和園、香山等等 北海、颐和园、香山等等 Or (2) ...


3

I just want to expand on what is being said in the comments about context. One of the problems of speaking a language other than your first language is getting across the point of what you are trying to say, not just saying your main point but making yourself fully understood. Think about this in the context of English. If you were going to say "Yesterday I ...


3

The best way is to install a Cantonese input plugin for your computer/phone. I have jyutping (粵拼) installed both on my Mac and Android phone. Works great. I use this to write both in Cantonese and (broken) Mandarin.


3

There are a lot of Cantonese dictionaries online. The one I often use is CantoDict. It is volunteer-contributed and is pretty comprehensive. I has both characters and words, and has pronunciation for both Cantonese in Jyutping and Mandarin in pinyin, meanings in English. and you can search based on characters, Jyutping, pinyin, or English. Once you get the ...


3

It's difficult for westerners to master the four tones in a few days, but if you have a few months, you can try! It's also difficult to learn how to read Chinese characters, but you can memorize some common words in a few days, such as restaurant, hotel, supermarket, museum, park etc, so that you can know where to go (most places have English signs in ...


2

The only place that comes to my mind is looking for an international penpal, getting to know each other and using a chatting service that allows you two to call using a webcam. That way you can also "choose" a Cantonese speaker, and considering those sites, also with similar interests that you have.


2

I think Password might be a good choice. One player is given a secret word, and has to get his teammates to say that word by giving them clues. He can't say the secret word as part of his clues. The trickiest part would be getting the words. You can either have everyone write a few words on slips of paper and stick them in a bag, or maybe use a deck of ...


2

It is a tradition from theatrical performances (such as Chinese Opera) to replace vowel 'e' with 'i' or other vowels for quality and clarity of the tone. It's even true for pop music until the late 1990's.


2

One strategy I use is shopping whenever I can at shops with Chinese speaking proprietors (Fast-food, groceries, restaurants, anything). I use a bit of Chinese, this generally interests them, and you will find that you have a small conversation with this person every time you go there. (Incidentally this is also a great way to get discounts :)


2

Some people pronounce this as "di" all the time and some people say "di" to just add some spice (or sound cool) or add a little bit of emphasis. Example of this I have heard people say something simple as: 他们是我的好朋友 Tāmen shì wǒ di hǎo péngyǒu I've also heard it sang in songs just to match other parts of the song or to fit in well with the rest of ...



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