I've found many articles about differences in certain sentence structures regarding 台湾国语 and 大陆普通话, but does anyone have a large list of commonly-used vocabulary that are different? I spend a lot of time on the mainland and Taiwan, and sometimes I get blank stares when I say "滑鼠" in Shanghai or "垃圾桶” in Kaohsiung.

Please note, when I refer to 台湾国语, I mean differences in word choice and sentence structure, not pronunciation.

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    +1 Good question. As a Chinese, I do know some lists for computer-related areas, like 打印机 vs 印表机. But I have no idea for the others. – coolcfan Jan 30 '12 at 9:03
  • Are you asking for technical dictionaries? Or just word lists? – Alenanno Jan 30 '12 at 9:52
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    I don't think average Chinese can show you a list because we don't learn the differences specially and a person from the mainland can communicate with a person from Taiwan(of course, even for these different words,it's easy for one to explain it to the another). I know some differences in terms in technical areas, but I can't show you a comprehensive list. – Huang Jan 30 '12 at 14:34
  • @Kurtz, please improve your question by editing it, using the guidelines you find on Good Subjective, Bad Subjective, since your question is dangerously asking for list answers. – Alenanno Jan 30 '12 at 15:28
  • Recently I saw a piece of news of a book being published later this year with a background of Mainland China and Taiwan cooperation, which can be used as a dictionary. Here is the link of the news: culture.people.com.cn/GB/22219/17076556.html – coolcfan Feb 10 '12 at 1:57

Here's a list of books from Taiwan on this topic:

We're looking for long answers that provide some explanation and context. Don't just give a one-line answer; explain why your answer is right, ideally with citations. Answers that don't include explanations may be removed.

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    The guy just asked for a list. This answer goes well beyond what the OP wanted; Derek has gone to the trouble of providing a list of reference tools, with links. – Bathrobe Jan 31 '12 at 23:55


I saw this website today. It is related to what I mentioned in the comment to the question:

Recently I saw a piece of news of a book being published later this year with a background of Mainland China and Taiwan cooperation, which can be used as a dictionary. – coolcfan yesterday

And now you don't need to wait to buy the book. The link above is the official site of the cooperation project and it provides an online version of the dictionary.

For example, when you search for 垃圾 on that site, it will give you the following result:

大陆规范字形 垃圾

台湾标准字体 垃圾

大陆读音注音符号:ㄌㄚ ㄐㄧ
台湾读音注音符号:ㄌㄜˋ ㄙㄜˋ


How to use this website:

For example, when you search for 印表机, you will see 台湾词语 and “见【打印机】” in the 释义 section. This means: 1. 印表机 is a Taiwan word; 2. 打印机 is a word with the same meaning.

And then when you click on the link on “见【打印机】”, you will see 大陆词语 on the page, which means this is a Mainland word. In the 释义 section you will see:

计算机的输出设备,可以把文字、图表等直接印在纸上。台湾词语 即“印表机”;也作“列印机”。

So you will know that for printer, 打印机 is the Mainland word, and 印表机 or 列印机 is the Taiwan version.

  • +1 for the link! It's a great website! – gonnastop Mar 20 '12 at 17:12

protected by Alenanno Jan 30 '12 at 15:28

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