I was trying to find the written representation of the Cantonese word "to make", pronounced as "jing", by looking through the alternatives on Google Translate and reading the Mandarin pronunciations. What better ways are there to find the exact written word for spoken Cantonese words?

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    "An example is the word 係, which is commonly spoken in Cantonese but not written." It is written, including by the government and companies in advertisings. I have plenty of examples showing this...
    – dda
    Aug 21, 2014 at 9:20

4 Answers 4



2010 Comerical Press

8,453 (approx.) entries

Is a good place to start.

For instance the entry for 係

1 是







2 只有(與“至”配搭着用)





Not only does it have written Cantonese for the individual words but also example sentences with mandarin translations.

Words without characters are marked with a: □.

-- Edit: and I believe your 'jing' can be found under the entry for

Romanization is a little different: zing2

Here's the 'to make' part of the definition:

3 做





So! If you know the Cantonese pronunciation and, even roughly, know the romanization system it should be pretty easy to: (A) find the written form of your cantonese words and characters and then (B) find the mandarin equivalent - including examples for each. Should be helpful for what you're looking for/to do

-- Edit 3: zing is Jyutping / jing is Yale - is just double checked - the digitalized dictionary I'm using supports both and can switch between the two.

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    @SimonT I didn't want to put this in my answer, for fear of spamming - but seeing as you've already marked it as correct and seem to think it's a good idea - there's a dictionary company called Pleco who sell Chinese dictionaries on iOS and Android, they have already digitalized, if you will, this dictionary so if you want to find this dictionary, digitally, I think it's your best way to go.
    – Mou某
    Aug 21, 2014 at 15:56

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 hang of Jyutping, that will be the easiest way to search for something you know how to pronounce in Cantonese but don't know the character for.


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.


I like https://jyut.net/ where you can enter jyut6ping3 and even leave the tone number out. It cross-references a number of other dictionaries, which makes it particularly robust.
If you're not totally comfortable with jyut6ping3, https://shyyp.net/ can read characters out loud to check your guesses.

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