Questions tagged [pinyin]

Questions about the official transcription writing system that is used to write the reading of chinese characters using the roman alphabet.

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What is the historical development of IPA for Chinese spoken language?

When discussing the history of Chinese Romanization, including various schemes and various dialects, the best way is to use IPA. But what is the historical record of IPA that precisely describes the ...
7 votes
3 answers
2k views

Why did so many Ks change into Js and Qs?

When looking at the history of name changes, one of the most common changes to city names seems to be the replacement of K with J and Q. For example, the spelling "Peking" has been changed ...
0 votes
1 answer
107 views

How to get Google Contacts to use Hanyu Pinyin or Zhuyin fuhao sort order on desktop?

We observe an Android user figured out how to make Google Contacts sort his Chinese surnamed contacts in Hanyu Pinyin order. How to do the same thing, on desktop? Yes, I want to keep my main language ...
1 vote
1 answer
89 views

How to translate "开口呼、齐齿呼、合口呼、撮口呼" to English?

How to translate "开口呼、齐齿呼、合口呼、撮口呼" to English? 开口呼、齐齿呼、合口呼、撮口呼 (四呼) are concepts of Chinese pronouonciation. 开口呼 - There is no glide before the nucleus vowel, such as "Ma4Ma4" (妈妈)....
0 votes
0 answers
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How to compare the syllable structures of Chinese with Hangul?

How to compare the syllable structures (or pronunciations) of Chinese (Standard or Pu3Tong1Hua4) with Hangul (Korea Language)? In this article here, it says, "The number of the theoretically ...
0 votes
3 answers
271 views

How do you understand her name "Bi-khim Hsiao"?

Her name in Chinese is "萧美琴" and in English is "Bi-khim Hsiao". How do you understand the translation?
1 vote
1 answer
247 views

Python function for splitting pinyin into syllables

The question I'd like to have a function in Python for splitting a given string containing pinyin into its syllables. The following two code blocks show how the function is intended to work. Input ...
8 votes
4 answers
988 views

What is the correct orientation of "ㄧ" in zhuyin fuhao?

In zhuyin fuhao (bopomofo), "ㄧ" is equal to "i" or "yi" in Hanyu pinyin. I have noticed, when displayed on my computer, even with very complete fonts, I see a vertical line (similar to "|"), but when ...
1 vote
1 answer
587 views

Converting pinyin with tones into chinese characters

Does anybody know how to convert pinyin with tone marks back into chinese characters. I am using www.branah.com/chinese-to-pinyin to convert the characters to pinyin but cannot find a way to do the ...
0 votes
2 answers
144 views

How can I install Shuangpin in Rime for Traditional Characters only?

I am on a Windows 10 PC. I have installed the Zhengma method on RIME and have been using it for the past few months. But I want to try practicing with Shuangpin (aka Double Pinyin) since its easier on ...
5 votes
3 answers
296 views

Is the Pinyin made for some Chinese characters in double standard?

The most striking cases are: 莫 (mo), 我(wo), 坡(po),波(bo), but 国(guo), 洛(luo), 错(cuo), etc, with one "u" added, which is unnecessary. To my ears, they are the same, aren't they?
2 votes
4 answers
242 views

What "字母" mean in Chinese (not Alphabet in English)? Why is it called "character-mother"?

The word "字母" might have been first used by SHOU WEN of the TANG dynasty. Why is it called "character-mother"? And now people translate "Alphabet letters" as "字母&...
13 votes
8 answers
7k views

Why were some letters like Q, X, C, chosen for Pinyin which confuse non-Chinese speakers?

A romanization system is basically a system in which roman (latin) letters are used for languages that use non-roman scripts. This has the obvious benefit that people who can (maybe only) read roman ...
0 votes
0 answers
79 views

Why Pinyin's "声母" and "韵母" were translated as "initials" and "finals"?

Why Pinyin's "声母" and "韵母" were translated as "Initials" and "Finals", but not as "sound-mother" and "rime-mother"? What is the meaning of &...
1 vote
3 answers
139 views

Is there statistics on the frequency of individual pinyin syllables in real texts?

I'm interested in the frequency of pinyin syllables (both when including tones and toneless). This implies the usage in real text, weighted by the occurrences in the corpus, not by parsing a ...
2 votes
8 answers
549 views

Is the Ong sound absent from zhuyin?

In the “group a finals” rows of the Wikipedia pinyin and zhuyin tables I see an “ong” row present in the pinyin table absent from the zhuyin table. Zhuyin expresses this final with the combination of “...
0 votes
1 answer
109 views

How to properly map pinyin to Chinese text in a sentence?

I am working on displaying Chinese texts like CText does, but I wanted to have a version of each text which displays the pinyin next to it. My question is, how do you properly represent Chinese "...
23 votes
12 answers
36k 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 ...
14 votes
8 answers
1k 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 vote
1 answer
309 views

Ibus-pinyin seems not a good Chinese inputting system for Chinese learners. How do you usually input Chinese using keyboard without android or iphone?

Since my reputation points are insufficient, I guess that I can't paste an image in this post. So I describe what I want to tell you using texts only. I've been using ibus-pinyin in Ubuntu 22.04 to ...
2 votes
1 answer
72 views

Tool for processing Chinese text

DimSum is (was) a Java tool I found useful for Chinese on MacOS, but it is twelve years old and the website says it should solve some “problems on Snow Leopard” (Snow Leopard is 2009, version 10.6; ...
1 vote
2 answers
273 views

Dictionary for different dialects

I am in search for a dictionary that have the most common Chinese words mapped with a one-to-one relationship for different dialects. To be specific, I am looking for a entries mapped for Taiwan (...
2 votes
4 answers
740 views

How do I type 𨳒 on a keyboard?

I am using the Google Cantonese Input and Google Pinyin Input on my phone and cannot find a way to type 𨳒. Even when I switch to the handwriting method, 𨳒 does not come up as an option and I get ...
2 votes
1 answer
406 views

How do I change the ruby text language in Microsoft Word for Hanyu Pinyin?

I would like to use the Phonetic Guide in Microsoft Word to learn Chinese by adding Hanyu Pinyin to Simplified and Traditional Chinese text. However, when select a group of characters, the ruby text ...
3 votes
4 answers
506 views

Where to put the tone mark in pinyin

In pinyin the tone mark (diacritical mark) only goes on vowels. If there is only one vowel in a character's pinyin then the answer is easy, the tone mark just goes on the vowel. For example: 思 sī, 于 ...
6 votes
4 answers
654 views

Yinwei or Yinvei? 因为

I hear some people say 因为 as “yinwei”, but also some say it sound like “yinvei”. I’m not sure why there is a difference in pronunciation.
4 votes
1 answer
398 views

Why does "Lüzhijiang" or "Lvzhijiang" Bridge (绿汁江大桥) look so strange to me?

CNN's Record-breaking suspension bridge set to open in Yunnan, China says: Stretching 798 meters over a river valley, Lvzhijiang Bridge's mere length may not sound all that extreme when compared to ...
2 votes
1 answer
297 views

Pinyin / pronunciation for 朋友

I've only been learning Chinese for three days so this may be a very stupid question. I'm seeing the pronunciation for 朋友 sometimes written as [péngyou] and sometimes written as [péngyǒu]. Please ...
1 vote
4 answers
248 views

Tools for self study of Mandarin pronunciation

I am interested in self-study resources to improve my mandarin pronunciation (improve pinyin syllables and also tone pronunciation). There are many resources to self study writing/reading skills here ...
0 votes
5 answers
527 views

How to pronounce 學 "shwehh", "shoo-ehh", or "xüüehh"?

According to pinyin pronunciation guides, 學 should be pronounced x + ü + e with a rising tone. This should verbally sound something like 1) a shh- with tip of tongue close to your bottom teeth ...
1 vote
2 answers
91 views

What is the correct pronunciation of 辫发?

Google Translate and 查查在线词典 both say 辫发 ought to be biànfǎ, but Baidu says biànfā. What is correct?
0 votes
2 answers
101 views

What is the zhuyin for the onomatopoei bia1

Seeing that my existing code to map pinyin to zhuyin has no mapping for biā .. ao: "ㄠ", ba: "ㄅㄚ", bai: "ㄅㄞ", ban: "ㄅㄢ", bang: "ㄅㄤ", bao: "ㄅㄠ"...
5 votes
3 answers
1k views

How do I pronounce romanised Chinese names which lack tone marks?

In the West, Chinese names almost never seem to be written using pinyin tone marks or numbers. For example, the current president's name will simply be written as Xi Jinping. I had to Google to ...
6 votes
2 answers
1k 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. ...
4 votes
1 answer
271 views

Pronouncing pinyin "ing" (bopomofoㄧㄥ ) as /iŋ/ or /jəŋ/ e.g. in 冰

The book "Sounds of Chinese" gives the surface representation IPA transcription for the word 冰 as /pjəŋ/ and the underlying representation as /piŋ/ (in section 8.1), while the example at 3....
0 votes
1 answer
140 views

How to type PinYin on Windows without the actual letters being typed out as you construct a word?

The reason I'm asking is that I want to practice typing in Chinese on TypeRacer, but it's currently very inconvenient to use. If the word I'm trying to type is "你好", it warns me that I've ...
3 votes
1 answer
173 views

Is the pinyin for 他撇了撇嘴 actually "tā piē le piězuǐ" (as given by Pleco)? And if so, why are the two 撇s pronounced differently?

There are two pronunciations for 撇: piē and piě. As I understand, the pinyin for 撇嘴 is piě​zuǐ​. But then I see this example sentence on Pleco... 他撇了撇嘴,轻蔑地一笑。 Tā piēle piězuǐ. His lips curled in a ...
0 votes
1 answer
122 views

Without using the help of Pinyin

I was taught Chinese by my family and could do the memorizing of many words. The thing that had me worried is that while I could read without pinyin in some parts, I couldn't in others. If I was given ...
4 votes
5 answers
756 views

Why -ian instead of -ien and -üan instead of -üen?

Why are words like 天、面、先、盐 romanized in pinyin as tian, mian, xian, and yan, even though the ending is pronounced [iɛn], and would be better represented as -ien? Likewise, why are words like 卷、全、选、元 ...
4 votes
3 answers
2k views

What are the most common Mandarin words for each pinyin syllable?

I've been practicing my pronunciation by reciting the different pinyin syllables described in my book. My book lists some examples of common words for some syllables. I was wondering where I could ...
3 votes
3 answers
443 views

Why has zuò//láo // in between?

I am going through the word 坐牢 using the Pleco dictionary. Generally they will not keep // in between two characters. But I can see // for this. zuò//láo What does // mean? Can zuò and láo be used ...
0 votes
2 answers
87 views

Pronunciation of 对 and 水

对 (duì) sounds to my ears more like /duei/. Similarly with 水 (shuǐ) /ʂuei/. Am I mishearing, or am I misunderstanding how Pinyin is supposed to be pronounced? Or is this a dialectal variant?
5 votes
7 answers
985 views

Pronunciation of word-initial glides (pinyin 'y' and 'w')

As a non-native speaker, I read pinyin and want to pronounce 'yi' as /ji:/ and 'wu' as /wu:/. But sometimes I think I hear just /i:/ and /u:/. Is that really the case or am I just (not) hearing ...
11 votes
2 answers
696 views

Why one-to-many mapping between IPA and Pinyin?

I am referring to the Origin of zhuyin symbols table on Wikipedia. Under Rhymes and Medials the following 3 entries confuse me: Zhuyin IPA Pinyin ㄧ i i/y ㄨ u u/w ㄩ y ü/yu/u Why are there multiple ...
4 votes
3 answers
11k views

How to translate Pinyin with tones marks on Google Translate?

On Google Translate , if I enter Pinyin with tone marks (for example "nǐ hǎo"), Google Translate is unable to translate from Mandarin to English. However, if I type without tones (for example "ni hao")...
0 votes
4 answers
215 views

What does this name mean in pinyin/english?

i'd appreciate it a lot if someone could tell me! id like to know what this name means in pinyin, as well as english.
0 votes
1 answer
73 views

How do I type 了 with m17n tonepy in ubuntu?

I understand this character to be "le1." Here are what I get for the options of le+tone: le1: le2: (nothing) le3: (nothing) le4: I do not see what I am looking for and expected this common ...
5 votes
3 answers
3k views

Why so many definitions associated with each word?

I'm learning a little Chinese out of curiosity, and I have a basic question about the language as a whole, rather than a specific technical question about a particular word or character. Sorry if this ...
3 votes
1 answer
212 views

What tone for retroflex r?

The retroflex r is not the consonant r in a word (pinyin) like in 人 rén. The retroflex is added as a suffix in the Beijing area, or as a diminutive suffix. Would it be pronounced with the second tone,...
3 votes
3 answers
472 views

Character substitution in Microsoft Pinyin IME for typing 「」(直引号)

recently my Windows 10 was updated and with came some changes with the input methods that I was using, namely Google Chinese Piyin 谷歌拼音. The problem is that I cannot access it now for no clear reason. ...