Questions tagged [pronunciation]

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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25 views

栅 pronunciation - zhà vs. shān

As far as I know, the normal pronunciation of 栅 as in 栅栏 is zhà, but there is another pronunciation shān listed in dictionaries. Are both pronunciations in common use?
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3answers
134 views

Reading of 匙 meaning “key” (as in 钥匙)

Essentially the same as this question, but the solutions there don't seem applicable here. Both isolated and in compounds, I can only find 匙 as either shi⁰ or chi² “spoon”. Can this character in this ...
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1answer
47 views

-uan pinyin pronunciation

It seems to me that in Mandarin, two different vowel sounds are used for words whose pinyin ends with -uan. In some words, like 全 (quán) and 元 (yuán), the vowel sounds like "oo-en" (the nucleus/coda ...
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2answers
187 views

Help translating two lines of Zhang Shaolin's “Hakka homesickness” (客家乡情) + some weird pronunciations in that song

Song video. Lyrics, romanization (based on what I hear in the video), translation attempt. 张少林的“客家乡情”(客家话) 爱记乡情 齐家都係客人 最緊有煞拼求進 (AX 建议的写法) 莫忘乡情 齐家係自家人 只只回故乡寻根 叔公叔婆来相认 亲戚送礼来好热心 到处都有人亲 做事耐苦 人乌白也分明 ...
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2answers
71 views

What's the difference in pronunciation between kuàir and kuàr?

块儿 (kuàir) = a slice, etc. 跨儿 (kuàr) = "trans", in the sense of "transgender". Reading these aloud, I don't notice a distinction in pronunciation, but it seems like there should be. Question: What's ...
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3answers
99 views

Difference between j, q, x sounds and z, c, s sounds?

I'm struggling with some sounds in Chinese. I can't distinguish J, Q, X initials and Z, C, S initials. I feel that they are pronounced similarly. Am I right? Can you tell me how to pronounce these ...
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2answers
929 views

Why e is pronounced differently in de (的, 地) and ye (也,夜)?

I got confused because sometimes e is pronounced differently in various words. For example: (的, 地) and ye (也,夜) Can you explain and give me some tricks to remember? Thank you!
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2answers
107 views

What's the difference in pronunciation between “yo” and “you” in pinyin?

I have no idea, for example, of what the difference in pronounciation between 唷 when pronounced with the first tone and 优. If there's no difference, why are they written differently in pinyin?
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1answer
70 views

Are there any phonetic pangrams for Mandarin and other Chinese languages?

A phonetic pangram is a bit of text which uses all the sounds, or phonemes, in a language (as opposed to the letters of characters). Very useful for practising pronunciation. This is one in English: ...
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61 views

Rules for pronouncing Rules for pronouncing 著 as zhe5 or zhao2? [duplicate]

Are there rules to know when to pronounce 著 as zhe5 or zhao2?
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1answer
60 views

srs deck testing intonations/pronunciations of words with multiple characters

I've recently started studying Chinese, and I'm having trouble hearing the tones for words with multiple characters. For instance, I have trouble hearing the difference between 汉语 (hànyǔ) and 韩语 (...
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1answer
93 views

《庄子》人间世篇名读音及其解释讨论(Zhuangzi discussion)

《庄子》内七篇,曰:逍遥游、齐物论、养生主、人间世、德充符、大宗师、应帝王。 吾见今主流皆解人间世篇名作人间社会,而亦有异见作人处社会解,甚以为然。 庄子善寓言、重言、卮言。人间世多假人口而述己,略可剖为:颜回请行孔子,叶公子高使齐语孔子,颜阖傅太子而问蘧伯玉,匠石不顾栎社,南伯子綦异大木,孔子适楚遇接舆 等章。 纵观南华,庄子喻人以处己,而非论世以砭弊,故也人间世作人处世,读去声,明矣。 ...
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4answers
553 views

How do I pronounce Xué (学)?

I am currently learning Chinese but I've been struggling with perhaps a very easy sound to do. How do I pronounce Xué (学)? I know that with "x", it's "sh" with the tip of your tongue on your front ...
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3answers
414 views

How to create word/character sequence in Chinese that sounds the same as a word in English (or any other language)

Say I have a word in English "fooboo". What if I want it to be pronounced in Chinese as "fooboo" as well? My first attempt is to search in pinyin for "fu" and "bu". Fu gives results like 副 and 付. Bu ...
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2answers
56 views

Correct pronunciation of “和” [duplicate]

I know when it comes to names, it's pronounced "he" in "何", but my question is what about the regular: 我和你 I think it should be "han" in "漢", but some people say "he", so my question is what is ...
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3answers
83 views

What is the relationship between 尉-shaped characters and the pronuncation yu?

I'm curious about the relationship between 尉-shaped characters and the pronunciation yu. I'm not sure if this is just a Sichuanese thing or not, but here's what I know: In some Sichuanese topolects ...
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1answer
300 views

How did 秘 “bi” become “mi”?

I came across this comment just now: “秘”声符是“必”没问题,但是并不是说“秘”和“必”一定同音,“秘”这个字是北京话读错了,其实应该读bi,“秘鲁”一词还残存bi的读音 Which got me thinking. 秘 is still read "bi" in: surnames transcriptions (e.g.: Peru) ...
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3answers
299 views

Pronounciation of 腺

Quoting Wiktionary, the glyph origin of the character 「腺」 is as follows: A 国字 (kokuji, “Japanese-coined character”) coined in the late 1700s–early 1800s by rangaku scholar Udagawa Genshin as a ...
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4answers
172 views

shénmo pronounced as homophone of 什麼 shénme

According to ''Wiedenhof's A Grammar of Mandarin'', page 415, shénmo is also a possible transliteration of 什麼 shénme, with their final vowels being schwas. In what contexts is this true?
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1answer
59 views

When is “得” pronounced “de” and when is it pronounced “dei”?

I have noticed that there are two different pronunciations of 得: - Usually it's pronounced "de". - in some situations it's pronounced "dei" as in: 老百姓想自强 那就得学习点别人先进的东西。 When is “得” pronounced “de” ...
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2answers
874 views

How to pronounce the word 月 (Yue) in English?

Could anybody help me to pronounce the Chinese word 月 (Yue)? Is there any word in English whose pronunciation is similar to this?
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2answers
143 views

Pronunciation of “轧” in 富顺(县)?

《富顺方言》has an entry that reads: 【轧】 读音:ōā(连读) 释义:碾压,轧扎。 举例:1、小心车子轧斗人! 2、有一道菜叫“轧海椒”,下饭安逸得板。 The thing that is confusing me is the: 读音:ōā(连读) I've checked in the actual print edition of ...
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2answers
734 views

When is “了” pronounced “le” and when is it pronounced “liao”?

I have noticed that there are two different pronunciations of 了: - Usually it's pronounced "le". - in some situations it's pronounced "liǎo" for example: 我用了很多年才了解什么是武术。 As much as I realized, ...
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0answers
44 views

“Weng” syllables rhyme with the fnal -ong

According to Wiedenhof's A Grammar of Mandarin, page 44, "Weng" syllables rhyme with the fnal -ong [ʊŋ] However, he'd specified weng as [wʌŋ], to add Weng displays the same type of variation as ...
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1answer
54 views

Pronunciation of final -o

According to Wiedenhof's A Grammar of Mandarin, page 43, The final spelled as -o is only combined with the initials b-, p-, m-, f-. This vowel matches the vowel part of the final -uo [wɔ]. ...
3
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1answer
109 views

Do native English speakers naturally speak in the 4th tone?

I've been scratching my head for quite a while now because I've been trying way to hard to pronounce words in the 4th tone. I understand how it's supposed to work (with tone decreasing) but it felt ...
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3answers
152 views

Does pronunciation of a vowel change with tones?

As it is extremely hard to find a good online summary of all Pinyin pronunciation rules, I am listening the sounds in a Pinyin chart: https://chinese.yabla.com/chinese-pinyin-chart.php . I have read ...
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1answer
71 views

Why does Pleco give so many pronunciations of 欸?

Above is a screenshot of Pleco's "sentence" page for 欸 which displays 5 different pronunciations. This puzzles me. Question: Why does Pleco give so many pronunciations of 欸? My impression is that 欸 ...
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1answer
49 views

Prononciation of Suzhou

What is the pronunciation of the city Suzhou? Here, it looks like she says "Shu dshjo". Here it's more "Shu djo". Here it sounds more like "Su djo".
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1answer
62 views

Pronunciation of the vowel “i” in Pinyin si

What is the pronunciation of the vowel I in Pinyin si? /ɪ/, /ɘ/ or /ɨ/ ? Each website I read describe it differently. Please answer using IPA symbols.
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1answer
90 views

Pronunciation of Z and C in Pinyin

What is the correct pronunciation of the letters Z and C in Pinyin? Chinese phonology wikipedia says that Z is pronounced /ts/ and C is pronounced /tsʰ/, but several websites and videos say they are ...
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1answer
198 views

How was Switzerland transliterated into Chinese?

So, my real question is: did 瑞 used to be pronounced suì in 官话? My roundabout way at getting to this is from the transliteration of Switzerland. Let's look at Chengduese.《现代汉语方言音库 • 成都话音档》records 瑞 ...
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1answer
90 views

Question about third tone sandhi in two specific cases

I know of the commonly cited rules for third tones, which are the following (copied from somewhere else, so excuse the grammatical errors): "When word with the 3rd tone is used alone, or used at the ...
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5answers
4k views

Why is Russia translated to 俄罗斯(E Luo Si)?

The Chinese Wikipedia article describes the name of Russia, and many of its historical Chinese exonyms. 按照俄语发音“Россия”,其名称应翻译为“羅西亚”。元朝时根据蒙古语译为「斡羅思」[b],到清朝初年许多文献中曾称为「羅剎」[c],但在以国家相称时则多译为「鄂羅斯」[d]或「...
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3answers
142 views

曲子 pronunciation

I'm usually confused with the light tone thing. Here I have the word 曲子 which according to the Internet should be pronounced as qǔzi. However, I have heard some people pronounce it as qū (1st tone) zǐ ...
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1answer
98 views

Help with song lyrics pronunciation (我的新衣)?

So I was listening to the song "我的新衣” by Vava, and at a point the rapper Ty sings. And for some reason in this verse走到街上就像一千台进口奔驰 instead of 街 I listen he raps kāi. Can someone please tell me what he ...
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4answers
199 views

Why does 努力 which means “to make a great effort” sound so similar to 奴隸 which means “slave”?

I find it interesting that these two are phonetically similar. Is there a historical background to this?
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2answers
189 views

Does Taiwanese Mandarin have the neutral tone?

So I'm trying to learn Taiwanese Mandarin, and apparently they don't really use the neutral tone, but if that's the case how do you say things like 子,了, and 的?
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1answer
55 views

Origin of transliteration of ~j/sw to ~r in Mandarin

In Malaysia/Singapore, “Raja” is often transliterated to 拉惹,although Wikipedia uses 拉者as the name for its article on the title. e.g. Ayer Rajah 亚逸拉惹 Perlis’s Raja 玻璃市拉惹(https://zh.m.wikipedia.org/zh-...
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7answers
8k 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 ...
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1answer
79 views

Unusual looking characters at a temple in Hong Kong?

(source) It's from the Tsz Shan Monastery in the New Territories in Hong Kong. And I reading it up-down, left-right, or simply left to right on both levels? Many thanks to whoever can help.
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2answers
84 views

Should the second character in 回来了 be pronounced with second or fourth tone?

I almost always hear 来 pronounced as lài in 回来了, but are there any rules of tone sandhi that account for this?
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2answers
150 views

Pronunciation of 辆

So this morning I was trying to have a conversation in mandarin with my Malaysian Chinese friends. During the conversation, I pronounced 辆 in 4th tone just the way I learned online. Apparently, they ...
2
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2answers
89 views

How to distinguish two words the same pronunciation but different meaning (gāo jià)

I just wonder about how to distinguish the words 高价 vs 高架. Both of them seem to have the same pronunciation gāo jià. Are there any additional cues for distinguishing them in a sentence? or Do people ...
3
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4answers
188 views

Using 反切 to determine readings of characters in modern varieties of Chinese

From my understanding, 反切 is presented in the format XY 切, where a pronunciation of a character is determined from the inital of X and the rime of Y. However, there are still some points that are ...
2
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6answers
175 views

Where is 肉 pronunced “you”?

I have heard 肉 pronounced you (not sure of the tone, 4th probably, as in: yòu) on multiple occasions. It seems to be a northern Chinese thing - as opposed to a southern thing - but I'm not sure on ...
0
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1answer
53 views

Are begging and ball homonyms in spoken mandarin?

Are 求 (beg) and 球 (ball) both written in pinyin as Qiú homonyms? I am trying to get the pronunciation for ball right. Are there authoritative homonym lists maintained somewhere?
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4answers
172 views

为什么 “也” 发音为 “ye” 但是 “他”发音为“ta”???

Oh great. I have to ask in English to get it past StackExchange filters. Characters with radicals typically have pronunciations close to the bare character. For example: "韦“ (wei) versus "伟“ (wei) or "...
2
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1answer
184 views

Are the “h” in pinyin always pronounced as “[x]” in IPA?

Chinese (Mandarin) use [x] to pronounce h sound. It does not have any sounds such as [h] and [ɸ]. However, I'm not sure if it is fine to assume that all the h in pinyin are pronounced as [x]. ...
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7answers
1k views

Why is it written LIU in Pinyin, when there's clearly an O sound?

Does anybody know why this decision was made in Pinyin, about not writing any hint of the sound /O/ in liu, instead of writing something like liou or liow ? Because the first reaction of any ...

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