Questions tagged [topolect]

Questions regarding regional variants of the Chinese language

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5
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2answers
144 views

Why are there different pronunciations of 复杂?

During a Chinese class, a student pronounced 复杂 as fu3za2, instead of the official pronunciation fu4za2. The Chinese teacher corrected the student but then mentioned many native speakers pronounce it ...
5
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4answers
293 views

Is there a politically neutral Chinese term for Greater China that is acceptable to all Chinese speakers?

By "China," I am referring to the Mainland, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan collectively, without regard to geopolitics. Is there a word that refers to this entire region that would not offend any ...
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1answer
67 views

What does the inital /dⁿ/ stand for?

While answering @Qiangong2's question here: Are Characters customized in different provinces due to dialectal differences? I was looking through the table on 四川方言字. On the table the following initial ...
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2answers
2k views

How similar are Hakka and Cantonese?

I refer to this map (also shown below), which depicts that Yue and Hakka variants of Chinese are geographically very close to each other. If we take Hong Kong for example, how similar would the ...
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1answer
41 views

Where does 别间 (“other”) as in 别间大学 come from?

As a follow up to this question What does 别间 in 别间大学的男生都土里土气的 means? I was trying to figure out where the term 别间 comes from. Judging by the context, it appears having the same meaning as 别的 (other, ...
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0answers
38 views

Data on the endangerment of Southwestern Mandarin?

I'm looking for some data on the endangerment of Southwestern Mandarin. Since it is rather a broad subject, it can be broken down to the Cheng–Yu 成渝 branch as it is quite representative of the ...
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1answer
151 views

Is 𠱑 An Acceptable Form Of 逗 In Sichuanese?

The book《蜀籁》writes the word 逗猫惹草 as 𠱑猫惹草 and also contains many other usages of 𠱑 where 逗 would normally be. 逗 in Sichuanese is read dou in the first tone (tone value: 55). 逗 in theory should be ...
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2answers
292 views

List of Chinese characters not used in Mandarin/putonghua

Is there any convenient list of all of these characters? Examples of such characters being: The Hokkien (Min) 𪜶 (which is the pronoun 'them/they/theirs') The Cantonese/Hakka/Gan 佢 (which is the ...
3
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1answer
81 views

Are Characters customized in different provinces due to dialectal differences?

In other character-based writing systems such as Chu Nomh, Kanji, and Hanja, there are customized characters due to regional dialects. Has this occurred with Simplified at all? Or has the government ...
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1answer
74 views

Modern Standard Mandarin equivalent of the 倒…不… and 半…不… constructs?

I've seen this mostly as dialect usage, but I'm wondering if there's a Modern Standard Mandarin (MSM) equivalent. 倒...不... - (seemingly) neither A nor B 倒男不女 倒文不武 倒明不白 半...不... - (seemingly) half A ...
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1answer
72 views

What does 跳马猴子 mean?

The term literally indicates some kind of monkey jockey riding a racehorse. I’m guessing it means “lunatic”. I can’t find it in any dictionary. Any ideas?
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2answers
158 views

How should I understand the pronunciation of 驾驶证 (jiàshǐ zhèng) as 酱汁儿 (jiàng zhī er)?

I was reading this website ( https://pinyin.sogou.com/zimeiti/article/1255 ) to understand colloquial Beijing Mandarin and came across this pronunciation for 驾驶证 驾驶证 > "酱汁儿", i.e Jiàshǐ zhèng > jiàng ...
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5answers
231 views

Why did my teacher mark down 一把 as a classifier for 手機?

My teacher detracted a few points for using 一把手機。It seems that 一台,一部, 一個 are better choices. However, I find many occurrences of 一把手機 Google search Is it a dialectal phenomenon? Maybe in dialects ...
2
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1answer
116 views

When is f not pronounced?

I've seen that in Beijing Mandarin f can be pronounced as something of a final consonant when in an unstressed syllable, e.g. 豆腐 dòu fǔ = dòuff. However, in other cases it disappears in unstressed ...
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3answers
194 views

How did 贼 come to mean “extremely”?

While watching a tv show, I heard the presenter, a Beijinger, say 贼好. In that particular context, the only possible meaning was 很好. Later I did some research and, as a matter of fact, it turns out 贼 ...
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3answers
203 views

Is it correct to say the standard for written Chinese is Mandarin, regardless of dialect (e.g. Cantonese)?

I've looked for this question on the site but can't seem to find it. I'm interested in learning Chinese, well, Cantonese specifically, and I want to focus on both the written and spoken components. ...
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2answers
86 views

吞音 rules for Beijing Dialect

I've been wanting to learn more about beijinghua and it's been more challenging than I expected. I've heard that sh, ch, and zh, all turn to r in beijinghua. However, I've also heard some examples ...
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1answer
80 views

Do any Chinese languages or dialects contain a rolled/trilled R?

From 20:00 to 22:00 of this video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pnMeISMY6eM), the speaker appears to pronounce the R sound with standard Mandarin pronunciation in 若 and 仍然. However, he rolls the R ...
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2answers
129 views

What is the etymologically correct character for the Min-Nan words for meat (bah)?

In both the teoswa and hokkien, the common word for meat is pronounced something like /baʔ/. I.e., it has a voiced initial stop (not like pinyin "b") and a glottal final. This doesn't seem ...
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5answers
906 views

What is the meaning of “拜了个拜”?

I heard this phrase from some Chinese-speaking stranger. I assume it's related to farewell since the stranger was waving hand to someone else, but what does it mean exactly? Is there a certain context ...
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What qualities does Hong Kong Mandarin have?

With Mandarin making more and more in-roads into Cantonese speaking Hong Kong, I'm wondering what characteristics set it apart from Standard Mandarin or other regional Mandarin dialects and/or accents....
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2answers
184 views

Are there northern dialects which still preserve velars before front vowels?

It's well known that Modern Standard Mandarin has merged what were historically velar stops and alveolar silibants when followed by front vowels. For instance, 京 is "jing" rather than "ging", and 津 is ...
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1answer
149 views

What could 轰 be a contraction of to mean “what”?

轰 can be found in some dialects, often with a 个 found on the end, to mean what. This is most definitely a contraction. (Similar dialects also feature a contraction of 哪 and 样 as 孃 niang, also meaning ...
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535 views

About a line in 爱拼才会赢

Here are the full lyrics of the song in the title as found here, where a video is also found: 一时失志不免怨叹 一时落魄不免胆寒 那通失去希望 每日醉茫茫 无魂有体亲像稻草人 人生可比是海上的波浪 有时起 有时落 好运 歹运 总嘛要照起工来行 三分天注定 ...
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1answer
188 views

Is there any way to detect dialect automatically?

For current task I need to create a solution how to detect if some video or audio of Chinese speech is Mandarin or Cantonese (for now I do not need others dialects). For example, there is almost ...
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105 views

“Why” in Beijing Dialect [duplicate]

I've been wondering how to correctly say "why" in Beijing dialect. I know that in colloquial beijing mandarin 什么 is pronounced as shém with a final m. I thus thought the same was for 为什么 as weishem. ...
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111 views

When is d elided? [closed]

I know that plosive consonants can change in natural Mandarin speech, like intervocalic g is almost always elided, and sometimes k, but b and p are almost never elided, but when should d be elided? ...
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210 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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3answers
8k views

Difference between learning Mandarin Chinese and Taiwanese Hokkien for visiting Taiwan

I'm planning on visiting Taiwan as a tourist for about one week next year. Both Wikipedia and Wikivoyage say that Mandarin Chinese and Taiwanese Hokkien are common languages there. What advantages ...
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4answers
7k views

Useful resources for learning Taiwanese?

My girlfriend is from Fujian and speaks 闽南语, so I am trying to learn so I can communicate with her family better. The struggle is finding any useful resources (even in Chinese), so I'm wondering if ...
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5answers
1k views

“哩勒公蝦毀” what does this mean?

What does “哩勒公蝦毀” mean? A Taiwanese guy said that to me after I had, accidently, mistyped two words in an idiom I used on him. He also used an expression of surprise (I presume) which went like “蛤?!” ...
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1answer
100 views

What topolects distingish between 娘 and 孃? Why?

In MSM 娘 and 孃 are usually considered one and the same, where 孃 is Traditional and 娘 is simplified. These two characters can practically be used interchangeably. In Southwestern Mandarin, however, a ...
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1answer
85 views

Do any good topolect maps exist for Chinese?

I've been rummaging through English dialect maps. Here's an example of one on Twitter: And an American one for good measure: Do any good topolect maps exist for Chinese?
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4answers
183 views

Places where the use of 小姐 is inappropriate

Wikitionary has a cool feature that shows a dialectal map with word differences across all Chinese dialects, as in this example. The problem is that I was trying to see which places it was OK to use ...
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1answer
52 views

What does “和尚撞了道士” mean?

In the song《掐死大象的蚂蚁》by Bridge and 二毛 there's a bar by twenty-cents(?) that goes: 咋个回事咋个回事 十点半还不晓得回家 问起咋子问起咋子 也不晓得打个电话 有事有事安啥子事嘛啥子事嘛 和尚撞了道士上房揭瓦你要造次 The part that is tripping me up is: ...
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1answer
186 views

Why does Cantonese sound vaguely British?

Speaking as a native speaker of American English, I notice from my perspective that Cantonese speakers tend to sound more "British" than Mandarin speakers. I'm not just referring to Hong Kong, but ...
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1answer
68 views

Is it a common requirement for Chinese interpreters to be fluent in two or more dialects?

I was looking at job postings for interpreters and found a few for generic "Chinese" interpreters, a few more for both Mandarin & Cantonese, and just one for Mandarin only. To my surprise, I didn'...
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1answer
127 views

Is there any study on the relative difficulty of native Chinese speakers with different dialects learning another dialect?

I wonder if there is any research conducted in China, on the relative difficulty of Chinese speakers learning different dialects. I'm looking for something like the research by the Foreign Service ...
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1answer
59 views

What is the line between 新派 and X普 in topolects?

Not sure if there is a definite answer to the question. A lot of dialects distinguish between 老派 and 新派 for old-pronunciations and new-pronunciations. Many 新派 pronunciations though are heavily ...
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2answers
323 views

Resource request: Hainanese dictionaries

What are the available Hainanese (海南話) dictionaries? In particular, dictionaries of the Wenchang (文昌) dialect. If those are not available, dictionaries of the Haikou (海口) dialect are also fine. If ...
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1answer
58 views

How can I find where a dialect word come from?

I often come across words like this in a dictionary: 肚皮 <方> 腹部; 肚子 (dù·zi)。 I would like to know if there's a way (a website or a dictionary or whatever other way instead of asking someone) ...
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1answer
60 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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9answers
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Is 師奶 (see lai) strictly a Cantonese word? Is it a neutral word or does it have a negative connotation?

I had heard a husband refer to his wife in Cantonese as 師奶 (pronounced "see lai"). The way he said it sounded like an insult but I was told it's not a bad word. How would 師奶 be described in English? ...
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3answers
112 views

Why was Jutland transliterated as 日德兰?

Background: Jutland is the peninsula which makes up part of Denmark, and it was the site of the WWI Battle of Jutland (which is one of the main reasons "Jutland" would be written about at all in other ...
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3answers
277 views

Do Chinese speaking different languages use written Chinese to communicate?

My understanding is that there are multiple languages in China, for example, Hokkien, Cantonese and Mandarin, and they are not mutually intelligible. However, all three use more or less the same ...
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2answers
3k views

How widely is Mandarin used in Nanjing?

I know there is a Nanjing dialect of Jianghuai Mandarin but I have not been able to learn much about current usage in the city of Nanjing. For example, do many people in Nanjing today ordinarily ...
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2answers
140 views

Asking Chinese mother-in-law to learn pinyin?

I thought about asking this on parenting.se but it seemed specialized enough that this site made more sense. I'm a white man married to a Chinese woman, living in the US. Her parents live in China ...
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2answers
2k views

What does 蕉 mean in Cantonese?

I've seen 蕉 translated into Mandarin (and dubbed into Mandarin) as 肏. CC-CANTO doesn't really give anything much for 蕉 in Cantonese. words.hk doesn't give any results, either. I'm guessing 蕉 just ...
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3answers
598 views

Difference between 汉语 and 华文

A Singaporean friend of mine calls his Chinese: 华文. I didn't realise that this also meant Chinese. What is the difference between 华文 and 汉语?
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2answers
143 views

Is ㄙㄨㄚˋ (sua4) for the character 嘴 from another Chinese dialect or language?

In my explorations of my area of Taichung today I noticed this sign with Zhuyin Fuhao and took a photo to look it up when I got home: And it seems that ㄙㄨㄚˋ (sua4) is not even an existing syllable in ...

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