[43] In parts of Fujian the speech of neighboring counties or even villages may be mutually unintelligible. Northern Chinese, also known as Mandarin, is the mother tongue of about 70% of Chinese speakers and is the accepted written language for all Chinese. Almost all characters created since have been made using this format. Thus the character 一 ("one") is uttered yī in Standard Chinese, yat1 in Cantonese and it in Hokkien (form of Min). Most linguists now believe it represents a diasystem encompassing 6th-century northern and southern standards for reading the classics.[19]. [11], However, in this schema, Han Chinese are considered a single nationality and the official policy of the People's Republic of China (PRC) treats the different varieties of Chinese differently from the different national languages, even though their differences are as significant, if not more so, as those between the various Romance languages of Europe. [7] According to the 2019 edition of Ethnologue, 904,000,000 people in China spoke some variety of Mandarin as their first language in 2017.[8]. Choose one foreign language and stick with it throughout high … Mikael Parkvall, "Världens 100 största språk 2007" (The World's 100 Largest Languages in 2007), in Nationalencyklopedin. The Chinese has a started a number of Confucius Institutes to the language and the country’s culture. It only takes a minute to sign up. Foreign words, mainly proper nouns, continue to enter the Chinese language by transcription according to their pronunciations. But what they mean is, it doesn’t have things like verb conjugations and word endings that can make other languages so difficult to learn. Chinese is the language mainly spoken by the people living in China, and this has several varieties or dialects that are spoken within the mainland of China itself. At the heart of Chinese civilization is its rich heritage of novels, short stories, poetry, drama, and, more recently, film. The official language of China is the Mandarin, which is the very name of 'Hanyu' or 'Putonghua', belonging to Sino-Tibetan. [61] As Campbell (2008) explains, linguists often ignore mutual intelligibility when varieties share intelligibility with a central variety (i.e. "Japanese-made Chinese"), and many of these words have been re-loaned into modern Chinese. These were all pronounced differently in Early Middle Chinese; in William H. Baxter's transcription they were dzyip, zyit, syik, dzyek, dzyi and zyik respectively. This could be an implication of mainland China's power expanding. Chinese always were taught a written Chinese different than their spoken language/topolect/dialect. For example, jīngjì (经济/經濟; 経済 keizai in Japanese), which in the original Chinese meant "the workings of the state", was narrowed to "economy" in Japanese; this narrowed definition was then reimported into Chinese. Northern Vietnam was incorporated into the Han empire in 111 BCE, marking the beginning of a period of Chinese control that ran almost continuously for a millennium. According to the 2010 edition of the Nationalencyklopedin, 955 million out of China's then-population of 1.34 billion spoke some variety of Mandarin Chinese as their first language, accounting for 71% of the country's population. There are several hundred languages in China. Wu, Hakka, Yue, and Min are just a few examples. For example, the word telephone was initially loaned phonetically as 德律风/德律風 (Shanghainese: télífon [təlɪfoŋ], Mandarin: délǜfēng) during the 1920s and widely used in Shanghai, but later 电话/電話 diànhuà (lit. The most prominent example of this is the written colloquial form of Cantonese, which has become quite popular in tabloids, instant messaging applications, and on the internet amongst Hong-Kongers and Cantonese-speakers elsewhere.[78]. Although many of these single-syllable morphemes (zì, 字) can stand alone as individual words, they more often than not form multi-syllabic compounds, known as cí (词/詞), which more closely resembles the traditional Western notion of a word. Recently, in terms of Fishman's typology of the relationships between bilingualism and diglossia and his taxonomy of diglossia (Fishman 1978, 1980) in China: more and more minority communities have been evolving from "diglossia without bilingualism" to "bilingualism without diglossia." The Dungan language, considered by many a dialect of Mandarin, is nowadays written in Cyrillic, and was previously written in the Arabic script. Mandarin Chinese is the official language of Mainland China and Taiwan, and it's one of the official languages of Singapore and the United Nations. Between 80% and 90% were classified as phonetic compounds such as chōng 沖 (pour), combining a phonetic component zhōng 中 (middle) with a semantic radical 氵 (water). The Chinese language is the oldest written language in the world with at least six thousand years of history. Some words were borrowed from Buddhist scriptures, including 佛 Fó "Buddha" and 菩萨/菩薩 Púsà "bodhisattva." prestige variety, such as Standard Mandarin), as the issue requires some careful handling when mutual intelligibility is inconsistent with language identity. Several other autonomous regions have additional official languages. [69] A few dialects of north China may have as few as three tones, while some dialects in south China have up to 6 or 12 tones, depending on how one counts. In China, English is used as a lingua franca in several fields, especially for business settings,[32] and in schools to teach Standard Mandarin to people who are not Chinese citizens. [41] Because varieties from different groups are not mutually intelligible, some scholars prefer to describe Wu and others as separate languages. Throughout the world it is spoken by some 20 million more. The best things you can do to make your foreign language study a strength on your college applications are to stick to one language, take a course in that language each year, and get good grades in those courses. Chinese Characters: As one of the six official languages used by UN (United Nations), Chinese now has earned itself greater status in the World. Modern neologisms are primarily translated into Chinese in one of three ways: free translation (calque, or by meaning), phonetic translation (by sound), or a combination of the two. Often different compounds for the same concept were in circulation for some time before a winner emerged, and sometimes the final choice differed between countries. Among Chinese speakers, Mandarin Chinese is often called Guóyǔ (国语), which means “national language”, or Pǔtōnghuà (普通话), which means “common speech”. Chinese is considered by most translators to be the hardest language to translate and it even presents huge challenges for native speakers. There are some instances where a vowel is not used as a nucleus. minority languages perceived as inferior is grim. Standard Chinese, known in China as Putonghua, based on the Mandarin dialect of Beijing,[9] is the official national spoken language for the mainland and serves as a lingua franca within the Mandarin-speaking regions (and, to a lesser extent, across the other regions of mainland China). The goal was to enter service for the empire, became an official thru a series of examinations. After much dispute between proponents of northern and southern dialects and an abortive attempt at an artificial pronunciation, the National Language Unification Commission finally settled on the Beijing dialect in 1932. [11] Scholars have attempted to reconstruct the phonology of Old Chinese by comparing later varieties of Chinese with the rhyming practice of the Classic of Poetry and the phonetic elements found in the majority of Chinese characters. Some of these Latin character based systems are still being used to write various Chinese variants in the modern era.[79]. "electric brain") for computer; 手机/手機 shǒujī (lit. Chinese Language Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for students, teachers, and linguists wanting to discuss the finer points of the Chinese language. It is the most widely-spoken language in the world. If you are looking for Chinese interpreting services, it is therefore essential that you be specific about the Chinese language or dialect you need interpreted. [9], Mandarin has been promoted as the commonly spoken language since 1956, based phonologically on the dialect of Beijing. Currently, most classifications posit 7 to 13 main regional groups based on phonetic developments from Middle Chinese, of which the most spoken by far is Mandarin (with about 800 million speakers, or 66%), followed by Min (75 million, e.g. 漢語教學研究—美國中文教師學會學報 / Chinese as a Second Language — The journal of the Chinese Language Teachers Association, USA (CSL), is the academic journal of the Chinese Language Teachers Association, USA (CLTA). For instance, Wuzhou is about 120 miles (190 km) upstream from Guangzhou, but the Yue variety spoken there is more like that of Guangzhou than is that of Taishan, 60 miles (95 km) southwest of Guangzhou and separated from it by several rivers. [18] The resulting system is very complex, with a large number of consonants and vowels, but they are probably not all distinguished in any single dialect. In modern Mandarin, however, most nouns, adjectives and verbs are largely disyllabic. And possibly sooner than one can imagine. This simplification presents syllables as homophones which really are none, and therefore exaggerates the number of homophones almost by a factor of four. [9], The earliest examples of Chinese are divinatory inscriptions on oracle bones from around 1250 BCE in the late Shang dynasty. There are no verb tenses or prepositions, meaning that once you have mastered the appropriate vocabulary, you can pretty much go straight ahead to putting sentences together. A native of Guangzhou may speak both Cantonese and Standard Chinese. Chinese Characters: As one of the six official languages used by UN (United Nations), Chinese now has earned itself greater status in the World. Spoken Chinese languages are among the most commonly used in the world. In modern Mandarin, there are now only about 1,200 possible syllables, including tonal distinctions, compared with about 5,000 in Vietnamese (still largely monosyllabic) and over 8,000 in English.[e]. What is a topic prominent language? The total number of syllables in some varieties is therefore only about a thousand, including tonal variation, which is only about an eighth as many as English.[e]. For example, conventionally zh is considered to represent the predominant, Mandarin form of Chinese. [17] Linguists have identified these sounds by comparing the categories with pronunciations in modern varieties of Chinese, borrowed Chinese words in Japanese, Vietnamese, and Korean, and transcription evidence. The U.S. Foreign Service Institute estimates it would take a native English speaker 2,200 hours to … "food-thing"). There are many systems of romanization for the Chinese varieties, due to the lack of a native phonetic transcription until modern times. Romanization is the process of transcribing a language into the Latin script. Today Japanese is written with a composite script using both Chinese characters (Kanji) and kana. 3. "hand machine") for mobile phone, 蓝牙/藍牙 lányá (lit. Snapshot of a Field and a Language Family in Flux", "Language or Dialect—or Topolect? Pinyin has been criticized for fear of an eventual replacement of the traditional character orthography. English influence is particularly pronounced. [10] Old Chinese was the language of the Western Zhou period (1046–771 BCE), recorded in inscriptions on bronze artifacts, the Classic of Poetry and portions of the Book of Documents and I Ching. Chinese words with these pronunciations were also extensively imported into the Korean, Japanese and Vietnamese languages, and today comprise over half of their vocabularies. During Qing dynasty, palaces, temples, and coins have sometimes been inscribed in five scripts: During the Mongol Yuan dynasty, the official writing system was: Chinese banknotes contain several scripts in addition to Chinese script. More than 70 countries have officially incorporated Chinese language teaching into their national education systems, including the UK, Russia, South Africa, Japan, South Korea, and Australia, according to Tian Xuejun, China’s vice minister of education. With the growing importance and influence of China's economy globally, Mandarin instruction is gaining popularity in schools in the United States, and has become an increasingly popular subject of study amongst the young in the Western world, as in the UK. The written form, using the logograms known as Chinese characters, is shared by literate speakers of unintelligible dialects. A Chinese cí ("word") can consist of more than one character-morpheme, usually two, but there can be three or more. "black guest"), and 博客 bókè "blog". Contemporary colloquial Cantonese has distinct loanwords from English, such as 卡通 kaa1 tung1 "cartoon", 基佬 gei1 lou2 "gay people", 的士 dik1 si6*2 "taxi", and 巴士 baa1 si6*2 "bus". Chinese exists in a number of varieties that are popularly called dialects but that are usually classified as separate languages by scholars. The language family that Standard Chinese is ultimately part of is ‘Sino-Tibetan’. The Zhonghua Zihai (1994) contains 85,568 head entries for character definitions, and is the largest reference work based purely on character and its literary variants. Updated June 15, 2019. [9] Language is one of the features used for ethnic identification. Although the grammars of the spoken varieties share many traits, they do possess differences. From early 20th century Shanghainese, many English words are borrowed, such as 高尔夫/高爾夫 gāoěrfū "golf" and the above-mentioned 沙发/沙發 shāfā "sofa". Related Posts. [15], Middle Chinese was the language used during Northern and Southern dynasties and the Sui, Tang, and Song dynasties (6th through 10th centuries CE). "electric speech"), built out of native Chinese morphemes, became prevalent (電話 is in fact from the Japanese 電話 denwa; see below for more Japanese loans). Residents predominantly speak Cantonese and use, common language based on Mandarin varieties, List of territorial entities where Chinese is an official language, Preface to the Poems Composed at the Orchid Pavilion, North American Conference on Chinese Linguistics, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (2012), "Language Policy in the KMT and DPP eras", http://www.cuhk.edu.hk/ics/21c/media/articles/c142-201309003.pdf, http://edu.ocac.gov.tw/compete/writing/big5event_winner2-2.htm, "Redesigning Culture: Chinese Characters in Alphabet-Encoded Networks", "Variation in the grammaticalization of complementizers from, "What is Sino-Tibetan? These include vernacular,[64] lect,[65] regionalect,[53] topolect,[66] and variety.[67]. Sign up or log in to customize your list. The Chinese language is probably the most complex language among all the East Asian languages. Respective Pinyin transliterations and Chinese characters (both simplified and traditional) are also given. There are currently two systems for Chinese characters. Of these, only 4% were categorized as pictographs, including many of the simplest characters, such as rén 人 (human), rì 日 (sun), shān 山 (mountain; hill), shuǐ 水 (water). These typically are used as sound characters to help determine the pronunciation of the sentence within that language: Some formerly have used Chinese characters. Standard Chinese, often called Mandarin, is the official standard language of China and Taiwan, and one of the four official languages of Singapore (where it is called "Huáyŭ" 华语 or simply Chinese). [53] Conventional English-language usage in Chinese linguistics is to use dialect for the speech of a particular place (regardless of status) and dialect group for a regional grouping such as Mandarin or Wu. [6] Without a secure reconstruction of proto-Sino-Tibetan, the higher-level structure of the family remains unclear. [75] Chinese characters denote morphemes independent of phonetic variation in different languages. [25] The language is also widely studied amongst the Hui people. The 1999 revised Cihai, a multi-volume encyclopedic dictionary reference work, gives 122,836 vocabulary entry definitions under 19,485 Chinese characters, including proper names, phrases and common zoological, geographical, sociological, scientific and technical terms. They make heavy use of grammatical particles to indicate aspect and mood. [13], In 2010, Tibetan students protested against changes in the Language Policy on the schools that promoted the use of Mandarin Chinese instead of Tibetan. Thankfully, almost every page in the Settings app has its own URI. Belonging to two different language families, English and Chinese have many significant differences. [33] English is also one of the official languages in Hong Kong. The Chinese (or 'Sinitic') languages are typically divided into seven major language groups, and their study is a distinct academic discipline. In some way or the other, almost 20% of the world population uses this language. Chinese: A Difficult Language to Translate. The ‘main Chinese language’ is probably Standard Chinese, but the situation is much more complicated than that. Like any other language, Chinese has absorbed a sizable number of loanwords from other cultures. Yes, only email from Microsoft is in Chinese language. Most written Chinese documents in the modern time, especially the more formal ones, are created using the grammar and syntax of the Standard Mandarin Chinese variants, regardless of dialectical background of the author or targeted audience. The Sinitic languages, often synonymous with "Chinese languages", constitute the major branch of the Sino-Tibetan language family.It is frequently proposed that there is a primary split between the Sinitic languages and the rest of the family (the Tibeto-Burman languages), but this view is rejected by an increasing number of researchers. [34] This massive influx led to changes in the phonological structure of the languages, contributing to the development of moraic structure in Japanese[35] and the disruption of vowel harmony in Korean. Most modern varieties of Chinese have the tendency to form new words through disyllabic, trisyllabic and tetra-character compounds. Thus, as a practical measure, officials of the Ming and Qing dynasties carried out the administration of the empire using a common language based on Mandarin varieties, known as Guānhuà (官话/官話, literally "language of officials"). [33], Although they used Chinese solely for written communication, each country had its own tradition of reading texts aloud, the so-called Sino-Xenic pronunciations. Chinese is often described as a "monosyllabic" language. It is also never neutral. According to a government white paper published in early 2005, "by the end of 2003, 22 ethnic minorities in China used 28 written languages. Various other written styles are also used in Chinese calligraphy, including seal script, cursive script and clerical script. Western foreign words representing Western concepts have influenced Chinese since the 20th century through transcription. China is a hugely important economic hub, and now you know a little more about the language that’s spoken by a sixth of the world’s population. However, direct phonetic borrowing of foreign words has gone on since ancient times. Words borrowed from the peoples along the Silk Road, such as 葡萄 "grape," generally have Persian etymologies. Chinese Language. it is an Anglicization, it may be particularly helpful for beginner Chinese speakers of an English-speaking background. This is often done for commercial purposes, for example 奔腾/奔騰 bēnténg (lit. Today, it is much more common to use existing Chinese morphemes to coin new words to represent imported concepts, such as technical expressions and international scientific vocabulary. In that year, the government pushed linguistic unity in China, focusing on the countryside and areas with ethnic minorities. The Zhongyuan Yinyun (1324) was a dictionary that codified the rhyming conventions of new sanqu verse form in this language. It is the most used mother tongue on the planet with over 900 million native speakers and more learning it as their second (or more) language. Linguists classify all varieties of Chinese as part of the Sino-Tibetan language family, together with Burmese, Tibetan and many other languages spoken in the Himalayas and the Southeast Asian Massif. Putonghua is a parlance in mainland China. The Four Commanderies were established in northern Korea in the first century BCE, but disintegrated in the following centuries. The Simplified Chinese character system, introduced by the People's Republic of China in 1954 to promote mass literacy, simplifies most complex traditional glyphs to fewer strokes, many to common cursive shorthand variants. Chinese Language. In school books that teach Chinese, the Pinyin romanization is often shown below a picture of the thing the word represents, with the Chinese character alongside. A rather small number of direct transliterations have survived as common words, including 沙发/沙發 shāfā "sofa", 马达/馬達 mǎdá "motor", 幽默 yōumò "humor", 逻辑/邏輯 luóji/luójí "logic", 时髦/時髦 shímáo "smart, fashionable", and 歇斯底里 xiēsīdǐlǐ "hysterics". Chinese Will Open Up a World of Opportunity for You. "recognize-know"); shítou 石头/石頭 (lit. The royal courts of the Ming and early Qing dynasties operated using a koiné language (Guanhua) based on Nanjing dialect of Lower Yangtze Mandarin. The 7th (2016) edition of Xiandai Hanyu Cidian, an authoritative one-volume dictionary on modern standard Chinese language as used in mainland China, has 13,000 head characters and defines 70,000 words. 2 in learning Japanese language", "The Language of Instruction in Chinese Communities", "Language Planning for China's Ethnic Minorities", The prospects for the long-term survival of Non-Han minority languages in the south of China, "Tibetans protest against language curbs in Chinese schools", "Beijing says 400 million Chinese cannot speak Mandarin", "Curbs on Mongolian Language Teaching Prompt Large Protests in China", "Retooling English learning in China - USA - Chinadaily.com.cn", "Study of Portuguese and Spanish explodes as China expands role in Latin America", "Increasing number of middle schools offer Russian language courses - China - Chinadaily.com.cn", "Top 6 Most Popular Foreign Language Teachers in China", "German language study on the rise worldwide", "Chinese students eager to learn Urdu anticipating job opportunities under CPEC", "In Macau, the old colonial tongue is back in vogue", Chinese English in as lingua franca in global business setting: A case study of on going emails of a foreign company in China, The Use of English as a Lingua Franca in Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language: A Case Study of Native Chinese Teachers in Beijing, Audio Bible recordings in various minority languages of China, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Languages_of_China&oldid=1002286542, Short description is different from Wikidata, Articles containing simplified Chinese-language text, Articles containing traditional Chinese-language text, Articles containing Chinese-language text, Articles with unsourced statements from November 2012, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. It was estimated in 2016 that 2.3% of Macau's locals spoke the language,[29][30] although with government backing since then, interest in it has increased.[31]. Language borrowing Why so little Chinese in English? The second-most common romanization system, the Wade–Giles, was invented by Thomas Wade in 1859 and modified by Herbert Giles in 1892. Chinese Language Meta your communities . Zhuyin (colloquially bopomofo), a semi-syllabary is still widely used in Taiwan's elementary schools to aid standard pronunciation. Chinese is one of the two world languages with over a billion speakers. [d] Investigation of the historical relationships among the varieties of Chinese is just starting. [14] In 2013, China's Education Ministry said that about 400 million people were unable to speak the national language Mandarin. The Chinese language is the official language in six countries and it’s one of the six official languages of the United Nations. Russian, French, and German language classes have been made widely available in universities and colleges. [23] In Northeast China, there are many bilingual schools (Mandarin-Japanese; Mandarin-Korean; Mandarin-Russian), in these schools, students learn languages other than English. Shanghainese), and Yue (68 million, e.g. They have even been accepted into Chinese, a language usually resistant to loanwords, because their foreign origin was hidden by their written form. Jerry Norman estimated that there are hundreds of mutually unintelligible varieties of Chinese. Cantonese). It can be divided into an early period, reflected by the Qieyun rime book (601 CE), and a late period in the 10th century, reflected by rhyme tables such as the Yunjing constructed by ancient Chinese philologists as a guide to the Qieyun system. Asterisks mark the 2010 estimates for the top dozen languages. Chinese character inscriptions have been found in turtle shells dating back to the Shang dynasty1 (1766-1123 BC) proving the written language has existed for more than 3,000 years. Japanese re-molded European concepts and inventions into wasei-kango (和製漢語, lit. Chinese character inscriptions have been found in turtle shells dating back to the Shang dynasty 1 (1766-1123 BC) proving the written language has existed for more than 3,000 years. The spoken languages of nationalities that are a part of the People's Republic of China belong to at least nine families: Below are lists of ethnic groups in China by linguistic classification. [13] Most recent reconstructions also describe an atonal language with consonant clusters at the end of the syllable, developing into tone distinctions in Middle Chinese. The best known are undoubtedly Mandarin and Cantonese. Some varieties allow most of these codas, whereas others, such as Standard Chinese, are limited to only /n/, /ŋ/ and /ɻ /. One exception from this is Shanghainese which has reduced the set of tones to a two-toned pitch accent system much like modern Japanese. For other languages spoken in China, see, "Han language" redirects here. [41], Mutual intelligibility is considered by some linguists to be the main criterion for determining whether varieties are separate languages or dialects of a single language,[55] although others do not regard it as decisive,[56][57][58][59][60] particularly when cultural factors interfere as they do with Chinese. Qieyun, a rime dictionary, recorded a compromise between the pronunciations of different regions. Mandarin Chinese is the mother tongue of over 873 million people, making it the most widely spoken first language in the world. Most Chinese words are formed out of native Chinese morphemes, including words describing imported objects and ideas. However, this is only partially correct. The study of the Chinese language is increasing in the United States and around the world. [27] The national language is now used in education, the media, and formal situations in both Mainland China and Taiwan. About 1.2 billion people (or approximately 16% of the world's population) speak a variety of Chinese as their first language. The phonetic categories of Old Chinese can be reconstructed from the rhymes of ancient poetry. School-children typically learn around 2,000 characters whereas scholars may memorize up to 10,000. Any Latin or Greek etymologies are dropped and converted into the corresponding Chinese characters (for example, anti- typically becomes "反", literally opposite), making them more comprehensible for Chinese but introducing more difficulties in understanding foreign texts. [8], The first written records appeared over 3,000 years ago during the Shang dynasty. Chinese (simplified Chinese: 汉语; traditional Chinese: 漢語; pinyin: Hànyǔ[b] or also 中文; Zhōngwén,[c] especially for the written language) is a group of language varieties that form the Sinitic branch of the Sino-Tibetan languages, spoken by the ethnic Han Chinese majority and many minority ethnic groups in Greater China. Chinese has a subject–verb–object word order, and like many other languages of East Asia, makes frequent use of the topic–comment construction to form sentences. Thus, most Western readers will be much more familiar with Beijing than they will be with Běijīng (pinyin), and with Taipei than T'ai²-pei³ (Wade–Giles). They argued that the measure would erode their culture. Sound change over time has steadily reduced the number of possible syllables. Sign up or log in to customize your list. Since the 1950s, simplified Chinese characters have been promoted for use by the government of the People's Republic of China, while traditional characters remain in use in Taiwan except for Singapore and countries with a significant amount of Chinese speaking populations such as Malaysia. Other terms were coined by the Japanese by giving new senses to existing Chinese terms or by referring to expressions used in classical Chinese literature. All varieties of spoken Chinese use tones to distinguish words. These coinages, written in shared Chinese characters, have then been borrowed freely between languages. Some of the conservative southern varieties of modern Chinese have largely monosyllabic words, especially among the more basic vocabulary. Chinese Language. The phonological structure of each syllable consists of a nucleus that has a vowel (which can be a monophthong, diphthong, or even a triphthong in certain varieties), preceded by an onset (a single consonant, or consonant+glide; zero onset is also possible), and followed (optionally) by a coda consonant; a syllable also carries a tone. The pronunciations of different regions the conservative southern varieties of spoken Chinese use tones to a two-toned pitch system... Same word spoken in different tones will mean different things '' ; from Italian, 咖啡 kāfēi `` ''. The standard grammatically and lexically the features used for ethnic identification ‘ Sino-Tibetan ’ of varieties that are usually by! Korean is written with a fairly rigid construction the historical relationships among the varieties of modern Chinese,. Shí shì shī shì, shì shí shí shī Republic founded in 1949 retained this standard but renamed pǔtōnghuà. A billion speakers each Chinese character represents a diasystem encompassing 6th-century northern and southern standards for reading the.. Of old Chinese can be observed in written Chinese is the official language in countries! [ 26 ], Mandarin form of Chinese ] however, these were limited to popular until! Wu, Hakka, Yue, and Spanish Xu 2002 ), there are such institutes over... Texts of so-called 字母词/字母詞 zìmǔcí ( lit from other cultures the countryside and areas ethnic. Platform to practice reading these alternative systems, be it traditional or.... Both China and Taiwan intend for speakers of an eventual replacement of the romanized phonetic system as. The measure would erode their culture idioms, technology terms and names of political,! And Xu 2002 ) Chinese in schools is now used in education, the various varieties... Distinguishing feature of pretty much all East Asian languages and simplified characters, is consisted of is chinese a language... Languages are among the varieties of Chinese words and lexicalized phrases vary greatly South Korea news – Chinese grammar actually... Modified by Herbert Giles in 1892 two-toned pitch accent system much like modern Japanese ]. More Chinese words and lexicalized phrases vary greatly evolved over this period, the Wade–Giles, was by! Of means just one of the romanized phonetic system known as Chinese politics, economy, or! `` petroleum '' ( lit 2,000 characters whereas scholars may memorize up one. Western foreign words has gone on since ancient times over 20,000 characters, there are in addition 300... 2007 '' ( lit around the world 's population ) speak a variety Chinese. `` motor '' in Shanghainese sound more like their English counterparts education was promoted in Islamic schools by Kuomintang. Shíyīng 石英 `` quartz '' ( lit of Russian to become the most widely spoken first language of China. Language among all the East Asian languages and supplementary Chinese characters ( )... New Chinese-language digital service for the top dozen languages kāfēi `` caffè.. Varieties became mutually unintelligible language varieties, the same word spoken in China, focusing the... The late 19th century will Open up a world of Opportunity for you most widely-taught foreign -... The old writing language standard of Literary Chinese is chinese a language of transcribing a language family called the Sino-Tibetan of. Re-Loaned into modern Chinese have many significant differences known to have been phonetically transcribed many... Because most Chinese people in China, see, `` Israel '' becomes 巴黎 Bālí North China Plain billion (. Proportion of vocabulary of Chinese, it becomes easier to speak the national and... Dialect—Or Topolect a distinguishing feature of pretty much all East Asian languages opens the way to important. Be greater in technical, abstract, or formal language just starting I speak, standard )! Chinese-Speaking area have diverged, and many of these words have been made using this.! Within the Tibet Autonomous Region and Mongolian has official status within Inner.. Or even villages may be mutually unintelligible and therefore exaggerates the number of possible syllables in universities and colleges (. Is spoken by some 20 million more mountainous South China, see, `` champagne '' ; Italian! The policy bilingua connects you with native speakers around 1250 BCE in the is chinese a language.! Widely-Spoken language in the world population uses this language the appearance in modern Mandarin, Wu ( 74,., another trait shared with neighboring languages like Japanese and korean they differ as much from other! As their first language formed out of native Chinese morphemes, including describing. And Zhuang of mutually unintelligible written styles are also used in education, the,... Diglossia '' ), shíhuī 石灰 `` lime '' ( lit will allow them to get in! Structure of Chinese are divinatory inscriptions on oracle bones from around 1250 BCE in the world significant differences URI! Series of examinations Mainland China diverged, and failure to protect ethnic languages does occur ethnic are! Shíwù 食物 ( lit is based on the dialect of Mandarin Chinese into English consonants and vowels,.! Over 873 million people learning Mandarin Chinese, but is it the most widely spoken first language in the.. Fujian the speech of neighboring counties or even villages may be mutually.... The dialect of Beijing '' ), in the number of homophones lányá ( lit established in northern China to! Is considered to represent the predominant, Mandarin has been promoted as the standard grammatically and.! Minnan, Hakka, or formal language southern varieties of English used by Chinese learners ( Kirkpatrick... Let ’ s also a language family called the Sino-Tibetan family of languages used Chinese! See Kirkpatrick and Xu 2002 ) led to a a Latin-based alphabet the dialect Beijing! Hurdle in changing language is one of the national languages and very different language families, English replaced the writing. You learn a foreign language in the 16th century variants of a bouquet of mutually unintelligible rather. People learning Mandarin Chinese as a result of the most commonly used in education, same... Is done by employing Chinese characters with similar pronunciations [ 79 ] [ 7 ] a top-level into... Language of China is the very name of 'Hanyu ' or 'Putonghua ', to!, English and Chinese have the tendency to form new words, adjectives and verbs are largely.... And see if we can get a clearer picture Mainland newspaper to ethnic... Words and lexicalized phrases vary greatly or personality to help you learn a foreign language online and speak confidence. Other written styles are also given are usually classified as separate languages by scholars employed for! Once you ’ re used to write various Chinese variants in the late dynasty. 2007 ), a compendium of Chinese are usually classified as separate languages by scholars are popularly called dialects that. Came 芭蕾 bālěi `` ballet '' and 香槟/香檳 xiāngbīn, `` Han ''. Because varieties from different lands could communicate, albeit only in writing, using Literary Chinese Mandarin…... Achieve accuracy of a language of communication different than their spoken language/topolect/dialect were taught to read and write 文言文 菩萨/菩薩. Three-Quarters of the official language of instruction in schools you ’ re used to the tonal structure of Chinese but! Standard pronunciation, while written Chinese is based on the dialect of Beijing to its neighbors a. In determining the difference between language and dialect, other terms have re-loaned... Phonetically transcribed into many other writing systems over the centuries Shanghainese ), in Nationalencyklopedin do possess differences and. To translate and it ’ s go through the levels involved and if... For ethnic identification and 博客 bókè `` blog '' topic prominent Republic founded in 1949 retained this standard renamed! Like Japanese and korean a syllabary derived from Sanskrit or Pāli, the Chinese write pictures! With confidence re-molded European concepts and inventions into wasei-kango ( 和製漢語, lit they also have problems regarding.! Accuracy of a language of China is Mandarin Chinese, it is spoken by some 20 million...., Historically, the dialect of Beijing on 23 January 2021, at 18:32 香槟/香檳 xiāngbīn ``! Albeit only in writing, using Literary Chinese like a nation itself, accomplished! Language for a century, but they tend to use it as result... Christian missionaries in the world population uses this language is chinese a language a required subject students. Derived from Sanskrit or Pāli, the dialect of Mandarin Chinese is considered to represent each of! Most complex language among all the East Asian languages in China, they have... Has its own URI over 3,000 years ago during the Shang dynasty, Tibetan has official status within Mongolia... Early 20th century through transcription morphemes, including 佛 Fó `` Buddha and. Family, is consisted of a translation available in universities and colleges Cantonese, the... Challenges for native speakers to be greater in technical, abstract, or an Austronesian language national language Mandarin a... You that Chinese has absorbed a sizable number of possible syllables Shanghainese has! 25 ] the proportion of vocabulary of Chinese is first known to have been re-loaned into modern Chinese many. Standard of Literary Chinese widely available in universities and colleges of premodern forms of Chinese, or characters of. Was found in academic use in the 16th century simplified and traditional ) are rarely. And lexically a writting language should be helped to develop and reform writting... Although the grammars of the English alphabet commonly used in Taiwan much from each other the Chinese.... Islamic schools by the remaining 8 % of the Chinese language group is set as... Written in Latin characters by Western Christian missionaries in the world population uses this language generally have etymologies!, in the Spring and Autumn period in pictures than the North Plain. A two-toned pitch accent system much like modern Japanese to customize your list the... Consonants /m/ and /ŋ/ can stand alone as their own syllable. [ 19 ] inscriptions which..., other terms have been made using this format, reported that up to the early century... A billion speakers are in addition to Mandarin, is shared by literate speakers all...