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The Yale romanization of Cantonese was developed by Gerard P. Kok for his and Parker Po-fei Huang's textbook Speak Cantonese initially circulated in looseleaf form in 1952 [p] is represented as b in Yale, whereas its aspirated counterpart, [pʰ] is represented as p. Students attending The Chinese University of Hong Kong's New-Asia Yale-in-China Chinese Language Center are taught using Yale romanization.but later published in 1958. Unlike the Yale romanization of Mandarin, it is still widely used in books and dictionaries, especially for foreign learners of Cantonese. It shares some similarities with Hanyu Pinyin in that unvoiced, unaspirated consonants are represented by letters traditionally used in English and most other European languages to represent voiced sounds. For example,
Despite originally being a romanisation scheme to indicate pronunciations, some enthusiasts actually employ the Yale romanisation to explore writing Cantonese as an alphabetic language, elevating it from its assistive status to a written language in effect.
[ p ]
[ pʰ ]
[ m ]
[ f ]
[ t ]
[ tʰ ]
[ n ]
[ l ]
[ k ]
[ kʰ ]
[ ŋ ]
[ h ]
[ w ]
[ ts ]
[ tsʰ ]
[ s ]
[ j ]
[ aː ]
[ ɛː ]
[ iː ]
[ ɔː ]
[ uː ]
[ œː ]
[ yː ]
[ m̩ ]
[ ŋ̩ ]
Modern Cantonese has up to seven phonemic tones. Cantonese Yale represents these tones using a combination of diacritics and the letter h.Traditional Chinese linguistics treats the tones in syllables ending with a stop consonant as separate "entering tones". Cantonese Yale follows modern linguistic conventions in treating these the same as the high-flat, mid-flat and low-flat tones, respectively.
|No.||Description||IPA & Chao |
Sample transcription of one of the 300 Tang Poems by Meng Haoran:
|春眠不覺曉，||Chēun mìhn bāt gok híu,|
|處處聞啼鳥。||chyu chyu màhn tàih níuh.|
|夜來風雨聲，||yeh lòih fūng yúh sīng,|
|花落知多少？||fā lohk jī dō síu?|
Hanyu Pinyin, very often shortened to just pinyin, is the official romanization system for Standard Mandarin Chinese in mainland China and, to some extent, in Taiwan and Singapore. It is often used to teach Mandarin, which is normally written using Chinese characters, to learners who already know the Latin alphabet. The system includes four diacritics denoting tones, but pinyin without tone marks is used to spell Chinese names and words in languages written in the Latin script, and is also used in certain computer input methods to enter Chinese characters. The word Hànyǔ means 'the spoken language of the Han people', while Pīnyīn (拼音) literally means 'spelled sounds'.
Wade–Giles is a romanization system for Mandarin Chinese. It developed from a system produced by Thomas Francis Wade, during the mid-19th century, and was given completed form with Herbert A. Giles's Chinese–English Dictionary of 1892.
Hakka Chinese is a language group of varieties of Chinese, spoken natively by the Hakka people throughout Southern China and Taiwan and throughout the diaspora areas of East Asia, Southeast Asia and in overseas Chinese communities around the world.
Gwoyeu Romatzyh, abbreviated GR, is a system for writing Mandarin Chinese in the Latin alphabet. The system was conceived by Yuen Ren Chao and developed by a group of linguists including Chao and Lin Yutang from 1925 to 1926. Chao himself later published influential works in linguistics using GR. In addition a small number of other textbooks and dictionaries in GR were published in Hong Kong and overseas from 1942 to 2000.
Jyutping is a romanisation system for Cantonese developed by the Linguistic Society of Hong Kong (LSHK), an academic group, in 1993. Its formal name is the Linguistic Society of Hong Kong Cantonese Romanization Scheme. The LSHK advocates for and promotes the use of this romanisation system.
Penang Hokkien is a local variant of Hokkien spoken in Penang, Malaysia. It is spoken as a mother tongue by 63.9% of Penang's Chinese community, and also by some Penangite Indians and Penangite Malays.
Teochew is a dialect of Chaoshan Min, a Southern Min language, that is spoken by the Teochew people in the Chaoshan region of eastern Guangdong and by their diaspora around the world. It is sometimes referred to as Chiuchow, its Cantonese rendering, due to the English romanisation by colonial officials and explorers. It is closely related to some dialects of Hokkien, as it shares some cognates and phonology with Hokkien. The two are mutually unintelligible, but it is possible to understand some words.
Meyer–Wempe romanization was the system used by two Roman Catholic missionaries in Hong Kong, Bernard F. Meyer and Theodore F. Wempe, for romanizing Cantonese in their Student's Cantonese English Dictionary published in 1935.
Guangdong Romanization refers to the four romanization schemes published by the Guangdong Provincial Education Department in 1960 for transliterating Cantonese, Teochew, Hakka and Hainanese. The schemes utilized similar elements with some differences in order to adapt to their respective spoken varieties.
General Chinese is a diaphonemic orthography invented by Yuen Ren Chao to represent the pronunciations of all major varieties of Chinese simultaneously. It is "the most complete genuine Chinese diasystem yet published". It can also be used for the Korean, Japanese, and Vietnamese pronunciations of Chinese characters, and challenges the claim that Chinese characters are required for interdialectal communication in written Chinese.
Cantonese Pinyin is a romanization system for Cantonese developed by the Rev. Yu Ping Chiu (余秉昭) in 1971, and subsequently modified by the Education Department of Hong Kong and Prof. Zhan Bohui (詹伯慧) of the Chinese Dialects Research Centre of the Jinan University, Guangdong, PRC, and honorary professor of the School of Chinese, University of Hong Kong. It is the only romanization system accepted by Education and Manpower Bureau of Hong Kong and Hong Kong Examinations and Assessment Authority.
Wong Shik Ling published a scheme of phonetic symbols for Cantonese based on the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) in the book A Chinese Syllabary Pronounced According to the Dialect of Canton. The scheme has been widely used in Chinese dictionaries published in Hong Kong. The scheme, known as S. L. Wong system (黃錫凌式), is a broad phonemic transcription system based on IPA and its analysis of Cantonese phonemes is grounded in the theories of Y. R. Chao.
Tone numbers are numerical digits used like letters to mark the tones of a language. The number is usually placed after a romanized syllable. Tone numbers are defined for a particular language, so they have little meaning between languages.
Bopomofo, or Mandarin Phonetic Symbols, also named Zhuyin, is a Chinese transliteration system for Mandarin Chinese and other related languages and dialects. More commonly used in Taiwanese Mandarin, it may also be used to transcribe other varieties of Chinese, particularly other varieties of Mandarin Chinese dialects, as well as Taiwanese Hokkien. Consisting of 37 characters and five tone marks, it transcribes all possible sounds in Mandarin.
The Cantonese Romanisation system known as Barnett–Chao is based on the principles of the Gwoyeu Romatzyh system (GR) developed by Chao Yuenren in the 1920s, which he modified in 1947. The B-C system is a modification in 1950 by K M A Barnett which was adopted by the School of Oriental and African Studies, London (SOAS).
The different varieties of Chinese have been transcribed into many other writing systems.
The standard pronunciation of Cantonese is that of Guangzhou, also known as Canton, the capital of Guangdong Province. Hong Kong Cantonese is related to the Guangzhou dialect, and the two diverge only slightly. Yue dialects in other parts of Guangdong and Guangxi provinces, such as Taishanese, may be considered divergent to a greater degree.
The Fuqing dialect, or Hokchia, is an Eastern Min dialect. It is spoken in the county-level city of Fuqing, China, situated within the prefecture-level city of Fuzhou. It is not completely mutually intelligible with the Fuzhou dialect.
The Yale romanization of Mandarin is a system for transcribing the sounds of Standard Chinese, based on Mandarin Chinese varieties spoken in and around Beijing. It was devised in 1943 by the Yale sinologist George Kennedy for a course teaching Chinese to American soldiers, and popularized by continued development of that course at Yale. The system approximated Chinese sounds using English spelling conventions in order to accelerate acquisition of pronunciation by English speakers.
The Cantonese Transliteration Scheme, sometimes called Rao's romanization, is the romanisation for Cantonese published at part of the Guangdong Romanization by the Guangdong Education department in 1960, and further revised by Rao Bingcai in 1980. It is referred to as the Canton Romanization on the LSHK character database.