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''Hanyu Pinyin'' (), often abbreviated to pinyin, is the official
romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying and modeling them. The traditional areas ...
system for
Standard Mandarin Chinese Standard Chinese, in linguistics known as Standard Northern Mandarin, Standard Beijing Mandarin or simply Mandarin, is a dialect of Mandarin that emerged as the lingua franca among the speakers of various Mandarin and other varieties of Chi ...
in
mainland China Mainland China, also known as the Chinese mainland, China mainland, or the Mainland Area of the Republic of China is the geopolitics, geopolitical area under the direct jurisdiction of the People's Republic of China (PRC) since Proclamation of ...

mainland China
and to some extent in
Taiwan Taiwan (), officially the Republic of China (ROC), is a country in East Asia. Neighbouring countries include the China, People's Republic of China (PRC) to the northwest, Japan to the northeast, and the Philippines to the south. The main islan ...

Taiwan
and
Singapore Singapore (), officially the Republic of Singapore, is a sovereign state, sovereign island city-state in maritime Southeast Asia. It lies about one degree of latitude () north of the equator, off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, bord ...

Singapore
. It is often used to teach Standard Mandarin, which is normally written using
Chinese characters Chinese characters, also called ''hanzi'' (), are logogram In a written language A written language is the representation of a spoken or gestural language by means of a writing system. Written language is an invention in that it ...
. The system includes four
diacritic A diacritic (also diacritical mark, diacritical point, diacritical sign, or accent) is a glyph added to a letter Letter, letters, or literature may refer to: Characters typeface * Letter (alphabet) A letter is a segmental symbol A sy ...
s denoting tones. Pinyin without tone marks is used to spell
Chinese name Chinese personal names are names used by those from Greater China "Greater China" is an informal geographical area that shares commercial and cultural ties with the Han Chinese. The notion of "Greater China" refers to the area that normally en ...
s and words in languages written with the
Latin alphabet The Latin alphabet or Roman alphabet is the collection of letters originally used by the ancient Romans to write the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European lan ...

Latin alphabet
and also in certain computer
input method -based IME File:Interface of Weasel Input Method.png">Operation of an English -based IME An input method (or input method editor, commonly abbreviated IME) is an operating system component or program that enables users to generate characters no ...
s to enter Chinese characters. The pinyin system was developed in the 1950s by a group of Chinese linguists including
Zhou Youguang Zhou Youguang (13 January 1906 – 14 January 2017), also known as Chou Yu-kuang or Chou Yao-ping, was a Chinese economist, banker, linguist, sinologist, Esperanto-speaker, publisher, and supercentenarian, known as the "father of Pinyin", a syste ...
and was based on earlier forms of romanizations of Chinese. It was published by the
Chinese government The government of the People's Republic of China () is collectively the state authority in the People's Republic of China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the List of countries a ...
in 1958 and revised several times. The
International Organization for Standardization The International Organization for Standardization (ISO ) is an international standard-setting body composed of representatives from various national standards organizations. Founded on 23 February 1947, the organization develops and publishe ...
(ISO) adopted pinyin as an
international standard An international standard is a technical standard A technical standard is an established norm (social), norm or requirement for a repeatable technical task which is applied to a common and repeated use of rules, conditions, guidelines or characteris ...
in 1982 and was followed by the
United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization that aims to maintain international peace and international security, security, develop friendly relations among nations, achieve international cooperation, and be a centre for har ...

United Nations
in 1986. Attempts to make pinyin standard in Taiwan occurred in 2002 and 2009, but "Today Taiwan has no standardized spelling system" so that in 2019 "alphabetic spellings in Taiwan are marked more by a lack of system than the presence of one." Moreover, "some cities, businesses, and organizations, notably in the south of Taiwan, did not accept fforts to introduce pinyin as it suggested that Taiwan is more closely tied to the
PRC China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia East Asia is the eastern region of Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere, East ...

PRC
", so it remains one of several rival romanization systems in use. The word ' () means 'the
spoken language A spoken language is a language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), gestures (Signed language, sign language) and writing. Most languages have a writing system composed of glyp ...
of the
Han people The Han Chinese (), or the Han people (), is an East Asian East Asia is the east East is one of the four cardinal direction The four cardinal directions, or cardinal points, are the directions north North is one of the four ...
', while ' () literally means 'spelled sounds'. When a foreign writing system with one set of coding/decoding system is taken to write a language, certain compromises may have to be made. The result is that the decoding systems used in some foreign languages will enable non-native speakers to produce sounds more closely resembling the target language than will the coding/decoding system used by other foreign languages. Native speakers of English will decode pinyin spellings to fairly close approximations of Mandarin except in the case of certain speech sounds that are not ordinarily produced by most native speakers of English: ''j'' / /, ''q'' /tɕʰ/, ''x'' / ɕ/, ''z'' / ts/, ''c'' /tsʰ/, ''zh'' / ʈʂ/, ''ch'' /ʈʂʰ/, ''h'' // and ''r'' / ɻ/ exhibiting the greatest discrepancies. In this system, the correspondence between the Roman letter and the sound is sometimes
idiosyncratic An idiosyncrasy is an unusual feature of a person (though there are also other uses, see below). It can also mean an odd habit. The term is often used to express eccentricity or peculiarity. A synonym may be " quirk". Etymology The term "idiosync ...
, though not necessarily more so than the way the Latin script is employed in other languages. For example, the aspiration distinction between ''b'', ''d'', ''g'' and ''p'', ''t'', ''k'' is similar to that of these syllable-initial consonants English (in which the two sets are however also differentiated by
voicing Voicing may refer to: * Voicing (music), the distribution of a chord's notes, either in composition or orchestration *The regulation of tone and loudness of an instrument's notes: **Piano_maintenance#Voicing **Voicing (pipe organ) **Plectrum#Voicin ...
), but not to that of French. Letters ''z'' and ''c'' also have that distinction, pronounced as and (which is reminiscent of these letters being used to represent the phoneme in the German language and Latin-script-using
Slavic languages The Slavic languages, also known as the Slavonic languages, are Indo-European languages The Indo-European languages are a language family native to western and southern Eurasia. It comprises most of the languages of Europe together with t ...

Slavic languages
, respectively). From ''s, z, c'' come the
digraphs Digraph may refer to: * Digraph (orthography) A digraph or digram (from the el, δίς ', "double" and ', "to write") is a pair of characters used in the orthography An orthography is a set of conventions for writing Writing is a m ...
''sh, zh, ch'' by analogy with English '' sh, ch''. Although this introduces the novel combination ''zh'', it is internally consistent in how the two series are related. In the ''x, j, q'' series, the pinyin use of ''x'' is similar to its use in Portuguese, Galician, Catalan, Basque and Maltese and the pinyin ''q'' is akin to its value in Albanian; both pinyin and Albanian pronunciations may sound similar to the ''ch'' to the untrained ear. Pinyin
vowels A vowel is a syllabicSyllabic may refer to: *Syllable, a unit of speech sound, considered the building block of words **Syllabic consonant, a consonant that forms the nucleus of a syllable *Syllabary, writing system using symbols for syllables * ...

vowels
are pronounced in a similar way to vowels in
Romance languages The Romance languages, less commonly Latin or Neo-Latin languages, are the modern languages that evolved from Vulgar Latin Vulgar Latin, also known as Popular or Colloquial Latin is a range of informal sociolects of Latin Latin (, or , ) ...

Romance languages
. The pronunciation and spelling of Chinese words are generally given in terms of
initials In a written or published work, an initial or drop cap is a letter at the beginning of a word, a chapter (books), chapter, or a paragraph that is larger than the rest of the text. The word is derived from the Latin ''initialis'', which means ''sta ...
and
finals Final, Finals or The Final may refer to: *Final (competition), the last or championship round of a sporting competition, match, game, or other contest which decides a winner for an event ** Another term for playoffs, describing a sequence of conte ...
, which represent the ''segmental phonemic'' portion of the language, rather than letter by letter. Initials are initial consonants, while finals are all possible combinations of medials (
semivowel In phonetics Phonetics is a branch of linguistics that studies how humans produce and perceive sounds, or in the case of sign languages, the equivalent aspects of sign. Phoneticians—linguists who specialize in phonetics—study the physical p ...
s coming before the vowel), a
nucleus ''Nucleus'' (plural nuclei) is a Latin word for the seed inside a fruit. It most often refers to: *Atomic nucleus, the very dense central region of an atom *Cell nucleus, a central organelle of a eukaryotic cell, containing most of the cell's DNA ...
vowel and
coda Coda or CODA may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Films * ''Coda'' (1987 film), an Australian horror film about a serial killer, made for television * ''Coda'' (2019 film), a Canadian drama film starring Patrick Stewart, Katie Holmes, a ...
(final vowel or consonant).


History


Background: romanization of Chinese before 1949

In 1605, the
Jesuit , image = Ihs-logo.svg , caption = ChristogramOfficial seal of the Jesuits , abbreviation = SJ , nickname = Jesuit , formation = , founders = Ignatius of LoyolaFrancis Xavi ...
missionary
Matteo Ricci Matteo Ricci (; la, Mattheus Riccius; 6 October 1552 – 11 May 1610), was an Italian Italian may refer to: * Anything of, from, or related to the country and nation of Italy ** Italians, an ethnic group or simply a citizen of the Italian ...
published ''Xizi Qiji'' () in Beijing. This was the first book to use the Roman alphabet to write the Chinese language. Twenty years later, another Jesuit in China,
Nicolas Trigault Nicolas Trigault (1577–1628) was a Jesuit, and a missionary in China. He was also known by his latinised name Nicolaus Trigautius or Trigaultius, and his Chinese name Jin Nige (). Life and work Born in Douai (then part of the County of Flanders ...
, issued his ' () at Hangzhou. Neither book had much immediate impact on the way in which Chinese thought about their writing system, and the romanizations they described were intended more for Westerners than for the Chinese. One of the earliest Chinese thinkers to relate Western alphabets to Chinese was late Ming to early Qing dynasty
scholar-official 220px, A 15th-century portrait of the Ming official egrets Egrets are herons that have white or buff plumage, develop fine plumes (usually milky white) during the breeding season. Egrets are not a biologically distinct group from the herons an ...
,
Fang Yizhi Image:Fangs 01 rfc1036.jpg, The four canine tooth, canines, or fangs, of a domestic cat. (The largest two teeth of the top and bottom rows of teeth.) A fang is a long, pointed tooth. In mammals, a fang is a modified maxillary tooth, used for biti ...
(; 1611–1671). The first late Qing reformer to propose that China adopt a system of spelling was Song Shu (1862–1910). A student of the great scholars Yu Yue and
Zhang Taiyan Zhang Binglin (January 12, 1869 – June 14, 1936), also known as Zhang Taiyan, was a Chinese philologist, textual critic, philosopher, and revolutionary. His philological works include ''Wen Shi'' (文始 "The Origin of Writing"), the first syste ...
, Song had been to Japan and observed the stunning effect of the ''
kana The term may refer to a number of syllabaries In the linguistic Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying and modeling them. ...

kana
'' syllabaries and Western learning there. This galvanized him into activity on a number of fronts, one of the most important being reform of the script. While Song did not himself actually create a system for spelling Sinitic languages, his discussion proved fertile and led to a proliferation of schemes for phonetic scripts.


Wade–Giles

The Wade–Giles system was produced by in 1859, and further improved by
Herbert Giles Herbert Allen Giles (, 8 December 184513 February 1935) was a British diplomat A diplomat (from grc, δίπλωμα; romanized Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. I ...

Herbert Giles
in the Chinese–English Dictionary of 1892. It was popular and used in English-language publications outside China until 1979.


Sin Wenz

In the early 1930s,
Communist Party of China ) , anthem = "The Internationale "The Internationale" (french: "L'Internationale", italic=no, ) is a left-wing anthem. It has been a standard of the socialism, socialist movement since the late nineteenth century, when the Second ...

Communist Party of China
leaders trained in Moscow introduced a phonetic alphabet using Roman letters which had been developed in the Soviet Oriental Institute of Leningrad and was originally intended to improve literacy in the
Russian Far East Koryaksky volcano in Kamchatka The Russian Far East ( rus, Дальний Восток России, r=Dal'niy Vostok Rossii, p=ˈdalʲnʲɪj vɐˈstok rɐˈsʲiɪ) is a region in Northeast Asia. It is the easternmost part of Russia and the A ...

Russian Far East
. This Sin Wenz or "New Writing" was much more linguistically sophisticated than earlier alphabets, but with the major exception that it did not indicate tones of Chinese. In 1940, several thousand members attended a Border Region Sin Wenz Society convention.
Mao Zedong Mao Zedong pronounced ; also Romanization of Chinese, romanised traditionally as Mao Tse-tung. (December 26, 1893 – September 9, 1976), also known as Chairman Mao, was a Chinese communist revolutionary who was the Proclamation of the P ...

Mao Zedong
and
Zhu De Zhu De (; also Chu Teh; 1 December 1886 – 6 July 1976) was a Chinese general A general officer is an officer of high rank in the armies, and in some nations' air forces, space forces, or marines Marines or naval infantry, ...

Zhu De
, head of the army, both contributed their calligraphy (in characters) for the masthead of the Sin Wenz Society's new journal. Outside the CCP, other prominent supporters included
Sun Yat-sen Sun Yat-sen (; born Sun Deming; 12 November 1866 – 12 March 1925) Singtao daily. Saturday edition. 23 October 2010. section A18. Sun Yat-sen Xinhai revolution 100th anniversary edition . was a Chinese statesman, physician, and political ph ...

Sun Yat-sen
's son,
Sun Fo Sun Fo or Sun Ke (; 21 October 1891 – 13 September 1973), courtesy name A courtesy name (), also known as a style name, is a name bestowed upon one at adulthood in addition to one's given name. This practice is a tradition in the Sinos ...
;
Cai Yuanpei Cai Yuanpei (; 11 January 1868 – 5 March 1940) was a Chinese philosopher and politician as well as an influential educationalist in the history of Chinese modern education. He made contributions to education reform with his own education ideol ...

Cai Yuanpei
, the country's most prestigious educator;
Tao Xingzhi Tao Xingzhi (; October 18, 1891 – July 25, 1946), was a renowned Chinese educator and reformer in the Republic of China mainland era. He studied at Teachers College, Columbia University and returned to China to champion progressive education. H ...
, a leading educational reformer; and
Lu Xun Zhou Shuren (25 September 1881 – 19 October 1936), better known by his pen name Lu Xun (or Lu Sun, Wade–Giles Wade–Giles () is a romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the science, scien ...
. Over thirty journals soon appeared written in Sin Wenz, plus large numbers of translations, biographies (including Lincoln, Franklin, , Ford, and
Charlie Chaplin Sir Charles Spencer Chaplin Jr. (16 April 188925 December 1977) was an English comic actor, filmmaker, and composer who rose to fame in the era of silent film. He became a worldwide icon through his screen persona, the Tramp, and is considere ...

Charlie Chaplin
), some contemporary Chinese literature, and a spectrum of textbooks. In 1940, the movement reached an apex when Mao's Border Region Government declared that the Sin Wenz had the same legal status as traditional characters in government and public documents. Many educators and political leaders looked forward to the day when they would be universally accepted and completely replace Chinese characters. Opposition arose, however, because the system was less well adapted to writing regional languages, and therefore would require learning
Mandarin Mandarin may refer to: * Mandarin (bureaucrat), a bureaucrat of Imperial China (the original meaning of the word) ** by extension, any senior government bureaucrat A bureaucrat is a member of a bureaucracy and can compose the administration o ...
. Sin Wenz fell into relative disuse during the following years.


Yale romanization

In 1943, the U.S. military engaged
Yale University Yale University is a private Private or privates may refer to: Music * "In Private "In Private" was the third single in a row to be a charting success for United Kingdom, British singer Dusty Springfield, after an absence of nearly two d ...
to develop a romanization of
Mandarin Chinese Mandarin (; ) is a group of Sinitic languages, Sinitic (Chinese) languages natively spoken across most of northern and southwestern China. The group includes the Beijing dialect, the basis of the phonology of Standard Chinese. Because Mandarin ...
for its pilots flying over China. The resulting system is very close to ''pinyin'', but does not use English letters in unfamiliar ways; for example, ''pinyin'' x for is written as sy in the Yale system. Medial
semivowel In phonetics Phonetics is a branch of linguistics that studies how humans produce and perceive sounds, or in the case of sign languages, the equivalent aspects of sign. Phoneticians—linguists who specialize in phonetics—study the physical p ...
s are written with y and w (instead of ''pinyin'' i and u), and apical vowels (
syllabic consonant A syllabic consonant or vocalic consonant is a consonant In articulatory phonetics, a consonant is a speech sound that is articulated with complete or partial closure of the vocal tract. Examples are , pronounced with the lips; , pronounced wit ...
s) with r or z. Accent marks are used to indicate tone.


Emergence and history of Hanyu Pinyin

Pinyin was created by a group of Chinese linguists, including
Zhou Youguang Zhou Youguang (13 January 1906 – 14 January 2017), also known as Chou Yu-kuang or Chou Yao-ping, was a Chinese economist, banker, linguist, sinologist, Esperanto-speaker, publisher, and supercentenarian, known as the "father of Pinyin", a syste ...
who was an economist, as part of a Chinese government project in the 1950s. Zhou, often called "the father of pinyin," worked as a banker in
New York New York most commonly refers to: * New York City, the most populous city in the United States, located in the state of New York * New York (state), a state in the Northeastern United States New York may also refer to: Film and television * New ...

New York
when he decided to return to China to help rebuild the country after the establishment of the People's Republic of China in 1949. He became an economics professor in
Shanghai Shanghai (, , Standard Chinese, Standard Mandarin pronunciation: ) is one of the four Direct-administered municipalities of China, direct-administered municipalities of the China, People's Republic of China. The city is located on the sout ...

Shanghai
, and in 1955, when
China's Ministry of Education The Ministry of Education (MOE) of the Government of China, People's Republic of China is the agency of the State Council of the People's Republic of China that regulates all aspects of the educational system in mainland China, including compuls ...
created a Committee for the Reform of the Chinese Written Language, Premier
Zhou Enlai Zhou Enlai (; 5 March 1898 – 8 January 1976), Wade-Giles transliteration Chou En-lai, was the first Premier of the People's Republic of China. From October 1949 until his death in January 1976, Zhou was China's head of government. Zhou serve ...

Zhou Enlai
assigned Zhou Youguang the task of developing a new romanization system, despite the fact that he was not a professional linguist. ''Hanyu Pinyin'' was based on several existing systems: ''
Gwoyeu Romatzyh Gwoyeu Romatzyh (, literally "National Language Romanization"), abbreviated GR, is a system for writing Standard Chinese, Mandarin Chinese in the Latin alphabet. The system was conceived by Yuen Ren Chao and developed by a group of linguistics, li ...
'' of 1928, ''
Latinxua Sin Wenz Latinxua Sin Wenz (; also known as Sin Wenz "New Script", Zhungguo Latinxua Sin Wenz "China Latinized New Script", Latinxua "Latinization") is a historical set of romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics, is the conversion of ...
'' of 1931, and the diacritic markings from ''
zhuyin Zhuyin () or Mandarin Phonetic Symbols, also nicknamed Bopomofo, is a major Chinese transliteration system for Mandarin Chinese Mandarin (; ) is a group of Sinitic languages, Sinitic (Chinese) languages natively spoken across most of no ...
'' (bopomofo). "I'm not the father of pinyin," Zhou said years later; "I'm the son of pinyin. It's he result ofa long tradition from the later years of the Qing dynasty down to today. But we restudied the problem and revisited it and made it more perfect." A draft was published on February 12, 1956. The first edition of ''Hanyu Pinyin'' was approved and adopted at the Fifth Session of the
1st National People's Congress The 1st National People's Congress The National People's Congress of the People's Republic of China, normally referred to as the National People's Congress (usually abbreviated NPC), is the highest organ of state power and the national l ...
on February 11, 1958. It was then introduced to primary schools as a way to teach
Standard Chinese Standard Chinese (), in linguistics known as Standard Northern Mandarin, Standard Beijing Mandarin or simply Mandarin, is a dialect of Mandarin that emerged as the lingua franca among the speakers of various Mandarin and other varieties of C ...
pronunciation and used to improve the literacy rate among adults. During the height of the
Cold War The Cold War was a period of geopolitical tension between the United States and the Soviet Union and their respective allies, the Western Bloc and the Eastern Bloc, which began following World War II. Historians do not fully agree on its sta ...
, the use of pinyin system over the Yale romanization outside of China was regarded as a political statement or identification with the communist Chinese regime. Beginning in the early 1980s, Western publications addressing
Mainland China Mainland China, also known as the Chinese mainland, China mainland, or the Mainland Area of the Republic of China is the geopolitics, geopolitical area under the direct jurisdiction of the People's Republic of China (PRC) since Proclamation of ...

Mainland China
began using the Hanyu Pinyin romanization system instead of earlier romanization systems; this change followed the normalization of diplomatic relations between the United States and the PRC in 1979. In 2001, the PRC Government issued the ''National Common Language Law'', providing a legal basis for applying pinyin. The current specification of the orthographic rules is laid down in the National Standard GB/T 16159–2012.


Initials and finals

Unlike European languages, clusters of letters — initials () and finals () — and not consonant and vowel letters, form the fundamental elements in pinyin (and most other phonetic systems used to describe the Han language). Every Mandarin syllable can be spelled with exactly one initial followed by one final, except for the special syllable ''er'' or when a trailing ''-r'' is considered part of a syllable (see below, and see
erhua Erhua ( ); also called erization or rhotacization of syllable finals) refers to a phonological process that adds r-coloring or the "er" (注音:, common words: 、、) sound (transcribed in IPA as ) to syllables in spoken Mandarin Chinese Man ...
). The latter case, though a common practice in some sub-dialects, is rarely used in official publications. Even though most initials contain a consonant, finals are not always simple vowels, especially in compound finals (), i.e. when a "medial" is placed in front of the final. For example, the medials and are pronounced with such tight openings at the beginning of a final that some native Chinese speakers (especially when singing) pronounce ''yī'' (, clothes, officially pronounced ) as and ''wéi'' (, to enclose, officially pronounced ) as or . Often these medials are treated as separate from the finals rather than as part of them; this convention is followed in the chart of finals below.


Initials

In each cell below, the bold letters indicate pinyin and the brackets enclose the symbol in the
International Phonetic Alphabet The International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) is an alphabet An alphabet is a standardized set of basic written symbols A symbol is a mark, sign, or word In linguistics, a word of a spoken language can be defined as the smallest seq ...
. 1 ''y'' is pronounced (a labial-palatal approximant) before ''u''.
2 The letters ''w'' and ''y'' are not included in the table of initials in the official pinyin system. They are an orthographic convention for the medials ''i, u'' and ''ü'' when no initial is present. When ''i, u'', or ''ü'' are finals and no initial is present, they are spelled ''yi'', ''wu'', and ''yu'', respectively. The conventional
lexicographical order In mathematics Mathematics (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as quantity (number theory), mathematical structure, structure (algebra), space (geometry), and calculus, change (mathematical analysis, analysis). It ...
(excluding ''w'' and ''y''), derived from the
zhuyin Zhuyin () or Mandarin Phonetic Symbols, also nicknamed Bopomofo, is a major Chinese transliteration system for Mandarin Chinese Mandarin (; ) is a group of Sinitic languages, Sinitic (Chinese) languages natively spoken across most of no ...

zhuyin
system ("bopomofo"), is: : According to ''Scheme for the Chinese Phonetic Alphabet'', ''zh'', ''ch'', and ''sh'' can be abbreviated as ''ẑ'', ''ĉ'', and ''ŝ'' (''z'', ''c'', ''s'' with a
circumflex The circumflex is a diacritic in the Latin script, Latin and Greek alphabet, Greek scripts that is used in the written forms of many languages and in various romanization and Transcription (linguistics), transcription schemes. It received its En ...
). However, the shorthands are rarely used due to difficulty of entering them on computers and are confined mainly to
Esperanto Esperanto ( or ) is the world's most widely spoken Constructed language, constructed international auxiliary language. Created by Polish ophthalmologist L. L. Zamenhof in 1887, it was intended to be a universal second language for international ...
keyboard layouts.


Finals

In each cell below, the first line indicates
IPA IPA commonly refers to: * India pale ale, a style of beer * International Phonetic Alphabet The International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) is an alphabetic system of phonetic notation based primarily on the Latin script Latin script, also ...
, the second indicates pinyin for a standalone (no-initial) form, and the third indicates pinyin for a combination with an initial. Other than finals modified by an ''-r'', which are omitted, the following is an exhaustive table of all possible finals.1 The only syllable-final consonants in Standard Chinese are ''-n'' and ''-ng'', and ''-r'', the last of which is attached as a grammatical
suffix In linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying and modeling them. The traditional areas of linguistic analysis include ...
. A Chinese syllable ending with any other consonant either is from a non-Mandarin language (a southern Chinese language such as
Cantonese Cantonese ( zh, t=廣東話, s=广东话, first=t; Yale romanization of Cantonese, Yale: ''Gwóngdūng wá'') is a language within the Varieties of Chinese, Chinese (Sinitic) branch of the Sino-Tibetan languages originating from the city of Guang ...

Cantonese
, or a minority language of China; possibly reflecting final consonants in Old Chinese), or indicates the use of a non-pinyin romanization system (where final consonants may be used to indicate tones). 1 For other finals formed by the suffix ''-r'', pinyin does not use special orthography; one simply appends ''r'' to the final that it is added to, without regard for any sound changes that may take place along the way. For information on sound changes related to final ''r'', please see Erhua#Rules.
2 ''ü'' is written as ''u'' after ''y, j, q'', or ''x''.
3 ''uo'' is written as ''o'' after ''b, p, m, f,'' or ''w''. Technically, ''i, u, ü'' without a following vowel are finals, not medials, and therefore take the tone marks, but they are more concisely displayed as above. In addition, ''ê'' () and syllabic nasals ''m'' (, ), ''n'' (, ), ''ng'' (, ) are used as
interjection An interjection is a word or expression that occurs as an utterance on its own and expresses a spontaneous feeling or reaction. It is a diverse category, encompassing many different parts of speech, such as exclamations ''(ouch!'', ''wow!''), curses ...
s. According to ''Scheme for the Chinese Phonetic Alphabet'', ''ng'' can be abbreviated with a shorthand of ''''. However, this shorthand is rarely used due to difficulty of entering them on computers.


The ''ü'' sound

An umlaut is placed over the letter ''u'' when it occurs after the initials ''l'' and ''n'' when necessary in order to represent the sound This is necessary in order to distinguish the front high rounded vowel in ''lü'' (e.g. ) from the back high rounded vowel in ''lu'' (e.g. ). Tonal markers are added on top of the umlaut, as in ''lǘ''. However, the ''ü'' is ''not'' used in the other contexts where it could represent a front high rounded vowel, namely after the letters ''j'', ''q'', ''x'', and ''y''. For example, the sound of the word / (fish) is transcribed in pinyin simply as ''yú'', not as ''yǘ''. This practice is opposed to
Wade–Giles Wade–Giles () is a romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying a ...
, which always uses ''ü'', and ''
Tongyong Pinyin Tongyong Pinyin () was the official romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics, is the conversion of writing from a different writing system to the Latin script, Roman (Latin) script, or a system for doing so. Methods of romanizat ...
'', which always uses ''yu''. Whereas Wade–Giles needs the umlaut to distinguish between ''chü'' (pinyin ''ju'') and ''chu'' (pinyin ''zhu''), this ambiguity does not arise with pinyin, so the more convenient form ''ju'' is used instead of ''jü''. Genuine ambiguities only happen with ''nu''/''nü'' and ''lu''/''lü'', which are then distinguished by an umlaut. Many fonts or output methods do not support an umlaut for ''ü'' or cannot place tone marks on top of ''ü''. Likewise, using ''ü'' in input methods is difficult because it is not present as a simple key on many keyboard layouts. For these reasons ''v'' is sometimes used instead by convention. For example, it is common for cellphones to use ''v'' instead of ''ü''. Additionally, some stores in China use ''v'' instead of ''ü'' in the transliteration of their names. The drawback is that there are no tone marks for the letter ''v''. This also presents a problem in transcribing names for use on passports, affecting people with names that consist of the sound ''lü'' or ''nü'', particularly people with the surname ('' ''), a fairly common surname, particularly compared to the surnames ( ), ( ), ( ) and ( ). Previously, the practice varied among different passport issuing offices, with some transcribing as "LV" and "NV" while others used "LU" and "NU". On 10 July 2012, the
Ministry of Public Security Ministry of Public Security can refer to: * Ministry of Justice and Public Security (Brazil) * Ministry of Public Security of Burundi * Ministry of Public Security (China) * Ministry of Public Security of Costa Rica that supervises the Public Force ...

Ministry of Public Security
standardized the practice to use "LYU" and "NYU" in passports. Although ''nüe'' written as ''nue'', and ''lüe'' written as ''lue'' are not ambiguous, ''nue'' or ''lue'' are not correct according to the rules; ''nüe'' and ''lüe'' should be used instead. However, some Chinese input methods (e.g. Microsoft Pinyin IME) support both ''nve''/''lve'' (typing ''v'' for ''ü'') and ''nue''/''lue''.


Approximation from English pronunciation

Most rules given here in terms of English pronunciation are approximations, as several of these sounds do not correspond directly to sounds in English.


Pronunciation of initials

;* Note on ''y'' and ''w'': ''Y'' and ''w'' are equivalent to the
semivowel In phonetics Phonetics is a branch of linguistics that studies how humans produce and perceive sounds, or in the case of sign languages, the equivalent aspects of sign. Phoneticians—linguists who specialize in phonetics—study the physical p ...
medials ''i, u'', and ''ü'' (see below). They are spelled differently when there is no initial consonant in order to mark a new syllable: ''fanguan'' is ''fan-guan'', while ''fangwan'' is ''fang-wan'' (and equivalent to ''*fang-uan)''. With this convention, an apostrophe only needs to be used to mark an initial ''a, e'', or ''o: Xi'an'' (two syllables: ) vs. ''xian'' (one syllable: ). In addition, ''y'' and ''w'' are added to fully vocalic ''i, u'', and ''ü'' when these occur without an initial consonant, so that they are written ''yi, wu'', and ''yu''. Some Mandarin speakers do pronounce a or sound at the beginning of such words—that is, ''yi'' or , ''wu'' or , ''yu'' or ,—so this is an intuitive convention. See below for a few finals which are abbreviated after a consonant plus ''w/u'' or ''y/i'' medial: ''wen'' → C+''un'', ''wei'' → C+''ui'', ''weng'' → C+''ong'', and ''you'' → C+''iu''. ;** Note on the apostrophe: The
apostrophe The apostrophe ( or ) is a punctuation mark, and sometimes a diacritical mark, in languages that use the Latin alphabet and some other alphabets. In English, it is used for three purposes: * The marking of the omission of one or more letters (a ...

apostrophe
(') () is used before a syllable starting with a vowel (, , or ) in a multiple-syllable word when the syllable does not start the word, unless the syllable immediately follows a
hyphen The hyphen is a punctuation mark used to join word In linguistics, a word of a spoken language can be defined as the smallest sequence of phonemes that can be uttered in isolation with semantic, objective or pragmatics, practical meaning (li ...
or other dash. For example, is written as
Xi'an Xi'an ( , ; ; Chinese: ), sometimes romanized as Sian, is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals ( ...
or Xī'ān, and is written as Tian'e or Tiān'é, but is written "dì-èr", without an apostrophe. This apostrophe is not used in the
Taipei Metro Taipei Mass Rapid Transit (MRT), branded as Taipei Metro, is a metro system serving Taipei and New Taipei City, New Taipei, Taiwan, operated by State-owned enterprise, government owned Taipei Rapid Transit Corporation, which also operates Maokon ...
names. Apostrophes (as well as hyphens and tone marks) are omitted on
Chinese passport The People's Republic of China passport (), commonly referred to as the Chinese passport, is a passport issued to nationals of the China, People's Republic of China (PRC) who have registered as a resident of Mainland China and hence hold a hukou ...
s.


Pronunciation of finals

The following is a list of finals in Standard Chinese, excepting most of those ending with ''r''. To find a given final: #Remove the initial consonant. ''Zh'', ''ch'', and ''sh'' count as initial consonants. #Change initial ''w'' to ''u'' and initial ''y'' to ''i''. For ''weng'', ''wen'', ''wei'', ''you'', look under ''ong'', ''un'', ''ui'', ''iu''. #For ''u'' after ''j'', ''q'', ''x'', or ''y'', look under ''ü''.


Tones

The pinyin system also uses
diacritic A diacritic (also diacritical mark, diacritical point, diacritical sign, or accent) is a glyph added to a letter Letter, letters, or literature may refer to: Characters typeface * Letter (alphabet) A letter is a segmental symbol A sy ...
s to mark the four tones of Mandarin. The diacritic is placed over the letter that represents the
syllable nucleus A syllable is a unit of organization for a sequence of speech sounds. It is typically made up of a syllable nucleus (most often a vowel A vowel is a Syllable, syllabic speech sound pronounced without any stricture in the vocal tract. Vowels a ...
, unless that letter is missing (
see below See or SEE may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media * Music: ** See (album), ''See'' (album), studio album by rock band The Rascals *** "See", song by The Rascals, on the album ''See'' ** See (Tycho song), "See" (Tycho song), song by Tycho * T ...
). Many books printed in China use a mix of fonts, with vowels and tone marks rendered in a different font from the surrounding text, tending to give such pinyin texts a typographically ungainly appearance. This style, most likely rooted in early technical limitations, has led many to believe that pinyin's rules call for this practice, e.g. the use of a
Latin alpha Latin alpha (majuscule Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals (or more formally ''majuscule'') and smaller lowercase (or more formally ''minuscule'') in the written repres ...

Latin alpha
(ɑ) rather than the standard style (a) found in most fonts, or g often written with a single-storey ɡ. The rules of ''Hanyu Pinyin'', however, specify no such practice. # The first tone (flat or high-level tone) is represented by a macron (ˉ) added to the pinyin vowel: #:ā ē ī ō ū ǖ Ā Ē Ī Ō Ū Ǖ # The second tone (rising or high-rising tone) is denoted by an
acute accent The acute accent, , is a diacritic A diacritic (also diacritical mark, diacritical point, diacritical sign, or accent) is a glyph added to a letter Letter, letters, or literature may refer to: Characters typeface * Letter (alphabet) ...

acute accent
(ˊ): #:á é í ó ú ǘ Á É Í Ó Ú Ǘ # The third tone (falling-rising or low tone) is marked by a
caron A caron (), háček or haček ( or ; plural ''háčeks'' or ''háčky'') also known as a hachek, wedge, check, kvačica, strešica, mäkčeň, paukščiukas, inverted circumflex, inverted hat, or flying bird, is a diacritic (ˇ) commonly placed ...

caron
/háček (ˇ). It is not the rounded
breve A breve (, less often , neuter form of the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. ...

breve
(˘), though a breve is sometimes substituted due to ignorance or font limitations. #:ǎ ě ǐ ǒ ǔ ǚ Ǎ Ě Ǐ Ǒ Ǔ Ǚ # The fourth tone (falling or high-falling tone) is represented by a
grave accent The grave accent ( ` ) ( or ) is a diacritical A diacritic (also diacritical mark, diacritical point, diacritical sign, or accent) is a glyph In typography File:metal movable type.jpg, 225px, Movable type being assem ...

grave accent
(ˋ): #:à è ì ò ù ǜ À È Ì Ò Ù Ǜ # The fifth tone (neutral tone) is represented by a normal vowel without any accent mark: #:a e i o u ü A E I O U Ü ::In dictionaries, neutral tone may be indicated by a dot preceding the syllable; for example, ''·ma''. When a neutral tone syllable has an alternative pronunciation in another tone, a combination of tone marks may be used: ''zhī·dào'' (). These tone marks normally are only used in Mandarin textbooks or in foreign learning texts, but they are essential for correct pronunciation of Mandarin syllables, as exemplified by the following classic example of five characters whose pronunciations differ only in their tones: The words are "mother", "hemp", "horse", "scold", and a question particle, respectively.


Numerals in place of tone marks

Before the advent of computers, many typewriter fonts did not contain vowels with macron or
caron A caron (), háček or haček ( or ; plural ''háčeks'' or ''háčky'') also known as a hachek, wedge, check, kvačica, strešica, mäkčeň, paukščiukas, inverted circumflex, inverted hat, or flying bird, is a diacritic (ˇ) commonly placed ...

caron
diacritics. Tones were thus represented by placing a
tone number Tone numbers are numerical digits used like letters to mark the tones of a language. The number is usually placed after a romanized Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It ...
at the end of individual syllables. For example, ''tóng'' is written ''tong²''. The number used for each tone is as the order listed above, except the neutral tone, which is either not numbered, or given the number 0 or 5, e.g. ''ma⁵'' for /, an
interrogative An interrogative clause is a clause In language, a clause is a part of the sentence that constitutes or comprises a predicate (grammar), predicate. A typical clause consists of a subject (grammar), subject and a predicate, the latter typically a ...
marker.


Rules for placing the tone mark

Briefly, the tone mark should always be placed by the order—''a, o, e, i, u, ü'', with the only exception being ''iu'', where the tone mark is placed on the ''u'' instead. Pinyin tone marks appear primarily above the nucleus of the syllable, for example as in ''kuài'', where ''k'' is the initial, ''u'' the medial, ''a'' the nucleus, and ''i'' the coda. The exception is syllabic nasals like /m/, where the nucleus of the syllable is a consonant, the diacritic will be carried by a written dummy vowel. When the nucleus is /ə/ (written ''e'' or ''o''), and there is both a medial and a coda, the nucleus may be dropped from writing. In this case, when the coda is a consonant ''n'' or ''ng'', the only vowel left is the medial ''i, u'', or ''ü'', and so this takes the diacritic. However, when the coda is a vowel, it is the coda rather than the medial which takes the diacritic in the absence of a written nucleus. This occurs with syllables ending in ''-ui'' (from ''wei'': (''wèi'' → ''-uì'') and in ''-iu'' (from ''you'': ''yòu'' → ''-iù''.) That is, in the absence of a written nucleus the finals have priority for receiving the tone marker, as long as they are vowels: if not, the medial takes the diacritic. An algorithm to find the correct vowel letter (when there is more than one) is as follows: # If there is an ''a'' or an ''e'', it will take the tone mark # If there is an ''ou'', then the ''o'' takes the tone mark # Otherwise, the second vowel takes the tone mark Worded differently, # If there is an ''a, e'', or ''o'', it will take the tone mark; in the case of ''ao'', the mark goes on the ''a'' # Otherwise, the vowels are ''-iu'' or ''-ui'', in which case the second vowel takes the tone mark If the tone is written over an ''i'', the
tittle 150px, Lowercase i and j in Liberation Serif, with tittles in red. A tittle or superscript dot is a small distinguishing mark, such as a diacritic in the form of a dot on a lowercase ''i'' or ''j''. The tittle is an integral part of the glyph o ...
above the ''i'' is omitted, as in ''yī''.


Phonological intuition

The placement of the tone marker, when more than one of the written letters ''a, e, i, o'', and ''u'' appears, can also be inferred from the nature of the vowel sound in the medial and final. The rule is that the tone marker goes on the spelled vowel that is not a (near-)semi-vowel. The exception is that, for triphthongs that are spelled with only two vowel letters, both of which are the semi-vowels, the tone marker goes on the second spelled vowel. Specifically, if the spelling of a
diphthong A diphthong ( or ; from Ancient Greek, Greek: , ''diphthongos'', literally "double sound" or "double tone"; from ''δίς'' "twice" and ''φθόγγος'' "sound"), also known as a gliding vowel, is a combination of two adjacent vowel sounds w ...
begins with ''i'' (as in ''ia'') or ''u'' (as in ''ua''), which serves as a near-
semi-vowel In phonetics and phonology, a semivowel or glide is a sound that is phonetically similar to a vowel sound but functions as the syllable boundary, rather than as the syllable nucleus, nucleus of a syllable. Examples of semivowels in English are the ...
, this letter does not take the tone marker. Likewise, if the spelling of a diphthong ends with ''o'' or ''u'' representing a near-semi-vowel (as in ''ao'' or ''ou''), this letter does not receive a tone marker. In a
triphthong In phonetics Phonetics is a branch of linguistics that studies how humans produce and perceive sounds, or in the case of sign languages, the equivalent aspects of sign. Phoneticians—linguists who specialize in phonetics—study the physical p ...
spelled with three of ''a, e, i, o'', and ''u'' (with ''i'' or ''u'' replaced by ''y'' or ''w'' at the start of a syllable), the first and third letters coincide with near-semi-vowels and hence do not receive the tone marker (as in ''iao'' or ''uai'' or ''iou''). But if no letter is written to represent a triphthong's middle (non-semi-vowel) sound (as in ''ui'' or ''iu''), then the tone marker goes on the final (second) vowel letter.


Using tone colors

In addition to
tone number Tone numbers are numerical digits used like letters to mark the tones of a language. The number is usually placed after a romanized Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It ...
and mark, tone color has been suggested as a visual aid for learning. Although there are no formal standards, there are a number of different color schemes in use, Dummitt's being one of the first.


Third tone exceptions

In spoken Chinese, the third tone is often pronounced as a "half third tone", in which the pitch does not rise. Additionally, when two third tones appear consecutively, such as in (''nǐhǎo'', hello), the first syllable is pronounced with the second tone — this is called
tone sandhi Tone sandhi is a phonological change occurring in tonal languages Tone is the use of pitch (music), pitch in language to distinguish lexical or grammatical meaning – that is, to distinguish or to inflection, inflect words. All verbal langua ...
. In pinyin, words like "hello" are still written with two third tones (''nǐhǎo'').


Orthographic rules


Letters

The ''Scheme for the Chinese Phonetic Alphabet'' lists the letters of pinyin, along with their pronunciations, as: Pinyin differs from other romanizations in several aspects, such as the following: *Syllables starting with ''u'' are written as ''w'' in place of ''u'' (e.g., *''uan'' is written as ''wan''). Standalone ''u'' is written as ''wu''. *Syllables starting with ''i'' are written as ''y'' in place of ''i'' (e.g., *''ian'' is written as ''yan''). Standalone ''i'' is written as ''yi''. *Syllables starting with ''ü'' are written as ''yu'' in place of ''ü'' (e.g., *''üe'' is written as ''yue''). Standalone ''ü'' is written as ''yu''. *''ü'' is written as ''u'' when there is no ambiguity (such as ''ju'', ''qu'', and ''xu'') but as ''ü'' when there are corresponding ''u'' syllables (such as ''lü'' and ''nü''). If there are corresponding ''u'' syllables, it is often replaced with ''v'' on a computer to make it easier to type on a standard keyboard. *After by a consonant, ''iou'', ''uei'', and ''uen'' are simplified as ''iu'', ''ui'', and ''un'', which do not represent the actual pronunciation. *As in zhuyin, syllables that are actually pronounced as ''buo'', ''puo'', ''muo'', and ''fuo'' are given a separate representation: ''bo'', ''po'', ''mo'', and ''fo''. *The
apostrophe The apostrophe ( or ) is a punctuation mark, and sometimes a diacritical mark, in languages that use the Latin alphabet and some other alphabets. In English, it is used for three purposes: * The marking of the omission of one or more letters (a ...

apostrophe
(') is used before a syllable starting with a vowel (''a'', ''o'', or ''e'') in a syllable other than the first of a word, the syllable being most commonly realized as unless it immediately follows a
hyphen The hyphen is a punctuation mark used to join word In linguistics, a word of a spoken language can be defined as the smallest sequence of phonemes that can be uttered in isolation with semantic, objective or pragmatics, practical meaning (li ...
or other dash. That is done to remove ambiguity that could arise, as in ''
Xi'an Xi'an ( , ; ; Chinese: ), sometimes romanized as Sian, is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals ( ...
'', which consists of the two syllables ''xi'' () ''an'' (), compared to such words as ''xian'' (). (The ambiguity does not occur when tone marks are used since both tone marks in "Xīān" unambiguously show that the word has two syllables. However, even with tone marks, the city is usually spelled with an apostrophe as "Xī'ān".) *''Eh'' alone is written as ''ê''; elsewhere as ''e''. Schwa is always written as ''e''. *''Zh'', ''ch'', and ''sh'' can be abbreviated as ''ẑ'', ''ĉ'', and ''ŝ'' (''z'', ''c'', ''s'' with a
circumflex The circumflex is a diacritic in the Latin script, Latin and Greek alphabet, Greek scripts that is used in the written forms of many languages and in various romanization and Transcription (linguistics), transcription schemes. It received its En ...
). However, the shorthands are rarely used because of the difficulty of entering them on computers and are confined mainly to
Esperanto Esperanto ( or ) is the world's most widely spoken Constructed language, constructed international auxiliary language. Created by Polish ophthalmologist L. L. Zamenhof in 1887, it was intended to be a universal second language for international ...
keyboard layouts. Early drafts and some published material used palatal hook, diacritic hooks below instead: ' (''/''), ', ' ('). *''Ng'' has the uncommon shorthand of '''', which was also used in early drafts. * Early drafts also contained the symbol ''ɥ'' or the letter Che (Cyrillic), ''ч'' borrowed from the Cyrillic script, in place of later ''j'' for the voiceless alveolo-palatal sibilant affricate. *The letter ''v'' is unused, except in spelling foreign languages, languages of minority nationalities, and some dialects, despite a conscious effort to distribute letters more evenly than in Western languages. However, the ease of typing into a computer causes the ''v'' to be sometimes used to replace ''ü''. (The ''Scheme'' table above maps the letter to bopomofo ㄪ, which typically maps to .) Most of the above are used to avoid ambiguity when words of more than one syllable are written in pinyin. For example, ''uenian'' is written as ''wenyan'' because it is not clear which syllables make up ''uenian''; ''uen-ian'', ''uen-i-an'', ''u-en-i-an'', ''u-e-nian'', and ''u-e-ni-an'' are all possible combinations, but ''wenyan'' is unambiguous since ''we'', ''nya'', etc. do not exist in pinyin. See the pinyin table article for a summary of possible pinyin syllables (not including tones).


Words, capitalization, initialisms and punctuation

Although Chinese characters represent single syllables, Mandarin Chinese is a polysyllabic language. Spacing in pinyin is usually based on words, and not on single syllables. However, there are often ambiguities in partitioning a word. ''The Basic Rules of the Chinese Phonetic Alphabet Orthography'' () were put into effect in 1988 by the National Educational Commission () and the National Language Commission (). These rules became a Guobiao, Guóbiāo recommendation in 1996 and were updated in 2012. #General ##Single meaning: Words with a single meaning, which are usually set up of two characters (sometimes one, seldom three), are written together and not capitalized: ''rén'' (, person); ''péngyou'' (, friend); ''qiǎokèlì'' (, chocolate) ##Combined meaning (2 or 3 characters): Same goes for words combined of two words to one meaning: ''hǎifēng'' (, sea breeze); ''wèndá'' (, question and answer); ''quánguó'' (, nationwide); ''chángyòngcí'' (, common words) ##Combined meaning (4 or more characters): Words with four or more characters having one meaning are split up with their original meaning if possible: ''wúfèng gāngguǎn'' (, seamless steel-tube); ''huánjìng bǎohù guīhuà'' (, environmental protection planning); ''gāoměngsuānjiǎ'' (, potassium permanganate) #Duplicated words ##AA: Duplicated characters (AA) are written together: ''rénrén'' (, everybody), ''kànkan'' (, to have a look), ''niánnián'' (, every year) ##ABAB: Two characters duplicated (ABAB) are written separated: ''yánjiū yánjiū'' (, to study, to research), ''xuěbái xuěbái'' (, white as snow) ##AABB: Characters in the AABB schema are written together: ''láiláiwǎngwǎng'' (, come and go), ''qiānqiānwànwàn'' (, numerous) #Prefixes () and Suffixes (): Words accompanied by prefixes such as ''fù'' (, vice), ''zǒng'' (, chief), ''fēi'' (, non-), ''fǎn'' (, anti-), ''chāo'' (, ultra-), ''lǎo'' (, old), ''ā'' (, used before names to indicate familiarity), ''kě'' (, -able), ''wú'' (, -less) and ''bàn'' (, semi-) and suffixes such as ''zi'' (, noun suffix), ''r'' (, diminutive suffix), ''tou'' (, noun suffix), ''xìng'' (, -ness, -ity), ''zhě'' (, -er, -ist), ''yuán'' (, person), ''jiā'' (, -er, -ist), ''shǒu'' (, person skilled in a field), ''huà'' (, -ize) and ''men'' (, plural marker) are written together: ''fùbùzhǎng'' (, vice minister), ''chéngwùyuán'' (, conductor), ''háizimen'' (, children) #Nouns and names () ##Words of position are separated: ''mén wài'' (, outdoor), ''hé li'' (, under the river), ''huǒchē shàngmian'' (, on the train), ''Huáng Hé yǐnán'' (, south of the Yellow River) ###Exceptions are words traditionally connected: ''tiānshang'' (, in the sky or outerspace), ''dìxia'' (, on the ground), ''kōngzhōng'' (, in the air), ''hǎiwài'' (, overseas) ##Surnames are separated from the given names, each capitalized: ''Lǐ Huá'' (), ''Zhāng Sān'' (). If the surname and/or given name consists of two syllables, it should be written as one: ''Zhūgě Kǒngmíng'' (). ##Titles following the name are separated and are not capitalized: ''Wáng bùzhǎng'' (, Minister Wang), ''Lǐ xiānsheng'' (, Mr. Li), ''Tián zhǔrèn'' (, Director Tian), ''Zhào tóngzhì'' (, Comrade Zhao). ##The forms of addressing people with prefixes such as ''Lǎo'' (), ''Xiǎo'' (), ''Dà'' () and ''Ā'' () are capitalized: ''Xiǎo Liú'' (, [young] Ms./Mr. Liu), ''Dà Lǐ'' (, [great; elder] Mr. Li), ''Ā Sān'' (, Ah San), ''Lǎo Qián'' (, [senior] Mr. Qian (disambiguation), Qian), ''Lǎo Wú'' (, [senior] Mr. Wu) ###Exceptions include ''Kǒngzǐ'' (, Confucius), ''Bāogōng'' (, Bao Zheng, Judge Bao), ''Xīshī'' (, Xi Shi, Xishi), ''Mèngchángjūn'' (, Lord Mengchang) ##Geographical names of China: ''Běijīng Shì'' (, city of Beijing), ''Héběi Shěng'' (, province of Hebei), ''Yālù Jiāng'' (, Yalu River), ''Tài Shān'' (, Mount Tai), ''Dòngtíng Hú'' (, Dongting Lake), ''Qióngzhōu Hǎixiá'' (, Qiongzhou Strait) ###Monosyllabic prefixes and suffixes are written together with their related part: ''Dōngsì Shítiáo'' (, Dongsi 10th Alley) ###Common geographical nouns that have become part of proper nouns are written together: ''Hēilóngjiāng'' (, Heilongjiang) ##Non-Chinese names are written in Hanyu Pinyin: ''Āpèi Āwàngjìnměi'' (, Ngapoi Ngawang Jigme); ''Dōngjīng'' (, Tokyo) #Verbs (): Verbs and their suffixes ''-zhe'' (), ''-le'' () or ''-guo'' (() are written as one: ''kànzhe'' (, seeing), ''jìnxíngguo'' (, have been implemented). ''Le'' as it appears in the end of a sentence is separated though: ''Huǒchē dào le.'' (, The train [has] arrived). ##Verbs and their objects are separated: ''kàn xìn'' (, read a letter), ''chī yú'' (, eat fish), ''kāi wánxiào'' (, to be kidding). ##If verbs and their complements are each monosyllabic, they are written together; if not, they are separated: ''gǎohuài'' (, to make broken), ''dǎsǐ'' (, hit to death), ''huàwéi'' (, to become), ''zhěnglǐ hǎo'' (, to sort out), ''gǎixiě wéi'' (, to rewrite as) #Adjectives (): A monosyllabic adjective and its reduplication are written as one: ''mēngmēngliàng'' (, dim), ''liàngtángtáng'' (, shining bright) ##Complement (linguistics), Complements of size or degree such as ''xiē'' (), ''yīxiē'' (), ''diǎnr'' () and ''yīdiǎnr'' () are written separated: ''dà xiē'' (), a little bigger), ''kuài yīdiǎnr'' (, a bit faster) #Pronouns () ##Personal pronouns and interrogative pronouns are separated from other words: ''Wǒ ài Zhōngguó.'' (, I love China); ''Shéi shuō de?'' (, Who said it?) ##The demonstrative pronoun ''zhè'' (, this), ''nà'' (, that) and the question pronoun ''nǎ'' (, which) are separated: ''zhè rén'' (, this person), ''nà cì huìyì'' (, that meeting), ''nǎ zhāng bàozhǐ'' (, which newspaper) ###Exception—If ''zhè'', ''nà'' or ''nǎ'' are followed by ''diǎnr'' (), ''bān'' (), ''biān'' (), ''shí'' (), ''huìr'' (), ''lǐ'' (), ''me'' () or the general classifier ''ge'' (), they are written together: ''nàlǐ'' (, there), ''zhèbiān'' (, over here), ''zhège'' (, this) #Numerals () and measure words () ##Numbers and words like ''gè'' (, each), ''měi'' (, each), ''mǒu'' (, any), ''běn'' (, this), ''gāi'' (, that), ''wǒ'' (, my, our) and ''nǐ'' (, your) are separated from the measure words following them: ''liǎng gè rén'' (, two people), ''gè guó'' (, every nation), ''měi nián'' (, every year), ''mǒu gōngchǎng'' (, a certain factory), ''wǒ xiào'' (, our school) ##Numbers up to 100 are written as single words: ''sānshísān'' (, thirty-three). Above that, the hundreds, thousands, etc. are written as separate words: ''jiǔyì qīwàn èrqiān sānbǎi wǔshíliù'' (, nine hundred million, seventy-two thousand, three hundred fifty-six). Arabic numerals are kept as Arabic numerals: ''635 fēnjī'' (, extension 635) ##According to 6.1.5.4, the ''dì'' () used in ordinal numerals is followed by a hyphen: ''dì-yī'' (, first), ''dì-356'' (, 356th). The hyphen should not be used if the word in which ''dì'' () and the numeral appear does not refer to an ordinal number in the context. For example: ''Dìwǔ'' (, a Chinese compound surname). The ''chū'' () in front of numbers one to ten is written together with the number: ''chūshí'' (, tenth day) ##Numbers representing month and day are hyphenated: ''wǔ-sì'' (, May Fourth Movement, May fourth), ''yīèr-jiǔ'' (, December 9th Movement, December ninth) ##Words of approximations such as ''duō'' (), ''lái'' () and ''jǐ'' () are separated from numerals and measure words: ''yībǎi duō gè'' (, around a hundred); ''shí lái wàn gè'' (, around a hundred thousand); ''jǐ jiā rén'' (, a few families) ###''Shíjǐ'' (, more than ten) and ''jǐshí'' (, tens) are written together: ''shíjǐ gè rén'' (, more than ten people); ''jǐshí'' (, tens of steel pipes) ##Approximations with numbers or units that are close together are hyphenated: ''sān-wǔ tiān'' (, three to five days), ''qiān-bǎi cì'' (, thousands of times) #Other function words () are separated from other words ##Adverbs (): ''hěn hǎo'' (, very good), ''zuì kuài'' (, fastest), ''fēicháng dà'' (, extremely big) ##Prepositions (): ''zài qiánmiàn'' (, in front) ##Conjunctions (): ''nǐ hé wǒ'' (, you and I/me), ''Nǐ lái háishi bù lái?'' (, Are you coming or not?) ##"Constructive auxiliaries" () such as ''de'' (), ''zhī'' () and ''suǒ'' (): ''mànmàn de zou'' (), go slowly) ###A monosyllabic word can also be written together with ''de'' (): ''wǒ de shū'' / ''wǒde shū'' (, my book) ##Modal auxiliaries at the end of a sentence: ''Nǐ zhīdào ma?'' (, Do you know?), ''Kuài qù ba!'' (, Go quickly!) ##Exclamations and interjections: ''À! Zhēn měi!'' (), Oh, it's so beautiful!) ##Onomatopoeia: ''mó dāo huòhuò'' (, honing a knife), ''hōnglōng yī shēng'' (, rumbling) #Capitalization ##The first letter of the first word in a sentence is capitalized: ''Chūntiān lái le.'' (, Spring has arrived.) ##The first letter of each line in a poem is capitalized. ##The first letter of a proper noun is capitalized: ''Běijīng'' (, Beijing), ''Guójì Shūdiàn'' (, International Bookstore), ''Guójiā Yǔyán Wénzì Gōngzuò Wěiyuánhuì'' (, National Language Commission) ###On some occasions, proper nouns can be written in all caps: ''BĚIJĪNG'', ''GUÓJÌ SHŪDIÀN'', ''GUÓJIĀ YǓYÁN WÉNZÌ GŌNGZUÒ WĚIYUÁNHUÌ'' ##If a proper noun is written together with a common noun to make a proper noun, it is capitalized. If not, it is not capitalized: ''Fójiào'' (, Buddhism), ''Tángcháo'' (, Tang dynasty), ''jīngjù'' (, Beijing opera), ''chuānxiōng'' (, Ligusticum wallichii, Szechuan lovage) #Initialisms ##Single words are abbreviated by taking the first letter of each character of the word: ''Beǐjīng'' (, Beijing) → ''BJ'' ##A group of words are abbreviated by taking the first letter of each word in the group: ''guójiā biāozhǔn'' (, Guobiao, Guóbiāo standard) → ''GB'' ##Initials can also be indicated using full stops: ''Beǐjīng'' → ''B.J.'', ''guójiā biāozhǔn'' → ''G.B.'' ##When abbreviating names, the surname is written fully (first letter capitalized or in all caps), but only the first letter of each character in the given name is taken, with full stops after each initial: ''Lǐ Huá'' () → ''Lǐ H.'' or ''LǏ H.'', ''Zhūgě Kǒngmíng'' () → ''Zhūgě K. M.'' or ''ZHŪGĚ K. M.'' #Line wrapping ##Words can only be split by the character:
''guāngmíng'' (, bright) → ''guāng-
míng'', not ''gu-
āngmíng'' ##Initials cannot be split:
''Wáng J. G.'' () → ''Wáng
J. G.'', not ''Wáng J.-
G.'' ##Apostrophes are removed in line wrapping:
''Xī'ān'' (, Xi'an) → ''Xī-
ān'', not ''Xī-
'ān'' ##When the original word has a hyphen, the hyphen is added at the beginning of the new line:
''chēshuǐ-mǎlóng'' (, heavy traffic: "carriage, water, horse, dragon") → ''chēshuǐ-
-mǎlóng'' #Hyphenation: In addition to the situations mentioned above, there are four situations where hyphens are used. ##Coordinate and disjunctive compound words, where the two elements are conjoined or opposed, but retain their individual meaning: ''gōng-jiàn'' (, bow and arrow), ''kuài-màn'' (, speed: "fast-slow"), ''shíqī-bā suì'' (, 17–18 years old), ''dǎ-mà'' (, beat and scold), ''Yīng-Hàn'' (, English-Chinese [dictionary]), ''Jīng-Jīn'' (, Beijing-Tianjin), ''lù-hǎi-kōngjūn'' (, army-navy-airforce). ##Abbreviated compounds (): ''gōnggòng guānxì'' (, public relations) → ''gōng-guān'' (, PR), ''chángtú diànhuà'' (, long-distance calling) → ''cháng-huà'' (, LDC).
Exceptions are made when the abbreviated term has become established as a word in its own right, as in ''chūzhōng'' () for ''chūjí zhōngxué'' (, junior high school). Abbreviations of proper-name compounds, however, should always be hyphenated: ''Běijīng Dàxué'' (, Peking University) → ''Běi-Dà'' (, PKU). ##Chengyu, Four-syllable idioms: ''fēngpíng-làngjìng'' (), calm and tranquil: "wind calm, waves down"), ''huījīn-rútǔ'' (, spend money like water: "throw gold like dirt"), ''zhǐ-bǐ-mò-yàn'' (, paper-brush-ink-inkstone [four coordinate words]). ###Other idioms are separated according to the words that make up the idiom: ''bēi hēiguō'' (, to be made a scapegoat: "to carry a black pot"), ''zhǐ xǔ zhōuguān fànghuǒ, bù xǔ bǎixìng diǎndēng'' (, Gods may do what cattle may not: "only the official is allowed to light the fire; the commoners are not allowed to light a lamp") #Punctuation ##The Chinese full stop (。) is changed to a western full stop (.) ##The hyphen is a half-width hyphen (-) ##Ellipsis can be changed from 6 dots (......) to 3 dots (...) ##The Chinese punctuation#Enumeration comma, enumeration comma (、) is changed to a normal comma (,) ##All other punctuation marks are the same as the ones used in normal texts


Comparison with other orthographies

Pinyin is now used by foreign students learning Chinese as a second language, as well as Bopomofo. Pinyin assigns some Latin letters sound values which are quite different from those of most languages. This has drawn some criticism as it may lead to confusion when uninformed speakers apply either native or English assumed pronunciations to words. However, this problem is not limited only to pinyin, since many languages that use the Latin alphabet natively also assign different values to the same letters. A recent study on Chinese writing and literacy concluded, "By and large, pinyin represents the Chinese sounds better than the
Wade–Giles Wade–Giles () is a romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying a ...
system, and does so with fewer extra marks." Because Pinyin is purely a representation of the sounds of Mandarin, it completely lacks the semantic cues and contexts inherent in Chinese characters. Pinyin is also unsuitable for transcribing some Chinese spoken languages other than Mandarin, languages which by contrast have traditionally been written with Han characters allowing for written communication which, by its unified semanto-phonetic orthography, could theoretically be readable in any of the various vernaculars of Chinese where a phonetic script would have only localized utility.


Comparison charts


Unicode code points

Based on ISO 7098:2015, ''Information and Documentation: Chinese Romanization'' (), tonal marks for pinyin should use the symbols from Combining Diacritical Marks, as opposed by the use of Spacing Modifier Letters in Bopomofo. Lowercase letters with tone marks are included in GB 2312, GB/T 2312 and their uppercase counterparts are included in JIS X 0212; thus Unicode includes all the common accented characters from pinyin. Due to ''The Basic Rules of the Chinese Phonetic Alphabet Orthography'', all accented letters are required to have both uppercase and lowercase characters as per their normal counterparts. GBK (character encoding), GBK has mapped two characters ‘ḿ’ and ‘ǹ’ to Private Use Areas in Unicode as U+E7C7 () and U+E7C8 () respectively, thus some Simplified Chinese fonts (e.g. SimSun) that adheres to GBK include both characters in the Private Use Areas, and some input methods (e.g. Sogou Pinyin) also outputs the Private Use Areas code point instead of the original character. As the superset GB 18030 changed the mappings of ‘ḿ’ and ‘ǹ’, this has caused issue where the input methods and font files use different encoding standard, and thus the input and output of both characters are mixed up. Other symbols that are used in pinyin is as follow: Other punctuation mark and symbols in Chinese are to use the equivalent symbol in English noted in to GB/T 15834. In educational usage, to match the handwritten style, some fonts used a different style for the letter ''a'' and ''g'' to have an appearance of single-storey ''a'' and single-storey ''g''. Fonts that follow GB/T 2312 usually make single-storey ''a'' in the accented pinyin characters but leaving unaccented double-storey ''a'', causing a discrepancy in the font itself. Unicode did not provide an official way to encode single-storey ''a'' and single-storey ''g'', but as IPA require the differentiation of single-storey and double-storey ''a'' and ''g'', thus the single-storey character ''ɑ''/''ɡ'' in IPA should be used if the need to separate single-storey ''a'' and ''g'' arises. For daily usage there is no need to differentiate single-storey and double-storey ''a''/''g''.


Usage

Pinyin superseded older Chinese romanization, romanization systems such as
Wade–Giles Wade–Giles () is a romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying a ...
(1859; modified 1892) and postal romanization, and replaced
zhuyin Zhuyin () or Mandarin Phonetic Symbols, also nicknamed Bopomofo, is a major Chinese transliteration system for Mandarin Chinese Mandarin (; ) is a group of Sinitic languages, Sinitic (Chinese) languages natively spoken across most of no ...

zhuyin
as the method of Chinese phonetic instruction in
mainland China Mainland China, also known as the Chinese mainland, China mainland, or the Mainland Area of the Republic of China is the geopolitics, geopolitical area under the direct jurisdiction of the People's Republic of China (PRC) since Proclamation of ...

mainland China
. The ISO adopted pinyin as the standard romanization for modern Chinese in 1982 (ISO 7098:1982, superseded by ISO 7098:2015). The
United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization that aims to maintain international peace and international security, security, develop friendly relations among nations, achieve international cooperation, and be a centre for har ...

United Nations
followed suit in 1986. It has also been accepted by the government of Singapore, the United States's Library of Congress, the American Library Association, and many other international institutions. The spelling of Chinese geographical or personal names in pinyin has become the most common way to transcribe them in English. Pinyin has also become the dominant method for Chinese input methods for computers, entering Chinese text into computers in Mainland China, in contrast to Taiwan; where Bopomofo is most commonly used. Families outside of Taiwan who speak Mandarin as a mother tongue use pinyin to help children associate characters with spoken words which they already know. Overseas Chinese, Chinese families outside of Taiwan who speak some other language as their mother tongue use the system to teach children Mandarin pronunciation when they learn vocabulary in elementary school. Since 1958, pinyin has been actively used in adult education as well, making it easier for formerly Literacy in China, illiterate people to continue with self-study after a short period of pinyin literacy instruction. Pinyin has become a tool for many foreigners to learn Mandarin pronunciation, and is used to explain both the grammar and spoken Mandarin coupled with Chinese characters (). Books containing both Chinese characters and pinyin are often used by foreign learners of Chinese. Pinyin's role in teaching pronunciation to foreigners and children is similar in some respects to furigana-based books (with hiragana letters written above or next to kanji, directly analogous to
zhuyin Zhuyin () or Mandarin Phonetic Symbols, also nicknamed Bopomofo, is a major Chinese transliteration system for Mandarin Chinese Mandarin (; ) is a group of Sinitic languages, Sinitic (Chinese) languages natively spoken across most of no ...
) in Japanese language, Japanese or fully Harakat, vocalised texts in Arabic alphabet, Arabic ("vocalised Arabic"). The tone-marking diacritics are commonly omitted in popular news stories and even in scholarly works. This results in some degree of ambiguity as to which words are being represented.


Computer input systems

Simple computer systems, able to display only 7-bit ASCII text (essentially the 26 Latin letters, 10 digits, and punctuation marks), long provided a convincing argument for using unaccented pinyin instead of Chinese characters. Today, however, most computer systems are able to display characters from Chinese and many other writing systems as well, and have them entered with a Latin keyboard using an input method editor. Alternatively, some personal digital assistant, PDAs, tablet computers, and digitizing tablets allow users to input characters graphically by writing with a stylus, with concurrent online handwriting recognition. Pinyin with accents can be entered with the use of special keyboard layouts or various Character Map (Windows), character map utilities. X keyboard extension includes a "Hanyu Pinyin (altgr)" layout for AltGr key, AltGr-triggered dead key input of accented characters.


In Taiwan

Taiwan Taiwan (), officially the Republic of China (ROC), is a country in East Asia. Neighbouring countries include the China, People's Republic of China (PRC) to the northwest, Japan to the northeast, and the Philippines to the south. The main islan ...

Taiwan
(Republic of China) adopted ''
Tongyong Pinyin Tongyong Pinyin () was the official romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics, is the conversion of writing from a different writing system to the Latin script, Roman (Latin) script, or a system for doing so. Methods of romanizat ...
'', a modification of ''Hanyu Pinyin'', as the official romanization system on the national level between October 2002 and January 2009, when it decided to promote ''Hanyu Pinyin''. ''Tongyong Pinyin'' ("common phonetic"), a romanization system developed in Taiwan, was designed to romanize languages and dialects spoken on the island in addition to Mandarin Chinese. The Kuomintang (KMT) party resisted its adoption, preferring the ''Hanyu Pinyin'' system used in
mainland China Mainland China, also known as the Chinese mainland, China mainland, or the Mainland Area of the Republic of China is the geopolitics, geopolitical area under the direct jurisdiction of the People's Republic of China (PRC) since Proclamation of ...

mainland China
and in general use internationally. Romanization preferences quickly became associated with issues of national identity. Preferences split along party lines: the KMT and its affiliated parties in the pan-blue coalition supported the use of Hanyu Pinyin while the Democratic Progressive Party and its affiliated parties in the pan-green coalition favored the use of Tongyong Pinyin. ''Tongyong Pinyin'' was made the official system in an administrative order that allowed its adoption by local governments to be voluntary. Locales in Kaohsiung, Tainan and other areas use romanizations derived from
Tongyong Pinyin Tongyong Pinyin () was the official romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics, is the conversion of writing from a different writing system to the Latin script, Roman (Latin) script, or a system for doing so. Methods of romanizat ...
for some district and street names. A few localities with governments controlled by the KMT, most notably Taipei, Hsinchu, and Kinmen, Kinmen County, overrode the order and converted to ''Hanyu Pinyin'' before the January 1, 2009 national-level decision, though with a slightly different capitalization convention than mainland China. Most areas of Taiwan adopted Tongyong Pinyin, consistent with the national policy. Today, many street signs in Taiwan are using ''Tongyong Pinyin''-derived romanizations, but some, especially in northern Taiwan, display ''Hanyu Pinyin''-derived romanizations. It is not unusual to see spellings on street signs and buildings derived from the older
Wade–Giles Wade–Giles () is a romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying a ...
, MPS2 and other systems. Attempts to make pinyin standard in Taiwan have had uneven success, with most place and proper names remaining unaffected, including all major cities. Personal names on Taiwanese passports honor the choices of Taiwanese citizens, who can choose Wade-Giles, Hakka, Hoklo, Tongyong, aboriginal, or pinyin. Official pinyin use is controversial, as when pinyin use for a metro line in 2017 provoked protests, despite government responses that “The romanization used on road signs and at transportation stations is intended for foreigners... Every foreigner learning Mandarin learns Hanyu pinyin, because it is the international standard...The decision has nothing to do with the nation’s self-determination or any ideologies, because the key point is to ensure that foreigners can read signs.”


In Singapore

Singapore Singapore (), officially the Republic of Singapore, is a sovereign state, sovereign island city-state in maritime Southeast Asia. It lies about one degree of latitude () north of the equator, off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, bord ...

Singapore
implemented ''Hanyu Pinyin'' as the official romanization system for Mandarin in the public sector starting in the 1980s, in conjunction with the Speak Mandarin Campaign. ''Hanyu Pinyin'' is also used as the romanization system to teach Mandarin Chinese at schools.p.485, Chan, Sin-Wai. ''The Routledge Encyclopedia of the Chinese Language'', Routledge, 2016. While the process of Pinyinisation has been mostly successful in government communication, placenames, and businesses established in the 1980s and onward, it continues to be unpopular in some areas, most notably for personal names and vocabulary borrowed from other varieties of Chinese already established in the local vernacular. In these situations, romanization continues to be based on the Chinese language variety it originated from, especially the three largest Chinese varieties traditionally spoken in Singapore (Hokkien Chinese, Hokkien, Teochew dialect, Teochew, and
Cantonese Cantonese ( zh, t=廣東話, s=广东话, first=t; Yale romanization of Cantonese, Yale: ''Gwóngdūng wá'') is a language within the Varieties of Chinese, Chinese (Sinitic) branch of the Sino-Tibetan languages originating from the city of Guang ...

Cantonese
).


For other languages

Pinyin-like systems have been devised for other variants of Chinese. Guangdong Romanization is a set of romanizations devised by the government of Guangdong province for Standard Cantonese, Cantonese, Teochew dialect, Teochew, Hakka Chinese, Hakka (Moiyen dialect), and Hainan dialect, Hainanese. All of these are designed to use Latin letters in a similar way to pinyin. In addition, in accordance to the ''Regulation of Phonetic Transcription in Hanyu Pinyin Letters of Place Names in Minority Nationality Languages'' () promulgated in 1976, place names in non-Han languages like Mongolian language, Mongolian, Uyghur language, Uyghur, and Standard Tibetan, Tibetan are also officially transcribed using pinyin in a system adopted by the State Administration of Surveying and Mapping and Geographical Names Committee known as SASM/GNC romanization. The pinyin letters (26 Roman letters, plus ''ü'' and ''ê'') are used to approximate the non-Han language in question as closely as possible. This results in spellings that are different from both the customary spelling of the place name, and the pinyin spelling of the name in Chinese: ''
Tongyong Pinyin Tongyong Pinyin () was the official romanization Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics, is the conversion of writing from a different writing system to the Latin script, Roman (Latin) script, or a system for doing so. Methods of romanizat ...
'' was developed in Taiwan for use in rendering not only Mandarin Chinese, but other languages and dialects spoken on the island such as Taiwanese Hokkien, Taiwanese, Hakka language, Hakka, and Taiwan aboriginal languages, aboriginal languages.


See also

*Combining character *Cyrillization of Chinese *Pinyin input method *Romanization of Japanese *Tibetan pinyin *Transcription into Chinese characters *Comparison of Chinese transcription systems


Notes


References


Further reading

* * * *


External links


Scheme for the Chinese Phonetic Alphabet
The original 1958 ''Scheme'', apparently scanned from a reprinted copy in ''Xinhua Zidian''. PDF version from the Chinese Ministry of Education.
Basic rules of the Chinese phonetic alphabet orthography
The official standard GB/T 16159–2012 in Chinese. PDF version from the Chinese Ministry of Education. *


Chinese phonetic alphabet spelling rules for Chinese names
The official standard GB/T 28039–2011 in Chinese. PDF version from the Chinese Ministry of Education *


Pinyin-Guide.com
Pronunciation and FAQs related to Pinyin
Pinyin Tone Toolarchive
Online editor to create Pinyin with tones , - , - , - {{Authority control Pinyin, Writing systems introduced in 1958 Chinese language Chinese words and phrases ISO standards Mandarin words and phrases Phonetic alphabets Phonetic guides Romanization of Chinese Ruby characters