Home >>  Chinese Pinyin System >> 

How to Spell in Chinese Pinyin



Do you know? The Chinese language is mainly composed of monosyllabic morphemes, one Chinese pinyin / syllable for one Chinese Hanzi(character), and one Chinese pinyin / syllable consists of initial + final + tone.

In the pinyin of qiāng(枪, gun), "q" is the initial, "iang" is the final, "ˉ" which is above the vowel a is the tone.

In some cases the initial can be omitted, such as ài(爱, love), é(鹅, goose) and ǒu(藕, lotus root), which do not begin with an initial, are said to begin with the "Zero initial"(零声母). Some syllables in "Zero initial" need to add the insulation letter y and w before the finals.

Pronounce Tips:

1. When pronounce, the vocal organs get ready for pronouncing an initial. When pronouncing the initial while pronouncing the final together. For example: spell pinyin zhāng, firstly make the tougue retroflex to contact with the front of the hard palate, and get ready for pronouncing the initial "zh". When pronouncing the initial"zh", pronounce the final "ang" at the same time.


2. Don't pause between the initial and the final. For example: spell (古, ancient). If it comes to a pause after pronouncing g, then it would spell as ge - ǔ(歌舞, song and dance).


3. In some syllables, we should pronounce the medial exactly. We should open mouth slowly on purpose in order to lead to the medial. Some of the medials are vowels with the lips rounded, when pronouncing, we should make our mouth rounded and pronounce the medial exactly. If we couldn't pronounce exactly, we would lose or change the medials. For example: pronouncing luàn(乱, chaos), if we lost the medial u, then we would pronounce làn(烂, rotten). Pronouncing xué(学, learn), if we couldn't pronounce exactly, we would pronounce xié(鞋, shoes).