In Taiwan, words and syllables are pronounced differently, tones are sometimes changed and there are even a few vocabulary words that are different than in Chinese Mandarin. Chinese is the oldest written language in the world, dating back to over 4000 years ago. The media, the government, and the officials all speak 普通话. It was 1968 and I was a young Canadian diplomat (Canada was preparing to recognize the People’s Republic of China).My routine consisted of three hours of one-on-one tutoring with a Chinese teacher, five mornings a week. • Regardless of the number of dialects under the Chinese language, most non-Chinese normally refers to all these dialects only as Chinese. There are several hundred languages in China. It was the common language of China in the early and middle Zhou Dynasty (11th-7th centuries BC). The Korean alphabet, on the other hand, is very easy to learn and understand. Instead it’s very much a planned language that was designedby language experts from inside (and even outside) China. During the Sui, Tang and Song dynasties (7th-10th centuries AD), Middle Chinese became the common language. Because of the obvious radical difference between the way that the Chinese write and the way that we write, many myths have grown up, not just around China's writing system, but around its language as a whole and around China's people. When we talk about Standard Chinese, we mean the official language spoken by most of the people in China. Eventually, they came to represent ideas as well as objects. There are thousands of spoken languages in the world and most can be traced back in history to show how they are related to each other.For example:By finding patterns like these, different languages can be grouped together as members of a language family.There are three main language families: 1. It is an official language in China, Taiwan, and Singapore. Saying Standard Chinese is artificial might seem like quite a bold statement if you’re not aware of this, but really it’s quite an accurate way to describe the language. Although many of China’s dialects have numerous variants, Min has the most, including Northern Min, Southern Min, Central Min and Shaojiang Min. In English, Mandarin is the term you’ll hear the most to refer to the official Chinese language. Xiang is also known as Hunanese. Chinese includes many regional language varieties, the main ones being Mandarin, Wu, Yue and Min. They are therefore closely related. These dialects stem from the 56 ethnic minorities that Chinese is home to. Many of the oral dialects are mutually unintelligible—meaning they’re so different from one another that speakers of one can’t understand speakers of another. But this can be a difficult concept to grasp, especially for beginners and people who haven’t had experience with the language. Due to multiple revolutions and political changes, Chinese characters have also been altered over the years. This term is used in China to refer the Chinese language in general. It’s also the official language of Taiwan and one of Singapore’s four official languages. Mandarin is one of the two names given by the Westerners to talk about the official Chinese language. Brooke Bagley is a freelance writer and a passionate language learner. If you’re going to learn any Chinese dialect, this is probably the most practical one to learn. Standard Chinese has never been a language that developed entirely organically. This dialect is the most common one in Southern China and is widely used in Guangdong, Macau and Hong Kong. Indeed, people often say that the Chinese write in pictures. Gan is widely used in the provinces of Jiangxi, Anhui, Fujian, Hubei and Hunan. As the official language of China and the most spoken dialect of Chinese languge, when we say we learn Chinese, we actually mean Mandarin Chinese. can take anywhere. If you liked this post, something tells me that you'll love FluentU, the best way to learn Chinese with real-world videos. Old Chinese was first discovered by linguists in Shijing poetry, inscribed on bronze artifacts and in parts of the Yijing. Check it out with a FluentU free trial! The languages are mutually intelligible to a varying degree, depending on how close the languages are to one another. The Chinese language is probably the most complex language among all the East Asian languages. The Chinese (or 'Sinitic') languages are typically divided into seven major language groups, and their study is a distinct academic discipline. While you do need to learn a lot of characters, each word consists of about two characters and rarely more. Mandarin is China’s official language other countries in Asia. The Chinese language is the group of languages used by Chinese people in China and elsewhere. 国语 Guóyǔ is another term that refers the Chinese language. The Chinese language is the world’s most widely spoken language. With this information, you can probably understand why it used to be a pet peeve of mine when someone asked me if I was learning Chinese when I was a student. Today, Mandarin Chinese is the official language in China and Taiwan, and one of the official languages in Macau and Singapore. • Chinese language is a family of languages under which falls Mandarin, also known as Standard Chinese, that is been used by majority of the population in China and Taiwan. About 1.2 billion people (or approximately 16% of the world's population) speak a variety of Chinese as their first language. As a result, nearly everyone in China can speak Mandarin, whether they use it at home or not. Min is the perfect example of dialects that have sub-dialects. But even though Mandarin is the official language of three countries and is spoken by so many people, each country and individual regions add their own twists to it. We already discussed how it’s spoken by nearly 900 million people and that it’s the official language of three countries. 普通话 is taught in school. Join us to discover what the Chinese language really is! You may also have heard of Hainanese and Taiwanese. When you type in Chinese, you use a phonetic system, called pinyin, that corresponds to the Mandarin pronunciation. Ancient colonization is the main reason behind the fact many Chinese speakers live in North America. Unlike traditional characters, and as the name suggests, the simplified characters are much easier to learn and write. Mandarin is the most widely spoken language in the world, with 898 million speakers. 粤 Yuè (Cantonese) for example has 9 tones. Chinese languages, principal language group of eastern Asia, belonging to the Sino-Tibetan language family. Today, it’s spoken by about 85 million people. Initially, people mainly spoke Mandarin, and its regional Mandarin variants in Beijing and its surroundings, as well as in Northern China. The Chinese Hanzi script was made for the Chinese language, meaning that there exists a character for each common linguistic action. Mandarin is your door to all of China, Taiwan, Singapore and many countries in Asia. Mandarin Chinese is the mother tongue of over 873 million people, making it the most widely spoken first language in the world. The main spoken form, used officially in China, is called Mandarin. First of all, why should China using Chinese(simple)? It’s a bit more formal to say 汉语 than 中文 Zhōng wén which means the same thing. Learning Mandarin Gives You Access To Authentic Chinese Culture. 6 Fundamental Factors That You Should Consider, The 10 Best Chinese Songs of All Time for Your Next KTV Party, 7 Video Resources for Learning Chinese the Way Natives Use It, An Easier Way to Learn Chinese: Comprehensible Input, 4 Free Online Chinese Lessons and Other Resources That’ll Make Learning a Breeze, Yes, You Can Get Chinese Video with Pinyin Subtitles: 4 Options. The most commonly spoken language in China is Mandarin. You’ll notice how some are more similar to one another than others. Let’s see what these names mean! The Chinese use the term 普通话 to refer their common and official language. to talk about their national and official Chinese language. This dialect is spoken primarily in Beijing and Northern China and differs greatly from Southern and Central Mandarin because of the accent. If you’re feeling like you’re fighting a solo battle against the Chinese … Also known as Hunanese, you’ll find the 湘语 xiāngyǔ group of dialects spoken in Hunan and in some parts of the Sichuan province as well. As long as you know Mandarin, you’ll be fine anywhere. They differ as much from each other For example, there are slight differences between Taiwanese Mandarin and Standard Chinese Mandarin. There are many others names used to describe the Chinese language: 普通话, Standard Chinese, 国语, and more. But before diving in, take a look at this fun video featuring 25 different Chinese dialects. Aside from languages, Brooke runs her freelance writing business, Writing & Thriving and specializes in B2B copywriting, content marketing and holistic health and wellness. The capital of Guangdong, Guangzhou, was once named Canton, hence the name Cantonese. She’s learned Mandarin Chinese for seven years, Spanish for three and Indonesian for one. 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