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Hello everyone welcome to the Internet and my name is
Today we're going to look at the differences between Chinese and Chinese
Well, what I mean is we'll be looking at two of the many Chinese languages, Mandarin and Cantonese
As I mentioned in my video on Chinese, Chinese is not a single language.
But rather a number of dialect groups that are united by a common writing system.
The spoken languages are different and generally mutually unintelligible.
Which is definitely the case with Mandarin and Cantonese?
Which are both Semitic languages or Chinese languages spoken in China.
Mandarin is spoken by 960 million native speakers.
Mainly in the north of China, but is now used all over mainland China and Taiwan as the official language of government media and education,
and it's one of the four official languages of Singapore as well.
Cantonese on the other hand is spoken by 50 to 60 million native speakers in Hong Kong, Macau
Guangzhou and some adjacent areas as well as in Chinese diaspora communities around the world.
It's part of the wider Yue branch of Chinese
Before we get into the main differences between the two languages
it's important to point out that these days speakers of either language typically write in standard Chinese or
Hua which is based on the Beijing dialect of Mandarin, but when Cantonese speakers read standard Chinese?
They say each word using Cantonese pronunciation
Which creates the misconception that Cantonese is exactly the same as Mandarin except for the pronunciation, but that's not the case. Spoken
Cantonese is also somewhat different in terms of grammar and vocabulary and there's also written
vernacular, Cantonese
Which reflects the spoken language and is used in some informal contexts. The differences we talk about in this video will be based on?
spoken, Cantonese
and its written equivalent, written vernacular Cantonese. By far the largest difference between Mandarin and Cantonese lies in pronunciation
Both of these languages are tonal languages
But they each have a different number of tones. Mandarin has four tones plus one neutral tone
there's a high flat tone a rising tone a
Falling rising tone a falling tone, and the neutral tone, for example,
bāo, báo, bǎo, bào.
The neutral tone is a short de-emphasized syllable which is said with no regard to tone
Cantonese has six basic tones
There's a high flat tone
a mid rising tone, a mid flat tone, a low falling tone, a low rising tone, and a low flat tone
si
si
si
Si, si si
Some people count three additional tones for a total of nine. These are historical tones that were used for syllables ending in p, t, or k.
In standard Cantonese
They've merged with other tones, so that the only remainder of these tones is the stop consonant at the end of the syllable
So if we compare the two sets of tones
You'll see that Mandarin has a tone that falls then Rises which is something that Cantonese doesn't have
You'll also notice that Mandarin has a narrower range of tones
Cantonese has a wider range of tones, with tones essentially in two ranges the mid to high range and the low range. this makes
Cantonese harder for English speakers to learn than Mandarin because instead of
distinguishing only the movement of a tone they also have to
Distinguish whether a tone is in the mid to high range or the low range. In both Mandarin and Cantonese,
and all Chinese languages for that matter, each Chinese character or
Hànzì
Represents one morpheme. Either a word or a meaningful part of a word, which can't be further divided
But each character is pronounced differently in Mandarin and Cantonese. One example of this is the word for I in Mandarin. It's pronounced (Mandarin)
With the third tone or falling rising tone. While in Cantonese
It's pronounced "ngóh", with the fifth tone or low rising tone so the tone is different
But also notice that the initial consonant sound is different as well
Another example is this word which means China in Mandarin.
It's pronounced "Zhōngguó", with a high flat tone and a rising tone, and in Cantonese
It's pronounced "jūnggwok", with a high flat tone and a mid flat tone
The pronunciation of these two words might sound pretty close
But the tones are partially different and remember that the meaning of words is partly determined by tones
Notice that the second character is
pronounced with a cup sound at the end in Cantonese, while in Mandarin it ends in a vowel sound. In Mandarin every syllable ends in
A vowel or in a nasal sound in Cantonese however syllables can end in the stop consonants /p/, /t/, and /k/ as well
Pronunciation differences between Mandarin and Cantonese are often consistent. This character that we just looked at is
Pronounced "Zhōng" in Mandarin, and so is this character and this one among many others. In Cantonese,
they're all pronounced "jūng". The difference here lies mainly in the initial consonant sound. The systems of
Romanization are different for Mandarin and Cantonese so the Roman characters might be a little misleading here
But the initial consonant in Mandarin is something like the English J sound,
but with your tongue curled back. The initial consonant in Cantonese is [tsʊŋ]
like TS in English. Think of the end of the word cats
Let's look at three more characters first in Mandarin "Jiàn"
"Jiàn", "Jiān"
and in Cantonese, "gin",
"gin", "gīn".
In this case. We can see that the consonants and vowels consistently correspond
But that a different tone in Mandarin corresponds to a different tone in Cantonese
But the sounds don't always correspond like this. There are also characters that have the same pronunciation in one language but different
pronunciations in the other
in Mandarin, there's "xiè",
"xié",
"xiě"
But in Cantonese they're pronounced /zeh/
/haàih/
/sé/
Here we can see that the Mandarin sounds don't consistently correspond with Cantonese sounds. In Mandarin
They're pronounced the same except for the tones, but the three words are pronounced in three completely different waysi n Cantonese
Differences in grammar
Both languages are fundamentally SVO
For example here's a sentence meaning "I read those books" First in Mandarin. (Mandarin). Next in Cantonese
(Cantonese)
Word-for-word both sentences translate as I read those book, so you can see that both are SVO
subject-verb-object
Even though the words are different, In both languages the verb consists of two parts, the verb itself followed by the perfective marker
which shows completion, and in both languages, the object includes two parts, a determiner followed by the noun.
A determiner is a word like an article or a demonstrative adjective, which tells us information about which now and we're talking about
One difference can be noted in sentences that have a direct object. In basic sentences in mandarin, the indirect object
Comes before the direct object, while in Cantonese it comes after
For example here's a sentence in each language meaning "Give me a pen". In Mandarin
We would say (Mandarin), and in Cantonese, (Cantonese)
Notice that these are imperative sentences, commands or instructions
Word-for-word the Mandarin sentence translates as give me a pen
The Cantonese sentence translates as give a pen me
with the indirect object in the sentence final position after the direct object
Notice that the word meaning. I and the phrase meaning "a pen" are reversed
Let's take a look at the phrase meaning a pen for a second. It consists of three parts first the word meaning one
Followed by a word that functions as a counter for long cylindrical objects, and then the word for pen
In other cases the indirect object is in the same position as in Mandarin before the direct object
Like in this sentence meaning "he sends me a book" in Mandarin
(Mandarin), and in Cantonese (Cantonese)
Notice right here that in both sentences the indirect object comes after the verb and before the direct object.
In both languages the indirect object could go after the direct object, but another word functioning like a preposition meaning "to" would be necessary
Another difference is the way that comparisons are formed in Mandarin and Cantonese. Here's a sentence meaning, I'm bigger than you. In Mandarin
you say (Mandarin), while in Cantonese you say (Cantonese).
Word for word the Mandarin sentence is I compare you big or you could think of it as I
compared to you and big the Cantonese sentence translates as I
Big more than you, so you can see that in the Mandarin sentence the adjective comes at the end
While in the Cantonese sentence it comes before the comparative word and the pronoun meaning you
Notice that the comparative word is different in the two languages
differences in vocabulary. In Chinese languages words are represented by ideographic graphic characters called hanzou
sometimes Mandarin and Cantonese use different words
Represented by different Chinese characters to represent the same concept, and in other cases the same Chinese character it might have a somewhat different
meaning or usage in either language
The difference in vocabulary could be as high as 50%
That's when comparing Mandarin to spoken Cantonese and written vernacular Cantonese. Here are some examples of different vocabulary
These words function as copula verbs like "is" in English. (Mandarin) is used in Mandarin. When read in Cantonese
It's pronounced (Cantonese)
But the typical Cantonese word is (Cantonese)
This character is also used in Mandarin and is pronounced si, but it's used with the basic meaning of relation or connection
These are negation words meaning no or not in Mandarin. In Mandarin it's (Mandarin)
This word is also used in Cantonese and pronounced (Cantonese)
but but it's used more often in standard writing than the colloquial Cantonese word (Cantonese). This word is not used in Mandarin.
If we look at the word for teacher in both languages
We'll see that Mandarin uses the word (Mandarin), while Cantonese uses the word (Cantonese)
This word is also used in Cantonese with the pronunciation (Cantonese)
This word is also used in Mandarin with the pronunciation
Say Shen, and means mister or husband actually in Cantonese it has both of those meanings as well as the meaning of teacher
But from what I hear this word (Cantonese) is not used by younger people who use (Cantonese) instead for the meaning of teacher
These are the words for bus. In Mandarin is (Mandarin)
These four characters could be translated literally as something like public, shared, gas, car
But normally these two characters form the word meaning public and these two form the word meaning car.
in Cantonese it's
(Cantonese), a word derived from the English word bus
two Chinese characters
with sounds similar to those of the word bus were chosen to represent this English borrowing. This type of
Borrowing from English is more common in Cantonese particularly in the Hong Kong variety because it was a dependent territory of the UK.
In Mandarin, to ask someone's name, you would say (Mandarin). In Cantonese you would say (Cantonese)
Here you can see that the word order is the same, so the sentences are
Translatable word for word. If we translate word for word, we get you call what name but some of the words are different
The word for what is different and the word for name or first name is different. In Mandarin
It's a two character compound word and in Cantonese
It's a single character of course even the words that are the same are pronounced differently in either language
This word meaning you is pronounced in Mandarin as (Mandarin) with a falling rising tone. In Cantonese
It's lay with a low rising tone. You may have noticed that the Cantonese audio recording sounded more like
Lay with an initial L
Sound rather than (Cantonese) with an initial /n/ sound. the /n/ sound is considered proper Cantonese
while the L sound is considered casual or relaxed pronunciation
This word meaning call is pronounced in Mandarin as (Mandarin) with the falling tone. In Cantonese it's
(Cantonese) with a mid flat tone
This word or word component meaning name is pronounced in Mandarin as (Mandarin) with a rising tone, and in Cantonese
It's (Cantonese) with a mid rising tone
Note that throughout this video I've been using traditional Chinese characters for both Mandarin and Cantonese
but in mainland China, Singapore and Malaysia
simplified Chinese characters are used for Mandarin while traditional characters are used in Taiwan. As for Cantonese, in Hong Kong and Macau,
Traditional characters are used. In Guangzhou and surrounding areas people normally use
Simplified characters for Cantonese. Some people think that Mandarin is always written in simplified characters, and that Cantonese is always written in
Traditional characters, but it's not that simple
You may be asking yourself, which language is better to learn well
there are definite benefits to learning either one if
You learn Mandarin, you'll be understood all over mainland China as well as Taiwan, and also in Singapore and Malaysia
But they'll probably just speak English to you
and if you learn
Cantonese, you'll be able to communicate with people in the southern part of mainland China as well as Hong Kong and Macau and you'll be
able to enjoy all of those famous movies from Hong Kong
Either way if you have a deep cultural interest in either of these languages that will certainly make it easier to learn
the question of the day: For native speakers of either Mandarin or Cantonese to what extent can you understand the other language when it's spoken?
How about when it's written, and for learners of either language have you taken a look at the other language?
What similarities and differences did you notice? Be sure to follow Langfocus on Facebook Twitter and Instagram
And I'm not sure if you can follow those in China, but please try and once again
I would like to say thank you to all of my wonderful patreon supporters, especially these ones right here on the screen
They are my top tier patreon supporters, so many thanks to them. Thank you for watching and have a nice day
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普通話跟廣東話有像 (How Similar Are Mandarin and Cantonese?)

186 分類 收藏
jigme.lee888 發佈於 2018 年 8 月 22 日    陳明頤 翻譯    Evangeline 審核
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