Chinese language

ChineseRegional dialectChinese:MandarinChinese-languageMandarin ChineseChinese SimplifiedTraditional ChineselanguageSimplified Chinese
Unless otherwise specified, Chinese in this article is written in simplified Chinese/traditional Chinese; Pinyin order.wikipedia
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Han Chinese

HanChineseethnic Chinese
Chinese is spoken by the Han majority and many minority ethnic groups in China.
Similarly, the Chinese language also came to be named the "Han language" ever since.

Official languages of the United Nations

six official languagesOfficial languages United Nations
It is one of the six official languages of the United Nations.
Chinese (Written character: Simplified Chinese)

Chinese characters

ChineseChinese:characters
The written form of the standard language (中文; Zhōngwén), based on the logograms known as Chinese characters (汉字/漢字; Hànzì), is shared by literate speakers of otherwise unintelligible dialects.
Chinese characters are logograms developed for the writing of Chinese.

Qieyun

Qieyun, a rime dictionary, recorded a compromise between the pronunciations of different regions. It can be divided into an early period, reflected by the Qieyun rime book (601 CE), and a late period in the 10th century, reflected by rhyme tables such as the Yunjing constructed by ancient Chinese philologists as a guide to the Qieyun system.
The Qieyun is a Chinese rhyme dictionary, published in 601 CE during the Sui dynasty.

Sino-Tibetan languages

Sino-TibetanSino-Tibetan languageSino-Tibetan language family
Chinese (or ) is a group of related, but in many cases not mutually intelligible, language varieties, forming the Sinitic branch of the Sino-Tibetan language family. Most linguists classify all varieties of Chinese as part of the Sino-Tibetan language family, together with Burmese, Tibetan and many other languages spoken in the Himalayas and the Southeast Asian Massif.
It was cited together with the lack of reconstructable shared morphology, and evidence that much shared lexical material has been borrowed from Chinese into Tibeto-Burman, by Christopher Beckwith, one of the few scholars still arguing that Chinese is not related to Tibeto-Burman.

Old Chinese

OCancient ChineseOld
The phonetic categories of Archaic Chinese can be reconstructed from the rhymes of ancient poetry.
Old Chinese, also called Archaic Chinese in older works, is the oldest attested stage of Chinese, and the ancestor of all modern varieties of Chinese.

Tone (linguistics)

tonetonal languagetones
All varieties of Chinese are tonal and analytic.
Tones in Vietnamese and Tsat may result from Chinese influence on both languages.

Yunjing

It can be divided into an early period, reflected by the Qieyun rime book (601 CE), and a late period in the 10th century, reflected by rhyme tables such as the Yunjing constructed by ancient Chinese philologists as a guide to the Qieyun system.
The Yunjing is one of the two oldest existing examples of a Chinese rhyme table – a series of charts which arrange Chinese characters in large tables according to their tone and syllable structures to indicate their proper pronunciations.

Himalayas

HimalayanHimalayaHimalayan Mountains
Most linguists classify all varieties of Chinese as part of the Sino-Tibetan language family, together with Burmese, Tibetan and many other languages spoken in the Himalayas and the Southeast Asian Massif.
The mountains are known as the Himālaya in Nepali and Hindi (both written undefined), the Himalaya or 'The Land of Snow' in Tibetan, the Hamaleh Mountain Range (undefined) in Urdu and the Ximalaya Mountain Range ( t 喜馬拉雅, > Xǐmǎlāyǎ Shānmài) in Chinese.

Menggu Ziyun

Together with the slightly later Menggu Ziyun, this dictionary describes a language with many of the features characteristic of modern Mandarin dialects.
Menggu Ziyun (, "Rimes in Mongol Script") is a 14th-century rime dictionary of Chinese as written in the 'Phags-pa script that was used during the Yuan dynasty (1271–1368).

Indo-European languages

Indo-EuropeanIndo-European languageIndo-European language family
Although the relationship was first proposed in the early 19th century and is now broadly accepted, reconstruction of Sino-Tibetan is much less developed than that of families such as Indo-European or Austroasiatic.
Meanwhile, Mikhail Lomonosov compared different language groups, including Slavic, Baltic ("Kurlandic"), Iranian ("Medic"), Finnish, Chinese, "Hottentot" (Khoekhoe), and others, noting that related languages (including Latin, Greek, German and Russian) must have separated in antiquity from common ancestors.

Sino-Japanese vocabulary

Sino-JapanesekangoSino-Japanese word
For example, in Japan, Sino-Japanese words account for about 35% of the words in entertainment magazines, over half the words in newspapers, and 60% of the words in science magazines.
Sino-Japanese vocabulary or kango refers to that portion of the Japanese vocabulary that originated in Chinese or has been created from elements borrowed from Chinese.

Japanese language

JapaneseJapanese-languageJp
Chinese words with these pronunciations were also extensively imported into the Korean, Japanese and Vietnamese languages, and today comprise over half of their vocabularies.
During the Heian period (794–1185), Chinese had considerable influence on the vocabulary and phonology of Old Japanese.

Vietnamese language

VietnameseVietnamese nameVietnamese-language
Chinese words with these pronunciations were also extensively imported into the Korean, Japanese and Vietnamese languages, and today comprise over half of their vocabularies.
Its vocabulary has borrowings from Chinese, and it formerly used a modified set of Chinese characters called Chữ Nôm given vernacular pronunciation.

Sino-Xenic pronunciations

pronunciations of Chinese charactersSino-XenicSinoxenic
Linguists have identified these sounds by comparing the categories with pronunciations in modern varieties of Chinese, borrowed Chinese words in Japanese, Vietnamese, and Korean, and transcription evidence.
Sino-Xenic or Sinoxenic pronunciations are regular systems for reading Chinese characters in Japan, Korea and Vietnam, originating in medieval times and the source of large-scale borrowings of Chinese words into the Japanese, Korean and Vietnamese languages, none of which are genetically related to Chinese.

Hanja

HanchahanmunChinese characters
Korean is written exclusively with Hangul in North Korea, and supplementary Chinese characters (Hanja) are increasingly rarely used in South Korea.
More specifically, it refers to those Chinese characters borrowed from Chinese and incorporated into the Korean language with Korean pronunciation.

Kanji

on'yomikun'yomicharacters
Today Japanese is written with a composite script using both Chinese characters (Kanji) and kana.
It is written with the same characters in the Chinese language to refer to the character writing system, hanzi .

Logogram

logographiclogographlogograms
The written form of the standard language (中文; Zhōngwén), based on the logograms known as Chinese characters (汉字/漢字; Hànzì), is shared by literate speakers of otherwise unintelligible dialects.
Han characters: Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Vietnamese, Zhuang

Waxiang Chinese

WaxiangwxaXianghua
Some varieties remain unclassified, including Danzhou dialect (spoken in Danzhou, on Hainan Island), Waxianghua (spoken in western Hunan) and Shaozhou Tuhua (spoken in northern Guangdong).
Waxiang (ɕioŋ˥tsa˧) is a divergent variety of Chinese, spoken by the Waxiang people, an unrecognized ethnic minority group in the northwestern part of Hunan province, China.

Yuan dynasty

YuanYuan ChinaChina
After the fall of the Northern Song dynasty, and during the reign of the Jin (Jurchen) and Yuan (Mongol) dynasties in northern China, a common speech (now called Old Mandarin) developed based on the dialects of the North China Plain around the capital.
During his reign, the Da Yuan Tong Zhi (Chinese: 大元通制, "the comprehensive institutions of the Great Yuan"), a huge collection of codes and regulations of the Yuan dynasty begun by his father, was formally promulgated.

Macau

🇲🇴MacaoMacanese
In Hong Kong and Macau, because of their colonial and linguistic history, the language used in education, the media, formal speech, and everyday life remains the local Cantonese, although the standard language has become very influential and is being taught in schools.
Following the transition, major reforms in the legal system continued, such as the use of Chinese language in courts and legislations.

Burmese language

BurmeseMyanmarMyanmarsar
Most linguists classify all varieties of Chinese as part of the Sino-Tibetan language family, together with Burmese, Tibetan and many other languages spoken in the Himalayas and the Southeast Asian Massif.
To a lesser extent, Burmese has also imported words from Sanskrit (religion), Hindi (food, administration, and shipping), and Chinese (games and food).

ISO 639 macrolanguage

macrolanguageindividual codesISO 639
Because of the difficulties involved in determining the difference between language and dialect, other terms have been proposed: ISO 639-3 follows Ethnologue in assigning individual language codes to the 13 main subdivisions, while Chinese as a whole is classified as a 'macrolanguage'.
For example, Chinese is a macrolanguage encompassing many languages that are not mutually intelligible, but the languages "Standard German", "Bavarian German", and other closely related languages do not form a macrolanguage, despite being more mutually intelligible.

Shanghai

Shanghai, ChinaSHAmunicipality of Shanghai
For example, in addition to Standard Chinese, a resident of Shanghai might speak Shanghainese; and, if he or she grew up elsewhere, then he or she is also likely to be fluent in the particular dialect of that local area.
Shanghai is officially abbreviated (/Wu) in Chinese, a contraction of (/Vu Doh, lit "Harpoon Ditch"), a 4th- or 5th-century Jin name for the mouth of Suzhou Creek when it was the main conduit into the ocean.

Diglossia

diglossicdiglossaldiglossic linguistic area
In mainland China and Taiwan, diglossia has been a common feature.
The high variety may be an older stage of the same language (as in medieval Europe, where Latin remained in formal use even as colloquial speech diverged), an unrelated language, or a distinct yet closely related present day dialect (e.g. Standard German alongside Low German; or Chinese, with Mandarin as the official, literary standard and local varieties of Chinese used in everyday communication).