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Getting started with Chinese 3
Getting started with Chinese 3

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1.3 Pinyin spelling conventions

You’ll now look at some pinyin spelling conventions.

For i:

When there is no initial before a compound final starting with i, replace the i with a y:

e.g. iao → yao; ie → ye.

When i is followed by n or ng, add a y in front of i:

e.g. in → yin.

When the single final i is a syllable on its own, y must be added in front of it:

e.g. the number one is .

Listen to how the example sounds are pronounced:

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For u:

When there is no initial before a compound final starting with u, replace u with w:

e.g. uo → wo.

The compound final ui is pronounced uei, but it is always spelt ui and is always preceded by an initial:

e.g. dui.

The sound un is pronounced uen, but is always spelt un and is always preceded by an initial:

e.g. lun.

When the single final u is a syllable on its own, w must be added in front of the u:

e.g. the number five is .

Listen to how the example sounds are pronounced:

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For ü:

The two dots over ü are omitted when ü appears after j, q or x:

e.g. jüe → jue.

When there is no initial before a compound final starting with ü, add y in front of ü and remove the two dots over ü:

e.g. üe → yue.

When ü is a syllable on its own, add y in front of it and remove the two dots over ü:

e.g. ü → yu.

Listen to how the example sounds are pronounced:

Download this audio clip.Audio player: l197-pronunciation-09b.mp3
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