MITRES_21F_003S11_unit01 - Learning Chinese: A Foundation...

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Learning Chinese: A Foundation Course in Mandarin Julian K. Wheatley, 4/07 UNIT 1 Ji ǔ céng zh ī tái, q ǐ yú l ě i t ǔ ; qi ā n l ǐ zh ī xíng sh ǐ yú zú xià. 9 level tower, begin by piling earth, 1000 mile journey begins with foot down A tall tower begins with the foundation; a long journey begins with L ǎ oz ǐ a single step. Contents 1.1 Conventions 1.2 Pronunciation 1.3 Numbering and ordering 1.4 Stative Verbs 1.5 Time and tense 1.6 Pronouns Exercise 1 1.7 Action verbs 1.8 Conventional greetings Exercise 2 1.9 Greeting and taking leave 1.10 Tones Exercise 3 1.11 Summary 1.12 Rhymes and rhythms 1.1 Conventions The previous Unit on ‘sounds and symbols’ provided the first steps in learning to associate the pinyin transcription of Chinese language material with accurate pronunciation. The task will continue as you start to learn to converse by listening to conversational material while reading it in the pinyin script. However, in the early units, it will be all too easy to fall back into associations based on English spelling, and so occasionally (as in the previous overview), Chinese cited in pinyin will be followed by a more transparent transitional spelling [placed in brackets] to alert you to the new values of the letters, eg: máng [mahng], or h ě n [huhn]. In the initial units, where needed, you are provided not only with an idiomatic English translation of Chinese material, but also, in parentheses, with a word-for-word gloss. The latter takes you into the world of Chinese concepts and allows you to under- stand how meanings are composed. The following conventions are used to make the presentation of this information clearer. Summary of conventions a) Parentheses (...) enclose literal meanings, eg: Máng ma ? (‘be+busy Q’) b) Plusses ( + ) indicate one-to-many where needed , eg: nín ‘you+POL’ c) Capitals (Q) indicate grammatical notions , eg: Q for ‘question’; POL for ‘polite’. In cases where there is no easy label for the notion, the Chinese word itself is cited in capitals, with a fuller explanation to appear later: N ǐ ne ? ‘(you NE)’ 34
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Learning Chinese: A Foundation Course in Mandarin Julian K. Wheatley, 4/07 d) Spaces ( ) enclose words, eg: h ě n h ǎ o versus sh ū fu ; used instead of + in literal glosses, eg h ǎ och ī (‘be good-eat’). e) Hyphens ( - ) used in standard pinyin transcription to link certain constituents, eg dì-y ī ‘first’ or m ǎ ma-h ū h ū ‘so-so’. In English glosses, hyphens indicate meanings of the constituent parts of Chinese compounds, eg h ǎ och ī (‘be good-eat’). f) Brackets [ ] indicate pronouns and other material that is obligatorily expressed in one language, not in the other: Máng ma ? ‘Are [you] busy?’ Or they may enclose notes on style or other relevant information: bàng ‘be good; super’ [colloquial]. g) Angle brackets <
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This note was uploaded on 11/11/2011 for the course MATH 180 taught by Professor Byrns during the Spring '11 term at Montgomery College.

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MITRES_21F_003S11_unit01 - Learning Chinese: A Foundation...

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