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CHINESE Universal Declaration Of Human Rights
Usage By Country
Total Speakers 885.000.000 (1990)
CHINESE MANDARIN UDHR
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights
1948 年 12 月 10 日，联合国大会通过并颁布《世界人权宣言》。这一具有历史意义的《宣言》颁布后，大会要求所有会员国广为宣传，并且“不分国家或领土的政治地位,主要在各级学校和其他教育机构加以传播、展示、阅读和阐述。”《宣言》全文如下：
Chinese (汉语 / 漢語; Hànyǔ or 中文; Zhōngwén) is a group of related but in many cases mutually unintelligible languagevarieties, which forms one of the branches of the Sino-Tibetan language family. Chinese is spoken by the Han majority and many other ethnic groups in China. More that one billion people, or about one-fifth of the world's population, speak some form of Chinese as their first language.
| National Commission on Language and Script Work
National Languages Committee
Promote Mandarin Council/Speak Mandarin Campaign
Chinese Language Standardisation Council
Varieties of Chinese are usually described by native speakers as dialects of a single Chinese language, but linguists note that they are as diverse as a language family.[a] The internal diversity of Chinese has been likened to that of the Romance languages. There are between 7 and 13 main regional groups of Chinese (depending on classification scheme), of which the most spoken, by far, is Mandarin (about 960 million), followed by Wu (80 million), Yue (60 million) and Min (50 million). Most of these groups are mutually unintelligible, although some, like Xiang and the Southwest Mandarin dialects, may share common terms and some degree of intelligibility. All varieties of Chinese are tonal and analytic.
Standard Chinese (Putonghua/Guoyu/Huayu) is a standardized form of spoken Chinese based on the Beijing dialect of Mandarin. It is the official language of the People's Republic of China (PRC) and the Republic of China (ROC, also known as Taiwan), as well as one of four official languages of Singapore. It is one of the six official languages of the United Nations. Thewritten form of the standard language (中文; Zhōngwén), based on the logograms known as Chinese characters (漢字 / 汉字;hànzi), is shared by literate speakers of otherwise unintelligible dialects.
Of the other varieties of Chinese, Cantonese (the prestige variety of Yue) is influential in Guangdong province and Cantonese-speaking overseas communities and remains one of the official languages of Hong Kong (together with English) and of Macau (together with Portuguese). Min Nan, part of the Min group, is widely spoken in southern Fujian, in neighbouring Taiwan (where it is known as Taiwanese or Hoklo) and in Southeast Asia (also known as Hokkien in the Philippines, Singapore, and Malaysia). There are also sizeable Hakka and Shanghainese diasporas, for example in Taiwan, where most Hakka communities are also conversant in Taiwanese and Standard Chinese.
Recognised minority language in
Chinese is the official language of over 1,1 billion people and, as a mother tongue, it is the most spoken language in the world. With regard to its classification, it is considered an isolated language, though it is the most important one within the Sino-Tibetan superfamily. Chinese is the language of the Han people, the majority ethnic group of China. Modern Standard Chinese is known as "Putonghua" (General Language) in mainland China, and as "Guoyu" (National Language) in Taiwan (Mandarin in English). Like most related languages it is monosyllabic, has very little inflection, and is tonal, assigning to words a distinctive relative pitch or pitch contour. Spoken Chinese comprises many regional varieties. Although they employ a common written form, many are mutually unintelligible. The dialect spoken in Beijing constitutes standard Mandarin, which forms the basis both of the modern written vernacular and of the official spoken language. Main varieties include Wu, Min, Cantonese, and Hakka. As a script, Chinese is derived from picture writing. It is written with thousands of distinctive characters called ideographs which have no relation to the sound of a word. In a large dictionary there are 40-50,000 characters, while the telegraphic code book contains nearly 10,000. The earliest Chinese characters were pictographs, such as a crescent for the moon, or a circle with a dot in the center to represent the sun. Gradually these gave way to non-pictorial ideographs which, in addition to standing for tangible objects, also represented abstract concepts. The majority of Chinese characters, however, consist of two elements: a "signific", which indicates the meaning of a word, and a "phonetic", which indicates the sound. Despite their staggering complexity, the Chinese characters do have the advantage of making written communication possible between people speaking mutually unintelligible dialects and languages. A given word may be quite different in Mandarin and Cantonese, but it would be written identically in the two dialects. Since the Chinese characters are also used in Japanese, each language, when written, is partially intelligible to a speaker of the other, despite the fact that the two spoken languages are totally dissimilar. Numerous attempts have been made over the years to simplify the Chinese system of writing. In the English-speaking world, since 1892, Chinese words have usually been transliterated according to a phonetic spelling system propounded by British scholars Sir Thomas Wade and Herbert Giles. Since 1958 a phonetic romanization known as "Pinyin" (spelling) has had official standing in the People's Republic of China.
Wu (incl. Shanghainese)
Yue (incl. Cantonese, Taishanese)
|ISO 639-2||chi (B)
|ISO 639-3||zho – inclusive code
cdo – Min Dong
cjy – Jinyu
cmn – Mandarin
cpx – Pu Xian
czh – Huizhou
czo – Min Zhong
gan – Gan
hak – Hakka
hsn – Xiang
mnp – Min Bei
nan – Min Nan
wuu – Wu
yue – Yue
och – Old Chinese
ltc – Late Middle Chinese
lzh – Classical Chinese
Most linguists classify all the varieties of Chinese language as part of the Sino-Tibetan language family and believe that there was an original Proto-Sino-Tibetan language from which the Sinitic and Tibeto-Burman languages descended. The relation between Chinese and other Sino-Tibetan languages is an area of active research, as is the attempt to reconstruct the proto-language. The main difficulty in this effort is that, while there is enough documentation to allow one to reconstruct the ancient Chinese sounds, there is no written documentation that records the division between Proto-Sino-Tibetan and ancient Chinese. In addition, many of the older languages that would allow us to reconstruct Proto-Sino-Tibetan are very poorly understood and many of the techniques developed for analysis of the descent of the (fusional) Indo-European languages from Proto-Indo-European do not apply to Chinese, an analytic language, because of the paucity of inflectional morphemes in modern varieties.
Categorization of the development of Chinese is a subject of scholarly debate.
Old Chinese was the language common during the early and middle Zhou dynasty (1046–256 BCE), texts of which include inscriptions on bronze artifacts, the Classic of Poetry and portions of the Book of Documents and I Ching. The rhymes of theClassic of Poetry and the phonetic elements found in the majority of Chinese characters provide hints to their Old Chinese pronunciations. Work on reconstructing Old Chinese started with Qing dynasty philologists. The first complete reconstruction was devised by the Swedish linguist Bernhard Karlgren in the early 1900s; most present systems rely heavily on Karlgren's insights and methods. Old Chinese was not wholly uninflected. It possessed a rich sound system in which aspiration andvoicing differentiated the consonants, but probably was still without tones.
Some early Indo-European loan-words in Chinese have been proposed, notably 蜜 mì "honey", 獅 shī "lion," and perhaps also馬 mǎ "horse", 豬 zhū "pig", 犬 quǎn "dog", and 鵝 é "goose". Reconstructions of Old Chinese are not definitive, so this hypothesis is tentative.[b] The source also notes that southern dialects of Chinese have more monosyllabic words than the Mandarin Chinese dialects.
Middle Chinese was the language used during Southern and Northern Dynasties and the Sui, Tang, and Song dynasties (6th through 10th centuries CE). 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 to summarize the Qieyun system. Linguists are more confident of having reconstructed how Middle Chinese sounded. The evidence for the pronunciation of Middle Chinese comes from several sources: modern dialect variations, rhyming dictionaries and tables, foreign transliterations, and Chinese phonetic translations of foreign words. The pronunciation of the borrowed Chinese words in Japanese, Vietnamese and Korean also provide valuable insights.
The development of the spoken Chinese languages from early historical times to the present has been complex. Most Chinese people, in Sichuan and in a broad arc from the north-east (Manchuria) to the south-west (Yunnan), use various Mandarin dialects as their home language. The prevalence of Mandarin throughout northern China is largely due to north China's plains. By contrast, the mountains and rivers of middle and southern China promoted linguistic diversity.
Until the mid-20th century, most southern Chinese only spoke their native local variety of Chinese. As Nanjing was the capitalduring the early Ming dynasty, Nanjing Mandarin became dominant at least until the later years of the Qing dynasty. Since the 17th century, the Qing dynasty had set up orthoepy academies (正音书院／正音書院; Zhèngyīn Shūyuàn) to make pronunciation conform to the standard of the capital Beijing. For the general population, however, this had limited effect. The non-Mandarin speakers in southern China also continued to use their various languages for every aspect of life. The Beijing Mandarin court standard was used solely by officials and civil servants and was thus fairly limited.
This situation did not change until the mid-20th century with the creation (in both the PRC and the ROC, but not in Hong Kong) of a compulsory educational system committed to teaching Mandarin. As a result, Mandarin is now spoken by virtually all young and middle-aged citizens of mainland China and on Taiwan. Cantonese, not Mandarin, was used in Hong Kong during the time of its British colonial period (owing to its large Cantonese native and migrant populace) and remains today its official language of education, formal speech, and daily life, but Mandarin has become increasingly influential since the 1997 handover.
The term sinophone, coined in 2005 in analogy to anglophone and francophone, refers to those who speak at least one Chinese language natively, or prefer it as a medium of communication. The term is derived from Sinae, the Latin word for ancient China.
VARIETIES OF CHINESE
Jerry Norman estimated that there are hundreds of mutually unintelligible varieties of Chinese. These varieties form a dialect continuum, in which differences in speech generally become more pronounced as distances increase, though the rate of change varies immensely. Generally, mountainous South China displays more linguistic diversity than the North China Plain. In parts of South China, a major city's dialect may only be marginally intelligible to close neighbours. For instance, Wuzhou is about 120 miles upstream from Guangzhou, but its dialect is more like that of Guangzhou than is that of Taishan, 60 miles southwest of Guangzhou and separated from it by several rivers. In parts ofFujian the speech of neighbouring counties or even villages may be mutually unintelligible
Local varieties of Chinese are conventionally classified into seven dialect groups, largely on the basis of the different evolution of Middle Chinese voiced initials:
Mandarin, including Standard Chinese
Wu, including Shanghainese
Yue, including Cantonese and Taishanese
The classification of Li Rong, which is used in the Language Atlas of China (1987), distinguishes three further groups:
Jin, previously included in Mandarin.
Huizhou, previously included in Wu.
Pinghua, previously included in Yue.
Credit : wikipedia.org | ohchr.org