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  Pinyin 3 - Vowel-Consonant Combinations



Vowel-Consonant
Groups


an

ang

en

eng

ian

in

iang

ing

iong

ong

uan

un

uang

ueng

üan


ün
a sound between on in pond and an in man

a as in marsh + ng as in ring

like en in hen.

like the ung in sung.

like yen.

like the een in green

ee in see + a in marsh + ng in ring

ee in see + ng in ring

ee in see + u in full + ng in ring

u in full + ng in ring

w in warm + Pinyin an

un as in under

w in warm + Pinyin ang

w in warn + ung in sung

pronounce ee as in see with lips rounded + en as in yen

ee as in see, pronounced with rounded lips, + n


 

There were some typographical shortcuts brought into practice when the Pinyin romanization system was being formulated. A sound which should have been romanized as iou instead became iu; uen became un.

For example, the Pinyin word hui (ability) looks as if it should be pronounced with an h followed by a u and then an i, but listening to a native speaker of Mandarin, one would hear a small difference (if one could aurally slow-motion these rapidly-spoken syllables): h + u + e + i.

This shortening of certain syllabic endings was probably done in the interest of simplification and standardization, but, since Pinyin doesn't reflect an exact Mandarin pronounciation, done at a cost: the spoken word was subtly altered, and differentiations of character pronounciation were generalized.

    The following Pinyin spelling peculiarities can be noted:
  1. When i, u and u are used to begin a Pinyin word, they are written as y, w and yu, respectively.
  2. When the consonants j, q and x are followed by a u, they are usually written without the umlaut (two dots); however, when n follows an n or 1, the umlaut is not omitted.
  3. When iou, uei, or uen are preceded by a consonant, they are written as iu, ui and un, respectively.