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Archive for 'Pinyin & romanisation'

The naming of “New North City”

On 25 December this year Taipei County will be upgraded to a special municipality. The Chinese-language name of the new municipality will be Xīnběi Shì (新北市). About a month ago I sent an e-mail to Taipei County Commissioner Chou Hsi-wei enquiring about the official English name of the new municipality but received no reply. A story [...]

Taiwanese class at Shi-Da

Today I had my first Taiwanese language class at Shi-Da. Shi-Da offers the class as one of the cultural classes. They also have classes in calligraphy, name chop engraving and a few others.  I have made sporadic efforts at studying Taiwanese but so far I haven't got beyond learning a few of the most common [...]

At the book fair

Russian Literature is the theme of the 2007 Book Exhibition  I went to the Taipei International Book Exhibition today. There were plenty of books there to see (and buy). The exhibition can rightly call itself international as there were stands from many different countries in the international section including Australia, Iran and Poland.  Far East [...]

The difficulties of studying Chinese in Taiwan

Today's Taipei Times has a big article on studying Chinese in Taiwan in the features section. Jules Quartly writes,  Over the past three years the number of students studying Chinese in Taiwan has risen by around 1,500 to 9,143, according to MOE statistics. This is a 5 percent annual increase, but set against the explosion [...]

Book review: ABC Chinese-English Dictionary

ABC Chinese-English Dictionaryedited by John DeFrancisUniversity of Hawai'i Press, Honolulu, 1999 (pocket edition)ISBN: 0824821548Cost: NT$630 at Caves Books, Taipei I earlier reviewed the Far East Pinyin Chinese-English Dictionary. The ABC Dictionary actually takes the organisation of Chinese words by pinyin a step further. Rather than just indexing characters by pinyin it indexes individual words by [...]

The bomb and the big mistake

Below are photos of a couple of interesting signs I saw while while in Tainan.  The above sign could perhaps best be described as Chinese with Japanese characteristics. The first two characters, inside the picture of the bomb, are 炸彈 (zhàdàn). However, the form of dàn is actually Kanji rather than the traditional (彈) or [...]

Recommended website #3: is undoubtedly the best resource available to understand the romanisation of Mandarin Chinese. This is especially important in Taiwan where romanisation is used inconsistently and there are several different systems in use.  I am sure most readers of this blog will have read Pinyin News at some time or another. The blog section of [...]