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Thread: Pronunciation

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    Pronunciation

    Just started Chinese martial arts a couple months ago and really enjoying it. Something I've had trouble in in pronouncing Chinese words. I'm confident in my pronunciation of sifu, but not so much of sihing, sigung and sijo. I've tried looking the pronunciation but have had failed attempts. Any insight of the pronunciation of these words will be a great help.
    "The fastest draw is when the sword never leaves the scabbard. The strongest block is not to provoke a blow. And the cleanest cut is the one withheld."
    "A distraction is only a distraction if you pay attention to it."



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    Re: Pronunciation

    Quote Originally Posted by Zakky View Post
    Just started Chinese martial arts a couple months ago and really enjoying it. Something I've had trouble in in pronouncing Chinese words. I'm confident in my pronunciation of sifu, but not so much of sihing, sigung and sijo. I've tried looking the pronunciation but have had failed attempts. Any insight of the pronunciation of these words will be a great help.
    Pretty much how you see it is how it is. Those three are pretty straight forward & don't take any special sounds...

    sihing = see heeng
    sigung = see gung
    sijo = see joe

    That should get you by nicely. Obviously if you wanted to study Cantonese, found out your sifu's dialect & learn it properly, but if not, you should be good with that.
    I know lots of people don't favor forms training too much, but I personally like the way it gives me a CLF aftertaste...
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    Re: Pronunciation

    Quote Originally Posted by clfsean View Post
    Pretty much how you see it is how it is. Those three are pretty straight forward & don't take any special sounds...

    sihing = see heeng
    sigung = see gung
    sijo = see joe

    That should get you by nicely. Obviously if you wanted to study Cantonese, found out your sifu's dialect & learn it properly, but if not, you should be good with that.
    Unless you are talking Mandarin, particularly Beijing Mandarin

    Sifu (Shifu) = Shr foo
    sihing = shr heeng
    sigung = shr gung
    sijo = shr joe

    But there are also tonal differences to take into consideration if you are looking for perfect pronunciation, but the majority of Chinese Sifu types are pretty forgiving to us when it comes to our pronunciations.

    And dialect makes a big difference in pronunciation

    My sanda sifus pronounces Sanda more like Shanda he is from way north China.
    My family in Beijing says Sanda. But both pronounce Xingyiquan like Shing-yee-chuan
    But my Taiji Sifu from the south pronounces Xingyiquan like yin-yee-chaun. And yet I think they all pretty much call Bagua… Bogwah.

    It really, as clfsean said, depends on your sifu's dialect
    .
    - If you train martial arts without training deep skill, you will arrive at old age with nothing - Di Guoyong
    - A man who views the world the same at fifty as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life. - Muhammad Ali
    - Last of the original Four Heroic Cynical Curmudgeons

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    Re: Pronunciation

    While we're on the subject, how do you pronounce your name, Xue Sheng? I've always wanted to know.
    "Nothing happens to any man that he is not formed by nature to bear."
    - Marcus Aurelius?

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    Re: Pronunciation

    Quote Originally Posted by CoryKS View Post
    While we're on the subject, how do you pronounce your name, Xue Sheng? I've always wanted to know.
    Shway Shung (it means student)

    But there is a tone or 2 in there and I think it is 2 and 4 (/ and \) or possibly 3 and 4 ( U and \) but I need to look that up

    Mandarin tones - / U \

    Edit:

    Sorry it is 2 and 1
    Xu shēng (学生)
    Last edited by Xue Sheng; 06-05-2009 at 10:18 AM.
    .
    - If you train martial arts without training deep skill, you will arrive at old age with nothing - Di Guoyong
    - A man who views the world the same at fifty as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life. - Muhammad Ali
    - Last of the original Four Heroic Cynical Curmudgeons

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    Re: Pronunciation

    Also you can learn Pinyin:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pinyin

    Another thing to learn is Tones
    http://mandarin.about.com/od/pronunciation/a/tones.htm

    Another thing is Hanzi:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_character

    Hanzi is great for example here are 2 Rens:

    人=man 妊=pregnant

    But my Chinese is terrible compared to my Japanese.

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    Re: Pronunciation

    Quote Originally Posted by Xue Sheng View Post
    Shway Shung (it means student)

    But there is a tone or 2 in there and I think it is 2 and 4 (/ and \) or possibly 3 and 4 ( U and \) but I need to look that up

    Mandarin tones - / U \

    Edit:

    Sorry it is 2 and 1
    Xu shēng (学生)
    Does Toedai also mean student in Chinese? If so, do you know what dialect?
    "You can't teach a man anything, you can only help him find it within himself" --Galileo

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    Re: Pronunciation

    Quote Originally Posted by phfman View Post
    Does Toedai also mean student in Chinese? If so, do you know what dialect?
    Yeah todai is student too... I've always heard it from the south so maybe Cantonese or something from the area. it may be from up North & just adapted down south... who knows....
    I know lots of people don't favor forms training too much, but I personally like the way it gives me a CLF aftertaste...
    ******************************
    Message: Due to the ongoing Recession, God has decided the light at the end of the tunnel will be shut off due to power costs. That is all.

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    Re: Pronunciation

    Quote Originally Posted by phfman View Post
    Does Toedai also mean student in Chinese? If so, do you know what dialect?
    That I will have to ask my wife

    student

    学员[xu yun] student
    学生[xu sheng] student

    初学者[chū xu zhě] beginning student
    大学生[d xu sheng] university student
    实习生[sh x sheng] intern (student)
    小学生[xiǎo xu shēng] (n) student in primary school; schoolchild
    教学[jio xu] education; teacher and student
    留学生[li xu shēng] (foreign) exchange student; student studying abroad
    研究生[yn jiū shēng] graduate student
    高中生[gāo zhōng shēng] senior high school student
    .
    - If you train martial arts without training deep skill, you will arrive at old age with nothing - Di Guoyong
    - A man who views the world the same at fifty as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life. - Muhammad Ali
    - Last of the original Four Heroic Cynical Curmudgeons

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    Re: Pronunciation

    Sounds like it looks, seems quite simple now that I look at it cheers for the help, appreciate it. Another thing I forgot to mention was how to pronounce 'Sun Tzu'?. Is it pronoucned like it sounds, like the others or more complex?
    "The fastest draw is when the sword never leaves the scabbard. The strongest block is not to provoke a blow. And the cleanest cut is the one withheld."
    "A distraction is only a distraction if you pay attention to it."



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    Re: Pronunciation

    Quote Originally Posted by Zakky View Post
    Sounds like it looks, seems quite simple now that I look at it cheers for the help, appreciate it. Another thing I forgot to mention was how to pronounce 'Sun Tzu'?. Is it pronoucned like it sounds, like the others or more complex?
    I've heard both "Sun Ssu", "Sun Zu" & other close variations.... regions again or the Chinese just being polite while we butcher their languages.
    I know lots of people don't favor forms training too much, but I personally like the way it gives me a CLF aftertaste...
    ******************************
    Message: Due to the ongoing Recession, God has decided the light at the end of the tunnel will be shut off due to power costs. That is all.

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    Re: Pronunciation

    I've heard both "Sun Ssu", "Sun Zu" & other close variations.... regions again or the Chinese just being polite while we butcher their languages.
    Ah silent 't', the way I was trying to say it was horrible, 'Soon Twuzz' . Thanks for the clear up.
    Last edited by Zakky; 06-05-2009 at 03:17 PM.
    "The fastest draw is when the sword never leaves the scabbard. The strongest block is not to provoke a blow. And the cleanest cut is the one withheld."
    "A distraction is only a distraction if you pay attention to it."



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    Re: Pronunciation

    In Beijing Sun Tzu is closer to Swin Za or su-in za (hard to actualy write that one phonetically, it is easier to say

    The art of war is swin za bing fa
    .
    - If you train martial arts without training deep skill, you will arrive at old age with nothing - Di Guoyong
    - A man who views the world the same at fifty as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life. - Muhammad Ali
    - Last of the original Four Heroic Cynical Curmudgeons

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    Re: Pronunciation

    In Beijing Sun Tzu is closer to Swin Za or su-in za (hard to actualy write that one phonetically, it is easier to say

    The art of war is swin za bing fa
    Is Mandarin spoken more in Beijing?
    "The fastest draw is when the sword never leaves the scabbard. The strongest block is not to provoke a blow. And the cleanest cut is the one withheld."
    "A distraction is only a distraction if you pay attention to it."



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    Re: Pronunciation

    Quote Originally Posted by Zakky View Post
    Is Mandarin spoken more in Beijing?
    Mandarin is spoken more in the North it is just that most Beijingren feel their mandarin is perfect Mandarin because...well... it’s Beijing.

    I am not all that good a showing the differences but my guess (this may be a poor example) is with something like Sifu most mandarin speakers would say seefoo where Beijing Mandarin says Shrfoo. There are more 'r' sounds in Beijing Mandarin. there us another word that is pronounced Hway by just about all other Mandarin speakers that in Beijing is pronounced Hwar. Also there is indigenous Beijing slang that I will not get into here

    I have been talking (what little I know) to other people who speak mandarin (native Chinese) and they look at me perplexed for a minute and then say… do you know you are speaking with a Beijing Accent. It confuses them a bit apparently to have a westerner speaking Beijing mandarin, yet when my wife says anything they don’t mention it at all.

    Now go further South it becomes Cantonese and all bets are off. Chinese is more of a language family than a language; Mandarin, Wu, Min, Cantonese, Xiang, Hakka, Gan to name a few and each dialect has sub dialects. And to make it more confusing the dialects cannot understand one another generally. For example a Cantonese Speaker can’t understand a Mandarin speaker but they all share the same written language.
    .
    - If you train martial arts without training deep skill, you will arrive at old age with nothing - Di Guoyong
    - A man who views the world the same at fifty as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life. - Muhammad Ali
    - Last of the original Four Heroic Cynical Curmudgeons

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