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Mandarin as standard language
Mandarin formed the basis for the standardization of Chinese language and writing that resulted from the recommendations of the Chinese and Taiwanese governments. It is the standard language of the Chinese people. Spoken Mandarin is based on the regional pronunciation of the Peking dialect. Mandarin is historically rooted in the language of the Han Dynasty, the source of all Chinese dialects. The languages of China’s various regional capitals, however, were spoken beyond their respective regions. In those days only traveling officials, traders and scholars used standard Chinese. Use of the term ‘Mandarin’ to describe the standard language of civil servants first appeared during the Ming and Qing Dynasties. The imperial capital was relocated to Peking in this period, which explains why the Peking dialect spoken there – Mandarin – was elevated to become the standard language of the empire. After the Opium Wars and China’s military defeat at the hands of neighboring Japan, sentiment was high in favor of a common national language that could unify and strengthen the country. After the fall of the Chinese emperor, a body of linguists sought to establish Mandarin as the universal Chinese standard. With the overthrow of the imperial court, these efforts were continued and intensified. Although language diversity in China continued to be supported, oral and written mastery of the Mandarin standard language was made compulsory throughout the country. If you have a need for translations into or from Mandarin, you will find us to be an ideal partner! We will translate your Mandarin texts quickly and professionally!
Characteristics of Mandarin
Standard Chinese, or Mandarin, is a tonal language like all Chinese dialects. Syllables may have as many as four tones or none at all, pronounced atonally. With fewer than five hundred syllables, standard Chinese is a relatively understandable dialect. It is characterized, however, by a great many borrowings from other languages, especially Japanese. Mandarin has also borrowed words from Latin, Italian, Mongolian, English and regional dialects.
Mandarin in today’s China
In spite of the diversity of languages and dialects, Mandarin has become the overall language of the workplace, government and communication in the People’s Republic. Various Chinese ethnic groups located outside northern China learn Mandarin as a foreign language in school and speak it as a second language. Standard Chinese is also the language of the media. Taiwanese is the only other Chinese language to enjoy a certain special status, being tolerated in the media for political and economic reasons. Nevertheless, Mandarin’s position as the official state language and national standard remains undisputed. Today many Chinese learn Mandarin purely out of practical considerations because it offers them the possibility of communicating with fellow countrymen from distant regions. We too have mastered Mandarin and we translate your texts with speed and pinpoint accuracy!
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