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Different tones in the Chinese language

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As mentioned before, tones are an important aspect of the Chinese sound system because they help distinguish the meanings of words. There are four tones in Standard Chinese each with a specific pitch pattern. It is almost like every syllable in Chinese has a fixed “intonation” of itself.

Other than the four tones, there is also the neutral tone which is pronounced lighter and shorter, and it has no tone mark. General rules for marking tones in Hanyu Pinyin will be explained in step 1.19.

Different tones in Chinese language

Malaysian Chinese Features:

Some words, especially the ones with the first tone, are pronounced with different tones in Malaysian Chinese. For example, “吃 chī” (eat) is often pronounced with the fourth tone “cì” rather than the first tone as in standard Chinese. Another example would be the common word “发财 fācái” (get rich) being pronounced as “fàcái”.

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Unlocking the Secrets of the Chinese Language

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