Browsing All posts tagged under »Mandarin Chinese«

Gesundheit! Yì Băi Suì! We all fall down.

February 28, 2011

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One of the delights of moving to a new country is learning how to react to events in the local way, with all the things that come with learning a new language. What do you say, for example, if you stub your toe? Get a fright? Or smell something untoward? And my favourite, what you […]

Gaddafi? Qaddafi? Kaddafi? Let’s call the whole thing off!

February 21, 2011

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Have you ever been lost in transliteration? You’re not alone. And you don’t need to tell me about it. Russian’s 33 letters do not fit perfectly into English’s 26. Arabic fits even more awkwardly. Chinese can be fun, too. Why? Well, for one – alphabets don’t match because the underlying sound systems don’t match. We […]