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Mandarin and Dialects
07/11/2008 18:56:34    Author : Yu    Browse : 813

Spoken Chinese comprises many regional variants, the largest of which are Mandarin, Wu, Cantonese, and Min. These sub-groups of the Chinese spoken language are, for the most part, not mutually intelligible.
Although the English word dialect is often used to translate the Chinese term fangyan (literally "regional speech"), the differences between the major variants Chinese are great enough that they are mutually unintelligible, a criterion used by many linguists to distinguish different languages from dialects of a single language. However, most Chinese view them as variants of a single Chinese language, which is often a prime consideration of a dialect.
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