2010/11/30

Formosan (Taiwanese) 101: Lesson 1

Formosan (Taiwanese) 101: Lesson 1

I am teaching some folks Formosan. As we are not able to find material in our preferred Formosan spelling system, a system invented by Mr. Pai Chou (aka Saru), I am doing it myself.

I will keep updating this page by posting the audio files.

Formosan: [.e\hiao.vo?]/[-liao\gai.vo?]

Việt Nam: Có hiểu không?

English: Do you understand?

Formosan: [.e\hiao]

Việt Nam: Có hiểu.

Yes, I understand.

Formosan: [.ve\hiao]

Việt Nam: Không hiểu.

English: No, I do not understand.

Formosan: [=si.vo?]/[-gam=si?]

Việt Nam: Có phải không?

English: Is this right?

Formosan: [=si]

Việt Nam: Phải

English: Right.

Formosan: [.m=si]
Việt Nam: Không phải
English: No, this is not it.

Formosan: ['di"o=vo?]
Việt Nam: Có đúng không?
English: Is it correct?

Formosan: ['di"o]
Việt Nam: Đúng
English: Yes, it is correct.

Formosan: [.m'di"o]
Việt Nam: Không đúng
English: No, it is incorrect.

The square brackets ([])signifies the beginning and the end of Taiwanese. The double quote (") before a vowel works as German umlaut.

The symbol before each syllable marks the intonation:
  1. -:
    Equivalent to the first tone from Mandarin Chinese. High flat tone.
    For example:
    FormosanEnglish漢字Pronunciation
    [-hong]wind
    [-sin]new
    [-tni]sky/heaven
    [-o]black
    [-pang]aroma
    [-dni]sweet
    [-bi"eng]ice
    [-syng]sour
    [-ju]book
  2. =:
    Does not exist in Mandarin Chinese. It is a flat tone slightly lower than -. Middle flat tone.
    For example:
    FormosanEnglish漢字Pronunciation
    [=ho]rain
  3. /:
    Equivalent to the second tone from Mandarin Chinese.
    For example:
    FormosanEnglish漢字Pronunciation
    [/lang]human/person/people
    [/hun]cloud
    Clouds Drift Over from the Other Side of the Mountain:

    “雲從山的那邊来”“風停雨去相思來”
  4. .:
    Equivalent to the third tone from Mandarin Chinese. Low flat tone.
    For example:
    FormosanEnglish漢字Pronunciation
    [.kun]sleep
  5. \:
    Equivalent to the fourth tone from Mandarin Chinese.
    For example:
    FormosanEnglish漢字Pronunciation
    [\h"o]good
  6. ':
    The higher Ru tone. Does not exist in Mandarin Chinese. It is sound that ends abruptly, similar to Japanese spelling with two consonants at the end of the syllable.
    For example:
    FormosanEnglish漢字Pronunciation
    ['jia]eat
  7. ,:
    The lower Ru tone.
    For example:
    FormosanEnglish漢字Pronunciation
    [,va]meat

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