Pinyin: Lesson Three

Pinyin: Lesson Three
Initials 1

Chinese Phonetic Alphabet
 Hànyǔ Pīnyīn Fāng'àn.

Pinyin Lesson Three

Initials 1

Initials 1:
‘b’ ‘p’ ‘m’ ‘f’

        b     p      m     f
a     bā   pá   mǎ   fà
o     bō   pó   mǒ   fò
e     ---   ----     me   ---
i      bī    pí     mǐ    ---
u    bū   pú    mǔ   fù
ü    ---    ----    ----     ---

An initials is the first consonant of a syllable.

Each initial represent one sound.

Some initials are represented by two-letters, e.g., ‘zh’ ‘ch’ and ‘sh’.

Most sounds are similar to English sounds, but not exactly identical. For example, the sound ‘b’ in Chinese is not voiced. It is a voiceless sound as ‘p’ in English word ‘speak’. The sound ‘p’ is an aspirated voiceless sound as ‘p’ in English word ‘peak’.

Please pay close attention to each sound when you learn. The following sounds need more attention:

 j    a consonant, as 'j' in ‘jeep’ but not aspirated
q    a consonant, as 'ch' in ‘cheek’
x    a consonant, as 'sh' in ‘she’
zh  a consonant, as 'j' in ‘jump’ with retroflexed tongue
ch  a consomant, as 'ch' in ‘church’, strongly aspirated and retroflexed
sh  a consonant, as 'sh' in ‘shore’, retroflexed
z    a consonant, as 'ts' but not aspirated
c    a consonant, as 'ts' in ‘bats’, strongly aspirated