Hanyu Pinyin abbreviated to pinyin, is the official romanization system for Standard Chinese in mainland China and to some extent in Taiwan. It is used to teach Standard Mandarin Chinese, written using Chinese characters; the system includes four diacritics denoting tones. Pinyin without tone marks is used to spell Chinese names and words in languages written with the Latin alphabet, in certain computer input methods to enter Chinese characters; the pinyin system was developed in the 1950s by many linguists, including Zhou Youguang, based on earlier forms of romanizations of Chinese. It was published by revised several times; the International Organization for Standardization adopted pinyin as an international standard in 1982, was followed by the United Nations in 1986. The system was adopted as the official standard in Taiwan in 2009, where it is used for international events rather than for educational or computer-input purposes, but "some cities and organizations, notably in the south of Taiwan, did not accept this", so it remains one of several rival romanization systems in use.
The word Hànyǔ means'the spoken language of the Han people', while Pīnyīn means'spelled sounds'. In 1605, the Jesuit missionary Matteo Ricci published Xizi Qiji in Beijing; this was the first book to use the Roman alphabet to write the Chinese language. Twenty years another Jesuit in China, Nicolas Trigault, issued his Xi Ru Ermu Zi at Hangzhou. Neither book had much immediate impact on the way in which Chinese thought about their writing system, the romanizations they described were intended more for Westerners than for the Chinese. One of the earliest Chinese thinkers to relate Western alphabets to Chinese was late Ming to early Qing dynasty scholar-official, Fang Yizhi; the first late Qing reformer to propose that China adopt a system of spelling was Song Shu. A student of the great scholars Yu Yue and Zhang Taiyan, Song had been to Japan and observed the stunning effect of the kana syllabaries and Western learning there; this galvanized him into activity on a number of fronts, one of the most important being reform of the script.
While Song did not himself create a system for spelling Sinitic languages, his discussion proved fertile and led to a proliferation of schemes for phonetic scripts. The Wade–Giles system was produced by Thomas Wade in 1859, further improved by Herbert Giles in the Chinese–English Dictionary of 1892, it was popular and used in English-language publications outside China until 1979. In the early 1930s, Communist Party of China leaders trained in Moscow introduced a phonetic alphabet using Roman letters, developed in the Soviet Oriental Institute of Leningrad and was intended to improve literacy in the Russian Far East; this Sin Wenz or "New Writing" was much more linguistically sophisticated than earlier alphabets, but with the major exception that it did not indicate tones of Chinese. In 1940, several thousand members attended a Border Region Sin Wenz Society convention. Mao Zedong and Zhu De, head of the army, both contributed their calligraphy for the masthead of the Sin Wenz Society's new journal.
Outside the CCP, other prominent supporters included Sun Fo. Over thirty journals soon appeared written in Sin Wenz, plus large numbers of translations, some contemporary Chinese literature, a spectrum of textbooks. In 1940, the movement reached an apex when Mao's Border Region Government declared that the Sin Wenz had the same legal status as traditional characters in government and public documents. Many educators and political leaders looked forward to the day when they would be universally accepted and replace Chinese characters. Opposition arose, because the system was less well adapted to writing regional languages, therefore would require learning Mandarin. Sin Wenz fell into relative disuse during the following years. In 1943, the U. S. military engaged Yale University to develop a romanization of Mandarin Chinese for its pilots flying over China. The resulting system is close to pinyin, but does not use English letters in unfamiliar ways. Medial semivowels are written with y and w, apical vowels with r or z.
Accent marks are used to indicate tone. Pinyin was created by Chinese linguists, including Zhou Youguang, as part of a Chinese government project in the 1950s. Zhou is called "the father of pinyin," Zhou worked as a banker in New York when he decided to return to China to help rebuild the country after the establishment of the People's Republic of China in 1949, he became an economics professor in Shanghai, in 1955, when China's Ministry of Education created a Committee for the Reform of the Chinese Written Language, Premier Zhou Enlai assigned Zhou Youguang the task of developing a new romanization system, despite the fact that he was not a professional linguist. Hanyu Pinyin was based on several existing systems: Gwoyeu Romatzyh of 1928, Latinxua Sin Wenz of 1931, the diacritic markings from zhuyin. "I'm not the father of pinyin," Zhou said years later. It's a lo
Reconstructions of Old Chinese
Although Old Chinese is known from written records beginning around 1200 BC, the logographic script provides much more indirect and partial information about the pronunciation of the language than alphabetic systems used elsewhere. Several authors have produced reconstructions of Old Chinese phonology, beginning with the Swedish sinologist Bernard Karlgren in the 1940s and continuing to the present day; the method introduced by Karlgren is unique, comparing categories implied by ancient rhyming practice and the structure of Chinese characters with descriptions in medieval rhyme dictionaries, though more recent approaches have incorporated other kinds of evidence. Although the various notations appear to be different, they correspond with each other on most points. By the 1970s, it was agreed that Old Chinese had fewer points of articulation than Middle Chinese, a set of voiceless sonorants, labiovelar and labio-laryngeal initials. Since the 1990s, most authors have agreed on a six-vowel system and a re-organized system of liquids.
Earlier systems proposed voiced final stops to account for contacts between stop-final syllables and other tones, but many investigators now believe that Old Chinese lacked tonal distinctions, with Middle Chinese tones derived from consonant clusters at the end of the syllable. The major sources for the sounds of Old Chinese, covering most of the lexicon, are the sound system of Middle Chinese, the structure of Chinese characters, the rhyming patterns of the Classic of Poetry, dating from the early part of the 1st millennium BC. Several other kinds of evidence provide valuable clues; these include Min dialects, early Chinese transcriptions of foreign names, early loans between Chinese and neighbouring languages, families of Chinese words that appear to be related. Middle Chinese, or more Early Middle Chinese, is the phonological system of the Qieyun, a rhyme dictionary published in 601, with many revisions and expansions over the following centuries; these dictionaries set out to codify the pronunciations of characters to be used when reading the classics.
They indicated pronunciation using the fanqie method, dividing a syllable into an initial consonant and the rest, called the final. In his Qièyùn kǎo, the Cantonese scholar Chen Li performed a systematic analysis of a redaction of the Qieyun, identifying its initial and final categories, though not the sounds they represented. Scholars have attempted to determine the phonetic content of the various distinctions by comparing them with rhyme tables from the Song dynasty, pronunciations in modern varieties and loans in Korean and Vietnamese, but many details regarding the finals are still disputed. According to its preface, the Qieyun did not reflect a single contemporary dialect, but incorporated distinctions made in different parts of China at the time; the fact that the Qieyun system contains more distinctions than any single contemporary form of speech means that it retains additional information about the history of the language. The large number of initials and finals are unevenly distributed, suggesting hypotheses about earlier forms of Chinese.
For example, it includes 37 initials, but in the early 20th century Huang Kan observed that only 19 of them occurred with a wide range of finals, implying that the others were in some sense secondary developments. The logographic Chinese writing system does not use symbols for individual sounds as is done an alphabetic system. However, the vast majority of characters are phono-semantic compounds, in which a word is written by combining a character for a sounding word with a semantic indicator. Characters sharing a phonetic element are still pronounced alike, as in the character 中, adapted to write the words chōng and zhōng. In other cases the words in a phonetic series have different sounds both in Middle Chinese and in modern varieties. Since the sounds are assumed to have been similar at the time the characters were chosen, such relationships give clues to the lost sounds; the first systematic study of the structure of Chinese characters was Xu Shen's Shuowen Jiezi. The Shuowen was based on the small seal script standardized in the Qin dynasty.
Earlier characters from oracle bones and Zhou bronze inscriptions reveal relationships that were obscured in forms. Rhyme has been a consistent feature of Chinese poetry. While much old poetry still rhymes in modern varieties of Chinese, Chinese scholars have long noted exceptions; this was attributed to lax rhyming practice of early poets until the late-Ming dynasty scholar Chen Di argued that a former consistency had been obscured by sound change. This implied that the rhyming practice of ancient poets recorded information about their pronunciation. Scholars have studied various bodies of poetry to identify classes of rhyming words at different periods; the oldest such collection is the Shijing, containing songs ranging from the 10th to 7th centuries BC. The systematic study of Old Chinese rhymes began in the 17th century, when Gu Yanwu divided the rhyming words of the Shijing into ten groups. Gu's analysis was refined by Qing dynasty philologists increasing the number of rhyme groups. One of these scholars, Duan Yucai, stated the important principle that characters in the same phonetic series would be in the same rhyme group, making it possible to assign all words to rhyme groups.
A final revision by Wang Li in the 1930s produced the standard set of 31 rhyme groups. The Min dialects are believed to have split off before the Middle Chinese stage, because they contain distinctions that cannot be derived from th
Confucius was a Chinese teacher, editor and philosopher of the Spring and Autumn period of Chinese history. The philosophy of Confucius known as Confucianism, emphasized personal and governmental morality, correctness of social relationships and sincerity, his followers competed with many other schools during the Hundred Schools of Thought era only to be suppressed in favor of the Legalists during the Qin dynasty. Following the victory of Han over Chu after the collapse of Qin, Confucius's thoughts received official sanction and were further developed into a system known in the West as Neo-Confucianism, New Confucianism. Confucius is traditionally credited with having authored or edited many of the Chinese classic texts including all of the Five Classics, but modern scholars are cautious of attributing specific assertions to Confucius himself. Aphorisms concerning his teachings were compiled in the Analects, but only many years after his death. Confucius's principles have commonality with Chinese belief.
He championed strong family loyalty, ancestor veneration, respect of elders by their children and of husbands by their wives, recommending family as a basis for ideal government. He espoused the well-known principle "Do not do unto others what you do not want done to yourself", the Golden Rule, he is a traditional deity in Daoism. Confucius is considered as one of the most important and influential individuals in shaping human history, his teaching and philosophy impacted people around the world and remains influential today. The name "Confucius" is a Latinized form of the Mandarin Chinese "Kǒng Fūzǐ", was coined in the late 16th century by the early Jesuit missionaries to China. Confucius's clan name was "Kǒng", his given name was "Qiū", his "capping name", given upon reaching adulthood and by which he would have been known to all but his older family members, was "Zhòngní", the "Zhòng" indicating that he was the second son in his family. It is thought that Confucius was born on September 28, 551 BC, in the district of Zou near present-day Qufu, China.
The area was notionally controlled by the kings of Zhou but independent under the local lords of Lu. His father Kong He was an elderly commandant of the local Lu garrison, his ancestry traced back through the dukes of Song to the Shang dynasty. Traditional accounts of Confucius's life relate that Kong He's grandfather had migrated the family from Song to Lu. Kong He died when Confucius was three years old, Confucius was raised by his mother Yan Zhengzai in poverty, his mother would die at less than 40 years of age. At age 19 he married Qiguan, a year the couple had their first child, Kong Li. Qiguan and Confucius would have two daughters together, one of whom is thought to have died as a child. Confucius was educated at schools for commoners, where he learned the Six Arts. Confucius was born into the class between the aristocracy and the common people, he is said to have worked in various government jobs during his early 20s, as a bookkeeper and a caretaker of sheep and horses, using the proceeds to give his mother a proper burial.
When his mother died, Confucius is said to have mourned for three years. In Confucius's time, the state of Lu was headed by a ruling ducal house. Under the duke were three aristocratic families, whose heads bore the title of viscount and held hereditary positions in the Lu bureaucracy; the Ji family held the position "Minister over the Masses", the "Prime Minister". In the winter of 505 BC, Yang Hu—a retainer of the Ji family—rose up in rebellion and seized power from the Ji family. However, by the summer of 501 BC, the three hereditary families had succeeded in expelling Yang Hu from Lu. By Confucius had built up a considerable reputation through his teachings, while the families came to see the value of proper conduct and righteousness, so they could achieve loyalty to a legitimate government. Thus, that year, Confucius came to be appointed to the minor position of governor of a town, he rose to the position of Minister of Crime. Confucius desired to return the authority of the state to the duke by dismantling the fortifications of the city—strongholds belonging to the three families.
This way, he could establish a centralized government. However, Confucius relied on diplomacy as he had no military authority himself. In 500 BC, Hou Fan—the governor of Hou—revolted against his lord of the Shu family. Although the Meng and Shu families unsuccessfully besieged Hou, a loyalist official rose up with the people of Hou and forced Hou Fan to flee to the Qi state; the situation may have been in favor for Confucius as this made it possible for Confucius and his disciples to convince the aristocratic families to dismantle the fortifications of their cities. After a year and a half and his disciples succeeded in convincing the Shu family to raze the walls of Hou, the Ji family in razing the walls of Bi, the Meng family in razing the walls of Cheng. First, the Shu family led an army towards their city Hou and tore down its walls in 498 BC. Soon thereafter, Gongshan Furao or Buniu, a retainer of the Ji family and took control of the forces at Bi, he launched an attack and entered the capital Lu.
Earlier, Gongshan had approached Confucius to join him. Though he disapproved
National Library of the Czech Republic
The National Library of the Czech Republic is the central library of the Czech Republic. It is directed by the Ministry of Culture; the library's main building is located in the historical Clementinum building in Prague, where half of its books are kept. The other half of the collection is stored in the district of Hostivař; the National Library is the biggest library in the Czech Republic, in its funds there are around 6 million documents. The library has around 60,000 registered readers; as well as Czech texts, the library stores older material from Turkey and India. The library houses books for Charles University in Prague; the library won international recognition in 2005 as it received the inaugural Jikji Prize from UNESCO via the Memory of the World Programme for its efforts in digitising old texts. The project, which commenced in 1992, involved the digitisation of 1,700 documents in its first 13 years; the most precious medieval manuscripts preserved in the National Library are the Codex Vyssegradensis and the Passional of Abbes Kunigunde.
In 2006 the Czech parliament approved funding for the construction of a new library building on Letna plain, between Hradčanská metro station and Sparta Prague's football ground, Letná stadium. In March 2007, following a request for tender, Czech architect Jan Kaplický was selected by a jury to undertake the project, with a projected completion date of 2011. In 2007 the project was delayed following objections regarding its proposed location from government officials including Prague Mayor Pavel Bém and President Václav Klaus. Plans for the building had still not been decided in February 2008, with the matter being referred to the Office for the Protection of Competition in order to determine if the tender had been won fairly. In 2008, Minister of Culture Václav Jehlička announced the end of the project, following a ruling from the European Commission that the tender process had not been carried out legally; the library was affected by the 2002 European floods, with some documents moved to upper levels to avoid the excess water.
Over 4,000 books were removed from the library in July 2011 following flooding in parts of the main building. There was a fire at the library in December 2012. List of national and state libraries Official website
Zhang Binglin known as Zhang Taiyan, was a Chinese philologist, textual critic and revolutionary. His philological works include the first systematic work of Chinese etymology, he made contributions to historical Chinese phonology, proposing that "the niang and ri initials come from the ni initial ". He developed a system of shorthands based on the seal script, called jiyin zimu adopted as the basis of zhuyin. Though innovative in many ways, he was skeptical of new archaeological findings, regarding the oracle bones as forgery. An activist as well as a scholar, he produced many political works; because of his outspoken character, he was jailed for three years by the Qing Empire and put under house arrest for another three by Yuan Shikai. Zhang was born with the given name Xuecheng in Zhejiang to a scholarly family, he himself changed his given name to Jiang with the sobriquet Taiyan, to show his admiration for the early Qing scholar and activist Gu Yanwu. When he was 23, he began to study under the great philologist Yu Yue, immersing himself in the Chinese classics for seven years.
After the First Sino-Japanese War, he went to Shanghai, becoming a member of the Society for National Strengthening and writing for a number of newspaper, including Liang Qichao's Shi Wu Bao. In September 1898, after the failure of the Wuxu Reform, Zhang escaped to Taiwan with the help of a Japanese friend and worked as a reporter for Taiwan Nichinichi Shimpō and wrote for Qing Yi Bao produced in Japan by Liang Qichao. In May of the following year, Zhang was introduced to Sun Yat-sen by Liang Qichao, he returned to China two months to be a reporter for the Shanghai-based Yadong Shibao, published his most important political work, Qiu Shu. In 1901, under the threat of arrest from the Qing Empire, Zhang taught at Soochow University for a year before he escaped to Japan for several months. Upon return, he was arrested and jailed for three years until June 1906, he began to study the Buddhist scriptures during his time in jail. After his release, Zhang went to Japan to join Tongmeng Hui and became the chief editor of the newspaper Min Bao that criticized the Qing Empire's corruption.
There, he lectured on the Chinese classics and philology for overseas Chinese students. His students in Japan include Zhou Zuoren and Qian Xuantong, his most important student was Huang Kan. In 1908, Min Bao was banned by the Japanese government; this caused Zhang to focus on his philological research. He coined the phrase "Zhonghua Minguo"; because an ideological conflict with Sun Yat-sen and his Three Principles of the People, Zhang established the Tokyo branch of Guangfu Hui in February 1909. After Wuchang Uprising, Zhang returned to China to establish the Republic of China Alliance and chief-edit the Dagonghe Ribao. After Yuan Shikai became the President of the Republic of China in 1913, Zhang was his high-ranking advisor for a few months until the assassination of Song Jiaoren. After criticizing Yuan for possible responsibility of the assassination, Zhang was put under house arrest, in Beijing's Longquan Temple, until Yuan's death in 1916. After release, Zhang was appointed Minister of the Guangzhou Generalissimo in June 1917.
In 1924, Zhang left Kuomintang, entitled himself a loyalist to the Republic of China, became critical of Chiang Kai-shek. Zhang established the National Studies Society in Suzhou in 1934 and chief-edited the magazine Zhi Yan, he died two years at 67 and was buried in a state funeral. On April 3, 1955, the People's Republic of China removed the coffin from Suzhou to Nanping Mountain, Hangzhou; the People's Republic established a museum devoted to him beside the West Lake. He had three daughters with his first wife. With Cai Yuanpei as witness, he married again with Tang Guoli, an early Chinese feminist, they had Zhang Dao and Zhang Qi. Zhang Binglin was rooted in "Old Text" philology, which emphasized "the diversity of China's intellectual heritage led to a serious erosion of the paramount position of Confucius as upheld by the unwavering guardians of orthodoxy". Zhang shared the views of his contemporary, Liu Yiqing, that the Confucian classics should be read as history, not sacred scripture. However, he rejected Liu's suggestion to put Chinese intellectual heritage into the matrix of Western philosophy.
Joachim Kurtz writes: Zhang Binglin did not oppose radical reconceptualizations per se but only those that uncritically mirrored European taxonomies. Rather than squeezing ancient Chinese texts and concepts into a Western-derived disciplinary corset, Zhang suggested expanding existing categories in such a way as to make space for the new knowledge that the nation, as he agreed, so needed. Zhang replaced conventional sense of mingjia with a new understanding—the methodology of debate similar to European logic and Buddhist dialectic. Zhang's thoughts on religion went through multiple phases. In his pre-imprisonment days, he was critical of religion, wrote several essays that criticized religious concepts: "Looking at Heaven", "The Truth about Confucianism", "On Bacteria". In these essays, he emphasized that the scientific world could be reconciled with classical Chinese philosophy. However, his thoughts on religion significan
Book of Rites
The Book of Rites or Lǐjì is a collection of texts describing the social forms and ceremonial rites of the Zhou dynasty as they were understood in the Warring States and the early Han periods. The Book of Rites, along with the Rites of Zhou and the Book of Etiquette and Rites, which are together known as the "Three Li," constitute the ritual section of the Five Classics which lay at the core of the traditional Confucian canon; as a core text of the Confucian canon, it is known as the Classic of Rites or Lijing, which some scholars believe was the original title before it was changed by Dai Sheng. The Book of Rites is a diverse collection of texts of varied but uncertain origin and date, lacking the overall structure found in the other "rites" texts; some sections consist of definitions of ritual terms those found in the Etiquette and Ceremonial, while others contain details of the life and teachings of Confucius. Parts of the text have been traced to such pre-Han works as the Xunzi and Lüshi Chunqiu, while others are believed to date from the Former Han period.
During the reign of Qin Shihuang, many of the Confucian classics were destroyed during the 213 BC "Burning of the Books." However, the Qin dynasty collapsed within the decade: Confucian scholars who had memorized the classics or hid written copies recompiled them in the early Han dynasty. The Book of Rites was said to have been reconstructed, but the Classic of Music could not be recompiled and fragments principally survive in the "Record of Music" chapter of the Book of Rites. Since other scholars have attempted to redact these first drafts. According to the Book of Sui, Dai De reworked the text in the 1st century BC, reducing the original 214 books to 85, his nephew Dai Sheng reduced this to 46 books. To this three were added towards the end of the Han dynasty, bringing the total to 49. In 1993, a copy of the "Black Robes" chapter was found in Tomb 1 of the Guodian Tombs in Jingmen, Hubei. Since the tomb was sealed around 300 BCE, the find reactivated academic arguments about the possible dating of the other Liji chapters by the Warring States period.
Confucius described Li as all traditional forms. Li means "rites" but it can be used to refer to "ceremonial" or "rules of conduct"; the term has come to be associated with "good form", "decorum" or "politeness". Confucius felt that li should emphasize the spirit of piety and respect for others through rules of conduct and ceremonies; as outlined in the Book of Rites, li is meant to restore the significance of traditional forms by looking at the simplicity of the past. Confucius insisted that a standard of conduct that focused on traditional forms would be a way to ease the turmoil of collapsing Zhou state; the absolute power of li is displayed in the Book of Rites: "Of all things to which the people owe their lives the rites are the most important..." The ideas of li were thought to become associated with human nature and social order as the population integrated li into their lives. Li is beneficial to society because it guides people to recognize and fulfill their responsibilities toward others.
As a result of the Book of Rites' chapters, using a syncretic system and combining Daoist and Mohist beliefs scholars formed both the Great Learning and the Doctrine of the Mean. These two books were both believed to be written by two of Confucius' disciples one being his grandson; the great Neo-Confucian Zhu Xi and his edited versions of the Great Learning and the Doctrine of the Mean influenced the Chinese society to place much more attention on these and two other books creating the Four Books. Following the decision of the Yuan dynasty to make the Five Classics and the Four Books the orthodox texts of the Confucian traditions, they were the standard textbooks for the state civil examination, from 1313 to 1905, which every educated person had to study intensively; the Book of Rites and two of its by-products were large integral parts of the Chinese beliefs and industry for many centuries. Legge, James. Sacred Books of the East, volumes 27 and 28. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Couvreur, Séraphin.
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