August 26


Break Through Chinese Pronunciation 6 – The u sounds in Chinese

By fluentin

August 26, 2015

Hi everybody this is Chris for video 6 of Break Through Chinese Pronunciation from Fluent in, the video series that helps you to perfect your Chinese pronunciation and tones.

In this video we’re going to be looking at the u sound in Mandarin Chinese. You’ll find that there are actually two u sounds in Mandarin.

The u in pinyin is similar to the oo in fool in English. When you say it you push your lips forward and they make a round shape.

The second type of u sound is written with two dots on the top. If you’re typing pinyin, you use a ‘v’ to type it, and it’s a bit similar to the u in French, or the u in ‘huge’. Your lips should be tightly pursed up, not in a round shape like for the first u sound.

And one important thing to be aware of – when a ‘u’ comes after the letters J, X, Q and Y in Pinyin, it becomes the second type of u sound, not the ‘oo’ in fool. You’ll hear how this works in the video.

Bu – 不 bù – not
我不知道 wǒ bù zhīdào – I don’t know
Fu – 付钱 fùqián – to pay
Shu – 书 shū – a book
Zhu – 猪 zhū – pig
Du – 赌博 dǔbó – to gamble
Nu – 愤怒 fènnù – angry
Nü – 女 nǚhái – a girl
Lu – 马路 mǎlù – road
Lü – 法律 fǎlǜ – law
Ju – 剧场 jùchǎng – theatre
Xu – 需要 xūyào – to need
Qu – 有趣 yǒuqù – interesting
Yu – 下雨 xiàyǔ – to rain

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