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Chinese language

Chinese
汉语; 漢語 or 中文
Hànyǔ or Zhōngwén
Chineselanguage.svg
Hànyǔ (Chinese) written in traditional (top), simplified (middle) characters and alternative name (bottom)
Native to China, Taiwan, Singapore
Ethnicity Han Chinese
Native speakers
(1.2 billion cited 1984–2001)
Standard forms
Dialects
Simplified Chinese
Traditional Chinese

Transcriptions:
Bopomofo
Pinyin
Xiao'erjing
Dungan
Official status
Official language in
Regulated by National Commission on Language and Script Work (China)
National Languages Committee (Taiwan)
Civil Service Bureau (Hong Kong)
Promote Mandarin Council (Singapore)
Chinese Language Standardisation Council (Malaysia)
Language codes
ISO 639-1 zh
ISO 639-2  (B)
 (T)
ISO 639-3 inclusive code
Individual codes:
cdo – Min Dong
cjy – Jinyu
cmn – Mandarin
cpx – Pu Xian
czh – Huizhou
czo – Min Zhong
gan – Gan
hak – Hakka
hsn – Xiang
mnp – Min Bei
nan – Min Nan
wuu – Wu
yue – Yue
och – Old Chinese
ltc – Late Middle Chinese
lzh – Classical Chinese
Glottolog sini1245
Linguasphere 79-AAA
New-Map-Sinophone World.PNG
Map of the Sinophone world

Legend:

  Countries identified Chinese as a primary, administrative, or native language
  Countries with more than 5,000,000 Chinese speakers
  Countries with more than 1,000,000 Chinese speakers
  Countries with more than 500,000 Chinese speakers
  Countries with more than 100,000 Chinese speakers
  Major Chinese-speaking settlements
This article contains IPA phonetic symbols. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Unicode characters.
Chinese languages (Spoken)
Traditional Chinese
Simplified Chinese
Literal meaning Han language
Chinese language (Written)
Chinese
Literal meaning Chinese text

Legend:

Chinese (汉语/漢語; Hànyǔ or 中文; Zhōngwén) is a group of related, but in many cases mutually unintelligible, language varieties, forming a branch of the Sino-Tibetan language family. Chinese is spoken by the Han majority and many other ethnic groups in China. Nearly 1.2 billion people (around 16% of the world's population) speak some form of Chinese as their first language.

The varieties of Chinese are usually described by native speakers as dialects of a single Chinese language, but linguists note that they are as diverse as a language family. The internal diversity of Chinese has been likened to that of the Romance languages, but may be even more varied. There are between 7 and 13 main regional groups of Chinese (depending on classification scheme), of which the most spoken by far is Mandarin (about 960 million), followed by Wu (80 million), Yue (60 million) and Min (70 million). Most of these groups are mutually unintelligible, although some, like Xiang and certain Southwest Mandarin dialects, may share common terms and some degree of intelligibility. All varieties of Chinese are tonal and analytic.

Standard Chinese (Putonghua/Guoyu/Huayu) is a standardized form of spoken Chinese based on the Beijing dialect of Mandarin. It is the official language of China and Taiwan, as well as one of four official languages of Singapore. It is one of the six official languages of the United Nations. The written form of the standard language (中文; Zhōngwén), based on the logograms known as Chinese characters (汉字/漢字; Hànzì), is shared by literate speakers of otherwise unintelligible dialects.


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Wikipedia

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