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Full text of "Handbook of the International Phonetic Association"

Chinese (Hong Kong Cantonese) 

Eric Zee 

Phonetics Laboratory, Department of Chinese, Translation and Linguistics, 
City University of Hong Kong, 83 Tat Chee Avenue, Kowloon, Hong Kong 

The style of speech illustrated is that typical of the educated younger generation in Hong 
Kong. The recording is that of a 22-year-old male university student who has lived all his 
life in Hong Kong. 

Consonants 





Bilabial 


Labio- 
dental 


Dental 


Alveolar 


Post- 
alveolar 


Palatal 


Velar 


Labial- 
Velar 


Glottal 


Plosive 


PP h 




tt h 




kk h 


k w k wh 




Affricate 








ts ts h 










Nasal 


m 




n 




q 






Fricative 




f 




s 








h 


Approximant 












J 




W 




Lateral 
Approximant 






1 













p pal 'father* 

p h p h a"l 'to lie prone' 

m mal 'mother' 

f fan 'flower' 



wal 



'frog' 



t 


tal 


'dozen' 


t h 


t h al 


'he/she' 


n 


p h an1 


'to climb 


s 


sal 


'sand' 


ts 


tsa~l 


'to hold' 


ts h 


ts h a"l 


'fork' 


J 


JBUl 


'worry' 


1 


teul 


'angry' 



k kal 'to add' 

k h k h al 'truck' 
rj . p h arj1 'to cook' 



k w k w a1 'melon' 
k wh k wh a1 'to boast' 

h hal 'shrimp' 



Illustrations of the IP A 59 



Vowels 














Monophthongs 












(1) 


or (2) 














i 


i: 


sil 


'silk' 


hipH 


'to assist' 


himl 


'moderate' 


y 


y: 


syl 


'book' 


hytH 


'blood' 


synl 


'sour' 


e 


e: 


scl 


'to lend' 


hekH 


'to eat' 


serjl 


'sound' 


OS 


ce: 


hoel 


'boot' 


soek-l 


'to whittle' 


soerjl 


'hurt' 


a 


a: 


sal 


'sand' 


hak-l 


'guest' 


saml 


'three' 





o: 


sol 


'comb' 


hok-l 


'shell' 


foql 


'square' 


u 


UI 


ful 


'husband' 


futH 


'wide' 


mm 


'cheerful' 


i 


i 






sikl 


'colour' 


siql 


'star' 


e 


e 






setl 


'shirt' 


senl 


'to inquire' 


B 


b 






SBpl 


'wet' 


semi 


'heart' 


u 


u 






sukl 


'uncle' 


suql 


'loose' 



Diphthongs 






(1) 


or (2) 






ai 


a:i 


sail 


'to waste' 


ei 


ei 


seil 


'west' 


au 


a:u 


saul 


'basket' 


12U 


BU 


Seul 


'to receive 


ei 


ei 


heil 


'rare' 


eu 


e:u 


teu-l 


'to throw' 


ey 


ey 


sey"l 


'bad' 


oi 


o:i 


soil 


'gill' 


ui 


u:i 


fuil 


'ash' 


iu 


i:u 


siul 


'to burn' 


ou 


ou 


soul 


'beard' 



iN 


\ •! 






\ • 


oe\e o 






\ a \ 




Tones 



1 


(high, level) 


sil 


'silk' 


sikl 


'colour' 


H 


(mid, level) 


siH 


'to try' 


siH 


'to reveal' 


-1 


(low-mid, level) 


si-J 


'matter' 


sik-l 


'to eat' 


J 


(low-mid to low, falling) 


siJ 


'time' 






1 


(low-mid to high, rising) 


sil 


'history' 






A 


(low-mid to mid, rising) 


sti 


'city' 







60 Handbook of the IP A 

Conventions 

(a) Consonants, vowels and diphthongs 

Syllable-final plosives [p, t, k] are unreleased, i.e. [p, t\ k" 1 ]. Syllable-initial [t, t h , n] and 
final [t, n] are apico-laminal denti-alveolar; syllable-initial [s, ts, ts h ] are laminal alveolar; 
and syllable-initial [1] is apical denti-alveolar or apical alveolar, [n] rarely occurs in 
syllable-initial position; syllable-initial [rj] is often deleted, [i, y, e, oe, a, o, u] occur in 
open syllables as well as syllables closed by a plosive or nasal. In open syllables, [i, y, u] 
are about cardinal; [e] = [e]; [oe] = [oB]; [o] = [o]; and [a] = [a]; [i, y, u, e, ce\ o, a] are 
lowered in syllables closed by a plosive or nasal, [i, y, e, oe, a, o, u] are long in open 
syllables and short (a third shorter) in syllables closed by a plosive or nasal, [i, e, e, u] 
which occur only in syllables closed by a plosive or nasal are extra-short (two thirds 
shorter than [i, y, e, oe, a, o, u] in open syllables). All diphthongs are long; the first 
elements in [ai, au, oi, ui, iu, eu] are longer than the second elements; and the first 
elements in [m, mi, ei, oy, ou] are similar to the second elements in length, [au] = [au]; 
[ai] = [ai]; and [eu] = [eu]. The alternative transcriptions for vowels and diphthongs 
given above differ in whether these length distinctions are indicated. 

(b) Tones 

[1, H, -I, J, \ A] (= high; mid; low-mid; low-mid to low, falling; low-mid to high, rising; 
low-mid. to mid, rising) are long tones; [J] is relatively shorter. The short or extra-short 
variants of [1, H, -l] occur on syllables closed by a plosive. On a compound-final syllable, 
[H, -I] and their variants and [J] are often replaced by [1]. 

Transcription of recorded passage 

jmU jetl ts h iH I pekl furfl t h uqJ t h aiH joeqJ heil tou-J am kenl pinl koH lekl 
til II k h eyJ tei-J ami ami t h ml tou^l jeuJ koH jiml haqJ k w oH I lil koH jenl 
tsoekH l:sy-l kin-J tai-l leul II k h eyJ tei-l tseu-l wa-l lakH I pinl koH hoi ]\A tsirj'l 
touH lil koH jem ts h eyJ tso^l kin-l IbuI lei I tsmi-l synH pinl koH lekl til lakH 
II jyl si-l I pekl furp tseu-J pokH meq-l keml ts h eyl II timl tsil I k h eyJ jyt-J 
ts h eyl irekl seil lei-l I kol koH jem tsmi-l jyt-l hei-J lal sst-J kin-J teul II tseyH 
heu-l I pekl fuql moiU saiH fuJ I weLl yeuA forjH heiH II kenl tsy-l I t h aiH joeqJ 
ts h etl leiJ saiH tso-1 jetl tsim-l I ko-1 koH jen'l tsBu-l tsikl hakl ts h eyJ tsol 
kin-l teul lakH II jyl si-l I pskl furjl vraJ jmU jirj-l syl lal II 

Orthographic version (non-standard, vernacular) 

wmm • im • imwmmtw. • S&& • mmmmi • mmxmmmmm 
#«•««• immsn • mmm • m& • *Mmm&r-w • mmxm 



Handbook of the International Phonetic Association : 
A Guide to the Use of the International Phonetic Alphabet 
International Phonetic Association, July 1999.