Re: OFF: More Pinyin reform...
|From:||Vasiliy Chernov <bc_@...>|
|Date:||Thursday, February 24, 2000, 18:02|
On Thu, 24 Feb 2000 10:49:11 CST, Daniel A. Wier <dawier@...> wrote:
> However, I've also toyed with writing NO vowel for the
>'schwa e' and using <e> for the fronted version. So _be_ ends up as just
>_b_, and _sheng_ becomes _shng_ (see below). (The tone marker could be
>placed over the nasal -- but I'm thinking of marking tone to the right of
>the syllable and not over the vowel/sonorant.)<...>
>If <e> (schwa) is unwritten, then the following 'rhymes' (syllable-final
>groups) would result:
>e > zero (just the initial consonant)
>en > n
>eng > ng
>er > r (this never has an initial consonant)<...>
>_chi_ becomes _qi_, _zhi_ becomes _ji_, and _shi_ becomes _xi_ -- but
>there's already a _qi_, _ji_ and _shi_! What do we do? Remember that
>lonely <er> syllable which never begins with anything? Turns out that the
><i> after retroflexes sounds like English "er", and Mandarin has the same
>value for <er>. So let that be our new vowel! Now we have _qer_, _jer_and
>_xer_; no more ambiguity!
>Oh yeah, and there's also _rer_. Cute.
>(If you were to eliminate back <e> as I suggested earlier, you'd have _qr_,
>_jr_, _xr_... and _rr_!)
- A problem with all this: how do you distinguish _er_ from _re_, and
_en_ from _ne_?
BTW, Pinyin also allows for suffixed _r_: _mianr_, _haohaorde_, and the
The syllable-initial _r_ in Putonghua differs a lot from the
syllable-final one. The latter sometimes originates from _l_ (_nar_ =
_nali_, etc.). Write it _l_?
>Next, the diphthong <ao> would be replaced by <au>; I just like it better,
>and it's more phonetically accurate. (Except the <ao> digraph makes itlook
>distinctively 'Chinese' when read...)
>Another change. Get rid of <ong> and make it <ung>. It's more accurate
>anyway, and it's written in Bopomofo as <u-eng>. Likewise, <iong>, whichis
>marked in Bopomofo as <ü-eng>, should be <üng>, or better yet <iung> (see
>the next paragraph).
The authors of Pinyin had the concern than *handwritten* _n_ and _u_ look
alike, and tried to avoid using _u_ where a confusion was possible.
Kinda parallel to English spellings like _some_, _world_, _money_, etc.
Are spelling rules of anybody's conlang influenced by this type of
concerns, I wonder?