Chinese Pinyin Basics

Mandarin Pinyin

Alphabets and their pronunciations

Pīnyīn
EN
PīnyīnEN
1Aaa in father14Nnnur in nurse
2Bb p in spider15Ooo in hot
3Cc ts in fonts16Pppo in popular
4Ddd in duck17Qqchi in chimney
5Eeee in fee18Rrr in regular
6Fffor in for19Ssce in ice
7Ggg in girl20Tttter in better
8Hhh in hair21Uuoo in oops
9Ii ee in eel22Vv
10Jjge in geology23Ww
11Kkca in career24Xxshee in sheesha
12Llller in traveller25Yy
13Mmma in machine26Zzt’s in it’s

Consonants/声母

ConsonantsConsonants
1b12j
2p13q
3m14x
4f
15zh
5d16ch
6t17sh
7n18r
8l
19z
9g20c
10k21s
11h

Vowels韵母

Different types of vowels for Mandarin

  1. Single Vowels: such as, a, e, o, i, u, ü
  2. Nasal vowels: vowels ended with “n” or “ng
  3. Complex Vowels

Vowels list

iuü
aiaua
ouo
eieüe
aiuai
eiuei
aoiao
ouiou
Nasal vowels
anianuanüan
enienuenüen
angianguang
engiengueng
ongiong

Mandarin Pinyin Index

Here is a list of ALL possible pinyin / pronunciations (without the tones) for Chinese characters.

A
aaianangao
B
babaibanbangbaobeiben
bengbibianbiaobiebinbing
bobu
C
cacechanchengchuachuncu
caicenchangchichuaichuocuan
cancengchaochongchuancicui
cangchachechouchuangcongcun
caochaichenchuchuicoucuo
D
dadaidandangdaodedei
dendengdidiadiandiaodie
dingdiudongdoududuandui
dunduo
E
eeienenger
F
fafanfangfeifenfengfo
foufu
G
gagaiganganggaogegei
gengenggonggouguguaguai
guanguangguigunguo
H
hahaihanhanghaohehei
henhenghmhonghouhuhua
huaihuanhuanghuihunhuo
J
jijiajianjiangjiaojiejin
jingjiongjiujujuanjuejun
K
kakaikankangkaokekei
kenkengkongkoukukuakuai
kuankuangkuikunkuo
L
lalailanlanglaolelei
lenglilialianliangliaolie
linlingliulolongloulu
lüelunluo
M
mamaimanmangmaomemei
menmengmimianmiaomiemin
mingmiumomoumu
N
nanainannangnaonenei
nennengninianniangniaonie
ninningniunongnounu
nuannüenuo
O
o
ou
P
papaipanpangpaopeipen
pengpipianpiaopiepinping
pu
Q
qiqiaqianqiangqiaoqieqin
qingqiongqiuququanquequn
R
ranrangraorerenrengri
rongroururuaruanruirun
ruo
S
sasaisansangsaosesen
sengshashaishanshangshaoshe
sheishenshengshishoushushua
shuaishuanshuangshuishunshuosi
songsoususuansuisunsuo
T
tataitantangtaoteteng
titiantiaotietingtongtou
tutuantuituntuo
W
wawaiwanwangweiwenweng
wowu
X
xixiaxianxiangxiaoxiexin
xingxiongxiuxuxuanxuesun
Y
yayanyangyaoyeyiyin
yingyoyongyouyuyuanyue
yun
Z
zazaizanzangzaozunzuo
zezeizenzengzhazhaizhan
zhangzhaozhezheizhenzhengzhi
zhongzhouzhuzhuazhuaizhuanzhuang
zhuizhunzhuozizongzouzu
zuanzuizunzuo

Tones/声调

For mandarin each character has a corresponding pinyi, and each pinyin has a tone on the single vowel. For example,

No.TonesSymboleExamples
1st tonehigh level/阴平
bā 巴
2nd tonemid rising/阳平
bá 拔
3rd tonemedially, low上声
bǎ 把
4th tonehigh falling/去声bà 爸
0 / 5th tonemid/轻声ba 吧

Separator/隔音符号

A separator is needed when a single vowel character follows another character, for example:

  • xi’an/xī ān/西安
  • pi’ao /pí ǎo/皮袄

Useful tools

Pleco Chinese Dictionary Mobile App

TTSMP3 – a free text-to-MP3 tool for Chinese Mandarin

References

汉典:汉语拼音音节索引汉语拼音方案

The Chinese Language: Fact and Fantasy, John DeFrancis