User:Tooironic/Chinese translation

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How to Add a Chinese Translation[edit]

Introduction[edit]

This is intended as a quick guide for anyone who wants to add Chinese translations of English words on Wiktionary. Compared with other languages on Wiktionary, Chinese has unique characteristics which need unique formatting. This guide focuses specifically on Mandarin translations - other dialects like Cantonese, Min Nan, etc may have different requirements. Check out Wiktionary:About_Chinese for more information.

The Template[edit]

A typical Chinese translation of an English word - for instance, psychology - looks like this:

* Chinese:
*: Mandarin: {{t|zh|心理學|sc=Hani}}, {{t|zh|心理学|tr=xīnlǐxué|sc=Hani}}

Note that all dialects (Mandarin, Cantonese, Min Nan, etc) always go under the * Chinese: section - this is just to make it easier for everyone to find the translation. Also note that both traditional (心理學) and simplified (心理学) forms are given, as well as pinyin (xīnlǐxué). These are the easiest edits to do - just copy this template into a notepad program and paste it into whatever English word you happen to be translating. If more than one translation is needed, simply list them in commas (,).

However there are always going to be a few variables. I will outline them here.

If translation is both simplified and traditional[edit]

If this is the case, simply delete the first part of the template, as in our translation of sandwich:

* Chinese:
*: Mandarin: {{t|zh|三明治|tr=sānmíngzhì|sc=Hani}}

If an explanation is needed[edit]

Sometimes you will need to add an explanation to differentiate between two or more translations. This can be done by adding an italicised bit of text before or after each translation. See how this was done in our translation of coffee table:

* Chinese:
*: Mandarin: {{i|lit. coffee table}} {{t|zh|咖啡桌|tr=kāfēizhuō|sc=Hani}}, {{i|tea table}} {{t|zh|茶几|tr=chájī|sc=Hani}}

If there is more than one pronunciation[edit]

Some words have more than one pronunciation in Chinese, especially in PRC and Taiwan Mandarin. See how this difference is highlighted in our translation of snail:

* Chinese:
*: Mandarin: {{t|zh|蝸牛|sc=Hani}}, {{t|zh|蜗牛|tr=wōniú ''(PRC)'' or guāniú ''(Taiwan)''|sc=Hani}}

If no Chinese equivalent expression exists[edit]

Sometimes there are words or expressions which are simply untranslatable into Chinese - you have to paraphrase. In these cases it is usually helpful to add an explanation like {{i|no exact term exists}}. You should not use the normal translation template here that you do for singular words or expressions. Instead, simply add links for each word. This is because linking paraphase translations as "words" will encourage people to add entries for them, most of which will probably go against Wiktionary's Criteria for Inclusion (WT:CFI). Anyway, check out our Chinese translation for native speaker:

* Chinese: *: Mandarin: {{i|no exact term exists}} [[說]][[母語]][[的]][[人]], [[说]][[母语]][[的]][[人]] (shuō mǔyǔ de rén), [[说]][[本族语]][[的]][[人]], [[說]][[本族語]][[的]][[人]] (shuō běnzúyǔ de rén), [[母語]][[使用者]], [[母语]][[使用者]] (mǔyǔ shǐyòngzhě)

If the translation is a "word and a half"[edit]

Since Chinese often does not make a distinction between an adjective or an adverb, there will be many times when you come across a translation which is what I call a "word and a half". This is where your translation consists of a Chinese word plus a grammatical suffix like or . As editors we do not want to link to every word with these suffixes as it creates the impression that they are actual words that need their own entries. This can be avoided by using a template which links to the actual word whilst displaying the "word and a half", as is the case in our translation of Australian:

* Chinese:
*: Mandarin: {{t|zh|澳大利亞|alt=澳大利亞的|sc=Hani}}, {{t|zh|澳大利亚|tr=Aòdàlìyà de|alt=澳大利亚的|sc=Hani}}

Translation request[edit]

To add a request for a translation into Mandarin Chinese (note the absence of : semicolon after {{trreq|Mandarin}}):

* Chinese:
*: {{trreq|Mandarin}}

Further reading[edit]

Hope you enjoyed that guide! For more information, you can check out:

Tooironic 23:34, 19 December 2009 (UTC)