what`s the difference between chinese, cantonese and mandarin?

i want to learn chinese but what`s the difference between chinese,cantonese, and mandarin?

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  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    "Chinese" is actually a family of languages. "Mandarin" is the socially-favored dialect, common in northern China and the "official" form of Chinese, Cantonese is another dialect, common in southern China.

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  • 4 years ago

    Cantonese and Mandarin are dialects of Chinese. The main difference between the two is in the way certain sounds are pronounced. There are also a couple of sounds that are in Mandarin that are not in Cantonese. The written language of Chinese is the same regardless of the specific dialect. However, depending on the geographic location, there are different dialects. For example, Shanghainese would sound somewhat different than Cantonese or Fujianese or Taiwanese or Mandarin. Cantonese, Fujianese and Taiwanese may sound closer to each other due to there geographical proximity to each other. However, they can all read and write the same characters in Chinese assuming they are literate. You can think of it sort of like how someone in Brooklyn sounds different than someone from Boston or Texas or even England. The difference between this and the Chinese dialects though is that while English is a phonetic/alphabet-based system, Chinese is a character based system. Mandarin is also the official dialect of China (or the two China's depending on your political views - ie, People's Republic of China and the Republic of China which is also known as Taiwan). It is the one that is officially taught in schools.

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  • 3 years ago

    Chinese Vs Mandarin

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  • 3 years ago

    Cantonese In Chinese

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  • June
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    For the best answers, search on this site https://shorturl.im/aw4Ly

    Chinese is a family of closely-related but mutually unintelligible languages. These languages are known variously as fāngyán (regional languages), dialects of Chinese or varieties of Chinese. In all over 1.2 billion people speak one or more varieties of Chinese. All varieties of Chinese belong to the Sino-Tibetan family of languages and each one has its own dialects and sub-dialects, which are more or less mutually intelligible. All varieties of Chinese are tonal. This means that each syllable can have a number of different meanings depending on the intonation with which it is pronounced. For example Mandarin has 4 tones, Cantonese has between 6 and 9 (it depends who you ask). Most people in China and Taiwan who don't speak Mandarin as their first language, can speak or at least understand it a bit. However in Hong Kong and Macau few people speak Mandarin, so they tend to use English to communicate with people from other parts of China or Taiwan. Cantonese is spoken by about 66 million people in Guangdong and Guangxi provinces and Hainan island in China, and also in Hong Kong, Macau, Singapore, Malaysia and many other countries.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Chinese: Natives of China,or People with Chinese heritage living overseas & language

    Cantonese: dialect of Chinese language

    Mandarin: dialect of Chinese language

    Cantonese and Mandarin = different dialects of the Chinese language. Most schools will teach Mandarin, so in those situations, Chinese = Mandarin, but not necessarily. xal is wrong: Chinese = Mandarin only in a restricted sense. There's 20+ dialects in Chinese. With plenty more sub dialects and sub-sub dialects. The common or official language used in China is called Zhongwen or zhong guo hua or putonghua, not Mandarin. Mandarin is a word that came from Mandarim from Portuguese to describe the officials of ancient China.

    The symbols are more complex (sophisticated)

    Read what you wrote, and look it up online first, before saying something totally unacceptable.

    mandarin is spoken by Chinese usually from Hong Kong. Really? People from HK speak Cantonese!

    wize woman,

    there's no such thing as Chinese-Sinitic. The word Sinitic is from Latin. The language group is called "Sino-Tibetan", not Chinese-Sinitic!

    Please do some research online before posting comments that's considered incorrect or misguiding!

    Source(s): I'm Chinese.
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  • 4 years ago

    Chinese language is the language is the language which is spoken at China. Chinese language itself is varied from region to region.

    Cantonese is the type of Chinese language which is spoken at Guangdong region of China. Majority of the overseas Chinese could speak Cantonese because their ancestors are mostly from Guangdong region. Cantonese is also spoken at Hainan island because there were significant Cantonese people who moved to Hainan island during the Ming to Qing dynasty periods.

    Mandarin is type of Chinese language which is spoken at the Northern regions of China. Mandarin has the status as the official language of China because Sun Yatsen decided to use Mandarin as the official language of China.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Cantonese and Mandarin are two dialects of Chinese.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Mandarin is spoken mostly in the Northern part of China, such as Beijing or Tianjing.

    Cantonese is spoken in Southern regions such as (surprise) Canton and Hong Kong.

    Both are different dialects in the Chinese language, however there are more than just these two, they just happen to be better known.

    It seems that most people in China will speak Cantonese, unless they live near the north, but just about everyone who lives will be able to speak Mandarin as long as they had an education in a school.

    Source(s): I'm Chinese, my parents are from Hong Kong and Beijing. I listen to what they say.
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  • 1 decade ago

    Chinese is the common languange use by the Chinese, Cantonese is a local language use by Hongkongnese and a small number opf Chinese, Mandarin is just the same as Chinese. Get it?? hehe..

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  • 1 decade ago

    chinese has many dialects. of them, cantonese and mandarin are probably the two most common.

    mandarin is for example, spoken in beijing. cantonese is for example spoken in hongkong

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