Pinghua (simplified Chinese: 平话; traditional Chinese: 平話; pinyin: Pínghuà; Yale: Pìhng Wá; sometimes disambiguated as Chinese: 廣西平話/广西平话) is a pair of Sinitic languages spoken mainly in parts of the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, with some speakers in Hunan province. Pinghua is a trade language in some areas of Guangxi, where it is spoken as a second language by speakers of Zhuang languages. Some speakers of Pinghua are officially classified as Zhuang, and many are genetically distinct from most other Han Chinese. The northern subgroup of Pinghua is centered on Guilin and the southern subgroup around Nanning. Southern Pinghua has several notable features such as having four distinct checked tones, and using various loanwords from the Zhuang languages, such as the final particle wei for imperative sentences.
|平話 / 平话|
Pinghua written in Chinese characters
|7+ million (2016)|
|Cantonese Yale||Pìhng Wá|
|Hanyu Pinyin||Píng Huà|
|Alternative Chinese name|
|Cantonese Yale||Gwóngsāi Pìhng Wá|
|Hanyu Pinyin||Guǎngxī Píng Huà|
History and classificationEdit
Language surveys in Guangxi during the 1950s recorded varieties of Chinese that had been included in the Yue dialect group but were different from those in Guangdong. Pinghua was designated as a separate dialect group from Yue by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in the 1980s:15 and since then has been treated as a separate dialect in textbooks and surveys.
Since designation as a separate dialect group, Pinghua has been the focus of increased research. In 2008 a report by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences of research into Chinese varieties noted an increase in research papers and surveys of Pinghua, from 7 before the 1987 publication of the Language Atlas of China based on the revised classification, and about 156 between then and 2004.
Pinghua is divided into two mutually unintelligible languages:
- The Northern Pinghua (Guìběi 桂北平话) is spoken in northern Guangxi, around the city of Guilin, in close proximity with Southwest Mandarin dialects.
- The Southern Pinghua (Guìnán 桂南平话) is spoken in southern Guangxi, around the city of Nanning. These varieties form a dialect continuum with Yue varieties spoken in that part of Guangxi (excluding enclaves of Cantonese, such as in Nanning). Yu Jin subdivides this group into three types:
Nanning Pinghua has a voiceless lateral fricative [ɬ] for Middle Chinese /s/ or /z/, for example in the numbers /ɬam/ "three" and /ɬi/ "four". This is unlike Standard Cantonese but like some other Yue varieties such as Taishanese.
|高||52 [˥˨]||33 [˧]||55 [˥]||5 [˥]|
|高||21 [˨˩]||24 [˨˦]||22 [˨]||23 [˨˧]|
Genetically, Pinghua speakers have more in common with non-Han ethnic minorities in southern China than with other Han groups.
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