Chinese Words and Phrases
Courtesy of Commissar People's Blade

Ni hao, brothers and sisters.

Mandarin Chinese is spoken by nearly 900 million people, and is generally written in Chinese characters, which are ideographic in nature. To be able to read and type Chinese in an English character setting, you must employ one of the accepted romanization systems. Many have been used over the years by Westerners, but it behooves you to use the official PRC romanization system, pinyin. You will also find it easier to pronounce.

Pinyin also uses accent marks to indicate the four tones of Mandarin, which have semantic significance. These we cannot type easily, so I, Brother Collective Fist and Brother Comrade X will have to politely suffer through your hapless mispronounciations of our melodious language. Please understand, though. The word "hao" with the third tone (down then up), means "good." We use it frequently. But with the second tone (down), the word means "number."

Common Phrases

English Chinese
Hello Ni hao
Ni hao ma (ma is a question word, like adding a question mark)
I, me Wo
You Ni
Hen Very, is very
Hao Good
Hao a Okay ("a" makes a word more casual)
Yes Shi de ("is")
Dui ("right")
No Bu Shi ("is not")
Bu Dui ("not right")
Thanks Xie xie
Xie xie ni
I'm OK Wo hao.
I don't know Bu zhi dao.
I understand Wo ming bai.
Wo bu ming bai (don't understand)

English Chinese
Serve the people Wei renmin fuwu
A hundred flowers bloom, a hundred schools of thought contend Bai hua qi fang, bai jia zheng ming
Dare to think, dare to act Gan xiang gan gan
To rebel is justified Zao fan you li
Smash the Gang of Four! Fencui si ren bang
Seek truth from facts Shishi qiu shi
Achieve the Four Modernisations Shixian sige xiandaihua
Achieve the Four Modernisations Shixian sige xiandaihua

English Chinese
To negotiate with a tiger for its skin Yu hu mou pi
If anyone spits in your face, let it drip dry Tuo mian zi gan
Without entering the tiger's lair, how can one catch the tiger's cub? Bu ru hu xue, yan de hu zi
Keeping the company of an emperor is like keeping the company of a tiger Ban jun ru ban hu

Online Reading of Classics
Mao's Little Red Book

Quotations from Chairman Mao