Chinese Pidgin English

Chinese Pidgin English is represented in two kinds of sources from the China trade period: (i) western texts such as memoirs and travelogues which give examples of pidgin phrases and dialogue, and (ii) phrasebooks in which pidgin words and phrases are represented using Chinese characters. The language represented in these sources differs in ways which are systematic, leading scholars to believe that Chinese Pidgin English as spoken by Chinese speakers differed from that used by speakers of English and other European languages (Ansaldo, Matthews & Smith 2011). The default lect for the Chinese Pidgin English dataset is the variety used by Chinese speakers as represented in the phrasebooks, from which the majority of examples are drawn (see Li, Matthews & Smith 2005). The alternate European lect referred to in the entries for certain features is the variety used by speakers of European languages as represented in the memoirs and similar western texts.

No. Feature Value % lect Details Source
No. Feature Value % lect Details Source

Consonants

bilabial
labiodental
dental
dental/alveolar
dental/alveolar
affricate
palato-alveolar
retroflex
palatal
velar
labial-velar
uvular
glottal
plosive/affricatepbtdt͡sd͡zt͡ʃd͡ʒʈɖcɟkgk͡pg͡bqʔ
aspirated plosive/affricatet͡sʰt͡ʃʰ
glottalized stop/affricateɓt͡sʼt͡ʃʼ
nasalmnɳɲŋ
trill, tap or flaprɾ
fricativeɸβfvθðszʃʒxɣχh
lateral/approximantɬlɭjw

Vowels

frontnear-frontcentralnear-backback
high
higher-mid
mid
lower-mid
low

Special segments

aidiphthong falling from low central unrounded vowel to high front unrounded vowel - Exists (as a major allophone)
audiphthong falling from low central unrounded vowel to to high back rounded vowel - Exists (as a major allophone)
ɔidiphthong falling from lower mid back rounded vowel to high front unrounded vowel - Exists (as a major allophone)

Legend

 Exists (as a major allophone)
 Exists only as a minor allophone
 Exists only in loanwords
 Does not exist
No. Feature Value % lect Details Source