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Re: buffer vowel
> But the poor people can't say
> even that, they actually say KXY,LUO,DI,YA (Ke4Luo2Di4Ya4), and the
> two-syllable long name of my city, Zagreb, that even the English
> speaking folk pronounce without any difficulty, Chinese translate into
> SA,GY,LY,BU (Sa4Ge4Le4Bu4), a four-syllable name. They just can't cope
> with C clusters.
These problems are related to the Chinese writing system rather than their
ablity to pronounce consonant clusters. As you are probably aware, Chinese
is a monosyllablic language and the ideographic system exploits this property.
However, when foreign words with consonant clusters are to be represented
there are no symbols which can be used. Hence the rather unwieldy
One work-around used is to only part-transliterate and glue it to a concept
word. This is typical for country names, e.g. America becomes mei4guo2 with
mei4 (beautiful) from aMERica and guo2 for country, and England (which is
synonmous with UK) ying1guo2 with ying1 (brave) from ENGland and guo2.
co'o mi'e dn.