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how to translate"郑”in english? [Copy link] 中文

Rank: 4

Post time 2004-8-5 20:05:48 |Display all floors
i know lee-李,woo-吴, so how to translate chinese surname into english? is there any governing rules, i wonder?

thanks a lot!

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Rank: 4

Post time 2004-8-5 20:15:02 |Display all floors

Why not use "Zhen"?

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Rank: 4

Post time 2004-8-5 20:17:48 |Display all floors

it should be zheng?

one friend told me it could be Jones, i don't feel it right.
i wonder there r better versions.

and the reason why not directly as "zheng", i figure that's because there r no such sound combination in english, and not in accordance with phonetic rules.

please give me a hint.

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Rank: 8Rank: 8

Post time 2004-8-5 21:37:52 |Display all floors

Governing rules - NOT a translation issue!

If you are a Mainland Chinese citizen, you have to go with the PINYIN name as would be carried in your Chinese passport.
So, ZHENG for 郑, Wu for 吴, and LI for 李. That's all. Within the Mainland context, any attempt to "translate" these standard surnames into non-pinyin could at best be interpreted as an ignorant de-Mianlandization act. It has been pointed out that this is a tendency that reflects a typical "inferiority complex" - and I tend to agree. So don't ever be stupid as to take it as a fad.

Once you are outside Mainland China, however, it's a different story. For historical reasons, many overseas Chinese (earlier settlers) have their Chinese names spelled in a variety of ways, based on their respective ancestral dialectal accents. So you could find 吴 as ENG or NG in Hong Kong, as GO or AU in Malaysia/Singapore, or as WOO in TW, etc. The same applies with 郑, which could be TSENG, CHENG, CHIA, TENG, other than Zheng.

So if you decide to de-Mainlandize your last name for whatever purpose outside China, you had better go through a legal name-change process. Otherwise, just keep your official last name (surname) AS IS. Rest assured: there is absolutely nothing wrong to bear your PINYIN last name.

2004-08-05 21:12
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PS: Don't worry too much about some sounds that foreigners MAY find a bit difficult to pronounce. This happens to EACH and EVERY language in the world. Have you seen any foreigners change the spelling of their last names to make them easier for people foreign to them to pronounce? It would be a joke, right? We should learn how to pronounce their names correctly as best we could. So should they ours!

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Rank: 4

Post time 2004-8-6 08:27:53 |Display all floors

thanks so much

many thanks for ur great reply!  obviously, i di d make a fuss over this issue. i couldn't agree more. there r differences among mainlander, hongkongese and taiwanese, and so on, if the foreigners know us better, they will tell the difference easily.
language learning involves culture learning, but we should also grip our national identity, isn't right?
and 1 ex. occurs to me : we used to say peking opera, but now we have beijing opera. i begin to see that...

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Rank: 6Rank: 6

Post time 2004-8-6 19:56:45 |Display all floors

:-)

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