Illustrated Dictionary of Symbols in Eastern and Western Art

By James Hall; Chris Puleston | Go to book overview

Appendix

The Transcription of Chinese

There have been several systems for transcribing Chinese characters into the Roman alphabet. The system used in this book, known as Wade—Giles, was until recently the most widely adopted in Britain and the USA. It was devised by Sir Thomas Wade in 1859 and modified a little by H. A. Giles in 1912. In 1958 the Chinese authorities published a system called 'Pinyin zimu', which has advantages especially for teachers of Chinese. Pinyin is widely used nowadays for reference books and for labelling in museums. Nevertheless many basic books that are required by students and others (including the majority in the bibliography of this book) are only available in Wade—Giles. The following list shows the differences between the two systems, together with some examples.

Wade—Giles
Pinyin
Wade—Cites
Pinyin
ch (except if followed by i or ü) zh
o (on its own or after h, k, k') e
ch'(except if followed by i or u) ch
o (after f, m, p, p' w) o
chi ji
o (after other con uo
ch'i qi
sonants)
chih zhi
p b
ch'ih chi
p' P
chü ju
ssu (sze) si
ch'ü qu
t d
eh e
t' t
erh er
ts z
hs x
ts' c
i (as an initial or yi
tzu zi
on its own) tz'u ci
ieh ie
u (after y) ou
ien ian
ü (after l, n) ü
ih i
ü u
j r
uei (after k, k') ui
k g
ung ong
k' k
I Ching Yijing (Book of Changes) Taoism Daoism
Han Hsiang Tzu Han Xiangzi T'ang Tang (Dynasty)
Lan Ts'ai-ho Lan Caihe Chu zhu (bamboo)
Pa kua Ba gua (Eight Trigrams) Ch'in Qin (dynasty)
Chung zhong (type of bell) Chü ju (chrysanthemum)
San Yu San You (the three friends) yu (jade)
Ho Hsien-ku He Xiangu Lao Tzu Laozi

-216-

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Illustrated Dictionary of Symbols in Eastern and Western Art
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Illustrated Dictionary of Symbols in Eastern and Western Art *
  • Contents *
  • Acknowledgements *
  • How to Use This Book *
  • About Symbols in Art ix
  • The Dictionary 1
  • 1 - Abstract Signs 1
  • 2 - Animals 8
  • 3 - Artefacts 54
  • 4 - Earth and Sky 98
  • 5 - Human Body and Dress 113
  • 6 - Plants 142
  • Collectives 163
  • Appendix - The Transcription of Chinese 216
  • Notes and References 217
  • Bibliography 222
  • Chronological Tables 225
  • Index 234
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