AskBiography Logo   Latest News  Follow Us on Twitter  Follow Us on Google Buzz  Became Fan - Facebook  Subscribe to RSSRSS   Bookmark and Share


Nativename广州话 / 廣州話
StatesChina: central and western Guangdong (Zhongshan, Foshan, Shenzhen), the Pearl River Delta, Hainan, and the eastern and southern part of Guangxi (Wuzhou)
Hong Kong
Australia: Sydney, Melbourne
New Zealand: Auckland
Canada: Metro Vancouver, Metro Toronto, Greater Montreal
Laos: Vientiane
Malaysia: Kuala Lumpur, Perak, Sandakan, Ipoh
Thailand: Bangkok
United Kingdom: London
United States: New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles
Ho Chi Minh City, Can Tho, Bac Lieu, Da Nang, Kien Giang, Quang Ninh
ScriptWritten Cantonese
NationHong Kong
Macau (de facto official spoken form of Chinese in government)
AgencyOfficial Language Division
Civil Service Bureau
Government of Hong Kong
Speakersabout 20 million (excluding other dialects of Yue Chinese)

     Home | Language | Cantonese

Cantonese, or Standard Cantonese, is a language that originated in the vicinity of Canton (i.e. Guangzhou) in southern China, and is often regarded as the prestige dialect of Yue Chinese.

In mainland China, it is a lingua franca in Canton Province and some neighbouring areas, such as the eastern part of Guangxi Province. Outside mainland China, it is spoken by the majority population of Hong Kong and Macau in everyday life. It is also spoken by overseas Chinese communities in Southeast Asia, the United States, Canada, Peru, Cuba, Panama, Australia, and New Zealand, as well as part of Europe, and is the most widely spoken Chinese dialect in many of these communities.

While the term "Cantonese" refers narrowly to the prestige dialect described in this article, it is often used in a broader sense for the entire Yue branch of Chinese, including related dialects such as Taishanese.

The Cantonese language is also viewed as part of the cultural identity for the native speakers across large swathes of southern China, Hong Kong and Macau. Although Cantonese shares much vocabulary with Mandarin Chinese, the two languages are not mutually intelligible largely because of pronunciation and grammatical differences. Sentence structure, in particular the placement of the verb, sometimes differs between the two languages. The use of vocabulary in Cantonese also tends to have more historic roots.

Warning: simplexml_load_file( [function.simplexml-load-file]: failed to open stream: HTTP request failed! HTTP/1.0 410 Gone in /home/askbio/public_html/index_bio.php on line 257

Warning: simplexml_load_file() [function.simplexml-load-file]: I/O warning : failed to load external entity "" in /home/askbio/public_html/index_bio.php on line 257

Fatal error: Call to a member function children() on a non-object in /home/askbio/public_html/index_bio.php on line 260