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Meyer–Wempe

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Title: Meyer–Wempe  
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Meyer–Wempe

The Meyer–Wempe romanization system was developed by two Roman Catholic missionaries in Hong Kong, Bernard F. Meyer and Theodore F. Wempe, during the 1920s and 1930s for romanizing Cantonese.

Initials

p
[p]
p'
[pʰ]
m
[m]
f
[f]
t
[t]
t'
[tʰ]
n
[n]
l
[l]
k
[k]
k'
[kʰ]
ng
[ŋ]
h
[h]
kw
[kw]
k'w
[kʰw]
oo, w
[w]
ts
[ts]
ts'
[tsʰ]
s
[s]
i, y
[j]
ch
[tɕ]
ch'
[tɕʰ]
sh
[ɕ]

The distinction between the alveolar sibilants ([ts], [tsʰ], and [s]) and alveolo-palatal sibilants ([tɕ], [tɕʰ], and [ɕ]) has been lost in modern Cantonese, though the distinction still existed at the time this system was devised. See Cantonese phonology for more information.

Finals

a
[aː]
aai
[aːi]
aau
[aːu]
aam
[aːm]
aan
[aːn]
aang
[aːŋ]
aap
[aːp]
aat
[aːt]
aak
[aːk]
  ai
[ɐi]
au
[ɐu]
am, om
[ɐm]
an
[ɐn]
ang
[ɐŋ]
ap, op
[ɐp]
at
[ɐt]
ak
[ɐk]
e
[ɛː]
ei
[ei]
      eng
[ɛːŋ]
    ek
[ɛːk]
i
[iː]
  iu
[iːu]
im
[iːm]
in
[iːn]
ing
[ɪŋ]
ip
[iːp]
it
[iːt]
ik
[ɪk]
oh
[ɔː]
oi
[ɔːi]
o
[ou]
  on
[ɔːn]
ong
[ɔːŋ]
  ot
[ɔːt]
ok
[ɔːk]
oo
[uː]
ooi
[uːi]
    oon
[uːn]
ung
[ʊŋ]
  oot
[uːt]
uk
[ʊk]
oeh
[œː]
  ui
[ɵy]
  un
[ɵn]
eung
[œːŋ]
  ut
[ɵt]
euk
[œːk]
ue
[yː]
      uen
[yːn]
    uet
[yːt]
 
      m
[m̩]
  ng
[ŋ̩]
     

The finals m and ng can only be used as standalone nasal syllables.

Tones

Unlike most Cantonese romanization systems, Meyer–Wempe indicates the entering tones, for a total of nine tones.

Tone description Example
upper even a
upper rising á
upper going à
middle entering àt
upper entering at
low even ā
lower rising ǎ
lower going â
lower entering ât

References



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