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Old 02-23-2014, 07:48 PM
 
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^ This problem is much less for the simplified Chinese. Traditional Chinese does look too black.
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Old 02-23-2014, 07:56 PM
 
Location: Melbourne, Australia
9,781 posts, read 16,256,138 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bastardised View Post
^ This problem is much less for the simplified Chinese. Traditional Chinese does look too black.
Indeed, although I've some say that traditional is easier to read...well of course depends what you're used to as well.
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Old 02-23-2014, 10:21 PM
 
268 posts, read 324,947 times
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Originally Posted by Bettafish View Post

In fact one only needs to master about 6000 characters to read newspapers and novels, which is accomplished at 15 years old. Many young children did read the famous works (e.g. Journey to the West, the Romance of the Three Kingdoms) by that time.
Maybe 6000 words. I think around 2000 unique characters will allow you read 90-95% of a newspaper. The other 5-10% are comprised of thousands of less frequent characters/vocab that are hard to remember unless you are a native speaker. So, yeah, probably 6000+ characters if you want to read at 100% comprehension all the time. Through the power of context you can usually guess the meaning of those characters you don't recognize anyway. And I actually find novels a bit more difficult that newspapers.
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Old 02-23-2014, 11:20 PM
 
Location: State of Transition
78,792 posts, read 70,635,877 times
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Originally Posted by botticelli View Post
Whenever some western boasts he/she can speak 4 or 5 language, it is almost always a bunch of very similar ones which include Spanish, Portuguese and Italian, plus English, French, German/Dutch etc, and it seldom involved any Non-European languages which don't use Latin alphabets.

But is being able to speak 4 European language impressive? Studies show that for an native English speaker, it takes about the same time to learn Chinese or Japanese (2200 hours to be fluent) as French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian combined (575 hours each).

Language Difficulty Ranking | Effective Language Learning

Think you are linguistically gifted? Learn an Asian language. What's so special about a Spaniard to be able to speak Italian? It is probably more difficult for a Pekinese to learn Cantonese, and there are tens of thousands of people who can speak both Mandarin and Cantonese.
You're preaching to the choir. Several people here know an Asian language, as well as a couple of European ones, at least.

What kills me about Chinese and/or Japanese is the written language. It's impossible to retain all that unless you read it and practice writing it regularly.
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Old 02-23-2014, 11:21 PM
 
6,726 posts, read 6,611,101 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guawazi View Post
Maybe 6000 words. I think around 2000 unique characters will allow you read 90-95% of a newspaper. The other 5-10% are comprised of thousands of less frequent characters/vocab that are hard to remember unless you are a native speaker. So, yeah, probably 6000+ characters if you want to read at 100% comprehension all the time. Through the power of context you can usually guess the meaning of those characters you don't recognize anyway. And I actually find novels a bit more difficult that newspapers.
Novels are literature so they use more "elegant" words and old words.
Probably 3000 characters will allow you to read news without any problem, except for 1 or 2 words in each article.
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Old 02-23-2014, 11:27 PM
 
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I just searched online, and found high school graduates in China are required to master 4000 characters (recognize, pronounce, and use).
So I would say an educated Chinese can probably recognize 5000 characters.
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Old 02-23-2014, 11:29 PM
 
Location: Melbourne, Australia
9,781 posts, read 16,256,138 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth4Truth View Post
You're preaching to the choir. Several people here know an Asian language, as well as a couple of European ones, at least.

What kills me about Chinese and/or Japanese is the written language. It's impossible to retain all that unless you read it and practice writing it regularly.
I wonder if that's a good argument for China to switch over the romanisation/pinyin.
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Old 02-24-2014, 12:35 AM
 
Location: Jakarta, Indonesia
1,022 posts, read 3,147,342 times
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Indonesian language should be considered one of easiest.
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Old 02-24-2014, 01:17 AM
 
33 posts, read 21,046 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bettafish View Post
Novels are literature so they use more "elegant" words and old words.
Probably 3000 characters will allow you to read news without any problem, except for 1 or 2 words in each article.

i am native chinese, yes ,3000characters will be fine .it equals the level of chinese student before he enter into the middle school.

中国的小学生要求在小学毕业左右能认3000个汉字,能写2500个汉字
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Old 02-24-2014, 06:47 AM
 
25,059 posts, read 23,184,561 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shishiguier View Post
i am native chinese, yes ,3000characters will be fine .it equals the level of chinese student before he enter into the middle school.

中国的小学生要求在小学毕业左右能认3000个汉字,能写2500个汉字
Wow 3000? You're only required to learn 2136 in Japan. That's a huge difference. I can't read all of your Chinese, but I understood only Chinese primary school students, 3000, and I don't know what is after 2500
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