Saturday, April 16, 2011

Tomorrow, tomorrow…

While studying lesson five, I wondered about 聽早 hìng-dō “tomorrow” and why I couldn’t find this word in the Kaiping dictionary. Today while flipping through the dictionary, I found out why.

The editor, Deng Jun, simply uses a different character to represent the same sounds: 天早. The character 天 hing (or hin, in my accent) means roughly “day” or “sky” or “heaven,” among other meanings. It’s usually pronounced with a mid level tone.

Which is the correct form to use?

I don’t have strong enough feelings to advocate one way or another. In transcribing the Basic Course, I’ll continue to transcribe the words as provided. Additionally, using 聽早 nicely corresponds to the Cantonese usage of 聽日 for “tomorrow.” Nevertheless, 天早 is a heck of a lot quicker to write!

1 comment:

  1. I agree, I had assumed that it was literally "tomorrow morning" just like Cantonese uses "tomorrow day", so would be the same character from 聽日. I know 聽 doesn't normally mean "tomorrow", but it is listed as a definition here: