Zhuyin Fuhao (注音符號 Zhùyīn Fúhào), or "Symbols for Annotating Sounds", often abbreviated as Zhuyin (注音 Zhùyīn), or known as Bopomofo (ㄅㄆㄇㄈ) after the first four letters of this Chinese phonemic alphabet (bo po mo fo), is the national phonetic system of the Republic of China for teaching the Chinese languages, especially Standard Mandarin, to people learning to read and write and/or to people learning to speak Mandarin. Zhuyin is a non-romanized transcription system; "non-romanized" indicated that it uses a fixed set of characters (instead of latin letters) to indicate the sound,
The Zhuyin system uses 37 special symbols to represent the Mandarin sounds: 21 consonants and 16 vowels. Each symbol represents a group of sounds without much ambiguity.
Look for more information at Pinyin and/or http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zhuyin
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