I proudly speak Wu Chinese as my mother tongue, though Mandarin is also native to me.
In terms of the number of speakers, Wu (Sino-Tibetan : Sinitic : Southern) is the second largest language in China and the 10th largest in the world.
It is a soft and light language spoken mainly in
the Jiang-Nan region, i.e.,
Shanghai, Zhejiang and southern part of Jiangsu.
Wu is very different from Mandarin in (at least) two aspects:
- it preserves much more phonetics and vocabulary from Old Chinese
(making it the intellectual's language)
- it is more agglutinative and polysyllabic than Mandarin and
has significantly higher amount of SOV word order, due to its Austro-Asiatic substratum.
General Maps (non-linguistic):
Some Resources (google caches, in Chinese):
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Last modified: Sat May 28 20:05:38 EDT 2005