How to read GR

Careful study of these pages should enable you to read GR (Gwoyeu Romatzyh) fairly confidently. Learning to write correct GR takes a little more effort (see How to Write GR).

Basic principle of GR
In general, each syllable has a basic form representing Tone 1; the spelling is then modified according to certain rules to indicate the other tones. No accents or numbers are used.

The great advantage of GR is that the spelling conveys tonal information even in black and white: colours are used here simply to help you learn the system.

Once you are familiar with the basic rules, you will find our interactive demonstration of GR tonal spelling an invaluable reference.

Acknowledgments Sincere thanks to Benjamin Ao for his help and patient comments - and not least for providing the original version of the text. Thanks are also due to Daniel Bryant, James Dew and Richard Warmington for their comments.

Next: ►Spelling rules

Last revised October 2003

Intro | Rules | Table | Tones | Text | Exercise