Re: Fifth tone

Date: 2010-04-28 04:30 pm (UTC)
pulchritude: (2)
From: [personal profile] pulchritude
I learned it as 'toneless' and think of it as pronouncing the word...but with its normal tone less emphasized. I think 'taking its pitch from wherever the previous tone in the word/sentence ended up' does describe some instances fairly well.

I'm not sure I'd agree that it's almost not there because it really is, just less emphasized than normal. I am also pretty sure that Standard Mandarin doesn't advocate the elongation - I think it might be a regional thing that is a product of the way one's native topolect is said.
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