Mandarin Phonetic Symbols II

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Mandarin Phonetic Symbols II (國語注音符號第二式), abbreviated MPS II, is a romanization system formerly used in the Republic of China (Taiwan). It was created to replace the complex tonal-spelling Gwoyeu Romatzyh, and to co-exist with the popular Wade-Giles (romanization) and Zhuyin (non-romanization). It is sometimes referred to as Gwoyeu Romatzyh 2 or GR2.


Based on the earlier and more complex Gwoyeu Romatzyh, the tentative version of MPS II was released on May 10, 1984, by the Ministry of Education. After two years of feedback from the general public, the official version was established on January 28, 1986.[1] To distinguish Zhuyin from the Mandarin Phonetic Symbols II ("Mandarin Zhuyin Symbols II"), the first Zhuyin is officially called "Mandarin Phonetic Symbols I" (國語注音符號第一式).

Despite its official status for almost two decades until it was replaced by Tongyong Pinyin in 2002, MPS II existed only in some governmental publications (such as travel brochures and dictionaries). However, MPS II was not used for the official Romanized names of Taiwanese places (though many road signs replaced during this period use MPS II). It never gained the same status as did Wade-Giles. In mainstream overseas communities, it is virtually unused and unheard of.



Bilabial Labiodental Alveolar Retroflex Alveolo-palatal Velar
Voiceless Voiced Voiceless Voiceless Voiced Voiceless Voiced Voiceless Voiceless
Nasal m [m]
ㄇ m
n [n]
ㄋ n
Plosive Unaspirated b [p]
ㄅ b
d [t]
ㄉ d
g [k]
ㄍ g
Aspirated p [pʰ]
ㄆ p
t [tʰ]
ㄊ t
k [kʰ]
ㄎ k
Affricate Unaspirated tz [ts]
ㄗ z
j [ʈʂ]
ㄓ zh
j [tɕ]
ㄐ j
Aspirated ts [tsʰ]
ㄘ c
ch [ʈʂʰ]
ㄔ ch
ch [tɕʰ]
ㄑ q
Fricative f [f]
ㄈ f
s [s]
ㄙ s
sh [ʂ]
ㄕ sh
r [ʐ]
ㄖ r
sh [ɕ]
ㄒ x
h [x]
ㄏ h
Lateral l [l]
ㄌ l


Nucleus a ə
Coda i u n ŋ i u n ŋ ɻ
Medial a [a]
ㄚ a
ai [æɪ̯]
ㄞ ai
au [ɑʊ̯]
ㄠ ao
an [æn]
ㄢ an
ang [ɑŋ]
ㄤ ang
e [ɤ]
ㄜ e
ei [eɪ̯]
ㄟ ei
ou [oʊ̯]
ㄡ ou
en [ən]
ㄣ en
eng [ɤŋ]
ㄥ eng
er [ɐɚ̯]
ㄦ er
r/z [ɨ]
U+312D.svg -i
i ia [i̯a]
ㄧㄚ ia
iau [i̯ɑʊ̯]
ㄧㄠ iao
ian [i̯ɛn]
ㄧㄢ ian
iang [i̯ɑŋ]
ㄧㄤ iang
ie [i̯e]
ㄧㄝ ie
iou [i̯oʊ̯]
ㄧㄡ iu
in [in]
ㄧㄣ in
ing [i̯ɤŋ]
ㄧㄥ ing
i [i]
ㄧ i
u ua [u̯a]
ㄨㄚ ua
uai [u̯æɪ̯]
ㄨㄞ uai
uan [u̯æn]
ㄨㄢ uan
uang [u̯ɑŋ]
ㄨㄤ uang
uo [u̯o]
ㄨㄛ uo
uei [u̯eɪ̯]
ㄨㄟ ui
uen [u̯ən]
ㄨㄣ un
ung [ʊŋ]
ㄨㄥ ong
u [u]
ㄨ u
y iuan [y̯ɛn]
ㄩㄢ üan
iue [y̯e]
ㄩㄝ üe
iun [yn]
ㄩㄣ ün
iung [i̯ʊŋ]
ㄩㄥ iong
iu [y]
ㄩ ü


  • Indication of tone by respelling, as used in Gwoyeu Romatzyh (GR), is eliminated. Syllables are spelled like GR's tone one for non-nasal initials, and like tone two for nasal initials. Tone is then marked with four diacritics identical to Zhuyin's.
  • The romanization of the consonants is identical to GR's.
  • It uses r for both:
    • ㄖ (pinyin r), and
    • what is written in pinyin as i after zh, ch, sh, r. (Although this use of r has a tonal diacritic on it and is always final.) This use is identical to Yale.
  • It uses z for both:
    • ㄗ (pinyin z), and
    • what is written in pinyin as i after z, c, s. (Although this use of z has a tonal diacritic on it and is always final.) This use is somewhat like Yale.
      • The z is not written after tz (i.e., no tzz), however. Tz corresponds to Pinyin zi.
  • Like GR, -iou, -uen, and -uei are all written out, unlike the Pinyin/Wade -iu, -un, and -ui.
  • GR's au persists (as opposed to the ao of Pinyin, Wade-Giles, and the later Tongyong Pinyin.)
  • GR's iu (Pinyin ü) is written as -iu and yu (alone).
  • GR's -ong is spelled now -ung (like Wade-Giles).
  • GR's el is spelled now er (like Pinyin).
  • Y- and w- are added to or replace i and u (respectively) in ways similar to GR and identical to Pinyin.

An example of MPS II: "國語注音符號第二式" is written as guó-yǔ jù-yīn fú-hàu dì-èr shr̀. Compare with pinyin, which writes it as guóyǔ zhùyīn fúhào dì'èr shì and to GR, which writes it as gwoyeu juh'in fwuhaw dih'ell shyh.

Spaces are generally used in place of hyphens, except in personal names, which use hyphens in between the syllables of the given names.


  1. "MPS2". Pinyin Info. March 10, 2004.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links

Preceded by
Gwoyeu Romatzyh
Official romanization adopted
by the Republic of China (Taiwan)

Succeeded by
Tongyong Pinyin