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When you see unfamillar word......

Hi,guys.Today my questione is:when you see some unfamillar words,you don't know the meaning of this word and you have never seen this word.How do you read this word?How do you know the pronunciation of this word?

Jan 11, 2015 2:12 PM
Comments · 7

The context will usually tell you the meaning.


There's also a kind of 'close-enough' rule which people use in their own language. For example, I might be reading an English book set in the early 19th century. I read that a lady put on her xxxxx and her hat, then went outside, got into a yyyy and drove away. I'd guess that a xxxx is some kind of clothing, probably a sort of coat or cloak, and that a yyyy is some kind of vehicle, probably a type of horse-drawn carriage. Maybe I've never seen either of those words before, but it doesn't matter. I have a rough idea of what they mean, and that's ok. I don't need a more exact definition.

January 11, 2015

ni hao, Vin!


Rules will help you, but English spelling doesn't match its pronunciation, so you should use an English to English dictionary they usually have the word spelt phonetically (as in how it sounds), and some online dictionaries have a sound sample so you can hear the word.


eg. "Candy"


There is also a pronunciation website called Forvo:-


If you learn how to read the International Phonetical alphabet, it will help you too:-


Hope that helps!

January 11, 2015

google translate ^^. 

January 11, 2015

I use the context of the sentence to try to determine the meaning of the word.  If I am unable to do that, I will eventually look it up if need be.  But at this point I try to only do that as a last resort.

January 11, 2015

Well, we make an educated guess. Usually we can recognise some part of the word (maybe a prefix or suffix) and we can guess at the meaning from the parts. This also helps us pronounce it.


Aside from that, the context of the sentence/paragraph usually gives us an idea of the meaning.


It's not a perfect method, but it works most of the time.

January 11, 2015
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Language Skills
Chinese (Mandarin), English
Learning Language