Using Ninchanese

Get to know the basics and a few helpful tips along the way!
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Why do I sometimes see hints for Chinese characters?

Are you wondering why you sometimes see hints for some Chinese characters in the vocabulary stages?

Don’t worry, Nincha isn’t sending you too much help. No, there’s a very good reason to these hints.

Chinese is full of polyphonic words

Did you know Mandarin Chinese is full of polyphonic words?

What's a Chinese polyphonic character?  In Chinese, a lot of characters are polyphonic words, that is to say, a Chinese character that has multiple meanings and pronunciations, such as 的 (check out its multiple pronunciations here).

Polyphonic characters, therefore, need a special treatment in the vocabulary stages.

Since you are asked to enter either the pinyin or the English for a given Chinese character when you’re learning new Chinese words with Ninchanese, in the case of a polyphonic character, we show you a hint. Otherwise, you’d have no way of knowing which character for that polyphonic character you’re being tested on.

The hint, therefore, tells you:

  • either the pinyin or the meaning of a polyphonic character you are being prompted to answer

Does that make sense to you? It may seem like it’s too easy, but it’s definitely a useful hint for some words, like 的 or  得 for example.


To learn more about how at Ninchanese we deal with polyphonic characters, read this blog post.

NinchaneseWhy do I see hints for some Chinese characters?