A. Official language
Chinese comprises many regional language varieties sometimes grouped together as the Chinese dialects, the primary ones being Mandarin, Wu, Cantonese, and Min. These languages are not mutually intelligible and some differ more than the European languages that neighbor each other. Chinese’s language span eight primary language families, are diverse morphologically and phonetically, and may be mutually unintelligible with each other. The languages most studied and supported by the state include Chinese, Mongolian, Tibetan, Uyghur and Zhuang.
Mandarin is the official language in China. At the fall of the Qing Dynasty in 1911, there was no single, national language in China or an education system that could teach the proper sounds of any of the languages. The new government decided a national language must be established and so it was decided by a group of scholars in 1913 that Mandarin be made the standard.
There are many Dialects in China (over 400 dialects), so it is hard to guess how many dialects exist. In recently, the Dialects have been divided into 16 groups. These are the dialects has been used most in China, such as Putunghua (Mandarin); Gan, Kejia (Hakka); Min, Wu, Xiang and Yue (Cantonese).
The dialects from the seven groups are quite different. For example, a Mandarin speaker in northern China usually understands little Cantonese, but a non-Mandarin speaker usually can speak some Mandarin with a strong accent. This is largely because Mandarin has been the official national language since 1913. Mandarin or Putonghua is mainly based on the Beijing dialect. Despite the large differences among Chinese dialects, there is one thing in common for them -- they all share the same writing system based on Chinese characters.
C. Spoken versus written language
The Han people have their own spoken and written languages, namely Chinese. It is the most commonly used language in China, and one of the most...