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To transliterate Chinese, use the pinyin system, officially adopted by China and used by the Western press and in Western academic publications.

For well-known place-names, follow NGS atlas, then the Board on Geographic Names. Familiar anglicized or Wade-Giles spellings may appear in parentheses. A few words, mostly place-names, carry diacritical marks in Pinyin, but do not use them in text or on page maps.

For personal names follow the Pinyin system, the generally accepted form for well-known historical figures (Sun Yat-sen, Chiang Kai-shek, Mao Zedong), or the expressed preference of the individual. Traditionally the first name is the family name (almost always one character), followed by one or two given names, which are one word in pinyin (Deng Xiaoping) and usually hyphenated in Wade-Giles (Lee Teng-hui). The second element of the given name is generally lowercase, but personal preference prevails.

Some Chinese names are westernized, with the family name last: George Chang, H. H. Michael Hsiao.

Wade-Giles system is still the preferred transliteration system for many nonmainland Chinese and in Taiwan and Singapore. For well-known names, Pinyin may be given within parentheses.