In Buddhism, there is a deity called Skanda. In Chinese, his name is Wei Tuo. See for example this link https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skanda_(Buddhism)

However, my question is, what is the actual correct spelling in English for the Chinese name of this Buddhist deity? Is it Wei Tuo or Weituo?

In the link, you can see that it also says that he is called "Hufa Weituo Zuntian Pusa", in which Wei and Tuo are written together as a single word.

In English, I believe Chinese names using pinyin are written together. For example, Beijing or Tu Youyou, not Bei Jing or Tu You You. This is why I wonder, what's the correct spelling here, Wei Tuo or Weituo? And why? What's the source of the grammatical rule applied to this case?

  • 3
    There is no rule. Both ways are used for names. For cities, they're usually written together as a single word (except Hong Kong). – Peter Shor Oct 3 '17 at 12:48
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    @PeterShor. Whereby "Hong Kong" is not pinyin. Hence the difference. – fdb Oct 3 '17 at 12:57
  • There is a difference between "correct" (according to language authorities) and common practice. In the US "common practice" would generally be determined by usages in the California Zen/beatnik community. – Hot Licks Oct 3 '17 at 13:03
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    This is not about grammar or grammaticality. It's about spelling systems. And they differ, so there is no real "correct" spelling. – Arm the good guys in America Oct 3 '17 at 13:16
  • @HotLicks Why the beatnik community for writing Chinese names? – Lawrence Oct 3 '17 at 13:59

If you are going to use pinyin then you ought to do so consistently. If I am not mistaken, the pinyin spelling of this name is Wéituó.

  • What is wrong with this answer? – fdb Oct 3 '17 at 14:14
  • It might have been downvoted just because someone thinks the question is off-topic. But otherwise, perhaps the lack of references? I haven't decided to upvote yet because I haven't found a reference that clearly supports this. "Hanyu Pinyin Rules" says that polysyllabic Chinese surnames, given names, pen names and nicknames should be written with no spacing between the syllables, but there are also some examples of names that are written with spaces when one part is analyzable as a separate word, such as " Xiǎo Liú" and " Wú Lǎo". – herisson Oct 3 '17 at 17:34
  • Since I don't know Chinese or the etymology of this name, I can't tell if "Wei" or "Tuo" can be analyzed as a separate word. – herisson Oct 3 '17 at 17:34

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