English Loan Words from Chinese
從中文借來的英文字

語音播放:

We tend to think of languages as static, but in fact they are changing all the time and borrowing words from one another. There are many reasons one language might adopt a word from another. Here we will look at some of those reasons and give examples of Chinese words that have been adopted into the English language for each one.

我們以為語言是不改變的,但事實上,語言一直變動且互相借字使用。可能有很多原因會讓一種語言採用另一種語言的字詞。讓我們來看看內文中提到的一些原因,也看看英文從中文借字的幾個例子。

語音播放:

One reason a language might borrow a word from another is that a culture may not have a word for a new food introduced by that other culture. For example, English speakers didn’t have a word for Chinese style fried noodles, so they called this dish chow mein, which comes from Cantonese and also sounds similar to fried noodles in Mandarin. There are many other food-related examples of English words that come from Chinese, including dim sum (廣式點心), lychee (荔枝), oolong (烏龍), tofu (豆腐), and wonton (雲吞).
借字的一個原因是在地文化中並沒有另一個文化所引進的新食物。舉例來說,中式炒麵當初沒有英文字,因此以英語人士就叫這道菜chow mein,這是廣東話,聽起來像普通話的炒麵。還有其他許多與食物相關的英文字也來自於中文,包括dim sum (廣式點心), lychee (荔枝), oolong (烏龍), tofu (豆腐), and wonton (雲吞)。

As you know, foods aren’t the only thing introduced by other cultures. Cultures can also introduce activities or abstract concepts. A good example of a Mandarin word that all English speakers are now familiar with is chi (氣), which means energy, as well as the popular activity tai chi (太極). Other English words from Chinese related to concepts or activities include yin yang (陰陽), feng shui (風水), mahjong (麻將), and kung fu (功夫).

如你所知,食物並不是唯一被引進到其他文化的物件。各國文化間也會引進活動或抽象的概念。有一個好例子是這個所有的現代英語人士都很孰悉的中國字,那就是chi(氣)意為能量,以及受人歡迎的活動tai chi(太極)。英文中與概念或活動相關的字包括yin yang (陰陽), feng shui (風水), mahjong (麻將), and kung fu (功夫),也都是從中文借來的。

語音播放:

In some cases, languages don’t import a new word or expression directly, but rather a literal translation of it simply because they find it to be an interesting or useful thing to say. For example, the Chinese expression 洗腦 literally means “wash brain” in English, so English speakers created a new English word, brainwash, which means to force somebody to change their beliefs.

在一些例子中,語言不會直接輸入一個新字詞表達用語,而是直接照字面翻譯過來,因為他們覺得那比較有趣、或比較有用。舉例來說,中文字「洗腦」在英文的字面意思就叫“wash brain”,因此英語人士創造一個新的英文字brainwash,意為強迫某人改變他們的信念。

Vocabulary 好字精選

1. static (adj) not changing or moving  靜態的,靜止的,停滯的
Science has shown us that nothing in the world is totally static.
科學讓我們看到世間萬物並不全然靜止不動。

2. Cantonese (n) the language of Canton (Guangdong) and Hong Kong   廣東話
Cantonese is the main language of Hong Kong.
廣東話是香港的主要語言。

3. Mandarin (adj) the standard dialect of Chinese  普通話
Mandarin is an official language in Taiwan, China, and Singapore.     
普通話是台灣、中國與新加坡的官方語言。

4. abstract (adj) related to ideas, not objects or physical things  抽象的
Philosophy is the study of abstract ideas. 
哲學是抽象概念的研究。

5. concept (n) an abstract idea  概念,觀念,思想
Several new psychological concepts were introduced during the lecture.        
數個新的心理學觀念在課程中介紹給大家。

6. literal (adj) taking words in their actual meaning  照字面上的,原義的
In the literal sense of the word, ‘awesome’ describes something that inspires awe, but many people just use the word to mean ‘cool.’
在文字的世界中,「awesome」這個字描述產生敬畏的東西,但許多人只用這個字來代表「酷」。

7.translation (n) a written or spoken version of something from another language 翻譯,譯本;轉化,轉變
Do you have the English translation of this book?
你有這本書的英譯版嗎?

Phrases and Sentence Patterns 句型解析

1. one another (phr) like ‘each other’, but among more than two people/things  彼此(用於總數為三或三以上)
The students walked around and introduced themselves to one another.
學生們到處走動向彼此介紹自己。
** each other 意同於one another,但用於總數為二。

2. as you know (phr) to introduce something the speaker already (probably) knows  如你所知
As you know, Amy is not the easiest person to get along with.
如你所見,Amy不是個好相處的人。

Exercise 課後練習題

1. The market has remained ______________ for years; it really hasn’t changed much.
市場多年毫無改變;真的改變不大。
2. Simone can’t speak ____________, but luckily she can communicate with people in Hong Kong using English.
Simone不會講廣東話,但幸運地她在香港時可以用英文和別人溝通。
3. _______________ is the world’s most widely spoken language.
普通話是世上最廣泛使用的語言。
4. ______________ art is a kind of art that conveys ideas, not everyday images.
抽象藝術是一種傳達想法的藝術,而不是每日的影像。
5. The ______________ of marriage goes back thousands of years.
婚姻的概念可追溯回數千年前。
6. The movie title doesn’t sound good in Chinese because it’s just a ______________ translation of the English title.
電影的中文名聽起來不好聽,因為那只是英文標題的直譯。
7. This _______________ software can scan any words or characters and tell you what they mean in your own language.
這件翻譯軟體可以掃描任何字詞,或中文字,然後再以你的語言釋義。
8. The kids were reminded not to get in fights with _____________.
孩子們被叮嚀不可和對方吵架。
9. _____________, the report is due on Monday, so I don’t understand why you haven’t started it yet.
如你所知,報告周一要交,所以我不知道你為什麼還沒動工。

解答:
1. static
2. Cantonese
3. Mandarin
4. Abstract
5. concept
6. literal
7. translation
8. one another
9. As you know

Comprehension Questions 閱讀理解

1. What would be another expression that means the same as ‘loan word’ as used in the title of the article?
a. Static word.
b. Literal word.
c. Original word.
d. Borrowed word.

2. Which of the following is an abstract concept?
a. kung fu
b. water
c. fried noodles
d. freedom

解答:
1. 以下選項何者意同於文章中使用的字詞「loan word」?
a. 靜止不動的文字
b. 照字面解釋的文字
c. 原有的文字
d. 借來的文字

2. 以下選項何者是抽象的概念?
a. 功夫
b. 水
c. 炒麵
d. 自由

 

版權宣告

本內容版權為驊鉅數位科技有限公司所擁有,未經授權請勿作商業使用。 
轉載時請勿修改圖片文字內容等資訊,並保留版權宣告的相關訊息,否則將視為侵權使用。
© Huachu Digital Technology Limited Company. All Rights Reserved.
Please do not change any contents and information when you forward this newsletter, and keep all messages of COPYRIGHT. Or you will infringe the rights of Huachu Digital Technology Limited Company.