English words of Chinese origin

KT   Tuesday, April 29, 2003, 06:56 GMT
Are there any?
"Silk"? "Typhoon"?
daje   Tuesday, April 29, 2003, 07:44 GMT
dimsum is gaining grounds too
KT   Tuesday, April 29, 2003, 14:09 GMT
yummy :o)
To KT   Tuesday, April 29, 2003, 20:14 GMT
Hi, Typhoon is derived from the Japanese word taifû which in turn is the Sino-Japanese reading of Chinese word. So, Typhoon is somehow of Chinese origin.
Another example would be tycoon which stems from the Japanese word "Taikun" -again Sino-Japanese reading (On-yomi) of a Chinese word.
Allen   Wednesday, April 30, 2003, 00:14 GMT
Typhoon and the Chinese word 台风 have the similar pronunciation .Since the south of China suffers typhoon more often that Euro countries , i think maybe English share the pronunciation with the Chinese word firstly .
KT   Wednesday, April 30, 2003, 02:37 GMT
From Dictionary.com:

ty·phoon ( P ) Pronunciation Key (t-fn)
A tropical cyclone occurring in the western Pacific or Indian oceans.

[Greek tuphn, whirlwind, and Arabic --f-n, deluge (from Greek tuph-n), and Chinese (Cantonese) taaîfung(equivalent to Chinese (Mandarin) tái, great + Chinese (Mandarin) fng, wind).]

Word History: The history of typhoon presents a perfect example of the long journey that many words made in coming to English. It traveled from Greece to Arabia to India, and also arose independently in China, before assuming its current form in our language. The Greek word tuph_n, used both as the name of the father of the winds and a common noun meaning “whirlwind, typhoon,” was borrowed into Arabic during the Middle Ages, when Arabic learning both preserved and expanded the classical heritage and passed it on to Europe and other parts of the world. fn, the Arabic version of the Greek word, passed into languages spoken in India, where Arabic-speaking Muslim invaders had settled in the 11th century. Thus the descendant of the Arabic word, passing into English (first recorded in 1588) through an Indian language and appearing in English in forms such as touffon and tufan, originally referred specifically to a severe storm in India. The modern form of typhoon was influenced by a borrowing from the Cantonese variety of Chinese, namely the word taaîfung, and respelled to make it look more like Greek. Taaîfung, meaning literally “great wind,” was coincidentally similar to the Arabic borrowing and is first recorded in English guise as tuffoon in 1699. The various forms coalesced and finally became typhoon, a spelling that first appeared in 1819 in Shelley's Prometheus Unbound.
To KT   Wednesday, April 30, 2003, 16:02 GMT
Well, I don't think so. Typhoon or Taifû, taifung are not of Greek origin. Similarities don't always mean that two words are related: Tai means "plate" and Fung means "wind". In Japanese, the word Tai remains the same and the fû is the sino-japanese reading of "kaze" wind. Hence, the Chinese coined the term.
nt   Wednesday, May 07, 2003, 23:27 GMT
where is the place from tycoon come from
Jim   Thursday, May 08, 2003, 05:14 GMT
How about "ketchup"/"catchup"/"catsup"? http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=ketchup says it possilby came from Cantonese probably via Malay.
Simon   Thursday, May 08, 2003, 06:45 GMT
Damn, Jim, you beat me to it.

Apparently, the phrase "Long time no see" is a literal translation of Cantonese. Don't know how this entered our speech though.
KT   Thursday, May 08, 2003, 14:47 GMT
Ketchup definitely sounds like ketchup in Catonese, which is literally translated as "eggplant sauce" and pronounced as "ke dzup". (In Catonese we call tomato "fan ke" which literally translated as "foreign eggplant".)

And I thought "long time no see" was a coincident that we both have this term.

How about "no problem"? Is it just a coincident? Chinese have this term for a long time.

We in Hong Kong got affeccted by (sometimes hit by) typhoons at least twice a year.
Kabam   Saturday, May 10, 2003, 03:47 GMT
Well "long time no see" and "no problem" have both an equivalent in french too. I think some similarities are more due to the fact that we human come through the same feelings (joy for meeting someone after having not see him for a while, agreeing with someone) whatever our ethnic differences may be.
Kelly   Thursday, May 15, 2003, 21:10 GMT
A list of borrowed Chinese words into English.

Click on the link below and read on.


KT   Friday, May 16, 2003, 05:12 GMT
Interesting site, thanks.

I personally think Chow Mein resembles more of the Cantonese pronounciation of "fried noodles" than that of Mandarin.

http://zhongwen.com/ also has a list of English words of Chiense origin.