Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Discussions on the Hokkien (Minnan) language.
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Mark Yong
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by Mark Yong »

niuc wrote:
Is 茸 (diông in Bagan) jiông or jiâng in Penang?
SimL wrote:
Sorry, don't know this word in Hokkien, so have to leave it to the others...
Oops... out of my vocabulary range, too! :oops: I guess among the *more senior* :mrgreen: Penang Hokkien speakers here, that leaves Andrew and aokh1979!

Mark Yong
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by Mark Yong »

amhoanna wrote:
禽獸 is also a great word. It means BIRDS AND BEASTS, right?
From what I read, etymologically, not quite so. originally meant specifically the wild beasts, while meant specifically the domesticated ones. Compounding both together gave the collection of all animals. Perhaps that is the reason why only the domesticated animals visit the 獸醫 siu-i ‘veterinarian’. Another easy way that I employ to remember which is which, is to associate with ‘to seize’ (like an eagle seizing its prey with its talons), and with ‘gentle’ (from the Hokkien 幼秀 iu-siu).

It's sort of like 沐浴. means ‘washing the hair’ and means ‘washing (the rest of) the body’, and compounding both gives ‘bath’. For some reason, only the second morpheme is used in other compounds, e.g. 浴室 ‘bathroom’ and our Hokkien 沖浴 cang ek (as if someone decided that between the two, having lice (‘kutu’) was more tolerable than body odour! :lol: )
amhoanna wrote:
tiâu 椆 PEN (FOR 精牲)… Tiâu also has several other sets of meanings, one being BEING STUCK SOMEWHERE
I use tiau24 very regularly in the context of ‘being stuck’ (both literally and figuratively), normally as 著椆 tiok22-tiau24. We used it a lot in the factory, when foreign matter got jammed in between machine components, grinding everything to a halt (“機復再著椆”).
amhoanna wrote:
…po͘ 埔 FIELD (FOR 精牲 TO GRAZE).
Also another word I use regularly, most of the time in 草埔 chau44 pO22.
amhoanna wrote:
And, Niuc and Mark, I always order my Malay with extra Sanskrit and extra Java; no English, easy on the Arabic, and one shot of Hokkien, please. 8)
Now you're talkin’ my language, Mr. Bond. :mrgreen:

SimL
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by SimL »

Mark Yong wrote:
SimL wrote:
My only query now is that 五,做,册 are low for me, but 讀 is high.
Okay, now you had me doubting for a moment there! :lol:

I tried mumbling 讀册 to myself a few times a moment ago. Unfortunately, they both register low-level tones for me (unless I have been saying it wrong all this while!). At best, is tone contour 21 and is tone contour 11, but is definitely not tone contour 55 for me (so far).

Again, I am not a cradle Penang Hokkien speaker, so if my pronunciation is out-of-line, please let me know. As you can tell by now, I am etymologically-obsessed, but phonologically-incompetent (which is why my wife can never understand how she speaks much better Mandarin than me, and yet I can read much better than her)!
Hi Mark,

No, no, your ears and accent are prefectly good. In the phrase "thak-cheh", both are low-short, because the thak has sandhied. So, it's "thak8-cheh4", which sandhies to "thak4_cheh4". When I first queried your example, it was because the 4 characters were in a list, separated by commas, so I used citation tone in all 4, and hence got confused. To see that it's "thak8" in citation tone, you could say: "tng-lang-ji, i be-hiau thak" (= "he doesn't know how to read Chinese characters"), and hear that it's high-short.

BTW, has anyone else heard the pronunciation "chet4" for in Penang Hokkien?

SimL
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by SimL »

Ah-bin wrote:That system is far more complex and clever than I guessed from your explanaions to me Sim!
Haha! Thanks. Actually, you might be thinking of my other explanation, of how I map Mandarin tones to Hokkien tones (I think I wrote that up here too, somewhere) :mrgreen:.
Ah-bin wrote:The reason why I have trouble with number systems is because the dictionaries I own from China do the 1-8 thing differently from each other...in one system (also the computer input system) the tones are arranged yin first yang second:

a = 1 á = 2 à = 3 at = 4
â = 5 (á = 2) ā = 7 át = 8

and the other is yin-yang yin-yang yin-yang etc.

a = 1 â = 2 á = 3 à = 5 ā = 6 at = 7 át = 8

One and eight are still the same...but I get so confused that end up looking for other characters on the page with tones that I know. That's why I stick with tone marks!
Very valid point. I like the diacritics too, but I find it a bother to have to set my keyboard to allow them, and I have no trouble remembering the numbers so I usually use numbers. In fact, I mastered the (POJ-)numbers long before I mastered the diacritics - the 'other' number system I have never mastered (nor the Bodman diacritics). I guess anyone who wishes to consider himself reasonably knowledgeable in the area of Hokkien linguistics should really know them all!

For talking about Hokkien, I think either numbers or diacritics are fine, but for writing in Hokkien, I think the diacritics are far better.

amhoanna
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by amhoanna »

Here's a Hokkien vocab question for everybody. In Han medicine and diet practices, there's this concept of foods being either "cool", "fiery", or "warm". Sometimes the body goes out of balance and becomes "hot".

1) In your Hokkien, or the Hokkien of those around U, how do U refer to these three classes? I'm not really sure how to say it in any kind of Hoklo. I'm guessing maybe liâng and dia̍t for the first two?

2) How do U describe or refer to foods that escalate the "fire" of the body?

3) How do U describe or refer to foods that quell the "fire" of the body?

And, I'd like to re-ask another question. What do U guys call the four suits (diamonds, spades, etc.)? What about terms like FOUR OF A KIND, STRAIGHT, ROYAL FLUSH, etc.?

And thanks to Sim for answering that Penangites say "pung" (T1) when they want to pick up a cast-away mahjongg piece.

SimL
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by SimL »

Hi amhoanna,

Could be my ignorance of my own culture, but I am only aware of "leng2" and "juah8" (and perhaps "hong"?). Chocolate and durian (among other things) are "juah", and many fruits are "leng", but I've never been able to follow it very well. Isn't "hong" the ones which give you gas? :mrgreen:.

As I said, I don't know much about this field, but when we were adolescents, it was frequently said not to eat things which were "juah", because they gave one pimples.

The Malaysian English term for "juah" (in this sense) was "heaty", but I don't recall if there was a corresponding one for "leng".

There was also the belief that pregnant women were not supposed to eat pineapples, because they were "lai37" (= "sharp"), and could cause the baby to spontaneously abort.

niuc
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by niuc »

Ah-bin wrote: My Taiwanese version was "Tōng-bút lông-tiûⁿ" 動物農場
Same in my variant, but 物 "bút" also sandhied; otherwise it tends to mean "animal, farm".
I suppose it would be "Khîm-siù" 禽獸 rather than Tōng-bút 動物 since the second word is a loan from Japanese and ultimately a calque from "animal", and did not replace 禽獸 in most Chinese languages until the first decades of the twentieth century.
For me, 動物 is the most common and neutral word for "animal", 禽獸 gives a "fiercer" impression, while 精牲 gives a "low" impression (despite the word 精!).
Khîm-siù ê ló-kun 禽獸个老君
Khîm-siù ê i-seng 禽獸个醫生
Siù-i 獸醫
Siù-i 獸醫 sounds the most professional but I think all can be used, including 動物个老君/醫生.
it's interesting that ló-kun 老君 is from the Malay dukun, which meant a traditional Malay medicine man. Since a doctor of Chinese medicine is a 唐儂先生 tn^g-lâng sin-se•ⁿ, it leads me to the idea that the Chinese believed that western doctors were on the same level as Malay medicine-men (or women? I don't know whether women were dukun as well) when compared to their own style of medicine.
Mark Yong wrote:Has anyone heard the term used in Mainland China or Taiwan? niuc, what do they use in Bagansiapiapi, and siamiwako, what do they use in the Philippines?
In Bagansiapiapi we also usually say ló-kun for doctors, although sometimes we say 醫生. 唐儂先生 does mean "a doctor of Chinese medicine" (or "Chinese teacher"), but 先生 sian-si•ⁿ itself usually means teacher. 唐儂醫生 would be unambiguous. Sinshe in Bahasa Indonesia also means "a doctor of Chinese medicine".
However, when I watched the Singapore movie 那個不夠 by Jack Neo in 1999, one of the Hokkien-speaking housewives in the movie said, “汝【之】朋友定著是𢶀平【之】老君、啦!lu e peng-iu tiaⁿ-tiok si choe phiⁿ e lo-kun, la!.
I believe "choe" there is 最. Is the TLJ for "phiⁿ" (cheap) 平?

niuc
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by niuc »

amhoanna wrote: The Barclay Bible always used the word cháusiù 走獸 for BEASTS OF THE WILD. 禽獸 is also a great word. It means BIRDS AND BEASTS, right?
I also always think of 禽 as birds. 走獸 sounds elegant and cool.
Tōngbu̍t lôngtiûⁿ indeed. Someone seems to've had too much Mandarin education. :oops:
Including me! (not too much of education part, but too much influenced may be) :lol:
And, Niuc and Mark, I always order my Malay with extra Sanskrit and extra Java; no English, easy on the Arabic, and one shot of Hokkien, please. 8)
Ah, yes, Bahasa Indonesia is much poorer without them! English words are new-comers and still sound a bit foreign. But how many Indonesian would have guessed that daily words like "lemari" or "meja" is from Portuguese; "handuk" and "wortel" from Dutch? :mrgreen:

Mark Yong
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by Mark Yong »

niuc wrote:
I believe "choe" there is 最.
I will need to re-watch that movie. I am not sure if the lady said choe or cher (hence, my original assumption that it was 𢶀 ‘to seek out <someone>’). Or perhaps if you watched it and remembered what she said. :P
niuc wrote:
Is the TLJ for "phiⁿ" (cheap) 平?
That's what I have taken for granted so far, but I could be very, very wrong!

niuc
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by niuc »

Same as Sim, my variant uses mainly "líng" and "duàh". Sometimes we also say "liâng" and "diàt". Btw, 退冷 thè•-líng and 退熱 thè•-duàh means the same thing i.e. to quell the "fire" of the body.
SimL wrote:The Malaysian English term for "juah" (in this sense) was "heaty", but I don't recall if there was a corresponding one for "leng".
In Singapore the terms are "heaty" and "cooling".
There was also the belief that pregnant women were not supposed to eat pineapples, because they were "lai37" (= "sharp"), and could cause the baby to spontaneously abort.
Ah, yes, I remember this too. The sensation of pineapples (or soda) on tongue is called "kā-cìh".

niuc
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by niuc »

Mark Yong wrote: I will need to re-watch that movie. I am not sure if the lady said choe or cher (hence, my original assumption that it was 𢶀 ‘to seek out <someone>’). Or perhaps if you watched it and remembered what she said. :P
Oh, no, actually I just assumed based on the spelling "choe". Sorry, I think I am mistaken. Because you wrote "oe" instead of "ue", I wrongly assumed that you use ch/chh instead of c/ch. :mrgreen:

SimL
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by SimL »

niuc wrote:In Singapore the terms are "heaty" and "cooling".
Right, Malaysia too, how could I have forgotten! Thanks.
niuc wrote:Ah, yes, I remember this too. The sensation of pineapples (or soda) on tongue is called "kā-cìh".
Is this "ka7" as in "bite"?

amhoanna
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by amhoanna »

Thanks, guys. It's great to be able to hear U guys talk about these words. I get to tap into your gứkám.

Interesting that thèdoa̍h and thèléng mean the same thing!! There's a lot of pairs like this in Hoklo, I think. Also I wonder if this kind of ties into how Hoklo society generally doesn't know what to do with individuals that don't conform to expectations, probably more so than, say, Cantonese, North Chinese or Siamese society.
Same in my variant, but 物 "bút" also sandhied; otherwise it tends to mean "animal, farm".
Interesting. This kind of thing has been hard for me as a non-native. Tōngbu̍t is like an adjective here, so it makes sense to "run" it, ... but it seems like there's so many places where the last syllable of a noun used as an adjective takes citation. Even... How about soàⁿténg sûtián 綫頂詞典? Or 人民共和国?
Is this "ka7" as in "bite"?
Must be!
Ah, yes, Bahasa Indonesia is much poorer without them! English words are new-comers and still sound a bit foreign. But how many Indonesian would have guessed that daily words like "lemari" or "meja" is from Portuguese; "handuk" and "wortel" from Dutch?
B. Indo has five words for everything. They borrowed words from European languages just for fun, just for the hell of it, and somehow it makes them feel more "antarabangsa" -- oops, I mean "internasional". People in the Hoklo movement in TW used the same lines to advocate borrowing everything from English. The Koreans have gone so far (走火入魔) that I've seen Korean ad copy -- in the metro in Taipak! -- which use made-in-Korea, faux-English words formed from previous English loanwords using the morphology of English itself!

Asia needs a new holiday: one day each year to celebrate everything everyone loves about God's gift to man -- talking about European culture here :oops: -- so we can get on with our lives the other 364 days of the year. No offense, Niuc. The hoanná in me just had to say this.

niuc
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by niuc »

SimL wrote: Is this "ka7" as in "bite"?
Yes, 咬. Kā in my variant (not sure if the same 唐人字) also means itchy (beside ciūⁿ 癢), may be from the sense of itchiness after being bitten by mosquito or other insects.
amhoanna wrote: Interesting that thèdoa̍h and thèléng mean the same thing!! There's a lot of pairs like this in Hoklo, I think. Also I wonder if this kind of ties into how Hoklo society generally doesn't know what to do with individuals that don't conform to expectations, probably more so than, say, Cantonese, North Chinese or Siamese society.
I only remember bian2 & m7-bian2 as the other pair. I used to question why 退冷 thè•-líng and 退熱 thè•-duàh mean the same thing, but the answer I got is that everyone just use them that way. I am not sure the "logic" of these, but I guess it's also shown in the term 救火 (mainly in Mandarin?) -> not to save the fire (to continue to burn) but to save from fire (= to extinguish fire).
Even... How about soàⁿténg sûtián 綫頂詞典? Or 人民共和国?
綫頂詞典 -> I would pronounce 頂 in sandhi/running tone.
人民共和国 -> Here I am inconsistent, as I usually (subconsciously) pronounce 民 in citation/standing tone. Someone at ispeakmin.com (quite a long while ago, I hardly visit that forum nowadays) said 民 should be in sandhi/RT, and logically he was right.
Asia needs a new holiday: one day each year to celebrate everything everyone loves about God's gift to man -- talking about European culture here :oops: -- so we can get on with our lives the other 364 days of the year. No offense, Niuc. The hoanná in me just had to say this.
No worry! :lol: IMO, it's more of Hebraic influence rather than European. The latter probably was much closer to Indian culture before it was "baptized". Many prefer its pagan root and are moving there again, but obviously I have different view. ;) About getting on with our lives, in fact St Irenaeus (2nd century) says "The glory of God is man fully alive." So I agree with you that we should live our lives, and truly the Son of Man wants us to live it to the fullest. Surely we probably have different idea about the fullness of life... nonetheless how different and yet how similar! Sorry if I have talked too much. I'm not going to hijack this forum for "religious" discussion, just would like to point out the "linguistic" part. In discussions (particularly "theological/philosophical"), I often remind myself and my friends that human words are so limited; that some people debate and even kill each other over different terminology but actually they mean the same thing; while some are happy to hold hands because they use the same jargon but actually they mean it differently (even the opposite). 道可道, 非常道! 名可名, 非常名! :mrgreen:

aokh1979
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Re: Penang Hokkien Vocabulary Questions

Post by aokh1979 »

niuc wrote: Yes, 咬. Kā in my variant (not sure if the same 唐人字) also means itchy (beside ciūⁿ 癢), may be from the sense of itchiness after being bitten by mosquito or other insects.
Are you sure it's kā and not ka ? I only know "gātái (gatal)" as in ka...... ^^

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