I'd like some help Taiwanese Hokkien (Minnan) slang

Discussions on the Hokkien (Minnan) language.
mavericker
Posts: 107
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2007 1:38 am
Location: United States

More Taiwanese Hokkien help

Post by mavericker »

Hello. Does anyone know how to say, "cool guy" in Taiwanese Hokkien slang? :D

casey
Posts: 44
Joined: Mon May 28, 2007 7:27 am

Post by casey »

Hi there, Mavericker

It is nice to learn that you are going to use Hokkien to name the characters in your comic book, but I am curious to know how people would be able to understand (thus appreciate) them if they do not know (Romanized) Hokkien?
From your example of "lone wolf", it means just "孤狼" only. It does not imply "wilderness" as in "荒野". Translated in Hokkien it is "hong1 ya2 goo1 long5". I wonder how many people would understand?
Duaaagiii is correct, it is difficult to translate the individual terms correctly without any context because there is a deviation in the meaning after going through the process of translation, especially when you have translated (hence deviated) once from Chinese to English. Since you are more familiar with the Mandarin terms perhaps it is better for you to use the terms in Mandarin in your comic book.
By the way, Mandarin is Mandarin, there is no such thing as "Taiwanese Mandarin".
Another thing, can you pass duaaagiii's test?
Tai Ke Lai O Ban Lam Oe

kanoo
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Aug 29, 2009 7:47 am

Re: I'd like some help Taiwanese Hokkien (Minnan) slang

Post by kanoo »

I heard them called gangsters lo5-mua5 [written as 流氓]. I don't know why the characters are read as lo5-mua5 but that's what I usually heard. May be Duaaagiii or Heruler can help to explain further.

tadpole
Posts: 31
Joined: Thu Oct 09, 2008 10:39 am

Re: I'd like some help Taiwanese Hokkien (Minnan) slang

Post by tadpole »

kanoo wrote:I heard them called gangsters lo5-mua5 [written as 流氓]. I don't know why the characters are read as lo5-mua5 but that's what I usually heard. May be Duaaagiii or Heruler can help to explain further.
http://www.xmnn.cn/hxwmspd/wxm/ss/20061 ... _57640.htm
http://203.64.164.10/website/ce31/bad_main.htm
http://twblg.dict.edu.tw/tw/result_deta ... wcount=c03

鱸鰻 (loomuaa) (anguilla marmorata) originally is the name of a fish. It is probably a coincidence that it sounds close to 流氓 and acquired the same meaning (gangster). Anybody can make up stories on the precise etymology, but it will be hard to verify any of the claims, I think.

Coincidences do happen in languages. For instance, typhoon is a word with two separate origins, one from Arabic/Greek, another one from Hokkien/Chinese. If two languages are totally un-correlated with each other, and let us say there are 10,000 common words, then there will be around sqrt(10,000)=100 coincidences. That is, coincidences usually happen at ~1% level. Given any two languages, it will not be hard to find ~100 words with similar sounds and similar meanings.

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