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Chinese-born English words will go big

2013-12-12 16:30:15

(People's Daily Online)


China's new hot words "Tuhao" and "Dama" may be included in the new edition of the Oxford English Dictionary. The words have caught on in China, and they are now spreading around the globe. To date, about 120 words of Chinese origin have been added to the Oxford English Dictionary and have become part of the English speaker's language.

Chinese buzzwords normally reflect social changes and culture, and are increasingly gaining traction in the foreign media. Tuhao and Dama are both old words but have taken on new meanings.

Tuhao used to refer to a rural landlord who liked to bully his tenants or servants. Now it is used for a Chinese person who spends money thoughtlessly or who is rich and likes to flaunt their wealth. The BBC explains it as "nouveau riche". Simply expressed, a Tuhao is rich but lacks taste.

A Dama is a middle-aged woman, and first came to public attention as a term for the thousands of Chinese women who purchased large numbers of items of gold when the gold price slumped between April and June.

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