In Chinese 肚 and 胃 are two quite seperate things.

In English, though, it's mostly just: stomach.

Is there a good way to differantiate between the two in English?


肚 is belly, 胃 is stomach. So:

啤酒肚: Beer belly.

肚子疼: Pain in the belly, could be the stomach, but may well be the appendage.

大肚婆: Slang for pregnant woman.

小肚子: The underbelly. Formal: 下腹 or 小腹.

肚脐: Belly button.

肚量大: Big-hearted. (Funny, but we also say 心胸宽广.)

When you read it as , it means the stomach of an animal: 猪肚, 牛肚, etc. Usually edible by Chinese standards. Sometimes you hear 肠子肚子 which means "stomach and intestines". A human stomach is NOT called 人肚.

Update,肚子疼 vs 胃疼:



病人:这里。(Points at the left)


So 肚子疼 is the pain in the belly area, maybe it's the stomach, maybe not. 胃疼 is more specific, it is the stomach, no doubt about that. Also:




In this case 肚子疼 means "period pain", and the boss should say things like "好好喝水,多多休息" instead of advising her to go to the hospital.

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  • How about 肚子疼 vs. 胃痛, we don't really say belly pain in English... – user3306356 Nov 17 '14 at 7:41
  • @user3306356 check my update. – Wang Dingwei Nov 17 '14 at 7:56
  • Can we get some English words for the differences in 肚 and 胃 - or are we to simply say stomach for both?! – user3306356 Nov 17 '14 at 8:35
  • @user3306356 肚: belly. 胃: stomach. You can say 肚子疼 if you've got a stomachache, but you can also say 肚子疼 for other inconvenient feelings in your belly. 胃疼 is just the stomachache. – Wang Dingwei Nov 17 '14 at 8:43
  • Bellyache vs Stomachache. I like it. btw: it's not belly pain it would be bellyache - that could totally work. good job. – user3306356 Nov 17 '14 at 8:51

I did not realize that this is a question about English. I should have deleted this answer, but I hope the explanation will help someone anyway.

肚 and 胃 belong to different registers.

We almost always use 肚(子) to refer to abdomen, belly, stomach, etc. It is also used in idiomatic expressions. It is also used to refer to the middle part of something, especially when something looks swollen.

胃 is occasionally associated with appetites, but it is mostly used in scientific contexts, which unambiguously refers to the stomach organ. Names of diseases, though often heard everyday, never contain 肚. They tend to be more specific to refer to different parts as 胃 (stomach), 腹 (abdomen), 肠 (intestine), etc.

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Tummy is similar to belly, and tummy ache is more commonly used than belly ache.

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肚 is one part of location of your body.

Located under diaphragm and above thigh.

It can also describe lots of thing located there.

for example:

the skin on the 肚 : 肚皮

the hair on the 肚 : 肚毛

following is a picture of body of one person.


     / \

     [__] <===usually located here.

     | |


胃 is just a organ. I think stomach is talking about 胃.

You can say 胃 is in 肚.

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  • doesn't really answer my question as you I'm looking for names of 肚 vs. 胃 in English aswell... – user3306356 Nov 17 '14 at 8:34
  • 1
    If you want a specific English word, I would use belly or abdomen for 肚; stomach for 胃. – Ray Nov 17 '14 at 8:52
  • Abdomen, good thinking. I like that. +1 – user3306356 Nov 17 '14 at 8:55
  • abdomen sounds formal enough, the counterpart in Chinese i think should be 腹. – Wang Dingwei Nov 17 '14 at 9:38

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