I am looking for a Chinese translation of the Swahili word kianga, which has the following meanings:

  • burst of light
  • burst of sunshine
  • clear up (after rain)
  • ray of sunlight after rain
  • clearing up (of the weather after rain)

Source: http://kamusi.org/define?headword=kianga&to_language=371

Are there words in Chinese that convey an image similar to ray of sunlight (or clearing up) after rain?

The closest I have come with Google Translate is , but that does not capture the "after rain" aspect.

The translation is for a name or logo; something short and poetic would be preferrable over a long and literal expression.

  • Bing dict is much better than Google Translate. Google has already given up the market in China so the translation is always buggy. However, there are several branches of MS in China. cn.bing.com/dict
    – user6617
    Mar 31, 2015 at 5:22
  • 1
    Thank you, I will keep this in mind. Bing translates 霽光 as Immaculate Snow, which is quite far from the intended meaning. I fear that both Bing and Google Translate are rather unreliable tools.
    – René
    Mar 31, 2015 at 8:46
  • Uh, 霁 means [Snow/Rain Stopped] actually and I seldom meet this character. It may be used in acient time for rhythm but if you gonna communicate with real Chinese, never use it sinse they can't get your point without your explanation.
    – user6617
    Mar 31, 2015 at 9:44
  • Chinese is such a complicated language that an local speaker may don't know how to explain some words. Machines... Okay...
    – user6617
    Mar 31, 2015 at 9:51
  • It is okay if the translation is somewhat mysterious; I am looking for a name or logo, not for precise communication. A character that is rarely used seems to fit quite well for this purpose. I just want to avoid unintentional, possibly negative connotations.
    – René
    Mar 31, 2015 at 10:36

5 Answers 5


How about 霽光? As in the Song Dynasty poem: 一夕輕雷落萬絲,霽光浮瓦碧參差。("after a night's worth of distant thunder and myriad raindrops / then the light after the rain shines shimmeringly on the blue-green roof tiles") Not sure there's a single character for this but can check 康熙 (standard classical dictionary).

霽 as a single character refers to the clearing of clouds/rain, but I don't think carries a strong connotation of "light" by itself.

  • 霽 seems very close to what I am looking for, thank you! If I may ask a follow-up question: What is the difference in meaning between 光 and 暘, especially if combined with 霽? (If it is even possible to use the latter character in that combination. I do not speak Chinese myself – my apologies if this is complete nonsense.)
    – René
    Mar 29, 2015 at 18:49
  • 暘 yang2 seems to refer more to the action of the sun rising as opposed to the light per se- 光 guang1 simply means "light". Personally I'd go with guang1 since it doesn't seem there's any classical basis for combining yang2 and 霽. All assuming there isn't one char that combines both meaning. Mar 29, 2015 at 19:46

雨过天晴 or 雨过天青

Although quite transparent in it's meaning and long in length, is actually a set idiom and has meanings similar to that of the English you are looking for both literally and figuratively.

A Chinese-English Dictionary:

the sun shines again after the rain

after gloom comes brightness

An example sentences from a Chinese idiom dictionary says:

雨过天青, 一道彩虹挂在半空中。

Which basically translates to: after the rains stopped the sun came out, there was a rainbow hanging there in the middle of the sky.

  • Unfortunately this is too long for my purposes, though it seems to be a good match otherwise.
    – René
    Mar 30, 2015 at 20:47

雨霁初晴, it's common and easy to understand. Your reader won't need a dictionary.

  • Out of curiosity: What is the literal meaning of these words? I do not speak Chinese myself, and Google Translate is not very helpful in this case.
    – René
    Mar 30, 2015 at 20:56
  • Character by character: the rain (雨) stopped (霁), it's just (初) getting clear (晴). Hope this would help.
    – Madwyn
    Apr 9, 2015 at 11:35

If you wanna say that the clouds disappeared and the rain stopped. 晴 must be the answer. (天晴了) But if you wanna say a beam of light projects, it should be 射. (云层间射出一道阳光)


This is a direct translation.. Sounds okay to me. 雨後的一道陽光

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