Translate 表面風光、內裏陰乾 in english.

Where is this ancient idiom coming from by the way?


It is not an idiom, but a typical 順口溜 (Jingle)

表面(on the surface)

風光(look good)* short from 好風光(good scenery)- something look good in people's eyes)


陰乾(slowly dry up in dry dark place)

It means 'someone seems well off in the public's eyes, but in reality, is flat broke.'


I'd like to recommend another.

In simplified Chinese, you can find a similar but different one


金玉其外, on the surface it is gold

败絮其中, but inside it is just rubbish

It's very impolite to describe a person in this way. That means this guy is actually an asshole but masked with a polite, friendly and gorgeous appearance.

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