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In Mandarin translation of Little Red Riding Hood that can be found around (Grimm Stories, BaiDuBaiKe), mother warns Little Red Riding Hood: "外婆家的时候,别忘了说‘早上好’,也不要一进屋就东瞧西瞅。" How would you translate 东瞧西瞅 in this sentence? I have seen translations like "look around" but it does not seem to make much sense in the context.

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The original English text for the excerpt you’ve given above is:

And when you go into her room, don't forget to say, good-morning, and don't peep into every corner before you do it."

So here “peep into every corner” was translated 东瞧西䐐. It’s a fairly true translation.

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  • Thank you @user3306356, you are right. Even though Grimm Stories does not have that version, other sources (e.g. Wikisource) do. In this, a bit archaic, context "peep into every corner" has a negative connotation, as in being rude. Does 东瞧西䐐 have that feel to? – celaeno Feb 21 '20 at 12:27
  • @celaeno Absolutely. A more common phrase would be 东张西望 or you could even just say something like 东看西看, but it's always negative in connotation. – Mou某 Feb 21 '20 at 13:34
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this structure 东V西V could means:

1 do sth repeatedly and blindly

2 do sth repeatedly and leisurely

3 do sth repeatedly and curiously

4 do sth repeatedly

In your sentence, it means "keeps looking around curiously".

Similarly:

东跑西颠, 东倚西靠 keeps XX leisurely

东躲西藏, 东拉西扯: keeps xx blindly

东奔西跑 just means "run around here and there", doesn't imply more information.

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东瞧西瞅 literally means look the east and the west. If we extend its literal meaning, it would be look here and there or look around.

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