When disgusted by something people will usually say, 'ew, yuck!' or 'ew, gross.'

Is there an equivalent of 'ew' in Mandarin?

The only things I was able to find about it (here) - just explain what 'ew' means & when to use it, but I want to know if there is an equivalent.

  • Good question. I can't recall any specific equivalent interjection.
    – Stan
    Jun 20, 2014 at 3:21
  • 1
    In my family, we usually say "Eee!肮脏!" (when we do say it in Mandarin). In English, I can't recall ever saying "Ew." Only "Eee" or "That's gross" or ...
    – Justin
    Jun 20, 2014 at 7:00

5 Answers 5


恶(e3) should be the one.
When feeling disgusted, in Chinese people would say a long 恶(e3), like eee3...

or 恶心(e3 xin1)as an adjective to mean disgusted, which literally means disgusted heart, or in English to have a disgusted heart (feeling) toward someone or something.

  • 2
    +1, good one, but maybe dialect or gender relative. I've never heard it in Cantonese, and not very often from a man/boy from mainland. I subjectively consider it is more popular in Taiwan.
    – Stan
    Jun 20, 2014 at 5:25
  • My feeling is mainlanders are generally more likely to describe it with e.g. 好恶心 than to just make a noise.
    – MHG
    Jun 27, 2014 at 0:17

Good question. Sound could vary depending on the region of China you live in. For Shanghai, it could be “犹(pronounce like English word you)”


If you live in Taiwan, you are very likely going to hear words like "超。。恶(sounds like "ugh" with third tone)的".


Besides 恶 e3, people also say

  • yi, pronounced with a natural rising tone, with slight falling at the end (like you'd sometimes do when saying "ew"). This is not restricted to "ew" specifically though, just that it covers the situations for "ew", and people do use it frequently.

  • Pinyin i + pinyin e in sequence (one syllable), often with a rising tone, sometimes with a low tone that is like the third tone, or a falling tone that's like the fourth. This awkward way of spelling it is because you can't spell this syllable in Pinyin; ie is totally different. If you can read IPA, it is roughly [iə]. There is no character to represent this syllable either. Again, this is not restricted to "ew" but covers it. Sometimes this is broken into two syllables, yi3 (y')e2/4

  • Some other more generic exclamations, like a permutation of ei/ai + ya/you/y'e/e, with the tone sequence of either 3-2 or 2/1-neutral. Most of these are more generic exclamations, so for most of them, just saying them flat does not get the meaning across, but I think in context and when you need to express the idea, the meaning would get across.


诶~~~ 三声 大概读出来是这个意思么~?应该发音差不多的~

  • 1
    You'd better answer in English, if the question is posted by English.
    – user4072
    Jun 21, 2014 at 12:55

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