Questions tagged [terms-of-address]

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2 answers
152 views

Assistance with Chinese address needed

I need to return a product but can't sort how to address it. Any assistance would extremely appreciated. The (translated) address provided is: qing xi zhen ju fu lu 38 hao S2-2 dong guan guang dong ...
1 vote
1 answer
208 views

Is 教授 a form of address?

The news report about a visit by Chinese vice president to the Netherlands said 会见威廉—亚历山大时,韩正首先转达了习近平主席和彭丽媛教授对国王和王后的亲切问候和良好祝愿 As far as I know, only PhD is used to address a respectable person, Dr. So ...
6 votes
2 answers
337 views

Family name-calling in Taiwan

Context: I know no Chinese but am writing a piece of fiction in which, incidentally, Taiwanese characters are involved in escalating arguments & I would like to have some increasingly ...
18 votes
7 answers
5k views

Addressing women as "小姐" in Northern China

I heard that it is not appropriate to call women or girls "小姐" in northern China. That it is considered rough and has a meaning close to "hooker". So I never address girls or women as "小姐" in the ...
3 votes
2 answers
1k views

How would I say "twin sister"?

My understanding is that in Chinese one doesn't say "sister", but always specifies "younger sister" (妹妹) or "older sister" (姐姐). If I had a twin sister, would I refer to ...
4 votes
1 answer
2k views

What are the most common Chinese honorifics?

What are the most common Chinese honorifics? As far as I know we have: 大人 = respect, like the -sama in Japanese 贵 = your 臣 = your servant 朕 = I (only used by the emperor)
5 votes
2 answers
1k views

What title did Qing China use for US presidents?

What title did Qing China use for the US president, given that US presidents are periodically "deposed"? Certainly not 王 as the office is not hereditary and could not be held for life. I am ...
7 votes
2 answers
375 views

How do expressions like "二嫂" work in Mandarin?

From what I've known from watching Chinese dramas, siblings or fellow disciples may refer to each other as: "big brother/sister" (oldest/first) "2nd/3rd brother/sister" (in-...
7 votes
1 answer
2k views

In what kind of scenarios are honorifics such as 大姐, 大哥, and 师傅 used, and when is it acceptable or polite to use them?

In Chinese films I've often heard characters refer to each other using some of these honorifics: 大姐 dàjiě (big sister; auntie) 大哥 dàgē (big brother) 师傅 shīfù (master) In what kind of scenarios are ...
9 votes
2 answers
283 views

Are any of these honorifics still in use today? 愚, 鄙, 敝, 卑, 窃, 仆, 婢, 妾, 在下, 贱妾, 小人, 小女, 草民, 民女, 奴才, 奴婢, 奴家

Are any of these honorifics still in use today? If not, might they be used and understood (as a joke) by regular Chinese in, say, a period film, much as English speakers would recognize someone using ...
5 votes
3 answers
2k views

干父母 vs. 义父母 translation/meaning?

干父母 (if I may use this term): 干爹 = 义父 干妈 = 义母 so 干父母 = 义父母 but what does it mean? 拜认为父母 English translations usually go like this: 干爹 = godfather 干妈 = godmother 义父 = stepfather (adoptive ...
0 votes
1 answer
2k views

Is there a common way to translate ajhumma/ajumma into Chinese?

Is there a common way to translate ajhumma/ajumma into Chinese? I've been looking but haven't seen a word in Chinese that carries the meaning the ajhumma has. For example, ajhumma can mean: Married ...
3 votes
3 answers
8k views

How do I call for a male waiter?

For female waiters, my dad taught me to use the phrase "小姐 ". But for male waiters, my dad doesn't know how to properly call them. I discussed the possibility of using "da ge", "小ge", "da di", "小 di"...
5 votes
4 answers
477 views

Plural marker 们 in 哥们(儿)

Can someone explain why 们 is used in the word 哥们 to mean buddy/dude, even if it's referred to a single person? Would it be possible to add 们 to any other family name, like 妈们,姐们,爸爸们 etc.? And if ...
5 votes
3 answers
1k views

What professions can be called 师傅?

After reading this question, I remembered we can also call some of them 师傅. But I'm not sure which ones. Any help? Thank you.
3 votes
2 answers
217 views

What professions can be uncle & aunty-ized?

Kids like to call grown-ups Uncle & Aunty. Professions can even be uncle & aunty-ized: 警察叔叔 “一个人在家害怕,警察叔叔帮我找爸妈” In Sichuan there is even 护士娘娘 护士娘娘,我嘴巴干的很,可不可以给我倒杯水啊! What other ...
2 votes
1 answer
260 views

What is the preferred relationship title for "my mother's mother's big brother's son"?

This recently came up during a visa application, and we had a hard time coming to a definitive conclusion, even with Chinese family members :( What is the preferred relationship title for "my ...
2 votes
2 answers
254 views

What is the difference between 老X and X老 as a term of address?

Here is an exchange I saw in a WeChat group today: 李xx: 请大家为28号投票! A: 谢谢您,李老! 【抱拳】【抱拳】 B: 谢谢您,老李! 【偷笑】 A: “李老”是尊称,“老李”是称呼! C: 【强】 I'm fairly familiar with the usage 老X as a term of address. And I ...
3 votes
2 answers
930 views

When do people use a one-character given name alone?

I live in the US but have friends I see in China, some of whom have one-character given names (that is "first" name in English usage, "second" name in Chinese usage). I know that often people avoid ...
6 votes
2 answers
192 views

Did some people only have names like 张三?

Some novels seem to say that in village life (or within a hutong) poorer children often had no personal given name. Some characters in realistic seeming novels are known only by family name and birth ...
12 votes
5 answers
2k views

What is a good form of address for a male friend who is too old to be 小, too young to be 老, and too humble to be called 大?

I have a male "friend", last name 柯 (kē) who is over 30. From ages 18-30 or so, he went by 小柯, but that seems less and less appropriate as he gets older. Always going by his full name seems overly ...
8 votes
4 answers
3k views

What's the title for addressing an unknown young person the same age as you?

For example, you are a 20 year old male/female. You are walking on the street, then you see a male stranger who seems to be the same age as your. He is in hurry, you see him drop his wallet. You pick ...
6 votes
2 answers
2k views

How to address fellow students junior to oneself (学妹,学弟)?

I have sometimes wondered what would be the appropriate way of addressing (fellow) students that are junior to oneself. Given name? Full name? Name + 妹/第? Are there even cases where one can use 哥/兄 ...
19 votes
6 answers
2k views

When is it appropriate to address a lady as 先生?

Chairman Mao addressed Soong Ching-ling as 宋庆龄先生. Yang Jiang was also addressed as 杨绛先生 by the public. My dad used to tell me to address some of his female colleagues as 先生 too. I wonder why a lady ...