[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]

Re: It's Mei day!!



> I also don't know of any other dinosaur whose generic name is a verb
(though,
> since I don't speak Mandarin, I don't know whether "mei" might also be
used for
> 'sound sleeper' or 'soundly sleeping' in addition to 'sleep
soundly'--Ben?).

I've found it! I've found it! <jumping> :-) :-) :-)

Go to http://www.zhongwen.com/. Fill in the field next to "English:" (under
"Search Dictionary") with "sleep soundly" or just with "sleep". You'll get a
bunch of results from "slang" to "slide", with lots of neat clickable
characters. Don't click those next to "sleep soundly". Click the first two
(first the left one, then the right one) next to "sleep", and you'll find
that there's a word for "sleep" that's pronounced mèngmèi. The latter
character doesn't appear elsewhere among the results. Looks like it's not
used alone anymore. Probably this is an issue of classical vs modern
Chinese, compared by one linguist in the 1950s as "like Latin and French
(not Latin and Italian)".

In short... I've found it, but that doesn't help me.

But a link leads to
http://www.csse.monash.edu.au/cgi-bin/cgiwrap/jwb/wwwjdic?1MKU5BD0 which
implies that that character is used in Japanese, too. Erm... Dan? :^) )

> I'm not sure how you would translate the full name.  A species name (like
> _long_) is supposed to modify (or be in apposition to) the generic name
(like
> _Mei_).  Thus, _Mei long_ might mean something like 'sleeper: to wit, a
dragon"
> or "dragonish sleepy one", but it would not mean "sleeping dragon" (that
would
> have to be _Long mei_).

True. But it would overturn Chinese word order (adjective first, like in
English).