Ambrose Li


(backdated )

I was working on my Meta-index to etymologically correct written forms of Cantonese words and suddenly realized that none of the two Cantonese names for hide-and-seek‍[Note 1] means “hide-and-seek”.

ˍbuk ˈnei ˈnei means just “hide” (or, literally, “hide-hide-hide”), and ˈdzuk ˈji ˈjɐn means just “seek” (or, literally, “catch them”‍[Note 2]). None of these means “hide-and-seek”, but together they mean “hide” and “seek”.

I actually find this funny.


  1. Pang Chi-Ming, 正字正確 [Be correct: Etymologically correct written forms] (Hong Kong: Subculture, 2007), 14.
  2. Singular they


  • #Chinese languages
  • #Cantonese (language)