和尚打伞,无法无天

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Mandarin[edit]

simpl.
trad.

Etymology[edit]

Literally “(like a) monk holding up an umbrella — no law and no sky”. The idiom depends on two bits of word-play: (wúfǎ, no law) is pronounced identically to (wúfǎ, no hair), alluding to a Buddhist monk’s shaven head; and (wútiān, no sky), while literally referring to the monk’s being under an umbrella (rather than under open sky), also calls to mind the larger phrase 天理 (wú tiānlǐ, no heavenly justice). The overall effect is a combination of “like a monk holding up an umbrella — no hair and no sky” with “no (respect for) law and order”.

Idiom[edit]

和尚打伞,无法无天 (simplified, Pinyin héshàng dǎ sǎn, wúfǎwútiān, traditional 和尚打傘,無法無天)

  1. (xiehouyu) no respect for law and order; unruly

References[edit]