矛盾

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Japanese[edit]

Kanji in this term
Grade: S Grade: S
on'yomi

Etymology[edit]

From Middle Chinese 矛盾 (/mjuw dwonX/), literally (lance, spear) + (shield).

From an anecdote in the book Han Feizi, c. 2nd century BC, illustrating a contradiction:

楚人有鬻楯與矛者 譽之曰 吾楯之堅 莫能陷也 又譽其矛曰 吾矛 之利 於物無不陷也 或曰 以子之矛陷子之楯 何如 其人弗能應也.
There was a man in Chu who sold shields and spears. Praising the shields he said: 'My shields are so strong that nothing can pierce them.' And praising the spears he said: 'My spears are so strong that there is nothing that they cannot pierce.' A person asked: 'What if someone pierces your shields with your spears?' He could not respond.

Noun[edit]

矛盾 (hiragana むじゅん, romaji mujun)

  1. a contradiction, an inconsistency, a paradox

Alternative forms[edit]

Synonyms[edit]


Mandarin[edit]

simpl. and trad.

Pronunciation[edit]

Mandarin (Standard Chinese, Beijing)
Pinyin máodùn
Zhuyin ㄇㄠˊ ㄉㄨㄣˋ
IPA (key) /mɑʊ̯³⁵ tu̯ən⁵¹/
Audio
(file)

Noun[edit]

矛盾 (traditional and simplified, Pinyin máodùn)

  1. contradiction, conflict
  2. (logic) paradox

Adjective[edit]

矛盾 (traditional and simplified, Pinyin máodùn)

  1. conflicted, vacillating between two options
    他的心里很矛盾.
    Tā de xīnlǐ hěn máodùn.
    He is feeling really conflicted inside.