a stick; club or cudgel; smart; capable; strong
child; son; (noun suff.); small thing; midnight; 11 p.m.-1 a.m.; seed; egg; 1st earthly branch
|simp. and trad.
The origin of sense (4) is a matter of debate. A similar use was attested in the 17-18 century book "Liaozuo Travelogue" (《遼左見聞錄》), where it referred to the "Koreans born of illegitimate affairs between officials and prostitutes", who were discriminated against by the populace. Hence compare Korean 백정 (白丁, baekjeong, “former outcaste group in Korea”). The 1751 book "The Picture Album of Subordinate Peoples of the Qing Dynasty" (《皇清職貢圖》) noted "高麗棒子" (Goryeo bangzi) as a colloquial name for Koreans. See the Chinese Wikipedia page "高麗棒子" for more.
- club, stick, a short and thick club
- (dialectal) corn
- (dialectal) bottle
- (slang, pejorative) a Korean person, gook