imitate; model; norm; pattern
paste; cream; muddled; scorched
Etymology unclear. A literal derivation is unlikely. First attested in the Tang Dynasty. If not a loanword from an Altaic language, it is likely that this is a disyllabic derivative of the Old Chinese root *m̥aŋ/m̥oŋ/m̥ɯŋ ("unclear, confused"), which had numerous descendants, for example 盲 (máng, “to be blind”), 茫 (máng, “boundless and indistinct”), 蒙 (méng, “darkness”), 夢／梦 (mèng, “dream”), 昏 (hūn, “dim, confused”). Compare 馬虎／马虎 (mǎhu, “careless”), 麻胡 (máhú, “a mythical ferocious character”), 瑪呼／玛呼 (mǎhū, “(to put on) a mask”), 糊塗／糊涂 (hútu, “confused, obfuscated”).
- Min Nan
- to blur; to confuse; to mix up
- blurry; vague; obscure; fuzzy
- vaguely; dimly