蝴蝶

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Chinese[edit]

butterfly
simp. and trad.
(蝴蝶)
alternative forms 胡蝶 obsolete
Wikipedia has articles on:
蝴蝶

Etymology[edit]

From Middle Chinese *ɦuo dep (first syllable unstressed), from Old Chinese *ɡaː l'eːb, derived from a proto-form of *kʰleːp ~ *ɦleːp, a prefixed form of the root *lep (“butterfly”), which was also the source of

Variants of 胡蝶 / 蝴蝶, representing different developments from the proto-form, including disyllabification, fricativisation of the voiceless initial, etc.:

(OC *l'eːb), (OC *seːb), 胡蜨 / 蝴蜨 (OC *ɡaː seːb), 蛺蝶 (OC *keːb l'eːb), 蛺蜨 (OC *keːb seːb).

There are different theories regarding the original meaning of the root *lep:

Alternatively, Sun (1999) proposes that 蝴蝶 is a fission reduplication of two cognate bases, the former being more likely:

  • (OC *ɡeːb, “to press from both sides; to carry something under one's arms”), alluding to the flapping motion of the butterfly's wings, or
  • (OC *kreːb, “pincers”), from the way the butterfly holds its wings erect when not flying.

Compare Proto-Austronesian *kali-, *qali- (prefix for words with a sensitive reference to the spirit world, including “butterfly”).

Pronunciation[edit]



Rime
Character
Reading # 1/1 2/2
Initial () (33) (7)
Final () (23) (158)
Tone (調) Level (Ø) Checked (Ø)
Openness (開合) Open Open
Division () I IV
Fanqie
Reconstructions
Zhengzhang
Shangfang
/ɦuo/ /dep̚/
Pan
Wuyun
/ɦuo/ /dep̚/
Shao
Rongfen
/ɣo/ /dɛp̚/
Edwin
Pulleyblank
/ɦɔ/ /dɛp̚/
Li
Rong
/ɣo/ /dep̚/
Wang
Li
/ɣu/ /diep̚/
Bernard
Karlgren
/ɣuo/ /dʱiep̚/
Expected
Mandarin
Reflex
dié
Zhengzhang system (2003)
Character
Reading # 1/1 2/2
No. 4254 11580
Phonetic
component
Rime
group
Rime
subdivision
0 2
Corresponding
MC rime
Old
Chinese
/*ɡaː/ /*l'eːb/
Notes

Noun[edit]

蝴蝶

  1. butterfly (Classifier: )

Synonyms[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

Descendants[edit]

Sino-Xenic (胡蝶, 蝴蝶):

See also[edit]


Japanese[edit]

Kanji in this term

Hyōgaiji
ちょう
Jinmeiyō
on’yomi

Noun[edit]

蝴蝶 (hiragana こちょう, rōmaji kochō, historical hiragana こてふ)

  1. Alternative spelling of 胡蝶 (butterfly)