나비

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Korean[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

First attested in the Neung-eomgyeong eonhae (楞嚴經諺解 / 능엄경언해), 1461, as Middle Korean 나ᄇᆡ〮 (Yale: nàpóy).

Also attested in the Bullyu dugongbu si eonhae (分類杜工部詩諺解 / 분류두공부시언해), 1481, as Middle Korean 나뵈〮 (Yale: nàpwóy).

Perhaps etymologically 나봇 (nabot, ideophonic root for fluttering) +‎ (-i, noun-deriving suffix), literally "flutterer". Compare 나부끼다 (nabukkida, “to flutter in the wind”), 나붓거리다 (nabutgeorida, “to repeatedly flutter”), and 나붓나붓 (nabunnabut, “flutteringly”).

Related to 나방 (nabang, “moth”).

나비

Pronunciation[edit]

Romanizations
Revised Romanization?nabi
Revised Romanization (translit.)?nabi
McCune–Reischauer?nabi
Yale Romanization?napi

South Gyeongsang (Busan) pitch accent: 비의 / 비에 / 비까지

Syllables in red take high pitch. This word always takes high pitch only on the first syllable, and lowers the pitch of subsequent suffixes.

Noun[edit]

나비 (nabi)

  1. butterfly
Related terms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

(nap, monkey) (obsolete) +‎ (-i, noun-attaching suffix). The semantic shift is not well-understood. Monkeys are not native to Korea, and perhaps there was some confusion leading to a belief that they looked like cats.

Pronunciation[edit]

Romanizations
Revised Romanization?nabi
Revised Romanization (translit.)?nabi
McCune–Reischauer?nabi
Yale Romanization?napi

Noun[edit]

나비 (nabi)

  1. (childish) kitty
See also[edit]

References[edit]

  • 허인영 (Heo In-yeong) (2019), “'원숭이'의 어휘사 [A lexical history of [words for] "monkey"]”, in Hangugeohak, volume 83, pages 243–272