Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search


The Dipper, as of the Big Dipper and the Little Dipper, may originate from, as well as symbologically coincide with, the ancient Chinese as follows:

北斗 (literally, Northern Dipper) Big Dipper
南斗 (literally, Southern Dipper) Little Dipper
大斗 (literally, large measure) about 18 litters
小斗 (literally, small measure) about 09 litters.

In addition and in consilience, such may be the case with Odin's or "Woden's wagon" aka Charles' Wain associated with Charlemagne, as it was coincidentally regarded as the Heaven's wagon by the ancient Chinese. The idea of Plough is also quite similar to the wagon.

--KYPark (talk) 06:14, 30 October 2012 (UTC)

  • Riiiight....except that "dipper" in this sense arose in US English in the 19th century. What sort of influence do you really think "Ancient Chinese" had at this point? Ƿidsiþ 08:05, 30 October 2012 (UTC)
    • It may be worth wondering who reinvented and spread the US English Dipper from scratch, without knowing the ancient Chinese one lasting millennia. Had it been the case, they must have been so ignorant of the other hemisphere. I don't think they reinvented but just revived it. --KYPark (talk) 08:49, 30 October 2012 (UTC)
      Well, it's not that difficult to look at either of these two constellations and think, hmm, that looks like a dipper. --WikiTiki89 09:04, 30 October 2012 (UTC)
      Sure! The Big Dipper especially looks like nothing but a dipper, anything but a bear. But, the question is who patented it and who either copied or reinvented it without knowing the patent. --KYPark (talk) 09:32, 30 October 2012 (UTC)
      Seems like a parallel yet independent creation based on the appearance of it. Can you offer any evidence that may link Big Dipper to the Chinese word? Leasnam (talk) 18:53, 30 October 2012 (UTC)
      Let me move leftmost...

In the English speaking regions of North America (Canada and the United States) the Plough is known as the Big Dipper because the major stars can be seen to follow the rough outline of a large ladle or dipper. This figuration appears to be derived originally from Africa, where it was sometimes seen as a drinking gourd. In the 19th century, runaway slaves would "follow the Drinking Gourd" to the north and freedom. --- from w:Big Dipper #North America

The parallel independent creation or reinvention of the Dipper is possible only at the painful cost of American ignorance (as recent as the 19th century) of the deep-rooted East Asian culture.

Historically there has been a deep-rooted West Eurasian counterculture and obscurantism, I regret, likely enforced by name of God. Everything orient should be paganic hence unworthy and unspoken. Then, "the cruelest lies are often told in silence," as notably noted by R. L. Stevenson. All the more, "he who knows does not speak," as noted by Lao Tzu.

Unfortunately and undoubtedly, I have no hard, direct, explicit, written evidence enough to satisfy rigid positivists, but otherwise a great deal of indirect or implicit kind, I hope, whence to help infer another view against the said "independence."

As suggested in the beginning, the more overlapping or surprising consilience or jumping together, the more seriously we should take it. Such is science, they say!

Chinese dipper and wagon are dually consilient with the Western counterparts. These are dually striking, while African "drinking gourd" is singly consilient and striking, as cited above as a likely origin of American Dipper, which in turn is at odds with American "independent creation based on the appearance" as you note.

Striking again is the consilience of Chinese wagon with a variety of European counterparts such as:

These look like a rather free variety of calques, yet the resulting "unity in variety" in consilience. This freedom would complement with an apparently controlled variety of calques of Latin Via Lactea ("Milky Way" instead of Hellenistic "Milky Circle"), for example, which itself is not terribly different from the oriental Silvery River.

Regardless of Chinese influence, there is already French Grande Casserole ("Great Kettle") which may be older than American Dipper. Moreover, there might be even more of this kind in IE languages, whether extinct or not. So unlikely anyway is American "independent creation."

--KYPark (talk) 03:59, 31 October 2012 (UTC)

If, as Laozi said, "he who knows does not speak," I leave it to you to judge why you seem to speak so much. Μετάknowledgediscuss/deeds 04:05, 31 October 2012 (UTC)
True, without evidence we can only speculate. Maybe a "Compare also..." is called for, and let users decide for themselves? One other possibility is that the concepts may have originated in the Near East and moved east and west... Leasnam (talk) 17:42, 31 October 2012 (UTC)
Since it was a bear in Classical Greece and Judaea, and a bull's leg in Mesopotamia, I find that doubtful.
I really don't think that this is such a complicated concept that it needs to be borrowed. Both cultures had ladles, and both were describing the same constellation, which really does look like a ladle.
On the other hand, given that both terms are describing the same thick band of stars, a road of milk and a river of silver are significantly different - no consilience there. And really, what are you arguing when you bring the Milky Way into it? That Western Astronomical terms in general are derived from China? The Twenty Eight Mansions in general have very little relation to the western constellations. I don't think your consilience is very convincing if you ignore everything that is jumping in the other direction. Furius (talk) 20:43, 31 October 2012 (UTC)

Leasnam! Yeah, but without evidence we have to infer scientifically (rather than speculate as usually negatively connoted as speculative) from the indirect evidence. And, on the page Dipper, it might read:

Etymology 1

Possibly a calque of the Ancient Chinese ("dipper; Dipper") as of 北斗 ("Big Dipper") and 南斗 ("Little Dipper").

Such would be not speculative but inferential, intelligent and even "critical," surely helping readers judge for themselves, hence reader-response criticism.

Now we are supposed to live in the information leakage as well as linkage age! Wikileaks is just such a symptom. The US presidential election campaign is another. A new, true round of the Age of Enlightenment may be opening to open out mysteries and secrets secured by obscurantism since the Dark Age.

That is to say, we should hold such obscurantism no more at the cost of enlightenment. The world would better restore the lost Eurasian bridge! In this regard, critically refer to the latest history of the following pages:

At least, I am not the last Eurasiatic. See also: w: De (Chinese) #Etymologies. --KYPark (talk) 03:36, 1 November 2012 (UTC) Minor modified --KYPark (talk) 04:21, 1 November 2012 (UTC)

Strangely indeed, the Dipper, Big or Little, had not been so called in the West until the 19th century, it seems, although it "really looks like a ladle" (Furius) Therefore, very likely indeed, I suspect, is that there were such names as French Grande Casserole but perhaps mostly abolished, as I suggested above.

"On the other hand," (Furius) Milky and Silvery means whittish in common hence in consilience, even though the road and the river may be too different for consilience. Yet, ain't the fields (1) divided (2) along either said to be consilient at all?

I've neither said nor suggested that "Western Astronomical terms in general are derived from China" (Furius) "And really, what [I am] arguing when [I] bring the Milky Way into it" (Furius) is to compare the likely free calques of Chinese Heaven's Wagon with the likely controlled calques of Latin Via Lactea, for example, both commonly in the sky, hence free vs. controlled in short! Anyone may be free to go beyond my intent, but not free to blame me for that freedom of overdoing. Again anyone may be free to underrate my claim for consilience.

--KYPark (talk) 05:49, 1 November 2012 (UTC) -- Changed to Heaven's Wagon. --KYPark (talk) 07:34, 1 November 2012 (UTC)

"If, as Laozi said, "he who knows does not speak," I leave it to you to judge why you seem to speak so much." (Metaknowledge) Granted that I "speak so much" or even too much, Metaknowledge seems to take it that Laozi's maxim is such a virtue that I am self-contradictory, say, to my own quotation.

While such interpretation may be possible, such may be not always the case. According to the so-called oriental mysticism, everything is both good and evil, well Janus-faced by both virtue and vice at the same time, perhaps hence the name mysticism. Anyway, I quoted it as evil or vice, whether right or wrong, to be aligned along the line of "the cruelest lies..." How I wish he who knows would speak up!

Frankly, I am so unhappy around here so often to come across rigid positivism of it being either black or white, either good or evil, perhaps heavily influenced by Abrahamism toward the Final Judgment. Accordingly, something like religious persecution is still imposing on each other among themselves as well as pagans, I fear, practically but invisibly!

--KYPark (talk) 06:55, 1 November 2012 (UTC)

They cannot be calques from 北斗 and 南斗 because means north not big and means south not little. --WikiTiki89 08:57, 1 November 2012 (UTC)

As per the title, first of all, we have to attend to the generic Dipper and , where one looks like an exact calque of another, and then to their specific pairs. The Plough is not pairwise and polar and so less consilient than the Big Dipper in polar pair with the Little Dipper.

This occidental polarity sides with the polar pair of Ursa Major and Ursa Minor, and the like, so that so superficial would be the difference from the oriental polar pair of Northern vs. Southern Dipper. Neither calque nor translation should be literal! Then, Big Dipper is worth a calque as well as translation of Northern Dipper, however different and similar.

It is interesting to note that it is more fundamental to notice similarity than difference, say, between Big Dipper and Northern Dipper. That is, no meaningful difference without meaningful similarity. The hight is a measure different from the weight. That is, both are measures in common, but should not be numerically compared, say, 5 meters with 7 grams, whose difference is rather meaningless or useless. Meanwhile, 5 meters and 7 meters are meaningfully as similar and different as Big Dipper and Northern Dipper.

It is implausible to literally compare Big with Northern, while either isolated from Dipper. This seems to be the very pitfall of logical atomism and the like, including even analytic philosophy. Instead, we have to make best use of the given, say, the Eastern and Western Dippers, and make best sense of something globally useful or pragmatic, essentially making the implicit explicit, namely science, if you like!

--KYPark (talk) 02:54, 2 November 2012 (UTC)

You're answering a very narrow terminological quibble with a wide-ranging, encyclopedic philosophical discourse. You can't have a calque of a single, monolithic word: a calque is made by substituting literal translations of the parts for the parts themselves. What you're proposing is semantic borrowing, of which calques are only one type.
As for the substance of your proposal: it's theoretically possible, but no more likely than origin from any of the thousands of known and unknown languages for which we have no information to contradict their being the source. There's absolutely no evidence beyond the existence of the concepts themselves, the similarity of which can be explained just as plausibly by independent invention, or by borrowing from some unknown third source. Chuck Entz (talk) 04:58, 2 November 2012 (UTC)
Also, you talk about how "Everything orient should be paganic hence unworthy and unspoken", ignoring the fact that most of the older sources of Western culture were "paganic" (whatever that is): Sumer, Akkad, Classical Greece and Rome,etc.
The problem with your proposals is that they require acceptance of borrowing across huge distances and across great depths of time without providing evidence from the histories of the languages or cultures in between. You're proposing such borrowings just for the things that you happen to notice look similar, which contradicts well-known patterns: languages change. Concepts change. It's very rare for something to be passed over such great distances and times in recognizable form without being preserved in writing or without strong countervailing cultural forces such as religion. Asking us to reject centuries of scholarship with no evidence beyond what can be explained otherwise is asking a lot.
Telling us how blind, biased and ignorant you think we all are isn't helping. Most of your illustrations of the power of expectations over perception work equally well as explanations of why you might be seeing what you expect to see.Chuck Entz (talk) 06:03, 2 November 2012 (UTC)

People including lexicologists are likely to hold that meanings are definitions in the dictionary, which just tries to show the external popular uses of words as a sign of an internal thought, however successful or not. But the ultimate pragmatic or sense-making job is neither dictionary's nor machinery's but just ours! [This was excluded from my last talk to make it less "philosophical". Yet now I may need it.]

Essentially, I'd respond to the thick implicit mindset below the thin explicit face value of speech, whether it be "terminological quibble" (Chuck) or "philosophical discourse" (Chuck).

Many debaters including Chuck used to blame me for such as "speaking so much" (MetaKnowledge). The more speech the more chance of being analyzed and attacked, hence a fatal strategic weakness in a way. Yet they've failed, I feel, to refute most of such a long reasoning of mine. Why?

Unfortunately, I almost always find myself struggling hard against the blind wholesale oppositions (rather than fair Conjectures and Refutations), say, for the opposition sake! I've never seen any debater criticize another doing wrong obviously. But they used to attribute whatever may be evil to me alone.

Within my agenda or initiative, of course, I am most responsible for the fair resolution. As such, I have a reason to "speak so much" (Metaknowledge). Accordingly, the higher wall I have to overcome, the higher tone I have to overdo with.

  • "Asking us to reject centuries of scholarship with no evidence beyond what can be explained otherwise is asking a lot." [counter-brightness]
  • "Telling us how blind, biased and ignorant you think we all are isn't helping. Most of your illustrations of the power of expectations over perception work equally well as explanations of why you might be seeing what you expect to see." [counter-blindness]

As to counter-blindness and counter-bias, I do not deny but myself have often stressed our overriding prejudice such that I used to see what I would see. But we should not end here but therefore undergo " Conjectures and Refutations" as far as possible toward the fair resolution, as I do wish.

As to counter-brightness or counter-scholarship, I am not really enforcing counter-brightness (explicit yang) but counter-blindness or counter-darkness (implicit and tacit yin) or "deep-rooted West Eurasian counterculture and obscurantism," as I noted previously.

To defend my thesis and stance in particular, how I wish you could admit that the following counter-edit must inherit from, and contribute to the very counterculture and obscurantism at issue! It is unbearably self-defeating to delete the needed Etymology and to degrade the refined definition.

KYPark edited
7 September 2012

Ruakh edited
25 September 2012




From Confucius (551-479 BC) who said: 其恕乎 己所不欲 勿施於人, literally meaning, "That is considerateness; what one wouldn't like shouldn't be done to the other," and idiomatically, "don't do unto others what you wouldn't have them do unto you," namely, the silver rule. He was in reply to Zi-gong, one of his disciples, who asked: 有一言而可以終生行之者乎, meaning "Is there a single word worth doing for life?"


己所不欲,勿施於人 (traditional, Pinyin jǐsuǒbùyù wùshīyúrén)

  1. don't do unto others what you wouldn't have them do unto you, namely, the silver rule (negative form of moral reciprocity); cf. do unto others as you would have them do unto you, namely, the golden rule (positive form).



己所不欲,勿施於人 (traditional, Pinyin jǐsuǒbùyù wùshīyúrén)

  1. do unto others as you would have done unto you

--KYPark (talk) 03:37, 3 November 2012 (UTC)

Prior to the recent American Big Dipper, the monolithic Dipper granted must have been the calque, while the Plough the translation, of . Then, it is just your POV to argue that the calque in itself should not be monolithic. See also its WT definition reading "A word or phrase ... translation of a word in another language."

"As for ... your proposal: it's theoretically possible, but no more likely than origin from any of the thousands of known and unknown languages ..."

How tacitly or implicitly this shows up that your argument may be fatally wrong! You dare to equate the likely influence of Chinese with that of any unknown language. Such would result from the blind denial of the oriental culture, hence counterculture!

--KYPark (talk) 08:24, 3 November 2012 (UTC)

"Also, you talk about how "Everything orient should be paganic hence unworthy and unspoken", ignoring the fact that most of the older sources of Western culture were "paganic" (whatever that is): Sumer, Akkad, Classical Greece and Rome, etc."

I am not "ignoring the fact ..." but just focusing on anti-orientalism. Meanwhile, you seem to admit the likelihood of anti-paganism at large. Then we have to wonder how thoroughly it was persecuted and we have lost. Could you imagine that reality at all?

--KYPark (talk) 09:21, 3 November 2012 (UTC)

How do you rule out the possibility that the coincidence is purely coincidental? 斗 judging from the oracle bone scripts originated graphically from a ladle-like drinking vessel (much like 두, but with 十 at the bottom). Etymologically it goes back to Old Chinese /*tˁoʔ/, not sufficiently reminiscent of Proto-Germanic *duppjan, source of English dip, dipper. 22:40, 26 December 2012 (UTC)