taikonaut

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See also: Taikonaut

English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Mandarin 太空 (tàikōng, space) +‎ -naut, modelled after astronaut, cosmonaut, spationaut, etc. The term was coined on 19 May 1998 by Chiew Lee Yih ( (trad.)/ (simpl.); pinyin: Zhào Lǐyù) from Malaysia, who used it first in newsgroups. Almost simultaneously, Chen Lan coined it for use in the Western media.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • Hyphenation: tai‧ko‧naut

Noun[edit]

taikonaut (plural taikonauts)

  1. A person who travels in space for the Chinese space program; a Chinese astronaut. [from 1998.]
    • 2003, Peter Schwartz, Inevitable Surprises, page x:
      The past decade has seen remarkable events and changes: [] The Columbia disaster and a Chinese taikonaut in orbit

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