~You can’t fully learn a language without learning the culture~
Oh, this is fun!
If you’re not famliiar with this famous ditty, “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” is a song from the 1964 musical film Mary Poppins. It was written by the Sherman Brothers, and sung by Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke (pictured).
Every child born in the USA from the 1950s on can recite this for you. Even to this day after they’ve long become adults.
For those struggling, here’s the correct pronunciation:
[ˌso͞o pər ˌka lə ˌfra jəˌ lis tikˌ eks pē ˌal ə ˈdō SHəs]
Its exact meaning is heavily debated, but most scholars agree it could stand for extreme happiness and wonderful delight. 😜 It was even added to the Oxford Dictionary in 1986!
Now close your eyes and try to spell it!
The roots of the word are as follows: super- “above”, cali- “beauty”, fragilistic- “delicate”, expiali- “to atone”, and -docious “educable”, with the sum of these parts signifying roughly “atoning for educability through delicate beauty.”
Yawn. We like Mary’s definition better.
Here’s a refresher:
So, how to translate this spectacular word into Chinese? Thanks to our Chinese tutor’s spectacular daughter, Lucy, we have this specatacular translation:
hǎojíle bàngjíle méizhìle gàilemàorle kuàilèdebùdéliǎo
Got that? No, we didn’t think so. Let’s break it down a bit further…
hǎo jí le
bàng jí le
méi zhì le
gài le mào r le
kuài lè de bù dé liǎo
Say THAT 5 times fast… I bet it will take some practice.
In the mean time, impress all your friends by copying and pasting the Chinese characters into the “Say something…” box when you share this article on your Wechat Moments. You’re welcome.