Contemporary By-Names of Chinese Places
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Keywords

Chinese place names
Chinese by-names
structure of Chinese by-names
semantic features of Chinese by-names
honorific titles of places

Abstract

Contemporary By-Names of Chinese Places

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the distinguished properties of by-names as forms differentfrom official ones, to analyze their structural and semantic features and to search for their historicalevidence. By-names of Chinese places should not be defined as unusual and informal, since actually in many cases by-names are formal and very common in China nowadays. By-names are generally bestowed on important places (mostly cities) that win the public interest. Most of them have twostructural parts, the front specific parts are determiners / qualifiers and the back ones are generics.The generics generally are: cheng 城 ‘town / city’, du 都 ‘capital’, jiang 江 ‘river’, shan 山 ‘mountain’, dao 岛 ‘island’ etc. The lexical meanings of lexical items forming specific parts of by-namesmainly refer to animals, plants, minerals, local manufactured products, climate and natural scenery,geographical location, humans, areas, etc. Chinese contemporary by-names, used on various occasions, vary in frequency and stability. The by-names discussed in the paper only account for a smallproportion and are listed just due to their relatively high frequency, stability and acceptability.

https://doi.org/10.17651/ONOMAST.63.13
PDF (English)

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