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叶公好龙 (Yègōng hào lóng) Lord Ye Loved Dragons! (Beginner)

Aug. 17, 2010

叶公好龙 (Yègōng hào lóng) Lord Ye Loved Dragons


 "叶公好龙 (Yègōng hào lóng)" is a Chinese idiom meaning that someone loves a certain thing outwardly, but not sincerely.

Key Learning Point (Preview): 好 (hào): v. to love/to like


Cóngqián yǒu gè rén jiào Yègōng, tā hěn xǐhuan lóng.

从前          有   个  人   叫     叶公,他  很    喜欢   


Once upon a time, there was a man named Lord Ye who claimed to love dragons very much.

Tā de yīfu shàng xiùzhe lóng, jiǔbēi shàng kèzhe lóng, qiáng shàng huàzhe lóng.

他 的 衣服   上     绣着    龙, 酒杯    上     刻着    龙,  墙      上       画着     龙。


Pictures of dragons were embroidered on his clothes, carved on his cup and painted on his walls.

Tiānshang de zhēn lóng zhìdào le Yègōng zhème xǐhuan lóng, biàn xiàjiàng dào tā jiā.

天上           的  真     龙    知道   了   叶公       这么   喜欢    龙, 便    下降     到   他 家。


An actual dragon in heaven knew that Lord Ye loved dragons very much, so it descended to his house.

Lóng zài chuāngkǒu zhāngwàng, bǎ wěiba shēn jìn  le dàtīng.

龙      在     窗口            张望,      把   尾巴   伸   进  了  大厅。


The dragon looked through the window and pushed its tail into the hall.

Dànshì Yègōng què bèi zhēn lóng xià de liǎnsè cāngbái, zhuǎnshēn jiù pǎo.

但是       叶公      却   被    真   龙    吓 得 脸色     苍白,   转身          就  跑。


But Lord Ye's face turned pale out of fear for the real dragon. He fled away.

Kànlái, Yègōng bìng bú shì zhēnde xǐhuan lóng ya!

看来,  叶公       并    不  是   真的     喜欢    龙   呀!


Apparently Lord Ye didn't actually love dragons with sincerity.

Tā suǒ xǐhuan de zhǐshì nàxie xiàng lóng de dōngxi.

他  所     喜欢   的  只是   那些    像    龙   的   东西。


What he loved were just things that looked like dragons.

Key Learning Point:

好 (hào): v. to love/to like


Here "好" is pronounced the fourth tone, it means "to love/to like" as a verb.  


Tā hào kāi wánxiào.

他   好   开    玩笑。


He is fond of joking.

生词 (shēngcí) Vocabulary:


绣 (xiù) v. to embroider


刻 () v. to carve


You may be interested in more Chinese Idioms related to the Chinese Zodiacs

Why 2016 Makes an Ancient Chinese Idiom Contradict Itself?

鹤立鸡群 (hèlìjīqún) A Crane Standing Among Chickens

Kids’ Chinese Idiom: 亡羊补牢 It’s Never Too Late to Take Action (Beginner)

Chinese Idiom: It is neither a horse nor a tiger. But what is it?

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The dragon is also a symbol of strength and integrity – King Arthur was a PenDragon and the national flag of Wales has a red dragon on it!

Yes, they are, in the West. On the contrary, dragons are a kind of holy animal in Chinese mythology and the symbol of emperors; people use them in Chinese idioms to express their positive meanings.

Aren’t dragons often considered as evil? Why are they so often used in Chinese idioms?

People like to use dragons in Chinese idioms, I know many other Chinese idioms related to 龙. They are 龙腾虎跃,龙马精神,亢龙有悔,龙潭虎穴,画龙点睛,龙飞凤舞.

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