BOW DOWN  鞠躬

GREET so as to BEND one's BODY DOWN as a POLITE GESTURE.
INCLINE THE BODYINCLINE THE HEADNODSALAAMKOWTOWCURTSYBOBGENUFLECT
Taxonoymy

KNEELKOWTOW

See also

FAREWELL

Kind Of

GREET

Old Chinese Criteria

1. The general word for all kinds of bowing recognised as ritually correct is bài 拜, which involves kneeling on the ground, moving one's head against one's hands joined in the obligatory Confucian manner, and bowing one's torso forward, and this word is often rich in further semantic nuances. It is important to realise that even newly appointed kings bowed in the bài 拜 fashion. By Han times, this kind of bowing often was accompanied by one's pronouncing one's personal name. Standardly, one 再拜 "bowed twice" in ancient China.

[GENERAL]; [[COMMON+]]

2. Qǐ 稽 and mostly qǐ shǒu 稽首 refers to the profoundest bow which involves hitting the ground with one's forehead and remaining in that position.

[ASCENDING++], [ELEVATED], [FORMAL]

3. Dùn shǒu 頓首 involves knocking the ground and lifting one's head again, thus being not quite as extreme as qǐ shǒu 稽首.

[ASCENDING+], [ELEVATED], [FORMAL]

4. Yī 揖 refers to a polite bow with one's hands held against one's chest.

[HORIZONTAL], [POLITE]

5. Gǒng 拱 refers to a polite bow where the hands, which are held together in the Confucian (and not the Buddhist) fashion, are removed some distance from the chest and shaken only mildly, or, as in the chuí gǒng 垂拱 variety, in front of one's stomach, typically as a sign of dignified and polite inactivity.

[ELEVATED], [POLITE]

6. Fǔ 俯 / 俛 refers to a general deep bowing down from a predominantly physical point of view, without any particular emphasis on the semantics of the bowing, and the action does not involve kneeling or hitting the ground with one's forehead.

[ELEVATED]; [[CURRENT]]

7. Yǔ 傴 is to bow deeply so as to reach a position like that of a hunchback, and to remain in that position for a considerable time.

[ARCHAIC], [FORMAL]; [[RARE]]

8. Lóu 僂 is to bow slightly so as to reach a position like that of a mildly hunchbacked person, and to remain in that position for a considerable time.

[ARCHAIC], [FORMAL]; [[RARE]]

9. Fú 伏 refers to the sustained polite bowing position in which, for example, polite deliberation by superiors had to be seen to proceed in the Han court, and this meaning has to be distinguished from the meaning "to crouch".

[ASCENDING], [POLITE]

10. Shì 式 (often written 軾 ) refers to the polite ritual act of stopping one's cart and leaning politely over the railings of that cart to greet someone.

[ARCHAIC], [ELEVATED], [FORMAL]

Modern Chinese Criteria

鞠躬 is the current modern word for bowing.

打躬 is an informal word for bowing politely.

折腰 (lit) is a formal way of referring to a bow.

哈腰 (coll) is a highly informal way of referring to bowing.

下拜

俯身 (lit) refers to a formal bow in traditionalist style.

唱喏 chàngrě (cl, obs) is an obsolete traditionalist way of referring to bowing.

打躬作揖 (prov) is a hyperbolic description of bowing and scraping on formal occasions.

rough draft to BEGIN TO identify synonym group members for analysis, based on CL etc. 18.11.2003. CH /

BUCK 1988 A Dictionary of Selected Synonyms in the Principal Indo-European Languages 9.14

HERNANDEZ 2000 Semantica del Griego Antiguo

SANBAITI 1987 中國文化史三百題 370

Attributions by syntactic funtion

  • VPi : 76
  • vi : 46
  • vtoN : 29
  • VPtoN : 16
  • vadV : 12
  • VPt(oN) : 9
  • VPadV : 7
  • vt(oN) : 5
  • nab : 4
  • vi.c : 3
  • VPt+prep+N : 1
  • vtoN{PLACE} : 1
  • NPab : 1
  • vt+V[0] : 1
  • vadN : 1

Attributions by text

  • 春秋左傳 : 37
  • 韓非子 : 24
  • 管子 : 20
  • 祖堂集 : 20
  • 禮記 : 16
  • 說苑 : 14
  • 論語 : 13
  • 史記 : 11
  • 六祖壇經 : 11
  • 莊子 : 8
  • 臨濟錄 : 8
  • 韓詩外傳 : 8
  • 賢愚經 : 5
  • 孟子 : 3
  • 淮南子 : 3
  • 荀子 : 3
  • 戰國策 : 2
  • 居延漢簡釋文合校 : 1
  • 呂氏春秋 : 1
  • 論衡 : 1
  • 毛詩 : 1
  • 新論-漢-桓譚 : 1
  • 尚書 : 1

Words

禮拜   lǐ bài OC: riiʔ proods MC: lei pɣɛi 36 Attributions
  • NPabactpolite greeting and bowing
  • VPiactBUDDH: make a ritual deep bow as sign of respect, bow, pay one's respects
  • VPt(oN)omBUDDH: make a ritual deep bow as sign of respect to, bow to, pay one's respects to (with a contextually determinate object)
  • VPtoNmake a ritual deep bow as sign of respect to, bow to, pay one's respects to
   bài OC: proods MC: pɣɛi 33 Attributions

The general word for all kinds of bowing recognised as ritually correct is bài 拜, which involves kneeling on the ground, moving one's head against one's hands joined in the obligatory Confucian manner, and bowing one's torso forward, and this word is often rich in further semantic nuances.

  • nabacta polite bow
  • vadVsometimes almost adverbially: with a bow; bowingly 拜送, 拜送,拜曰
  • vi.cactbow (thrice)
  • viactbow respectfully; bow as a sign of gratitude, admiration, congratulation, polite apology etc; makeobeisance
  • vtoNN=humanbow to someone 相拜 "bow to each other"
  • vtoNN=nonhubow to something
  • vt(oN)thank the contextually determinate N
稽首   qǐ shǒu OC: khiiʔ qhljuʔ MC: khei ɕɨu 26 Attributions

Qǐ 稽 and mostly qǐ shǒu 稽首 refers to the profoundest bow which involves hitting the ground with one's forehead and remaining in that position. [ASCENDING++], [ELEVATED], [FORMAL]

  • VPiactkneel and bow so as to knock the floor with one's head
  • VPtoNkneel and bow before
再拜   zài bài OC: tsɯɯs proods MC: tsəi pɣɛi 25 Attributions
  • VPadVwith a double deep bow to show one's polite gratitude (note that 再拜受之 could be taken as two verbs in series, but a lingering doubt remains, since 再拜 so often precedes main verbs, and is never modified by an adverb. 待考)
  • VPiactmake a double bow as a show of polite respect (often followed by a knocking of one's head on the ground)
  • VPtoNmake a polite double bow addressed to (note that this could be parsed as "bowed to him twice", and this is quite probably the correct analysis.)
  • VPt(oN)bow twice in the direction of the contextually determinate N
   fǔ OC: poʔ MC: pi̯o 18 Attributions

Fǔ 俯/俛 refers to a general deep bowing down from a predominantly physical point of view, without any particular emphasis on the semantics of the bowing, and the action does not involve kneeling or hitting the ground with one's forehead.

  • nabactsalutation with a bow
  • vadVlooking down; fig. in respect to the lower in position (children, wife etc.)
  • viactstoop down; bow down; bow the head 俯而泣, but also ZUO Zhao 7 一命而僂,再命而傴,三命而俯
  • vtoN{PLACE}stoop down into
  • vtoNbow (the head)
式 / 軾   shì OC: lʰɯɡ MC: ɕɨk shì OC: lʰɯɡ MC: ɕɨk 10 Attributions

Shì 式 (often written 軾) refers to the polite ritual act of stopping one's cart and leaning politely over the railings of that cart to greet someone. [ARCHAIC], [ELEVATED], [FORMAL] Shì 式 (often written 軾) refers to the polite ritual act of stopping one's cart and leaning politely over the railings of that cart to greet someone. [ARCHAIC], [ELEVATED], [FORMAL]

  • vtoNgreet by bowing over the cross beam on top of a carriage one is riding in
  • vt(oN)bow down to the contextually determinate person, by bowing over the cross beam on top of a carriage
頓首   dùn shǒu OC: tuuns qhljuʔ MC: tuo̝n ɕɨu 10 Attributions

Dùn shǒu 頓首 involves knocking the ground and lifting one's head again, thus being not quite as extreme as qǐ shǒu 稽首. [ASCENDING+], [ELEVATED], [FORMAL]

  • VPiactknock one's forehead on the ground and lift it again.
  • VPt+prep+Nbow one's head politely to touch N
  • VPadVknocking one's head on the floor
共 / 拱   gōng OC: koŋ MC: ki̯oŋ gǒng OC: koŋʔ MC: ki̯oŋ 9 Attributions

Gǒng 拱 refers to the foldingof one's hands in front of one's chest or, as in the chuí gǒng 垂拱 variety in front of one's stomach, typically as a sign of dignified and polite inactivity. Gǒng 拱 refers to the foldingof one's hands in front of one's chest or, as in the chuí gǒng 垂拱 variety in front of one's stomach, typically as a sign of dignified and polite inactivity.

  • viactfold hands respectfully in the Chinese fashion as a sign of respect; fold hands (and do nothing)
  • vadVwith hands folded in a relaxed manner; hands down, effortlessly, without making any special effort;
  • vtoNbow to
   yī OC: qib MC: ʔip 9 Attributions

Yī 揖 is a polite bow with one's hands held against one's chest.

  • viactgive a salute with a ceremonious bow
  • vt+V[0]causativebow slightly as invitation for Ving (e.g. slightly lower one's head in a certain direction in order to signal that the addressee is supposed to sit down)
  • vtoNbow to (somebody)
叩頭   kòu tóu OC: khooʔ doo MC: khu du 6 Attributions
  • VPibow one's head to the ground
   fú OC: bɯɡ MC: buk 5 Attributions

Fú 伏 refers to the sustained polite bowing position in which, for example, polite deliberation by superiors had to be seen to proceed in the Han court.

  • vadVbowingly, with a deep sustained bow leaving one's head close to the ground, with without knocking the ground 伏惟 "consider a matter while bowing down"
  • viactremain in a bowing position, with the head against the ground
  • vtoNbend forward over (a lute, a sword in order to commit suicide)
   dī OC: tiil MC: tei 3 Attributions
  • vichangesink lower
  • vtoNto lower (especially the head)
   yǔ OC: qoʔ MC: ʔi̯o 3 Attributions

Yǔ 傴 is to bow deeply so as to reach a position like that of a hunchback, and to remain in that position for a considerable time.

  • viactbow deeply (so that one looks like a hunchback)
僂 / 僂   lóu OC: ɡ-roo MC: lu lǚ OC: ɡ-roʔ MC: li̯o 3 Attributions

Lóu 僂 is to bow slightly so as to reach a position like that of a mildly hunchbacked person, and to remain in that position for a considerable time. Lóu 僂 is to bow slightly so as to reach a position like that of a mildly hunchbacked person, and to remain in that position for a considerable time.

  • viactbow slightly and politely (as when receiving an order from a superior)
   qū OC: khlud MC: khi̯ut 3 Attributions

Qū 屈 refers to something being bent or twisted and therefore not stretched out to its full potential length (ant. shēn 伸 "stretch out") is mostly literal in meaning, except when referring to being bowed down by humiliation.

  • vadNbent; crooked
  • vibe bent
  • vichangebow, bend down, be humiliated; contract; be bent
  • vtoNbow to
   náo OC: mɢreewʔ MC: ɳɣɛu 3 Attributions
  • viactbow down in order to show submissiveness
  • vtoNbow to, show submissiveness towards
拱揖   gǒng yī OC: koŋʔ qib MC: ki̯oŋ ʔip 3 Attributions
  • VPiactbow politely (often: instead of making a concrete effort to help with work that is being done or needs to be done)
   fǔ OC:  MC: pi̯o 2 Attributions
  • vadVbowing down> on the one hand 俯。。。仰
  • viactbow the head; lower the head
  • vtoNlower, bow down (one's head)
磬折   qìng zhé OC: kheeŋs kljed MC: kheŋ tɕiɛt 2 Attributions
  • VPiactbow down to form the shape of a musical stone (as practised in Japan today...)
   qǐ OC: khiiʔ MC: khei 1 Attribution

Qǐ 稽 and mostly qǐ shǒu 稽首 refers to the profoundest bow which involves hitting the ground with one's forehead and remaining in that position. [ASCENDING++], [ELEVATED], [FORMAL]

  • viactbow to the ground, kotow
  • vtoNbow (the head) to the ground
傾倒   qīng dào OC: khʷleŋ k-laaws MC: khiɛŋ tɑu 1 Attribution
  • VPiactbow deeply
拜嘉   bài jiā OC: proods kraal MC: pɣɛi kɣɛ 1 Attribution
  • VPtoNbow down and praise, pay homage to
   yǎn OC: qanʔ MC: ʔi̯ɐn 0 Attributions
  • viactlower one's head
   qū OC: khoɡ MC: khi̯ok 0 Attributions
  • viactbow (and scrape)
   hàn OC: ɡlɯɯmʔ MC: ɦəm 0 Attributions
  • vtoNnod the head to
下拜   xià bài OC: ɢraaʔ proods MC: ɦɣɛ pɣɛi 0 Attributions
  • VPiactbow deep
俯伏   fǔ fú OC: poʔ bɯɡ MC: pi̯o buk 0 Attributions
  • VPiactbow deep
叉首   chā shǒu OC: skhraa qhljuʔ MC: ʈʂhɣɛ ɕɨu 0 Attributions
  • VPibow in the Buddhist fashion
空手   kōng shǒu OC: khooŋ hmljuʔ MC: khuŋ ɕɨu 0 Attributions
  • VPiZHOULI: bow
   jué OC: dzod MC: dziɛt 0 Attributions
  • vt+prep+Nbow down to, bend to

Existing SW for

Here are Syntactic Words already defined in the database: