Tsinoy Culture

When words fail, use idioms… Hokkien style (3)

Idioms, expressionsHokkien pronunciationLiteral translationMeaning
嘴尖舌利tsui tsiam tsi laipointed mouth, sharp tonguea very talkative person
嘴笑目笑tsui tsio bak tsiolaughing mouth and eyesexpression of  happiness as shown in one’s smiling face
三尖六角san tsiam lak kakthree sharp edges and six anglesdescribes something with irregular shape as in a piece of land
三人五目san lang go bakthree persons five eyestoo many people watching
雕花刻柳tiao hue kiak liucarve flowersdoing something with too much detail that it takes too long to finish

First published in Tulay Fortnightly, Chinese-Filipino Digest 28, no. 5 (August 4-17, 2015): 13.