[Tibeto-burman-linguistics] Words for tea

Nathan Straub 曹內森 nstraub at gmail.com
Mon Nov 3 15:14:55 UTC 2014

Hi Katie,

Here are a few languages I have on hand...

In Rawang (Mvtwang dialect), 'tea' is /paqká/ [pʰaʔ⁵⁵kʰa⁵³]. I'm not sure
of the etymology, although STEDT says [pʰaʔ] comes from a PTB root *r-pak
meaning 'leaf', and the second syllable might be related to Mandarin /chá/
[tɕʰa³⁵]. I always get it mixed up with /kapà/ [kʰa³³pʰa²¹] 'what'. Their
tea leaves are small and broad-leafed, and the tea is served in small
bamboo cups.

In Anong, it is [lɑ³¹tɕɑ⁵⁵].

In Thai, it is /náamchaa/ [naam³⁵tɕʰaa³³] (water+tea) or just [tɕʰaa³³].
That, except for the 'water' part, definitely seems to be from Mandarin.

In Dai Lue, there are several words:
/sutʰaa⁴/ [sutʰaa³³] 'tea (literary)'
/nam⁶laa⁶/ [na̰m³³la̰a̰³³] 'tea' (water+tea)
/laa⁶/ [la̰a̰³³] 'tea'
/laa⁶kʰew¹/ [la̰a̰³³kʰew⁵⁵] 'green tea' (tea+green)
/laa⁶dæŋ¹/ [la̰a̰³³dæŋ⁵⁵] 'black tea' (tea+red) (a calque with Mandarin
/hóngchá/ (red+tea))


Mani, Samuel. 1997/1978. *Zaqxømpkà (Thesaurus) [Rawang dictionary]*.
Chiang Mai: self published, p.59.
LaPolla, Randy J. 2003. Rawang glossary. electronic data, received 26 July,
2003. Accessed via STEDT database <http://stedt.berkeley.edu/search/> on

Sun Hongkai & Liu Guangkun. 2009. A Grammar of Anong: Language death under
intense contact. (Ed.) Li Fengxiang, Ela Thurgood & Graham Thurgood.
(Languages of the Greater Himalayan Region 9). Leiden & Boston: BRILL,

Becker, Benjawan Poomsan. 2002. Thai-English English-Thai dictionary.
Bangkok: Paiboon Poomsan Publishing, p.301.

Hanna, William J. 2012. Dai Lue-English dictionary. Chiang Mai: Silkworm
Books, pp.95, 205, 294.


On Mon, Nov 3, 2014 at 4:50 PM, Katie B Gao <katiebgao at gmail.com> wrote:

> Hi all,
> A brief (fun) request if you’re interested. I’m working on a mapping
> project illustrating the words for ‘tea’ in the world’s languages. If you
> have a minute, I would love to know the generic word for ‘tea’ in the
> language(s) you work on. If you have any etymological info (direct
> borrowing, trade-related, etc) for this lexical item or interesting sources
> you could point me to, I would appreciate it.
> Aloha,
> Katie Gao
> katiebgao at gmail.com
> *University of Hawai’i at Mānoa*
> _______________________________________________
> Tibeto-burman-linguistics mailing list
> Tibeto-burman-linguistics at listserv.linguistlist.org
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We are sent into this world for some end.  It is our duty to discover by
close study what this end is & when we once discover it to pursue it with
unconquerable perseverance.
JQA at age 12 to his brother Charles (June 1778)
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