Several Singaporean and Hong Kong English terms, including wah, shiok and yum cha, are now officially recognised as acceptable English.
The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) added 19 Singaporean terms and 13 Hong Kong terms in its March quarterly update.
The dictionary included formations of English that are mostly used in Singapore or Hong Kong. The OED records the meaning and development of the English language.
Some words from Hong Kong and their meaning
• Yum cha – Type of Chinese brunch
• Compensated dating - The practice of teenage students providing companionship or sex in exchange for money or gifts
• Dai pai dong - It means an open-air food stall
• Kai fong - Neighbourhood association, traditional mutual aid organisations
• Guanxi - The system of social networks and influential relationships which facilitate business and other dealings
• Lucky money - Red envelopes containing money typically handed out by elders and adults at Lunar New Year
• Sandwich class - An informal term used to refer to the middle class
• Milk tea - A drink made from black tea and milk, usually evaporated or condensed
• Shroff - A cashier, especially at a car park
• Sitting - out area - Small recreational spaces provided in urban areas
• Siu mei - Generic name given to roasted meats
• Yum cha - A type of Chinese-style brunch tea
• Wet market - A market selling fresh meat and produce
Some words from Singapore and their meaning
• HDB - it is used for a public housing estate
• Chilli crab - It is a dish consisting of crab cooked in a sweet and spicy gravy containing red chillies and tomato
• Killer - This is used for objects thrown or falling from high-rise buildings, endangering people
• Lepak (a Singaporean and Malaysian term) – It means to loiter aimlessly or idly; to loaf, relax, hang out
• Teh tarik (a Singaporean and Malaysian term) – It means sweet tea with milk, prepared by pouring the liquid back and forth repeatedly between two containers so as to produce a thick foam on top; a drink of this.
• Blur– It means confused or ignorant
• Chinese helicopter – It is a derogatory term and refers to a Singaporean whose schooling was conducted in Mandarin Chinese and has limited knowledge of English.
• Char siu (a Singaporean and Malaysian term) – It means roast pork marinated in a sweet and savoury sauce
• Shiok (a Singaporean and Malaysian term) – It means cool, great, delicious, superb
• Sabo (a Singaporean and Malaysian term) – It means to harm or play a prank on. The action of intentionally causing inconvenience, trouble, or harm to others, esp. to gain a personal advantage.
• Wah (Indian English and Singaporean term) – It is a expression of delight or surprise
• Sotong (a Singaporean and Malaysian term) - Squid or cuttlefish
• Wet market (a South Asian term) - It is a market for the sale of fresh meat, fish, and produce
• Ang moh (a Singaporean and Malaysian term) - It is used for a light-skinned person, especially of Western origin or descent; a Caucasian
• Hawker centre (a Singaporean and Malaysian term) - It is used for a food market at which individual vendors sell cooked food from small stalls, with a shared seating area for customers
Oxford adds words into the English dictionary after it qualified certain criteria’s like several independent examples of use of the word, evidence the word has been in use for a reasonable amount of time and more.
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When: In March 2016 Update
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