07 June 2007

豪杰 (HaoJie) Part 4: "Is a Hero the Victor of the People?"

Meanings of names matter a lot in Chinese culture. 尼古拉 is Nicholas or Nikolai transliterated in to English. In HanYu Pinyin it is ní-gǔ-lā or ni2gu3la1 depending on which way you write your pinyin. So that is actually what most of my Chinese friends call me when they speak. Tan LiYuan actually calls me "Ni-gu-la-si" when she is saying my English name however. It is a variant transliteration of Nicholas. Nicholas or Nikolai means "Victory of the people." Nicholas is the familiar Greek form of Nikolaos, and Nikolai is the Russian form of said Greek name.

Because of this, one person pointed out that if we consider 豪杰 (HaoJie) to mean roughly "Hero", as Google and Chen SiFang both say, it is not too far away from calling a man "Victory of the people" which also makes 豪杰 (HaoJie) an equivalent to Nicholas or Nikolai. However your mileage may vary, and if you think you have a better Chinese equivalent that also matches my true character, please leave a comment with your contrary ideas. I am all ears! :-D

What does 尼古拉 mean in Chinese? So far I have only gotten one answer, and everyone else says they have no idea at all. LOL! That answer was, "The god that protects sailors and children." Seems that they are thinking of Saint Nicholas of Myra in Lycia, there. In secular Chinese, saints are called gods it seems, as Buddhist saints are also called gods or goddesses. Chinese Orthodox may have a better term that my secular and Buddhist friends are not familiar with however.

And since it usually comes up when I have the discussion on my name's meaning, my long last name has a long meaning too, which is roughly "First son (crown prince) of the Russian King (Tsar) Stanislaus of Poland." My last name simply cannot be transliterated in to Chinese from what I have been told by many Chinese-speaking people. As for my middle name, well it means the exact same thing as my first name, oddly enough.

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