Travel Reference
In-Depth Information
Jiuba Bar or pub.
Lamaism The esoteric Tibetan and Mongolian branch of Buddhism, influenced by local shamanist and animist be-
Laowai A slang term for foreigner.
Ling Tomb.
Little Red Book A selection of “Quotations from Chairman Mao Zedong”, produced in 1966 as a philosophical
treatise for Red Guards during the Cultural Revolution.
Lu Street.
Luohan Buddhist disciple.
Maitreya Buddha The Buddha of the future, at present awaiting rebirth.
Mandala Mystic diagram which forms an important part of Buddhist iconography, especially in Tibet; they usually
depict deities and are stared at as an aid to meditation.
Men Gate/door.
Miao Temple.
Middle Kingdom A literal translation of the Chinese words for China.
Nan South.
Pagoda Tower with distinctively tapering structure.
Palanquin A covered sedan chair, used by the emperor.
Peking The old English term for Beijing.
Pinyin The official system of transliterating Chinese script into Roman characters.
PLA The People's Liberation Army, the official name of the Communist military forces since 1949.
PSB Public Security Bureau, the branch of China's police force which deals directly with foreigners.
Putonghua Mandarin Chinese; literally “Common Language”.
Qiao Bridge.
Qipao Long, narrow dress slit up the thigh.
Red Guards The unruly factional forces unleashed by Mao during the Cultural Revolution to find and destroy bru-
tally any “reactionaries” among the populace.
Renmin The people.
Renminbi The official term for the Chinese currency, literally, “people's money”.
RMB Renminbi. Another name for Chinese currency literally meaning “the people's money”.
Si Temple, usually Buddhist.
Siheyuan Traditional courtyard house.
Spirit wall Wall behind the main gateway to a house, designed to thwart evil spirits, which, it was believed, could
move only in straight lines.
Spirit Way The straight road leading to a tomb, lined with guardian figures.
Stele Freestanding stone tablet carved with text.
Stupa Multitiered tower associated with Buddhist temples; usually contains sacred objects.
Ta Tower or pagoda.
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