Chinese Onomatopoeia in Literature

It’s been almost a year since I started reading the Harry Potter series completely in Traditional Chinese, currently I just recently started Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Book #5).

Through my Chinese reading journey I have come accross a lot of Chinese onomatopoeia that you don’t really come across with in other types of writings such as Internet articles, conversations, and newspaper articles.

In this post I go into detail about each of these sounds I encounter in literature.

咕嚕 (gūlū)

Hungry

Definition: rumble, roll.

Used a lot when describing the rumbling sound of the stomach when hungry.

Examples:

啪啪 (pāpā)

Clapping

Definition: The sound of clapping, slapping, a gunshot.

Examples:

劈里啪啦 (pīlipālā)

Fire

Definition: The successive sounds of crackling.

Examples:

嘎嘎 (gāgā)

Duck

Definition: Quacking sound made by a duck, a quack.

嘩啦 (huālā)

Crumbling wall

Definition: Sound of something falling or crushing to the ground, to collapse.

Examples:

吱吱嘎嘎 (zīzīgāgā)

Creacky door

Definition: Creacking and grating

Examples:

嘶嘶聲 (sīsīshēng)

Snake Hiss

Definition: Hissing sound

Examples:

喳喳 (chāchā)

Whisper

Definition: Whispering sound

Examples:

咕噥 (gū nong)

Grumble

Definition: Murmur, mutter, grumble

Examples:

鏘鏘 (qiāngqiāng)

Silverware

Definition: A clanking sound.

Examples:

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