Dictionary of Honorifics

Da Shixiong (大师兄) : the eldest senior brother / the first to become the disciple

Dage (大哥) : big brother, eldest brother, but this term usually on friendship level, or family, or to someone you respect, not for romantic relationship.

Dajie: term used to address a woman older than you, English equivalent = older sister

Daozhang: an honorific used to address Daoist priests or simply cultivators in general

Ge: suffix used to address one’s elder brother, or an older male

Gege: used to refer to an elder brother, or an older male

Gongzi (公子) : son (honorific used to address a son from nobility/high status); son of an official/nobility

Jie: similar to “Dajie”, term used to address a woman older than you, English equivalent = older sister

LaoShi (老师) : This is the word for teacher and just like sensei in Japanese, people call teachers using this term by adding the term at the end of the person’s last name.

LaoZi (老子) : Literally means someone who’s of an old age (informal). A slang word generally used by teenagers when they want to elevate their position over someone else and imply they should be respected/not be messed with (since the elderly should be respected)

Shibo (师伯) : Uncle (in teacher-master form). The ‘bo’(伯) literal meaning is ‘paternal older uncle’ — disciples call masters other than their own master as ‘uncle’, in this case, the other master is older/senior than your own master, or he is your senior’s master.

Shidi (师弟) : Little Brother disciple/junior (man)

Shifu (師傅) : teacher/master

Shijie : Big Sister disciple/senior (woman)

Shimei (师妹)  : Little sister disciple/junior (woman)

Shishu (师叔) : Uncle (in teacher-master form) — disciples call masters other than their own master as ‘uncle’, or alternatively one’s mother’s shidi

Shixiong (师兄) : Big Brother disciple/senior (man)

Shizhi (师侄) : Nephew (in teacher-master form). — master will call the other master’s disciple as their ‘nephew/niece’.

XiaoGui (小鬼): Refers to someone who’s the little devil

Xiao Shidi (小师弟) : The youngest junior brother / the last to become a disciple

XiaoZi (小子): A similar meaning to boy or kid. Usually used to refer to young people who are brattish

Xiong (兄) : brother / bro ( have various use, can be used toward your real brother, your homie, or even strangers but you have respect for them)

Zhanglao (长老) : Elder

 


NOTE: In the wuxia world, people from the same sects are family members, so think of it as a big families:

  • All disciples have siblings-like relationships
  • All masters have siblings-like relationships, that means other master’s disciples will be like their ‘nephew/niece’.