Chinese Swear Words

Bad Words in Chinese – Let’s Learn Chinese!

Here at LTL we strongly believe in the power of full immersion in China and, of course, when you’re learning a language, you don’t just need to learn how to talk about the weather and how to describe your outfit.

You also need juicy content that will make you feel an active listener and speaker… even when the conversation goes too far!

Therefore we collected for you the most common swear words in Mandarin!

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Chinese Swear Words – Commonly Used

Here are some Chinese Swear words you’ll hear more than most others!

他妈的 (tā mā de) 

In a nutshell this is f*ck*ng sh!t in English!

The literal translation is “his mother’s.” Used day-to-day by most, you’ll hear this, even more so in the big cities

傻屄 (shǎ bī)

Swearing in Chinese - Be careful what you say!
Swearing in Chinese – Be careful what you say!

Calling someone a “stupid female reproduction system” is a very impolite way to describe a mean or disagreeable person.

This is one of the most commonly used curse words in China and it can be translated as “stupid c*nt”.

NOTE – If you go to a football match in China, be prepared for thousands of angry Chinese shouting 傻屄 (shǎ bī) when something goes against their side!

If the ref makes a bad call, why not join in yourself!? Might get some approving looks off some fellow angry locals and make a friend or two!!

If you like learning funny things about China, you should definitely check out our Chinglish blog too:

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二百五 (Èr bǎi wǔ)

Quite a funny one this. It’s the number 250, but be careful, it has a darker meaning!

Calling someone “250” basically means they are stupid, useless, good for nothing, etc.

You’ll notice in China, the number 250 is avoided at all costs. No prices will be 250CNY for example. By simply using the phrase 二百五 (Èr bǎi wǔ) as a foreigner will probably see a few laughs from the locals!

肏你妈 (cào nǐ mā)

Not a particularly nice one, but then are any of these?!

This means “f*ck your mother”

Oddly, in English one of the worse insults you can give anyone is uttering the word c*nt, yet in Chinese 傻屄 (shǎ bī) is much lighter than this one.

Call someone a 傻屄 (shǎ bī) and it ain’t nice, but say 肏你妈 (cào nǐ mā), and you could start a riot!

APPROACH WITH CAUTION!!

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Chinese Swear Words – Stupidity and Insanity

When you want to tell someone he’s not the smartest or he’s a little out of his mind it might be useful for you to learn these few expressions …

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FIND OUT FIRST – Learn more Chinese Slang here

As you will see, a lot of negative meaning words consists of eggs in Chinese such as:

笨蛋 (bèn dàn)

Being a “stupid egg,” this term is used to call someone a fool, an idiot, a moron etc.

坏蛋 (huài dàn)

Being a “bad egg” This is adjective is usually used to call someone unscrupulous or with reference to a “bad person.

混蛋 (hún dàn)

Being a “mixed egg”. As you can probably guess, call someone a “mixed egg” has something to do with his uncertain origin.

This word is, in fact, is used to call a person who is a b*stard, hoodlum or scoundrel.

变态 (biàn tài)

Pervert.

This word is used both to define someone really suffering from a mental illness, or to someone who has an ambiguous manner and an equivocal attitude.

DID YOU KNOW – You may often hear this as a level of spice at certain restaurants.

As you can imagine biǎn tài lā (which directly translate to pervertedly hot) means the hottest thing you could possibly ask for!

Chinese Swear Words - Who knows the alternate meaning to the word for Public Bus?
Chinese Swear Words – Who knows the alternate meaning to the word for Public Bus?

Chinese Swear Words – Loose Sexual Morals

打飞机 (dǎ fēi jī)

Literally translated this means “to hit the aeroplane”.

So how does that relate to a sexual swear word. Have a think…?

Yep, it means to masturbate! Makes sense now, right?!

小三 (xiǎo sān)

Literally “little three”, it refers to someone who’s being the third person/third wheel in a relationship, another name for a kept woman, mistress.

贱人 (jiàn rén) and 贱货 (jiàn huò)

Both of the expressions include the word 贱 Jiàn “cheap” and they refer to an easy woman or a cheap person. The former is followed by 人 rén “person”, the latter is followed by the word 货 “goods”.

小姐 (xiǎo jiě)

If you are in Taiwan and Hong Kong, you can call a young lady 小姐 “Miss”, but when in Mainland China, it would be better for you to just say “美女” pretty girl, because 小姐 became a synonym for “prostitute”.

卖豆腐 (mài dòu fu)

This has a funny literal translation that appears to make not much sense!

“Selling tofu” literally! It is used as a euphemism for prostitution.

If you are a veggie or a vegan in China, and you like Tofu, go steady when enquiring at local markets and restaurants!

吃豆腐 (chī dòu fu)

Stinky Tofu
Do you like eating Tofu? BE VERY CAREFUL!!

Another Tofu related swear word? Odd right?!

This literal translation is “eating tofu”

It is used to describe a man who is a pervert. Be careful when asked by a Chinese friend 你喜欢吃豆腐吗? (Do you like eating Tofu?)… if they are a good/close friend they probably aren’t asking you what you think…!

We’ll leave the rest to the imagination!

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公共汽车 (gōng gòng qì chē)

As you probably already know, this word means “public bus”, but sometimes it can be used to someone who is easy to engage sexual activity on a regular basis, just like the English expression “village bicycle”.

Bad Chinese Words – FAQ’s

Is 250 avoided in China?

Yes. 二百五 (Èr bǎi wǔ), despite meaning 250 (the number) is an insult in Chinese. Nothing will ever be priced up as 250CNY in Chinese.

Avoid it at all costs!

Does “eating tofu” have an alternate meaning?

Yes. It is used to describe a man who is a pervert.

Be careful when asked by a Chinese friend 你喜欢吃豆腐吗? (Do you like eating Tofu?)… if they are a good/close friend they probably aren’t asking you what you think…!

Can I call someone a 小姐 in Mainland China?

Whereas in Taiwan and Hong Kong 小姐 (xiǎo jiě) is accepted (it’s meaning is little sister/young lady), in Mainland China this is an offensive term.

It would be better for you to just say “美女” pretty girl, because 小姐 became a synonym for “prostitute”.

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