- (in the Chinese Empire) a member of any of the nine ranks of public officials, each distinguished by a particular kind of button worn on the cap.
- (initial capital letter) the standard Chinese language.
- (initial capital letter) a northern Chinese dialect, especially as spoken in and around Beijing.
- a small, spiny citrus tree, Citrus reticulata, native to China, bearing lance-shaped leaves and flattish, orange-yellow to deep-orange loose-skinned fruit, some varieties of which are called tangerines.
- any of several plants belonging to the genus Disporum or Streptopus, of the lily family, as S. roseus (rose mandarin) or D. lanuginosum (yellow mandarin), having drooping flowers and red berries.
- an influential or powerful government official or bureaucrat.
- a member of an elite or powerful group or class, as in intellectual or cultural milieus: the mandarins of the art world.
- of or relating to a mandarin or mandarins.
- elegantly refined, as in language or taste.
Origin of mandarin
Examples from the Web for mandarin
Sandwiched in between was a “Potbelly Punch” of SoCal Fruit Punch and mandarin vodka.Wash ‘Pulp Fiction’ Down With a Tasty Beverage
October 17, 2014
In the original Marvel comic books, the Mandarin was born and bred in China, a descendant of Genghis Khan no less.Did Hollywood Collaborate With Hitler? A New Book Makes Bold Claims.
September 9, 2013
But there is one important thing they do not know, which is what it is like to be anyone except a mandarin.
To the extent that the "Tiger Mom" phenomenon is actually real, it's arguably the cultural legacy of the Mandarin system.
And thus the separation of the mandarin class grows ever more complete.
And next a Chinese mandarin, who nods his head at Annie and myself.Little Annie's Ramble (From "Twice Told Tales")
Perhaps, for being such a darin' man, he may be made a mandarin!
The mandarin of this district is my friend, and I can make it all right.The Little Girl Lost
Ireland is a kind of laboratory for the culture of the mandarin bacillus.The Island Mystery
George A. Birmingham
I'll bet you'd be flirting with some mandarin or pasha before you got through.'Possessed
- (in the Chinese Empire) a member of any of the nine senior grades of the bureaucracy, entered by examinations
- a high-ranking official whose powers are extensive and thought to be outside political control
- a person of standing and influence, as in literary or intellectual circles
- a small citrus tree, Citrus nobilis, cultivated for its edible fruit
- the fruit of this tree, resembling the tangerine
Word Origin and History for mandarin
"Chinese official," 1580s, via Portuguese mandarim or older Dutch mandorijn from Malay mantri, from Hindi mantri "councilor, minister of state," from Sanskrit mantri, nominative of mantrin- "advisor," from mantra "counsel," from PIE root *men- "to think" (see mind (n.)).
Form influenced in Portuguese by mandar "to command, order." Used generically for the several grades of Chinese officials; sense of "chief dialect of Chinese" (spoken by officials and educated people) is from c.1600. Transferred sense of "important person" attested by 1907. The type of small, deep-colored orange so called from 1771, from resemblance of its color to that of robes worn by mandarins.