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t'ai chi ch'uan

[tahy jee chwahn, chee]
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noun
  1. a Chinese martial art and form of stylized, meditative exercise, characterized by methodically slow circular and stretching movements and positions of bodily balance.
Also tai chi chuan; Pinyin, tai ji quan [tahy jee chyahn] /ˈtaɪ ˈdʒi ˈtʃüɑn/.

Origin of t'ai chi ch'uan

First recorded in 1960–65, t'ai chi ch'uan is from the Chinese word tàijí quán literally, fist of the Great Absolute
Also called t'ai chi, tai chi, tai ji.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
British Dictionary definitions for tai chi

t'ai chi ch'uan

noun
  1. a Chinese system of callisthenics characterized by coordinated and rhythmic movementsOften shortened to: t'ai chi (ˈtaɪ ˈdʒiː)

Word Origin

Chinese, literally: great art of boxing
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for tai chi

n.

1736, the "supreme ultimate" in Taoism and Neo-Confucianism, from Chinese tai "extreme" + ji "limit." The form of martial arts training (said to have been developed by a priest in the Sung dynasty, 960-1279) is first attested 1962, in full, tai chi ch'uan, with Chinese quan "fist."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper