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Kowtow - the Deepest Bow in Chinese / Japanese...

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Kowtow - The deepest bow

China kòu tóu
Japan koutou
Kowtow - The deepest bow

叩頭 is the term that seems to be known worldwide as kowtow. In Japanese and Chinese, it simply means a deep bow, especially one so low that one's head touches the ground in submission. However, in western culture, it has sometimes come to mean "giving in" or "surrendering to someone else's will." Sometimes even said of a person who stoops to flattery at the expense of their own dignity.

I don't know if you would really want this on a wall scroll but enough people have searched for this term on our website, that I guess it was time to add it. It just feels strange to see such a word on a wall scroll, so please order with caution. 叩頭 is antiquated in both Japanese and Chinese. The act is seldom done anymore, and seen as an ancient ritual of sorts.


Not the results for kowtow - the deepest bow that you were looking for?

Below are some entries from our dictionary that may match your kowtow - the deepest bow search...

Characters

If shown, 2nd row is Simp. Chinese

Pronunciation
Romanization
Simple Dictionary Definition

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Japanese rei / re / れい Japanese (1) (See お礼・1) thanks; gratitude; (2) manners; etiquette; (3) bow; (4) reward; gift; (5) ceremony; ritual; (personal name) Reiji; (female given name) Rei; (given name) Rai; (given name) Yuzuru; (female given name) Yuki; (male given name) Hiroshi; (personal name) Hiro; (personal name) Iyabu; (female given name) Ayano; (female given name) Aya; (female given name) Akira

ボー

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Japanese boo / ボー Japanese (1) bow; (2) baud; (place-name) Bo (Siera Leone); Baugh; Beaux
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Beau

叩頭


叩头

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Mandarin kòu tóu / kou4 tou2
Taiwan k`ou t`ou / kou tou
Japanese koutou / koto / こうとう
Chinese to kowtow (traditional greeting, esp. to a superior, involving kneeling and pressing one's forehead to the ground); also written 磕頭|磕头[ke1 tou2]
Japanese (noun/participle) kowtow (bow made from a kneeling position wherein the forehead touches the ground)
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Kowtow - The deepest bow

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Mandarin gōng / gong1
Taiwan kung
Chinese to bow; to salute

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Mandarin kòu / kou4
Taiwan k`ou / kou
Japanese tataki / たたき
Chinese to knock; to kowtow
Japanese (surname) Tataki

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Mandarin gōng / gong1
Taiwan kung
Japanese yumi(p);yu / ゆみ(P);ゆ    kyuu / kyu / きゅう
Chinese a bow (weapon); CL:張|张[zhang1]; to bend; to arch (one's back etc); surname Gong
Japanese (1) (ゆ is usu. a prefix) bow (and arrow); (2) archery; (3) bow (for a violin, etc.); (1) bow (and arrow); (2) unit of distance to an archery target (approx. six feet); (3) unit of distance for land surveying (approx. eight feet); (surname, female given name) Yumi; (personal name) Yuge; (personal name) Hiroshi; (personal name) Kyuu
Dhanus. A bow; a bow's length, i. e. the 4, 000th part of a yojana. Seven grains of wheat 麥 make 1 finger-joint 指節; 24 finger-joints make 1 elbow or cubit 肘; 4 cubits make 1 bow; or 1 foot 5 inches make 1 elbow or cubit: 4 cubits make 1 bow; 300 bows make 1 li; but the measures are variously given.

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Mandarin yǐn / yin3
Taiwan yin
Japanese hiki / ひき
Chinese to draw (e.g. a bow); to pull; to stretch something; to extend; to lengthen; to involve or implicate in; to attract; to lead; to guide; to leave; to provide evidence or justification for; old unit of distance equal to 10 丈[zhang4], one-thirtieth of a km or 33.33 meters
Japanese (surname) Hiki
To stretch, draw, lead, bring in or on.

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Mandarin chí / chi2
Taiwan ch`ih / chih
Chinese to unstring a bow; to slacken; to relax; to loosen

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Mandarin/ ba4
Taiwan pa
Chinese the part of a bow grasped when shooting

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Mandarin tāo / tao1
Taiwan t`ao / tao
Chinese bow case; to cover

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Mandarin/ fu3
Taiwan fu
Chinese handle of bow

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Mandarin/ di3
Taiwan ti
Chinese carved bow

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Mandarin xián / xian2
Taiwan hsien
Japanese gen / げん
Chinese bow string; string of musical instrument; watchspring; chord (segment of curve); hypotenuse; CL:根[gen1]
Japanese (1) bowstring; (2) (See 絃) string (of a shamisen, etc.); stringed instrument; (3) {math} chord; (4) (obscure) {math} (See 斜辺・しゃへん) hypotenuse; (female given name) Yuzuru; (personal name) Sachihiro; (personal name) Sachie; (personal name) Genji; (surname, given name) Gen; (female given name) Ito

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Mandarin chāo / chao1
Taiwan ch`ao / chao
Chinese unbent bow

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Mandarin/ nu3
Taiwan nu
Japanese do / ど
Chinese crossbow
Japanese (1) crossbow (incl. large models operated by a number of people); (2) netted apparatus atop a wall containing large stones, which were dropped onto attackers by cutting the net; (3) slingshot; catapult; (surname) Do
Crossbow, bow.

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Mandarin zhěn / zhen3
Taiwan chen
Chinese (of a bow) impactful; powerful

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Mandarin/ mi3
Taiwan mi
Japanese mi / はず
Chinese to stop; repress
Japanese (1) (kana only) expectation that something took place, will take place or was in some state; it should be so; bound to be; expected to be; must be; (2) nock (of a bow); (3) nock (of an arrow); (4) (sumo) nock-shaped grip (between thumb and forefinger); (5) wooden frame on the tip of the mast of a Japanese ship that prevents the hawser from falling out
Stop, put down.

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Mandarin shāo / shao1
Taiwan shao
Chinese ends of a bow

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Mandarin gòu / gou4
Taiwan kou
Chinese to draw a bow to the full; the range of a bow and arrow; old variant of 夠|够[gou4], enough

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Mandarin kōu / kou1
Taiwan k`ou / kou
Chinese nock at end of bow; stretch

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Mandarin wǎn / wan3
Taiwan wan
Japanese hiki / ひき    ban / ばん
Chinese to pull; to draw (a cart or a bow); to roll up; to coil; to carry on the arm; to lament the dead; (fig.) to pull against; to recover
Japanese (surname) Hiki; (surname) Ban

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Mandarin zhī / zhi1
Taiwan chih
Japanese shi / し    eda / えだ
Chinese branch; classifier for sticks, rods, pencils etc
Japanese (counter) counter for long, thin things (i.e. swords); branch; bow; bough; twig; limb; (surname) Shige; (surname) Edasaki; (surname) Eda; (personal name) Eta
A branch.

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Mandarin/ yi4
Taiwan i
Chinese oar; stand for correcting a bow

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Japanese hoko / ほこ Japanese (1) long-handled Chinese spear; lance; pike; (2) weapon; arms; (3) grip of a bow

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Mandarin/ zi3
Taiwan tzu
Japanese azusa;shi;azusa / あずさ;し;アズサ
Chinese Catalpa kaempferi; printing blocks
Japanese (1) (あずさ, アズサ only) (kana only) (See 夜糞峰榛) Japanese cherry birch (Betula grossa); (2) (あずさ, アズサ only) (See キササゲ) yellow catalpa (Catalpa ovata); (3) (あずさ, アズサ only) (See 赤芽柏・1) Japanese mallotus (Mallotus japonicus); (4) printing block; (5) (あずさ only) (abbreviation) (See 梓弓) catalpa bow; (6) (あずさ only) (abbreviation) (See 梓巫女) catalpa medium; (surname) Shin; (personal name) Shi; (female given name) Adzusa; (surname, female given name) Azusa; (female given name) Azu; (personal name) Agishi; (personal name) Agi; (personal name) Aki

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Mandarin qiāng / qiang1
Taiwan ch`iang / chiang
Japanese yari / やり    utsugizaki / うつぎざき    utsugi / うつぎ
Chinese gun; firearm; rifle; spear; thing with shape or function similar to a gun; CL:支[zhi1],把[ba3],桿|杆[gan3],條|条[tiao2],枝[zhi1]; to substitute for another person in a test; to knock; classifier for rifle shots; surname Qiang
Japanese (1) spear; lance; (2) javelin; (3) (shogi) lance; (4) (archaism) jeering; (1) long-handled Chinese spear; lance; pike; (2) weapon; arms; (3) grip of a bow; (surname) Yari; (surname) Utsugi

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Mandarin qiàn / qian4
Taiwan ch`ien / chien
Japanese kake / かけ    kaki / かき
Chinese deficient; to owe; to lack; yawn
Japanese lack; deficiency; vacancy; (1) (kana only) yawn; yawning (and stretching); (2) kanji "yawning" radical (radical 76); (place-name) Kake; (surname) Kaki
To owe: debt; deficient; to bend, bow, yawn, etc.; the Sanskrit sign अ said to imply 大空不可得 space, great and unattainable or immeasurable.

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Mandarin wēi / wei1
Taiwan wei
Chinese cove; bay; a bend or nook in the hills; the curve of a bow

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Mandarin máo / mao2
Taiwan mao
Japanese hoko / ほこ
Chinese spear; lance; pike
Japanese (1) long-handled Chinese spear; lance; pike; (2) weapon; arms; (3) grip of a bow

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Mandarin/ ji1
Taiwan chi
Japanese horidome / ほりどめ
Chinese to bow to the ground; to inspect; to check; surname Ji
Japanese (personal name) Horidome
Investigate; delay; to prostrate oneself; think

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Search for Kowtow - the Deepest Bow in my Japanese & Chinese Dictionary


The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...

Title CharactersRomaji(Romanized Japanese)Various forms of Romanized Chinese
Kowtow - The deepest bow叩頭
叩头
koutou / kotokòu tóu / kou4 tou2 / kou tou / koutouk`ou t`ou / koutou / kou tou
In some entries above you will see that characters have different versions above and below a line.
In these cases, the characters above the line are Traditional Chinese, while the ones below are Simplified Chinese.



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A nice Chinese calligraphy wall scroll

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We also offer custom wall scrolls in small, medium, and an even-larger jumbo size.

A professional Chinese Calligrapher

Professional calligraphers are getting to be hard to find these days.
Instead of drawing characters by hand, the new generation in China merely type roman letters into their computer keyboards and pick the character that they want from a list that pops up.

There is some fear that true Chinese calligraphy may become a lost art in the coming years. Many art institutes in China are now promoting calligraphy programs in hopes of keeping this unique form of art alive.

Trying to learn Chinese calligrapher - a futile effort

Even with the teachings of a top-ranked calligrapher in China, my calligraphy will never be good enough to sell. I will leave that to the experts.

A high-ranked Chinese master calligrapher that I met in Zhongwei

The same calligrapher who gave me those lessons also attracted a crowd of thousands and a TV crew as he created characters over 6-feet high. He happens to be ranked as one of the top 100 calligraphers in all of China. He is also one of very few that would actually attempt such a feat.


Check out my lists of Japanese Kanji Calligraphy Wall Scrolls and Old Korean Hanja Calligraphy Wall Scrolls.

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