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Author Archive | Dr. Dexterous and Zoe Lam

Cartoon illustration for 'four = death'

Four = Death

Here’s a handy cross-cultural tip: speakers of both Cantonese and Mandarin Chinese are often seriously freaked out by the number 4—to the point that hotels in Asia often ‘pretend’ not to have a fourth floor. Why? It’s because in both Cantonese and Mandarin the words for ‘four’ carry a strong echo of ‘death’. This post explains […]

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