Singaporean Mandarin Database

This database contains a collection of Mandarin terms which have cultural, historical or sentimental value unique to Singapore. These terms may be used by Singaporeans in the past or at present. Some of the terms are read in print while others are used in our everyday conversations.

峇峇
bā bā
baba
大宝森节
dà bǎo sēn jié
Thaipusam
公共假日
gōng gòng jià rì
public holiday
辜加警察团
gū jiā jĭng chá tuán
Gurkha Contingent
哈芝节
hā zhī jié
Hari Raya Haji
海峡华人
hăi xiá huá rén
Straits Chinese
好兄弟
hăo xīong dì
good brothers (supernatural spirits)
红毛
hóng māo
caucasians / westerners (colloquially known as ang mo)
红头巾
hóng tóu jīn
samsui women (red headscarf)
华巫印
huá wū yìn
Chinese, Malay, and Indian
家庭日
jiā tíng rì
family day
马打
mă dă
police (colloquially known as mata, derived from mata-mata)
娘惹
niáng rě
nyonya / nonya
怕输
pà shū
afraid of losing to others (colloquially known as kiasu)
七月歌台
qī yuè gē tái
getai
全面防卫日
quán miàn fáng wèi rì
Total Defence Day
狮城
shī chéng
Lion City
石叻
shí lè
Selat (old term to refer to Singapore)
屠妖节
tú yāo jié
Deepavali
卫塞节
wèi sài jié
Vesak Day