05 April 2015

Literal translations of Mandarin names

In his TEDTalk on Are China and the US doomed to conflict?Kevin Rudd mentioned in passing (see transcript) the literal translations of the Mandarin names of China (the Middle Kingdom) and the United States (Měiguó which means "the beautiful country").

It seemed only natural to look for other translations along the same lines.
But a cursory search failed to turn up anything that looks carefully researched.
Please let me know if you have any ideas.

The next thing, of course, was to look up my first name in Mandarin. For Steve, Chinese-Tools.com gives:
斯蒂夫 and the Pinyin: Sī dì fū
while another gives
史蒂夫

For Dyson, I found
戴森 and the Pinyin: Dài Sēn.

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