13 Our Fire Chicken Special 🐣
We’re grateful to be back with a Thanksgiving puzzler
November is upon us, and as the chilly winter is fast approaching, we’re lighting a big bonfire this week so that we can all bask in its warmth, and maybe eat some delicious, hearty, clucky foods with your loved ones.
This is Hanmoji Puzzles, your weekly dose of emoji word puzzles inspired by The Hanmoji Handbook. And don’t worry — you don’t need to speak Chinese at all in order to play along. You just need a love for emoji and be curious about how language works!
🧩 This week’s puzzle
What word in Chinese does this emoji combo represent?
Hint: What kind of chicken is fiery and feisty?
Answer (spoilers ahead!)
With US Thanksgiving approaching, of course, it’s a turkey 🦃!
🔥🐓 stands for 火雞 in Traditional Chinese and 火鸡 in Simplified Chinese. It’s pronounced huǒ jī in Mandarin, and fo2 gai1 in Cantonese. The two characters literally say fire chicken, though the fiery chicken is, of course, the beloved turkey.
It’s not clear why the turkey is named as the fire chicken, but people online speculate that it’s due to its fiery read neck or wattle, or its lush, semi-circular tail of feathers. We personally like to think that it’s because these chickens are on fire with their fabulous fans and great gobbles:
Bonus question: What do you think the Chinese characters are for the country Turkey? Is it also 🔥🐓?
Answer: Nope. The Chinese characters for the country Turkey, also known as Turkiye, are 土耳其 (Tǔ'ěrqí/tou2 ji5 kei4). This is what linguists call a phonetic transcription of, in this case, an English word.
🥳 Updates from our parent project, The Hanmoji Handbook
We were reviewed by the good folks at MSL Book Review.
We’ve been nominated for a Forest of Reading Yellow Cedar Award. Tell your Canadian grade schoolers (and teachers and librarians) to take a look at the books and vote for their favorites!
Our book is now out — order it now on IndieBound 🇺🇸, Shop Local 🇨🇦, Blackwell’s 🌏, Barnes & Noble 🇺🇸, or Indigo 🇨🇦.
That’s it this week’s 🧩 Hanmoji Puzzles 🧩! Subscribe to receive next week’s puzzle and please forward this email to friends so we can continue this puzzling endeavor.
Hanmoji Puzzles is a spin off of The Hanmoji Handbook: A Guide to Learning Chinese Through Emoji, which you should absolutely order today 😗. This newsletter is a project by Jason Li, An Xiao Mina and Jennifer 8. Lee.