58 episodes

Join Laszlo Montgomery for bi-weekly episodes that introduce commonly used Chinese Sayings and the stories, history and rich meanings behind each phrase. Whether you speak Chinese or not, enjoy a few nice stories and pick up a new and useful phrase or two from China’s ancient times.

The Chinese Sayings Podcast Laszlo Montgomery

    • History
    • 4.8 • 5 Ratings

Join Laszlo Montgomery for bi-weekly episodes that introduce commonly used Chinese Sayings and the stories, history and rich meanings behind each phrase. Whether you speak Chinese or not, enjoy a few nice stories and pick up a new and useful phrase or two from China’s ancient times.

    S6E07 | Tomorrow Never Knows

    S6E07 | Tomorrow Never Knows

    Here's one that goes back all the way to the Huananzi 淮南子. And it's still used today. And quite often too. Sài wēng shī mǎ, yān zhī fēi fú 塞翁失马焉知非福. Eight characters that remind us sometimes you never know when a good thing turns out to be a bad thing and a bad thing turns out to be a blessing in disguise. This is the Chinese Saying that reminds us fate rewards us in strange and roundabout ways. It also taketh away just when you thought you were lucky.
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    • 9 min
    S6E06 | Looks Good On Paper

    S6E06 | Looks Good On Paper

    This week's Chinese Saying is a well-worn one brought to us by none other than Sima Qian, the Grand Historian. Featured in this story are Lian Po, Zhao She, Zhao Kuo, Bai Qi and the whole Battle of Changping. This is the story of Zhǐshàng Tánbīng 紙上談兵, a useful chengyu for all kinds of occasions where the end result doesn't necessarily go according to the carefully crafted plan.
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    • 16 min
    S6E05 | The Comeback Kid

    S6E05 | The Comeback Kid

    This Chinese Saying for this time, 东山再起 Dōng Shān Zài Qǐ is a good one for any situation involving someone whose career everyone thought finished but who came back for one more great moment. This tale, taken from the Book of Jin, tells the story of Xie An who, after already doing great things for the Eastern Jin, came out of retirement to shine one more time.
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    • 15 min
    S6E04 | Sweating Buckets

    S6E04 | Sweating Buckets

    We've all been in this situation in our lives. Here's one for all seasons. Poor old Zhou Bo was caught ill-prepared when the emperor was grilling him. Enjoy this one, gifted to us by The Grand Historian himself, Sima Qian: Hàn Liú Jiā Bèi 汗流浃背. The weather doesn't need to be hot and humid to relate to this ancient classic.
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    • 12 min
    S6E03 | A Horse is a Horse, Of Course, Of Course

    S6E03 | A Horse is a Horse, Of Course, Of Course

    The story behind today's Chinese Saying is an old favorite of all lovers of popular Chinese history. How can we forget Zhao Gao 赵高 from the Qin Dynasty and the famous story behind Zhǐ Lù Wéi Mǎ 指鹿为马. In our connected age when it's so easy to hoodwink one another in news feeds and social media, this is the perfect chéngyǔ to keep handy at all times. And of course, because this Zhǐ Lù Wéi Mǎ strategy worked so well for Zhao Gao in the 3rd Century BC, many an autocrat since, also found it handy and useful, not to mention, effective.
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    • 13 min
    Do As I Say, Not As I Do

    Do As I Say, Not As I Do

    We're back with another good one, this time with a rare appearance of a twelve-character Chinese Saying. This one is perfect for our modern times. It' become a regular thing to see politicians, celebrities, and everyday people, talking the talk on social media about how to act, but not following through so much with walking the walk. Politicians stand on soapboxes and tell the people to obey the Covid regulations. But next thing you know, they're caught on video flaunting their own rules. This chéngyǔ is perfect to use in those kinds of situations. Zhǐ xǔ Zhōuguān fànghuǒ, Bùxǔ bǎixìng diǎndēng, 只许州官放火,不许百姓点灯.
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    • 13 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
5 Ratings

5 Ratings

MadelineKateF ,

Hopeful

I really hope this podcast updates again! I really enjoyed listening to all the episodes and the back stories. Lazlo is a genius and engaging the audience and instilling gems of wisdom.

Silvermoth ,

Fun

Great topic for dinner parties and a wonderful companion to the China history podcast

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