Main definitions of aiyah in English

: aiyah1aiyah2

aiyah1

(also aiya)

exclamation

informal
  • (chiefly among Chinese speakers) used to express dismay, exasperation, or surprise.

    ‘aiyah, you mustn't work so hard; you must find time for other things’

Origin

From Chinese ( Cantonese or Mandarin dialect): imitative.

Pronunciation

aiyah

/ʌɪˈjɑː/

Main definitions of aiyah in English

: aiyah1aiyah2

aiyah2

(also aiya)

exclamation

  • Chiefly in Chinese contexts: used to express dismay, exasperation, surprise, etc.

Origin

1920s; earliest use found in The New York Times Book Review. From Chinese (Cantonese) āai ā, aiya or its Mandarin equivalent āiyā, aiya, of imitative origin.

Pronunciation

aiyah

/ʌɪˈjɑː/