One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Each of a pair of small, thin, tapered sticks of wood, ivory, or plastic, held together in one hand and used as eating utensils especially by the Chinese and the Japanese.
- ‘Dishes are served on a revolving plate in the centre of the table, and food is deftly picked up with chopsticks as it comes by.’
- ‘In the Chinese way, we both helped ourselves to each of the dishes, breaking open new, clean chopsticks from a supply on each table.’
- ‘Her dark tresses were twisted into an oddly shaped bun with two chopsticks sticking from them.’
- ‘Then the bowl is thrust at me with battered wooden chopsticks and a porcelain spoon.’
- ‘Unique china and cherrywood chopsticks are placed on elegant silver holders to make the food look more appealing.’
- ‘Japanese chopsticks are too thin and Chinese chopsticks are hardly shaped at all.’
- ‘Once there, they had to pick up four jellybeans out of a bowl and put them on a plate using only a tricky pair of chopsticks.’
- ‘Naturally, she doesn't know how to use chopsticks, since she doesn't eat Chinese food.’
- ‘Only at funerals are chopsticks stuck into the rice that is put onto the altar.’
- ‘All the tables were pre-set with linen napkins, bowls, china spoons and chopsticks on a green cloth.’
- ‘As for the carvings, I bought some rather lovely chopsticks made from wild betel nut palm and a dolphin carved from the nut of the sago palm.’
- ‘Roll up with a fork or chopsticks, and place on the frissé salad.’
- ‘These are used to create goods such as bowls, cutlery, chopsticks and even wine cups.’
- ‘There are also new, shrink wrapped Japanese chopsticks to take back to the table.’
- ‘Also, never tap the bowls on the table with chopsticks as many Chinese believe only beggars do this.’
- ‘Therefore, chopsticks are also looked upon as the quintessence of Japanese culture.’
- ‘There are metal forks and spoons, melamine Chinese spoons and plastic chopsticks.’
- ‘Men also wear pouches on the right side of their belts to hold a small knife and a pair of chopsticks.’
- ‘At first, fumbling with chopsticks, he found it hard to grasp the food.’
- ‘It's like trying to build a house using only chopsticks and a hammer.’
Late 17th century: pidgin English, from chop ‘quick’ + stick, translating Chinese dialect kuàizi, literally ‘nimble ones’. Compare with chop-chop.
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