Main definitions of Yao in US English:

: Yao1Yao2

Yao1

noun

  • 1A member of an East African people living to the east and south of Lake Nyasa.

    • ‘When Arabs arrived on the east coast of Africa they began trading with the Yao people.’
    • ‘The Yao have lived in northern Mozambique (formerly Portuguese East Africa).’
  • 2The Bantu language of the Yao, with over a million speakers.

    • ‘They speak a Bantu language also known as Chiyao("Yao language", chi meaning "language").’
    • ‘In the north, the Bantu languages of Yao and Makua predominate; in the Zambezi Valley, it is Nyanja is the dominant languages; and in the south, Tsonga is spoken.’

adjective

  • Relating to the Yao or their language.

    • ‘A group of 61000 people on the island of Hainan speak the Yao language Kim Mun, but see themselves as Miao (Hmong).’
    • ‘The Yao traders from west of Lake Malawi began to reach the coast around Kilwa in the late sixteenth century.’

Origin

The local name.

Pronunciation

Yao

/you/

Main definitions of Yao in US English:

: Yao1Yao2

Yao2

noun

  • 1A member of a mountain-dwelling people of southern China.

    • ‘After hearing Diesel's mockery of an Asian accent, Yao told reporters that Chinese in fact was difficult to learn he struggled to master it himself.’
    • ‘Geddes contributed the study on the Hmong, Miles worked amongst the Yao, and I amongst the Karen, after two years as full-time adviser.’
    • ‘Minority groups in this small, mountainous country include the Mon-Khmer, the Yao, and the Hmong.’
    • ‘Some other scholars have argued that it may have derived from a script used by a non-Chinese people living nearby, called the Yao.’
    • ‘Geddes' master plan was for there to be studies of each of the ‘six main hill tribes’, identified as Hmong, Yao, Karen, Lisu, Lahu and Akha.’
    • ‘In 1836 the Yao of Hunan, under White Lotus preachers, started a fitful war of resistance which flared up once more in 1855 during the chaos of the Taiping Rebellion.’
    • ‘Farther north are the Makonde near the coast and the Yao near Lake Malawi.’
    • ‘China has scores of so-called ‘minority’ ethnic groups - Tibetan, Kirghiz, Yao, Uigur and many more.’
    • ‘The Yao of Liannan are dominated by the Bai-Yao and the Guoshan-Yao.’
  • 2The language of the Yao.

    • ‘Five percent of the people speak Yao, and 30 percent speak Arabic.’

adjective

  • Relating to the Yao or their language.

    • ‘It is also a very scenic route, with spectacular landscapes, vegetation, and historical ruins as well as typical Yao villages, temples, and other tourist attractions.’
    • ‘This Yao village is located at the foot of a mountain with a beautiful river zig-zagging around it.’
    • ‘Although the local government has built new houses at lower elevations for them, Yao people are more accustomed to living in high places.’

Origin

From Chinese Yáo, literally ‘precious jade’.

Pronunciation

Yao

/you/