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Chaz'z Chop

or, Who is XiàZi BùLànQíLì?

While in Taipei, Chaz was given a "chop", or stamp, with which to sign the Chinese transcription of his name. Despite Chaz'z adherence to green ink, the traditional ink used with a chop is red, and poisonous.

The table below shows the stylised design of the chop on the right, accompanied by a more current version of each character and, from left to right, its phonetic transcription (Wade-Giles and Pinyin) and an English translation.

xia   xià     hsia     summer   Chaz'z chop
zi   zi     tzü     to nourish, excite  
bù   bù     pu     calico  
lan <  làn     lan     blue, indigo  
qì   qì     ch'i     even, regular  
lì   lì     li     profit  

It is no longer the practice to convert Western names into three-syllable approximations of traditional Chinese names: "XiàZi BùLànQíLì" is simply a phonetic transcription of "Chaz Brenchley", and is pronounced in a way that produces a closer equivalent of the name than might be expected from the conventional spelling.

Paul Linebarger, better known as the incomparable Cordwainer Smith, was known to the Chinese as "Lin Bah Loh", which can be translated into English as "Forest of Incandescent Delight". If anyone can produce a similarly apt and succinct rendering of Chaz'z name, please .

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Transcription, translation and calligraphy by Neil Rogers

xià - summer zi - to nourish, or excite bù - calico làn - indigo qì - even, regular lì - profit Chaz's Chop