In the very first sentence, we run across three words of interest. One, 从前 cóngqián, means “a long time ago”, your classic storybook beginning.
The second, 楚国人 chǔguórén, means “a man from the State of Chu“. The State of Chu was a Chinese jurisdictional division during the Zhou Dynasty (1046 – 256 BC). In stories that reference pre-1900 China, you’ll often see references to places that existed in ancient times. Encyclopedia Britannica tells us: “China itself was at the time divided into a series of small duke states, all of which theoretically owed allegiance to the Zhou dynasty, although the Zhou rulers had long since been unable to exercise control over more than their own fiefs.” Anyhoo, the third word is 宝剑 bǎojiàn, which means “a double-edged sword”. How fable-y is that, huh?
I’d also like to draw your attention to the word 移动 yìdòng, meaning “to be moving” or “mobile”. This word is quite common – it’s used to refer to people who move often, and also to “mobile” phones (the cell provider “China Mobile” has this in their Chinese name: 中国移动).
Okay, let’s do this. And thanks again to Yang! Lots of work for some paltry backlinks.