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夜郎自大 (Yèlángzìdà)


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夜郎自大 (Yèlángzìdà) - Thinks too highly of oneself.

夜郎 (Yèláng) - a small country during the Han Dynasty.

自大 (zìdà) - arrogant or big headed.

Yèláng is a small country located at the edge of the Han Dynasty. Its ruler never once stepped out of his country thought that everything in his counry was the best. One day while he was showing some villagers around he boasts that his country's got the largest river and the best raft. He took the villagers for a ride on the raft. The river's current was too strong and they got swept downstream into the ocean. There they saw a giant ship in which they thought was a mountain. Their raft crashed into the ship but the ruler and the villagers got rescued by the crew onboard. After inquiring about their identity, the ruler was shown a map of the lands ruled by the Han. Yèláng which its ruler thought was the largest country is in fact nothing but a mere dot when compared to the Han.

夜郎自大 (Yèlángzìdà) is used to describe someone that is arrogant but is actually nothing special.


"雖然我懂得很多成語, 可是我不能「夜郎自大」以為自己很厲害,很聰明."

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Never heard of this 成语。I have not seen it in the newspaper or hear people speak oor people talk on TV show. It sounds quite intetesting. There are a lot of 成语 I don't even understand what the meanings are. It is good to learn something new today. 

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