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囫圇吞棗 (Húlúntūnzǎo)


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囫圇吞棗 (Húlúntūnzǎo) - Skim through without understanding.

Literal Meaning - Swallow dates whole.

During the Yuan Dynasty there once was a doctor that liked to ask his patients to eat fruits. One day, a man with stomach cramps came to see the doctor. The doctor told the man that it was due to constipation and asked him to eat dates. The man then left in a hurry.

The next day, the man came back with a toothache, the doctor asked him what happened and the man replied that although his stomach no longer cramped but because he ate too many dates, his tooth ached. The doctor said to him, "I asked you to eat dates but never asked you to overeat it. Obviously your tooth will ache when you chew so many dates!" The man then replied, "Oh, so chewing will lead to toothache, now I know what to do." The man then left again in a hurry.

On the following day, the man once again returned to the doctor and this time, he had a bloated stomach. The doctor once again asked him, "What happened to you???" The man repiied, "You said that chewing dates will make my tooth ache so I swallowed them whole instead!"

In the end, the doctor managed to heal the man by inducing vomit.

囫圇吞棗 (Húlúntūnzǎo) means someone that only listens to half of the story and never understands the meaning.


"你只會對成語, 但是不知道他的意思,這就是「囫圇吞棗」只知其一不知其二."

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