Meaning of tael in English:


Pronunciation /teɪl/


  • 1A weight used in China and East Asia, of varying amount but fixed in China at 50 grams (13/4 oz.).

    ‘Due to the intercession of Russia, Germany and France, the Manchurian government paid Japan 300 million taels of silver to ‘reclaim’ Liaotung.’
    • ‘The savvy businessman demanded a high annual rent of 50,000 taels of silver, and after 30 years, he wanted the Kwok family to return both the land and the store to his interests.’
    • ‘The garden's building project lasted 10 years and cost Gu more than 10,000 taels of silver.’
    • ‘Though the victim of this armed aggression, China was forced to pay the aggressor 21 million taels of silver in ‘war reparation’ and opened five trading ports.’
    • ‘Once each year, I would travel to Ping's father and pay him an annual remuneration of twenty taels of silver, which amounted to less than thirteen American dollars.’
    1. 1.1A former Chinese monetary unit based on the value of a tael of standard silver.
      ‘Because of their ability to provide arbitrage among the complex monies of China, they coexisted with modern banks until the reorganization of the currency in 1933 to a silver dollar rather than the Chinese tael.’
      • ‘For example, following the offer of its shares to the public, the capital increased from 476,000 taels in 1874 to two million taels in 1884.’
      • ‘In 1877, it was bought by the Chinese Merchant Steam Navigation Co for 220 million tael.’
      • ‘Nevertheless her indebtedness should not be exaggerated; the ill consequences were more the result of China's inelastic revenue system than of the real burden of foreign debt, which amounted only to one tael per capita.’
      • ‘Its total capital expenditure reached 2 million taels in 1882 and 2.3 million taels in 1891.’
      • ‘In 1910, 16 other Britons accumulated 16,000 taels and bought the Dalla Horse Repository, located at the present crossroad of Hongqiao Lu and Hami Lu, to change it into a club.’
      • ‘The two businessmen proposed that they lease the market from the Municipal Council of the French Concession for 500 taels in tax a year for 10 years.’
      • ‘It invested over 773,000 taels to reconstruct the shipbuilding factory.’
      • ‘But the price had skyrocketed so much that her entire savings converted into just a few measly taels.’
      • ‘He believes that even craftsmen and laborers above the lowest level, who generally made 1.5 tael or so a month plus payments in kind, could afford books, but this assumes that they could save a tael a month.’
      • ‘The construction fee plus the cost of equipment reached over 50,000 tael.’
      • ‘The one-and-a-half-million tael facility was donated anonymously to the municipality by a British businessman, believed to be a leading philanthropist of the time.’


From Malay tahil ‘weight’.