Only the prefect can commit arson, his people can’t even light a lantern (只许州官放火, 不许百姓点灯)|只许州官放火, 不许百姓点灯
Zhǐ xǔ zhōuguān fànghuǒ, bù xǔ bǎixìng diǎndēng
Translation: A prefect is free to commit arson while forbidding his people to light a lantern.
Meaning: People with power can do what they like while controlling and limiting the freedom of others.
The Chinese language is laden with homophones: Words that sound the same but carry different meanings. Traditionally people with power and influence often forbade others to use words that were homophonic with their
Share This Story, Choose Your Platform!