1896 CPE: Scheme to land Chinese

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Another West Coast pidgin language?

West Coast newspaper readers could handle that.

My readers are familiar with how I point out occasions when a news editor published pidgin-language text, untranslated.

That happened in places and times where locals had close familiarity with Chinuk Wawa, Chinese Pidgin English, and so on.

We see that twice over today. A BC newspaper reprints a San Francisco paper’s untranslated account of a CPE-speaking man.

After all the Chinese Pidgin English I’ve shared on this site, you might not need a translation etiher…

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Some ten days ago, says the F.S. [i.e. San Francisco] Call, a little, yellow, shriveled-up Chinese, Chin Wah Maw by name, with more nerve than cuteness, approached a gentleman high in Federal circles with a proposition to make, as he expressed it, “Big money.” “It is just like finding it in the road,” warbled the Chinese, and then, dropping back into pigeon English, added: “You fix-um certificate; makee heap big money.

— from the Nanaimo (BC) Semi-Weekly Mail of August 15, 1896, page 2, column 1

What have you learned?