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A medieval name for China popularized by Marco Polo in accounts of his travels. It usually applied only to the area north of the Yangtze River.

[Medieval Latin Cataya, Cathaya, ultimately (via Turkic languages) from Khitan Khitai, the Khitan people (who ruled in northern China and Central Asia in an era of increasing interaction between China, the Muslim world, and Europe).]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(Placename) a literary or archaic name for China
[C14: from Medieval Latin Cataya, of Turkic origin]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014



Archaic. China.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.Cathay - a communist nation that covers a vast territory in eastern AsiaCathay - a communist nation that covers a vast territory in eastern Asia; the most populous country in the world
acupuncture, stylostixis - treatment of pain or disease by inserting the tips of needles at specific points on the skin
acupressure, G-Jo, shiatsu - treatment of symptoms by applying pressure with the fingers to specific pressure points on the body
Chinese Revolution - the republican revolution against the Manchu dynasty in China; 1911-1912
Chinese Wall, Great Wall, Great Wall of China - a fortification 1,500 miles long built across northern China in the 3rd century BC; it averages 6 meters in width
yang - the bright positive masculine principle in Chinese dualistic cosmology; "yin and yang together produce everything that comes into existence"
yin - the dark negative feminine principle in Chinese dualistic cosmology; "the interaction of yin and yang maintains the harmony of the universe"
feng shui - rules in Chinese philosophy that govern spatial arrangement and orientation in relation to patterns of yin and yang and the flow of energy (qi); the favorable or unfavorable effects are taken into consideration in designing and siting buildings and graves and furniture
Chinese - any of the Sino-Tibetan languages spoken in China; regarded as dialects of a single language (even though they are mutually unintelligible) because they share an ideographic writing system
Sino-Tibetan, Sino-Tibetan language - the family of tonal languages spoken in eastern Asia
Cultural Revolution, Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution - a radical reform in China initiated by Mao Zedong in 1965 and carried out largely by the Red Guard; intended to eliminate counterrevolutionary elements in the government it resulted in purges of the intellectuals and socioeconomic chaos
dim sum - traditional Chinese cuisine; a variety of foods (including several kinds of steamed or fried dumplings) are served successively in small portions
fortune cookie - thin folded wafer containing a maxim on a slip of paper
brown sauce, Chinese brown sauce - a sauce based on soy sauce
egg foo yong, egg fu yung - omelet containing onions and celery and chopped meat or fish
egg roll, spring roll - minced vegetables and meat wrapped in a pancake and fried
Red Guard - a radical political movement by Chinese youths who espoused Maoist principles
falun gong - a spiritual movement that began in China in the latter half of the 20th century and is based on Buddhist and Taoist teachings and practices
Manchuria - a region in northeastern China
Beijing, capital of Red China, Peiping, Peking - capital of the People's Republic of China in the Hebei province in northeastern China; 2nd largest Chinese city
Chongqing, Chungking - a city in south-central China on the Chang Jiang; a commercial center for western China
Canton, Guangzhou, Kuangchou, Kwangchow - a city on the Zhu Jiang delta in southern China; the capital of Guangdong province and a major deep-water port
Gansu, Gansu province, Kansu - a province in north-central China; formerly part of the Silk Road to Turkistan and India and Persia
Hebei, Hebei province, Hopeh, Hopei - a populous province in northeastern China
Hunan, Hunan province - a province in southeastern central China between the Nan Ling mountains and the Chang Jiang; noted for its timber and valuable mineral resources
Sichuan, Szechuan, Szechwan, Szechwan province - a populous province of south central China
Yunnan, Yunnan province - a province of southern China
Luda, Luta - an industrial conurbation in northeastern China on the southern end of the Liaodong Peninsula; it now includes the cities of Dalian and Lushun
Dairen, Dalian, Talien - a port and shipbuilding center in northeastern China on the Liaodong Peninsula; now a part of Luda
Loyang, Luoyang - a city in east central China; the capital of ancient China during several dynasties
Lushun, Port Arthur - a major port city in northeastern China on the Liaodong Peninsula; now a part of Luda
Hangchow, Hangzhou - a city of eastern China on Hangzhou Bay; regarded by Marco Polo as the finest city in the world
Nanchang, Nan-chang - a walled city in southeastern China on the Gan Jiang
Nanning, Nan-ning - an industrial city in southern China
Nanjing, Nanking - a city in eastern China on the Yangtze River; a former capital of China; the scene of a Japanese massacre in the 1930s
Shanghai - the largest city of China; located in the east on the Pacific; one of the largest ports in the world
Fengtien, Moukden, Mukden, Shenyang - a city in northeastern China
Taiyuan - an ancient city in northeastern China noted for coal mining and steel production
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
27-Simoes, R.P.; Castello-Simoes, V.; Mendes, R.G.; Archiza, B.; Santos, D.A.; Machado, H.G.; Bonjorno, J.C.; Oliveira, C.R.; Reis, M.S.; Catai, A.M.; Arena, R.; Borghi-Silva, A.
Machado-Vidotti, H.G., Mendes, R.G., Simoes, R.P., Castello-Simoes, V., Catai, A.M.
[7.] Ribeiro TF, Azevendo GD, Crescencio JC, Maraes VRFS, Papa V, Catai AM et al.
CATAI (Concurrent algorithms and data types Animation over the internet) [J].
[21] Pantoni CB, Di Thommazo L, Mendes RG, Catai AM, Luzzi S, Amaral Neto O et al.
Tea was first mentioned in European literature in 1559 as chai catai (tea of China) in Navigazioni e Viaggi (Voyages and Travels) by Gian Battista Ramusio, a noted Venetian author (New Encyclopedia Britannica, vol.
TONGUE STRAPS: 2.10 Chicago Grey, 2.45 Strong Rebel, 3.55 Top Mark, Little Bob, 5.05 Catai. CHEEK PIECES: 2.45 Just Posh, 3.20 *The Market Man, 3.55 *Minnesota Leader, 5.35 I'm Your Man, Wee Bertie.
Sedgefield 1.50 Catai, 2.20 Alderbridge, 2.50 Bougoure, 3.20 Scott's Mill, 3.50 Miss Pross, 4.20 Zoenicibel.
Kilmer, RJ, Williams, ED, "Combinatorial Discovery of Metal Co-catalysts for the Carbonylation of Phenol." Appl Catai A Gen., 254 (1) 5-25 (2003)
Figlia del re del Catai (pressappoco tra India e Cina), Angelica supera per bellezza le piu aggraziate dame della corte di Carlomagno (Galerana, Alda, Clarice, Ermelina).