Pictogram (象形): 禾 (“plant”) + 乃, resembling a fruit/an ear hanging off a plant.
May be a causative of 褎 (OC *lɯws, “growth of seedlings”). Compare Proto-Vietic *m-loh (“to blossom”) (whence Vietnamese trổ (“to burst, to open, to display”), lổ (“naked”)), and Khmer លាស់ (lŏəh, “to grow, to blossom, to prosper”).
The meaning of “show” [noun] is a phono-semantic matching of English show.
- † (of plants) to shoot out into ears; earing; ear
― to put forth flowers
but bear no fruit
- † (of plants) to bear fruit
- † (of plants) to blossom
- beautiful; elegant; graceful
― with delicate features
- to manifest; to show; to display
- (especially of a person) outstanding; prominent; extraordinary
― elegant; pretty
- (loanword) a show
― talk show
― fashion show
- (a show): (Cantonese) 騷／骚 (sou1)
- → Japanese: 秀 (shu)
- → Korean: 수 (秀, su)
- → Vietnamese: tú (秀)