Sino-Korean word from 麒麟. The archaic sense of legendary animal is attested in the two-millenia old Confucianist Classic of Rites that reads bonghwang-girin (鳳凰麒麟). Since Admiral Zheng He took the giraffe from Somalia to China in 1414, this Hanja word was equated with Somali geri or the like meaning "giraffe" then (See Citations:기린), which on the other hand may have influenced the etymology of Italian giraffa (since Medici giraffe in 1486) and its European derivatives via Arabic زَرَافَة (zarāfa).
- Phonetic Hangul[기린]
|Revised Romanization (translit.)?
기린 • (girin) (counter 마리, hanja 麒麟)
- a giraffe (mammal)
- (Chinese mythology) a qilin
- 지라프 (jirapeu) (rarely used)