UNICYCLE in various languages

NOTE: Some personal messages to Ken, Jouni and John follow the P.S. line.

Hi All,

As I wrote before, I feel bad that my responsibilities as a full- time
lexicographer did not allow me to take an active part in the discussions
concerning the equivalent of unicycle in various languages. I finally went over
all the correspndence on the subject, as well as my own records, and I submit
here a PRELIMINARY list.

I KNOW it has many errors, and I ask for everyone’s cooperation in offering
corrections. The status and sometimes source for each term is given acc. to my
speculation and seomtimes solid lexicographical evidence. It is especially
important to verify what the standard term is.

One piece of advice: DON’T trust native speakers unless they really know about
unicycling. The majority of people when confronted with the question of how to
say unicycle will, rather than admit their ignorance, make up an equivalent that
corresponds to something like “one-wheel bicycle” or “one wheel.”

Also, if you know of synonyms, please provide them, and even if you have
information on the status or source, even better

A total of 22 languages is given. That’s only a fraction of the world’s 4000 or
so languages. Let’s aim for 100, if possible!

Jack Halpern, IUF Vice President

P.S. Set your editor to a line width of at least 80 for easy viewing.

KEN LUNDE: Could you ask Ninik to check the Indonesian equivalent? JOUNI: Could
you verify the Finnish equivalent? JOHN FOSS: Could you verify the Russian


Arabic 'AJATA? standard? Chinese DU2-LUN2-CHE1 standard Mandarin DAN1-LUN2-CHE1
mostly Taiwanese variant DUK6-LEUN4-CHE1 standard Cantonese Danish ENHJULING
standard Dutch EENWIELER standard EENWIELFIETS colloq.? variant English UNICYCLE
standard MONOCYCLE traditional obsolescent British ONE-WHEELED VEHICLE
scientific ICICLE colloq. (Jack Halpern) IKE colloq. YIKE colloq. (Adam Stork)
UNI colloq., very common WHEEL colloq. ONE-WHEELER unattested nonce word
ONE-WHEEL BICYCLE unattested substand. nonce word BIKE substand. nonce word
ONE-WHEELED BICYCLE colloq. substand. nonce word ONE-WHEELED BIKE colloq.
substand. nonce word TRICYCLE colloq. substand. nonce word UNI-BIKE colloq.
substand. nonce word MONOBIKE substand. nonce word? (a Phillipin ONE TRICYCLE
colloq. substand. nonce word BICYCLE substand. nonce word UNIQUE colloq. nonce
word (Coolberg) FUNNY LOOKING BIKE substand. informal description FUNNY THING
substand. informal description FUNNY LOOKING THING substand. informal
description THAT WEIRD THING substand. informal description THAT SILLY THING
substand. informal description THAT THING substand. informal description THAT
substand. informal description WHAT THAT FUNNY MAN’S RIDING substand. informal
description THAT OVER THERE substand. informal description Esperanto MONOCICLO
standard? UNURADULO variant Finnish YKSIPYO:RA:INEN standard? KOLMIPYO:RA:INEN?
colloq. variant? French MONOCYCLE standard MONOROUE colloq. variant? (Michel
Roy) German EINRAHD standard Greek MONOPODYLATO? standard? Hebrew KHAD-OFAN
standard OFAN colloq. KHAD-GALGAL rare variant OFANAYIM substand. (Heb.
“bicycle”) Hungarian UNICEKLI? standard? Japanese ICHIRINSHA standard
YUNISAIKURU rare variant JITENSHA substand. (Jap. “bicycle”) Korean ILLUNCHA
standard Maltese ROTAWAHDA standard? ( Norwegian ENHJULET CYKKEL? standard?
Portuguese MONOCICLO standard Russian ADIOLESIAYA VELOCIPED?? standard Spanish
MONOCICLO standard UNICICLO Puerto Rican variant UNACICLETA unattested colloq.
(M. Stern) MONOCICLETA colloq. variant? (J. Brokaw) MONOBICICLETA unattested
colloq.? (W. Stroessner) Swedish ENHJULING standard Taki-Taki WANWIEL BAISIG’RI
standard (in Surinam) Turkish TEKERLEKLI BISIKLETIYLE? standard? Yiddish
MONOTSIKL standard


Re: Re: UNICYCLE in various languages

Beirne Konarski wrote:
|> Thanks for doing the unicycle word list. When you feel it is ready, let me
|> know and I will replace my version in the FAQ with yours. Here are a few
|> opinions that you can take or leave.
|> I’d leave out descriptive phrases like “funny thing”. I would stick to words
|> that would fit in the statement “I ride a _______” and have someone

I’ll take your opinion, and I’ll add a more formal classification scheme ro
make the status of each term clear.
|> I suspect that UNACICLETA, MONOCICLETA, MONOBICICLETA aren’t real Spanish
|> words (I lived in the Dominican Republic during my formative riding years),
|> but my Spanish is not authoritative enough to refute them directly.

You’re right. That was verified by some of the others, but they may slang or
substandard just like “unibike” etc in English. So if they are used, even
informally and by a limited number of people, I would like to know. Can the
people who posted the above terms please give me their sources?

Stay on top, Jack Halpern