Big Red: Best Paper Dictionary (for Your Desk)

Go to If you’ve already got Chubby and Lenny, but you need more words, then this dictionary is for you. I call him “Big Red” to distinguish him from the smaller, thinner version (“Little Red”). You wouldn’t want to try to carry him around, but this guy is a must-have for any learner of Chinese who wants to go beyond “nǐ hǎo”.

Big Red’s strengths:

  • Much larger vocabulary (than Chubby and Lenny).
  • Pinyin for all the main entries (this is obviously a must-have).
  • Available for purchase in most big bookstores in China.

Big Red’s weaknesses:

  • There is no pinyin for the sentence examples, only hanzi and English. This renders the sentence examples useless to a learner of Chinese who doesn’t know 3000 hanzi characters yet.
  • Big and heavy (600+ pages).


ISBN: 7100043581

Real (boring) title: Concise English – Chinese Chinese – English Dictionary (Third Edition)

Go see Big Red at

For my review of an online dictionary click here

2 Replies to “Big Red: Best Paper Dictionary (for Your Desk)”

  1. After having bought both “Chubby” and “Lenny” (well… 2 “Lenny”s– Lenny1 stolen in Changchun, and Lenny2 lost in a cab in Kunming), I decided last weekend to find a more comprehensive home edition… and… no joke… I bought that same dictionary this past weekend. My foreign friends have been using “Big Red” for a while, and I decided to break down and buy one, too!

    I’m glad I did! 🙂

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