I am working on a translation and looking for a word or phrase for the Chinese: 催婚.

催婚 is made up of two parts:

(1) 催 which essentially means encourage/urge/press; it can also be used to mean things like expedite

(2) 婚 which means marriage.

KEY says its a VO (verb-object) meaning:

(usu. of a person's parents) put pressure on one to get married

The concept is not all that foreign. Pressuring somebody (around their 30s) to get married (because everyone thinks they already should be!) - but I'm not sure if there's a good word / wording for it.

Any ideas?


I think either phrase you've used -- "pressuring someone to get married" or "urging someone to get married" -- would work. I don't know if there's a one- or two-word phrase for it, though my mother indulged heavily in its practice, regardless of whether a potential partner existed (perhaps most when one didn't).

An older phrase would be "pressing someone to get married."
OED, press, v1 9. a.II.9.a To urge by words or arguments; to try hard to persuade; to importune, beg, beseech, entreat (a person to do something or for something). 13.II.13 To push forward (arguments, views, considerations, positions, etc.).

Are you translating fiction or nonfiction? If the latter, could you explain that there's a Chinese phrase (or word) that means "exerting pressure to marry" that, for the sake of space, will be translated as (say) "marriage-pressure"?

"Matchmaking" is in the same arena, but I don't think it works as a synonym. OED: 1.1 The action or practice of scheming or contriving to bring about a marriage.


Urge is a synonym of push that I think might work well in this context.

'Her mother urged her to get married soon.'


I can't find any really good links this one is about as good as it gets, but pushing someone to get married is pretty close to the meaning you want.

Searching the net for pushing to get married returns more instances of women pushing their boyfriends to get married than parents pushing their children but there are enough hits with oblique references, like the one above, to show that most people would recognise and accept the usage, particularly in the context of a foreign culture like China.

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