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A.Word.A.Day--chinese wall

Pronunciation RealAudio

Chinese wall (CHY-neez wall) noun

1. A strong barrier.

2. A rule prohibiting exchange of confidential information between different departments of an organization, typically a financial institution, to prevent its use in illegal gain.

[After the Great Wall of China, constructed in Northern China in the third century BCE.]

"The decision followed the old City adage: there is no Chinese wall over which a grapevine cannot grow. The case has sent solicitors and accountants scurrying to look at their own procedures to prevent conflicts of interest." Robert Kingston, Law: Invasion of the Bean-counters, The Independent (London), Feb 11, 1999.

"(Jack) Grubman danced along the Chinese wall that separated research from banking on Wall Street." Julie Creswell, The Emperor of Greed, Fortune (New York), Jun 24, 2002.

This week's theme: terms employing various nationalities.


Spring is a natural resurrection, an experience in immortality. -Henry David Thoreau, naturalist and author (1817-1862)

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