from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A groom; by extension, a coachman.


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Mandarin 馬伕 (mǎfū), from  (, "horse") +  (, "servant, labourer").


  • It was small, rat-like and wiry, and was steered by the "mafoo" using the tail like a tiller.


  • Sending out the cart with gun, dog and provisions in charge of the head mafoo at about eleven o'clock on Saturday morning, as soon as work was over at one I would mount my pony, held in readiness by the second mafoo, and gallop with him after the cart, to find tiffin awaiting me spread on the grass.

    Life and sport in China Second Edition

  • Having finished shooting, my gun was again placed in the cart and we started leisurely for home, I riding a short distance in advance, followed by the second mafoo, while my pointer rambled over the grass.

    Life and sport in China Second Edition

  • As I rushed forward and seized the reins by which the mafoo had been leading him, he fell to the ground, and there on the club lawn, surrounded with trees, exactly as seen in my dream, he attempted to rise two or three times, eventually getting into a sitting position, and then falling back was dead in less than ten seconds.

    Life and sport in China Second Edition

  • He orders his mafoo to inspect the new season's griffins as they arrive, and arrange with the dealer to bring three or four of the best for his approval.

    Life and sport in China Second Edition

  • On several occasions I have been obliged to rely on my mafoo, who with horse-clippers and iron scissors proved to be effective if somewhat unartistic.

    Life and sport in China Second Edition

  • This the mafoo does with great pleasure, as, apart from the keen interest he takes in racing -- all Chinese being inveterate gamblers -- it is an understood thing that he will receive a good cumshaw from his master for each race that his stable wins.

    Life and sport in China Second Edition

  • I owed deliverance to the fortunate breaking of my pony's halter, as, having been freshly clipped, he had become restive from the cold, thereby causing the mafoo to enter my room for a spare one, which I always carried with me.

    Life and sport in China Second Edition

  • The next thing I remember was cold air beating on my face, water in my mouth and trickling down my neck and chest, strong arms supporting me and the voice of my friend's mafoo calling to his master for a light, the moon having set.

    Life and sport in China Second Edition

  • Soon many of the missionaries were kept busy for several months each year travelling with pack-pony and mafoo, from station to station in the most remote parts of the country, fording and swimming unbridged rivers, climbing mountain passes, inspecting and examining and instructing the converts, admitting them to church membership and organizing them for still more effective work.

    Korea's Fight for Freedom


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