is not a Chinese word, but one given by the Portuguese colonists at Maca'o to the officials called by the natives Khiouping (3 syl.) It is from the verb mandar (to command).
“The whole body of Chinese mandarins consists of twenty-seven members. They are appointed for (1) imperial birth; (2) long service; (3) illustrious deeds; (4) knowledge; (5) ability; (6) zeal; (7) nobility; and (8) aristocratic birth.” —Gutzlay.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894