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I know that なんて is a contraction of なんと, but has it also picked up the いう in its meaning? Because なんて means something, and I feel like 何という, which means "something called" (right?) could have just been reduced to なんて because saying "something" is such a common thing to say. Is this right?

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We have two なんて... ①なんて可愛いんだ!How lovely!--なに(何)+と ②あんたなんて嫌いよ!I hate you!--など(等)+と –  user1016 Oct 14 '13 at 6:14
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Are you talking about this なんて(何て), or this なんて(等+と)≒など/なんか ?? –  user1016 Jun 16 '14 at 7:58

2 Answers 2

なんて is a colloquial variant of など. なんか is another one.

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In informal situations (っ)て can be substituted for と when it's being used as a quoting particle. As such, [何]{なん}という can become [何]{なん}ていう (or more frequently [何]{なん}てゆう in speech).

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