Can anyone point me to an online resource that lists characters by classification? I.e., I'm looking for a list of characters that are generally considered pictographs / complex and simple ideographs / meaning-sound (phono-semantic) / borrowed / etc. I have been Googling but not finding anything. For many characters, I can take an educated guess, but it would be great to get the input of a consensus opinion from the Web. Thanks in advance for any help!! -唐納文


I strongly recommend an online dictionary 汉典. It may be the most professional online Chinese dictionary even for native speakers.

For every entry, you can refer to the section "字形分析" to know the classification of the character.

For example, the character 强 is classified as compound ideographs (会意), which is shown in the picture:enter image description here

The dictionary also collect contents from 《康熙字典》 and 《说文解字》, you can also learn the origin and example sentences of each entry.

  • Many thanks for the response. This looks good. – Tang Nawen Jul 4 '15 at 1:58

An exhaustive list may not exist, but you can take the Wikipedia article as a starting point, and then googool further.



Not a list (and only kind-of machine parseable): http://chineseetymology.org/CharacterEtymology.aspx?submitButton1=Etymology&characterInput=%E5%95%A5

  • Thanks - let me try to figure it out. This could be good. -唐納文 – Tang Nawen Jul 4 '15 at 1:59

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