Are there any characters in Chinese that have the same radicals in their formation, but the position of those radicals result in different meanings.

e.g. A character made up of two radicals, AB, and another BA, that is also a valid character.

Traditional or Simplified is fine.

  • 2
    I wrote an article about this last year. Some of the content overlaps with the answers already given here: hackingchinese.com/…
    – Olle Linge
    Commented Apr 4, 2017 at 18:03

3 Answers 3


Same meaning:

崕 = 崖 (ㄧㄚˊ / yá) = cliff; precipice

峰 = 峯 (ㄈㄥ / fēng) = peak; summit

毗 = 毘 (ㄆㄧˊ / pí) = to adjoin; to border on

群 = 羣 (ㄑㄩㄣˊ / qún) = group; crowd

飃 = 飄 (ㄆㄧㄠ / piāo) = to float

鄰 = 隣 (ㄌㄧㄣˊ / lín) = neighbor; adjacent

Different meanings:

早 (ㄗㄠˇ / zǎo) = early; morning
旪 (ㄒㄧㄝˊ / xié) = 協 = agreement

吟 (ㄧㄣˊ / yín) = to chant; to recite
含 (ㄏㄢˊ / hán) = to contain; to keep in mouth

旱 (ㄏㄢˋ / hàn) = drought; dry
旰 (ㄍㄢˋ / gàn) = 傍晚 = sunset; dusk

岳 (ㄩㄝˋ/ yuè) = mountain; peak
岴 (ㄑㄩ/ qū) = 嶇 = rugged; rough

星 (ㄒㄧㄥ / xīng) = star
甠 (ㄑㄧㄥˊ / qíng) = 晴 = clear (weather)

啻 (ㄔˋ / chì) = only
啼 (ㄊㄧˊ / tí) = cry; crow

There are many many others.

  • I'm actually going to mark this one as the accepted answer because I want to use the "same meaning" ones for the thing I'm working on. Commented Mar 31, 2017 at 5:13

if you're looking for "difference positions of radicals / components" with the same meaning, here're some more:

慚 (u+615a), 慙 (u+6159)

幕 (u+5e55), 幙 (u+5e59)

炮 (u+70ae), 炰 (u+70b0)

in modern usage, the first character would be considered as "the correct" one, while the second character is variant (異體字).

but, in literatures of yore, it's the opposite. that, 慙, 幙 & 炰 are used more.

edited, 4 more samples:

裡 (u+88e1), 裏 (u+88cf)

稿 (u+7a3f), 稾 (u+7a3e)

慼 (u+617c), 慽 (u+617d)

屻 (u+5c7b), 岃 (u+5c83)

have fun :)

  • 谢谢你 ........... Commented Apr 1, 2017 at 21:03
  • u re welcome :) do u ve enough samples for yr works now? Commented Apr 2, 2017 at 5:10
  • Yeah! Between all the answers I'm all set :) Commented Apr 2, 2017 at 23:20

If you can accept A = B:

if A != B:

杏 呆

部 陪

  • Aren't the radicals in your third example actually two different ones? Commented Nov 18, 2022 at 9:34

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.