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I have tried to find the characters in this sign in order to translate them but with no luck for the 2nd character.

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This restaurant's French name is "Le bonheur" which in English is roughly "Happiness". I'm just curious if the Chinese characters translate to "happiness" and if so, is there any nuance.

  1. Can anyone find the Chinese characters (specifically the second)?
  2. Can anyone translate?
  3. Is there a robust general way for searching for characters? (I've tried some OCR, stroke matching and searching by radical, but I have not found the second character).

thanks.

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    The unicode character 囍 is combine by two 喜-s, but the calligraphic or script version has only one combined 䒑 component in center, that means two 吉-s above and one 䒑 (not two) in center and two 口-s bottom, while the single character 喜 is combined with on 吉, one 䒑 and one 口. – 賈可 Jacky Jun 19 '18 at 13:58
  • @賈可Jacky thanks! That was the main thing tripping me up but I wasn't sure how to express the question. – martin jakubik Jun 19 '18 at 14:09
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The character is「囍」, which means double happiness (2×「喜」). The script is cursive, so it may be a bit hard to recognise.

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You can either read it as or shuāngxǐ (雙喜).


BTW, Pleco's handwriting recognition tool turns it up as the first result, even with messy handwriting.

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  • great! I just installed Pleco and found the same character... I'm just surprised that the stroke count doesn't seem to match exactly? In the "middle row" I only see one stroke under the square (mouth?), whereas in 囍 , there are two. Is that a consequence of the cursive script? It made my searching harder... – martin jakubik Jun 19 '18 at 7:46
  • @martinjakubik stroke counts are one of several indexing tools, and generally don't reflect fluent writing habits which on average lie somewhere between Regular and Cursive. I wrote the character in about 4 strokes in my search. – droooze Jun 19 '18 at 7:49
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If you google "Chinese wedding" and go to Images, you will see this double happiness character on the tapestry at the ancestral worship table (where the happy couple will present tea to the ancestors). It can also go on almost everything else at a wedding.

It is one of the easiest to do in Chinese paper cutting as it's angular and symmetrical. Have a look at this video if you're interested (it's only 2:22 long): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ht9ZcPQV7ds. Don't forget: you need to use red paper, as red is the auspicious colour.

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