2

Reading 誤's etymology spurred me to read 吳's etymology. Shouting doesn't require you to tilt your head, so why was 夨 used? Why not just use 人?

Glyph origin

Ideogrammic compound (會意):  (“mouth”) +  (“man with tilted head”) – to speak loudly.

Definitions

  1. † to speak loudly; to shout
  2. big
  3. (historical) (~國) one of the Warring States
  4. (historical) (~國) Eastern Wu, one of the Three Kingdoms
  5. the territory those states held, around the Yangtze delta
  6. Wu; the Chinese dialects of that territory, including Suzhounese and Shanghainese

    吳語

  7. A surname​.

    / [Min Nan]  ―  Gô͘ Chok-tòng [Pe̍h-ōe-jī]  ―  Goh Chok Tong (Singapore's second Prime Minister; currently Emeritus Senior Minister)

  8. (~) a harbor in Hiroshima Prefecture, Japan

2

This question is actually a good example of why Ancient Chinese scribes cannot keep on drawing pictures to represent words. They can avoid similar-looking or similar-meaning character components to a degree to distinguish between different words, but at some stage, it will become easier to incorporate a component which refers to the sound of a word rather purely relying on the meaning of a word.

Person (人) + mouth (口) has already been used for the character 「兄」.



enter image description here
2292
合集20014


enter image description here

 

Front view of a person (大, no tilted head) + mouth (口) has already been used for the following character:



enter image description here
後2.18.7
合集3028

隸定
enter image description here

 

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

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