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I would love some help identifying the characters written on this stamp. I see that the 5th and 6th characters are 山 and 間, but I cannot identify the others!

This stamp is the underside of a netsuke connected to an inro, which could be Japanese or Chinese.

The image has been flipped.

Thank you in advance!

2 Answers 2

山 江
间 上
明 清
月 风

“江上清风, 山间明月” from 《赤壁赋》 by 苏轼. it means:

Breeze over the river and moon between the mountains.

  • 江: river, especially Changjiang river.
  • 上: above, over
  • 清: refreshing
  • 风: wind, breeze
  • 山: mountains
  • 间: among, between
  • 明: bright
  • 月: moon

江上清风,与 山间明月,耳得之而为声,目遇之而成色,取之无禁,用之不竭。


(When talking about all the things in the universe), only the breeze over the river and moon between the mountains (are unlimited resources), because when you listen you will hear (the wind), and when you look you will see (the moon). The amount of sound and light are always infinite: they can never be taken away or used up. (They are always there for you to admire.)

  • Thank you! Can you tell me what it translates to?
    – A.R.
    Commented Aug 17, 2020 at 14:35
  • clear wind on the river, bright moon between mountains
    – Tang Ho
    Commented Aug 17, 2020 at 14:37
  • Thank you both so much!
    – A.R.
    Commented Aug 17, 2020 at 14:39

The transcription, in columns from right to left, is:

  • ⿰氵𢀚(江)
  • ⿰氵(清)
  • 𠙊(風)

  • 𨳇日(間)
  • (明)

Please see ideographic description characters for the interpretation of ⿰ and ⿵.

  • People without special fonts installed can't render a good half of your answer
    – blackgreen
    Commented Aug 17, 2020 at 15:35
  • @blackgreen that's why I put links there.
    – dROOOze
    Commented Aug 17, 2020 at 15:35
  • Just pointing out that relying on fonts and external links doesn't help bring your expertise to others, that's unfortunate. This is what your answer looks like without the proper fonts imgur.com/a/9AyrPo1
    – blackgreen
    Commented Aug 17, 2020 at 15:53
  • 1
    @blackgreen I think this calls for a font installation wiki of some sort. This way, those who are interested in rendering can follow the guide. You're right, I'm heavily reliant on Unicode extensions for a lot of answers, and they're not very user-friendly. It needs to be addressed.
    – dROOOze
    Commented Aug 17, 2020 at 15:58
  • 2
    installation wiki of some sort yeah good idea! maybe the [glyph-origin] tag could be the right place? or somewhere in the help center. I'd recommend to open a thread on meta to gather ideas and mod participation (not sure if we need them to change the help pages)
    – blackgreen
    Commented Aug 17, 2020 at 16:00

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