1. Correct me if I'm wrong, but 阝 is the left radical form of 阜. Correct?

  2. If I understood CUHK, the underlying semantic notion is showiness and bragging, correct? Note that even in English, "show" can mean "display". Even in 2021, too many people love showing off their mounds or abundance of wealth or valuables, like luxury art collections, cars, jewelry.

  3. But how does 阜 semantically appertain to 陳's senses A2 and B below?

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Oxford Chinese Dictionary (2010) p 91.

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Op. cit. p 227.

1 Answer 1


You have to go back to its original meaning:


陳 is composed of 阝“a row of hills” and 東 “bag tied at both ends; east,” which indicate the original meaning “name of a mound.”

Further meanings are extensions of rebus borrowings, as indicated by Outlier’s meaning tree:

1 (orig.) name of a mound.
2 ○ to exhibit, put on display
3 → to state, explain (i.e., to display with words)
4 → to be old, stale

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