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槑 is a variant character of 梅 comprised of two 呆. Both are pronounced "méi", and mean "plum blossom" (Prunus mume). But what would the glyph origin be like? 呆, pronounced "dāi" and meaning "stupid", lends neither phonetic nor semantic semblance to 槑.

My guess is that it's a pictogram of two plum bushes standing in a row next to each other. But I could also see it arising from a graphical corruption of 梅: the "hat" of the right 每 portion "sliding off" on top of the left 木 portion and morphing into 口, and the 母 alone on the right without a "hat" corrupting into another 呆.

I can't seem to find any coverage of it, at least online, so I'm asking here. (Maybe also add the correct glyph origin to the Wiktionary page of 槑 once figured out?)

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「槑」 is a graphical corruption, then reduplication, of 「某」.


「某」 is comprised of semantic 「木」 (picture of a tree) and semantic 「甘」 (picture of a mouth 「口」 with something delicious in it > sweet), indicating the original meaning plum tree (Baxter-Sagart OC: /*C.mˤə/, now written 「梅」). The modern meaning some particular <X> (/*məʔ/) is a phonetic loan (rebus borrowing).

In the character 「槑」, 「某」 is graphically corrupted into the shape of 「呆」 (by turning 「甘」 into 「口」), then doubling the shape 「呆」 to become 「槑」.

The relation between 「某」 and the pronunciation méi is still fairly strong, even in modern Mandarin; for example, 「媒」 and 「煤」 are both pronounced méi.


The character 「呆」 in current circulation, pronounced dāi, is completely unrelated to the graphical corruption of 「某」 into 「呆」. 「呆」 (dāi) is formed from the removal of 「亻」 from 「保」, and first appears in popular literature over 1,000 years later from the graphical corruption of 「某」 into 「呆」 occurring in the State of Chǔ.


References:

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    𤯏 is encoded in Unicode as U+24BCF in CJK Unified Ideographs Extension B.
    – Michaelyus
    Apr 4 at 11:33
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    How did 呆 become the 俗字 for 獃? At a glance, the meaning and sound of 保 doesn't seem to have any connection with the word written as 獃, which we now write as 呆. Apr 5 at 13:37
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    @wang_xiao_ming I think that warrants a proper question. I hope someone can answer it, because personally I don't have the resources on-hand to delve into things post-Hàn.
    – dROOOze
    Apr 5 at 22:04

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