For simplified characters, do any modern paper dictionaries include an index of characters using the original 214 Kanxi radicals?

I'm familiar with the original 214 Kanxi radicals due to their usage in the Unicode collation algorithm, which is widely used in sorting computerized databases. I've implicitly memorized the Unicode sorting conventions and would like a paper dictionary that includes an index sorted along the same convention.

  • It would help with some more context here. I think many (most?) dictionaries have such tables. For example, 现代汉语词典 has one. Obviously, it won't match the original Kangxi radicals exactly, but if you want to look up simplified character by radical, this will still work. If this is not what you're after, please provide more context.
    – Olle Linge
    Jan 14, 2023 at 10:22
  • Thanks @OlleLinge. I've added context about my implicit memorization of the Unicode collation algorithm, which is based on the original 214 Kangxi radicals. Jan 14, 2023 at 21:10

1 Answer 1


In traditional chinese, 214 Kangxi radicals remains the standard and most common way. A dictionary designed to be looked through by radical and stroke is extremely likely to use this. I am not super familiar with the unicode set specifically, but they are based on the standard traditional kangxi radicals. Any differences should be very easy to adapt to.

Simplified chinese uses a different radical system developed by the mainland that has slighlty less radicals. I don't know about it in detail either, since I use traditional chinese myself. Looking it up (汉字部首表) it seems it came to be in 2009 or so. If there is a simplified dictionary based on 214 kangxi radicals it would be older than that and so lacking up to date terms.

Please note that regardless of whether a dictionary is accurately based on 214 Kangxi radicals it is likely to contain less. Many Kangxi radicals have no modern words associated with them, and so the dictionary may be one or two dozen radicals short of the full set.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

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