Questions tagged [characters]

Questions about Chinese characters, called Hanzi.

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101 views

Written Japanese and Chinese speakers' understanding

I'd like to know in general how (in which measure) written Japanese is intelligible to Chinese speakers (when kana syllabaries are not used). For example a few days ago when Yoshihide Suga was chosen ...
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1answer
77 views

What means Nanfu? (Characters identified: 阿難)

A friend of mine bought that stone a while ago With the help of a friend, we were about to determine that the words in small seal script means (from left to right) 難 (difficult) and 阜 (plentiful). ...
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1answer
195 views

Besides the radical, what meaning does the rest of a Chinese character have (especially when it was originally created)?

I am a beginning student of Mandarin Chinese. There is a key thing about Chinese characters that I am trying to understand. Besides the radical, what purpose does the rest of a character have? Was it ...
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2answers
98 views

When 马 is used as the left component (e.g. in 骑), does the 一 héng stroke change to ㇀ tí?

I am thinking about the 马 character. I know that when you use 土 and 车 on the left in a composed character (like 地,场... and 较,辆 ...) the 3rd stroke in 土, and the 4th in 车 change from 一 héng to ㇀ tí. ...
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2answers
150 views

How can I get a list of all the characters containing the “flowing water” component that is in 益?

Further to this question. According to "Outlier Dictionary of Chinese Characters" (which I have as a (paid-for) add-on in the Pleco app), in the character 益, the component (top part of ...
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2answers
72 views

Understanding 照相 and 照片

I am having some confusion about 照相 and 照片. In my Chinese lesson they introduced them: 照片 Zhào piàn (noun) photo 照相 Zhào xiàng (verb) to take a picture They also showed this example: 我照了几百张照片。 I ...
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4answers
196 views

Does 伊 have any special meaning?

I know it’s often used in old script and such, but there aren’t many other uses. I was always told that my Chinese name meant light/beautiful girl, but I haven’t found anything pointing to that ...
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3answers
191 views

How did 贼 come to mean “extremely”?

While watching a tv show, I heard the presenter, a Beijinger, say 贼好. In that particular context, the only possible meaning was 很好. Later I did some research and, as a matter of fact, it turns out 贼 ...
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3answers
78 views

如何了解「喜欢你,我也是」里写这个替代“秒怂”的词?

我在看着书时遇到了下面不认识的字: “呃,那个……”张侃侃听到“学姐”二字,秒~。她舔舔嘴唇尴尬地说,…… 喜欢你,我也是,12页 我无法输入这个词:除了我的手机,我也尝试用QHanzi和Chinese Input,可是都不能识别“秒”右边的那个字。 为了对比,下面是Kindle版的相同部分。奇怪的是,那两词不一样。 “呃,那个……”张侃侃听到“学姐”二字,秒怂。她舔舔嘴唇尴尬地说,…… ...
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What is an “exoactive” Chinese character?

I have noticed that Chinese characters are labelled as “exoactive”, “endoactive”, “exopassive” and “endopassive” on Wiktionary. For example, it says that 娶 (marry) is the exoactive version of 取. I am ...
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4answers
113 views

Chinese word well illustrated graphically

i am working on an interactive dictionary with common Chinese characters. I found the word 乒乓 pīngpāng, the Chinese word for ping-pong (table tennis). I consider the graphic of the association of ...
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1answer
72 views

Need help in identifying the last character in this image

I have a license plate from the Heliongijang province. I would like to know what is the last character in this image and how is it pronounced. Also, I have seen many license plates which have this ...
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2answers
167 views

What is the difference between 乾 and 幹?

I know that dry is "乾燥", but according to Google Translate: dried apples = 蘋果乾 dried apricots = 杏乾 dried mangosteens = 山竹果乾 dried durians = 榴蓮幹 dried yeast = 幹酵母 dried chickpeas = 幹鷹嘴豆 dried ...
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2answers
54 views

Comparison question with implicit 再 zài?

I just started learning chinese and I came across this dialogue from a lesson: A: Pínɡuǒzěnme mài ? 苹果怎么卖? How much are the apples? B: Sìkuài. 四块. 4 Yuan. A: Yǒudiǎnr ɡuì. Kěyǐpiányi yìdiǎnr mɑ? 有点儿贵。...
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4answers
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How to distinguish between homophone words 再 and 在 zài

I wonder how one can distinguish in an oral conversation between homophone words: 再 and 在, as both have the same pronunciation zài. For example, in the sentence Wǒ zài kàn diànyǐng. how one can ...
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2answers
181 views

Is 々 commonly used and recognised by Chinese people?

In Japanese the kanji 々 is used as a repetition kanji. So instead of typing say 人人 you could type 人々. Is this character recognized by Chinese people nowadays ? For example instead of 谢谢 could I use ...
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1answer
141 views

⿺走巳 or ⿺走己: Can 起 be written in two different ways?

Whilst typing the character 起 on my Mac, I notice that the character appears differently, illustrated in the picture below. On some programs, the character appears with an extra stroke, on others it ...
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1answer
54 views

What is the English translation of my chop? Is it right side up? [closed]

I bought calligraphy supplies in a Chinatown and talked with the owner of the store. I told the person (who had her uncle carve this) that I was an artist/painter. I also told her my name in English ...
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1answer
55 views

Translating Teapot lid [closed]

This lid is from a 'Japanese' cast iron teapot lid. I was told the Japanese used Chinese Characters on cast iron teapots. Can anyone verify this? Could I also please get a translation.
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2answers
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Why is 刻 used to mean ''a quarter of an hour''?

刻 means ''to carve'' but my dictionary also says it means ''to set a time limit''. What is the connection between 刻 and a quarter of an hour ?
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2answers
110 views

Please help translate my Chinese seal chop (Characters identified: 詩思妮)

While on a recent trip to Shenzhen, China, I came across a booth selling Chinese Chops. I had one made for me. The artist asked me to write my name down, CECILE, and he made me this chop. Since he ...
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3answers
157 views

链接, 连接, 连结, 联接, 联结 - lianjie - is it a joke and if not, what's the difference?

Amongst 链接, 连接, 连结, 联接, 联结 - which one is the most correct to use in which situation? Is one more formal than others? Maybe the meanings are different? Please, write as much as possible about ...
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1answer
42 views

Is 賖 just a variant of 賒?

賒 is clearly defined as “delaying payment for something” in Chinese dictionaries; it commonly appears in the phrase “賒帳”, which has a similar meaning. 賖 is a Chữ Nôm used to write “xa” in Vietnamese,...
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1answer
66 views

Why in the multiplication table, different characters such as 如,得,歸,中 are used?

It seems to me that the following rules apply: When the answer is a one-digit number, the character 如 is used. When the answer is 10, the character 得 is used. When the answer is a multiple of 10, ...
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2answers
1k views

Is there any connection between the choice of characters for 九 and 丸?

I just learned the character 丸 and naturally noticed that it is similar to 九 with the additional 点. Is there any interesting connection between these two characters or is it just a random coincidence ...
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2answers
48 views

What's the meaning of lai2 in this sentence?

中国观众在看京剧的时候,看得高兴时,就用喝彩,鼓掌的方式来表示自己高兴的心情,他们也用这种方式来赞扬京剧演员 What's the meaning of lai2 in this sentence? Is it a common meaning of this? What are other examples in which I can use it with this meaning? Is ...
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5answers
203 views

How would you describe the Chinese name 阮天文?

When a name is introduced such as 阮天文, native speakers might want to know what the characters are, so they can spell it. Does it make sense if you were to say 天气的天, 文化的文? However, what would be a good ...
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3answers
155 views

Difference between 想象 and 想像

What's the difference between 想象 and 想像? Is one more correct than the other one?
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4answers
193 views

Why do the Chinese characters on my phone and computer look weird?

The Chinese characters appear so strange after I've typed them on my computer and on one of my Chinese apps on my phone. For example, 十分 is different on the photo I've attached than what I am typing ...
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1answer
70 views

Scribal convention versus scribal error

Brian van Norden's book Classical Chinese for Everyone says  We have learned from ancient manuscripts discovered in excavated tombs that it was once extremely common for scribes to substitute ...
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2answers
99 views

“Pixelating” the character 英

I would like to include a Chinese character (英) in a knitting pattern. To do so, I need to "pixelate" the character. Is this an acceptable representation of the character and is it easily ...
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1answer
83 views

Can anyone explain what this symbol means? [duplicate]

Please translate this Chinese character symbol found on Chinese food bowl.
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3answers
144 views

How would you write the years 1951 and 1964 in Chinese characters?

I know how to write the normal way to write numbers in Chinese but I wanted to know how to write years can anyone help me out? I really like the idea of getting this tattoed on me and I would like to ...
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1answer
102 views

How many unencoded characters still exist?

I've been wondering: How many unencoded characters still exist? I realize this is probably mostly speculation and it would be quite hard to pin down an actual number. Language Log, though, did post a ...
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3answers
85 views

Is there a way to discover unique word combinations from a list of characters?

I figured that it'd be more beneficial for me currently if I get a better grasp of the characters I already know rather than learning new ones, so I've compiled a list of all the characters I've ...
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2answers
733 views

Why are the words 戒 and 戎 written similarly?

Why are these words written similarly? Do they descend from a common Chinese character? If so, how do you explain the difference in pronunciations among derived words, especially for 戎? 投笔从戎 róng 盗贼 ...
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2answers
645 views

What is the history of the character “耻”?

The meaning of the word is “shame”. I often encounter the version which is written with a 止, but sometimes I confuse it with 恥. It seems that the meanings of 耻 and 恥 are both the same, just that one ...
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1answer
47 views

Chinese Character Reading: What browser-based chat sites are available from inside China?

While reading Chinese on the web I use a the Chinese Console Chrome Extension which helps me hover over characters and know what they are. I've recently started connecting with language practice ...
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2answers
159 views

What does “格” mean in “爾國臨格”?

Matthew 6:10 of the Bible is translated as the following in the Delegates Version: 爾國臨格、爾旨得成、在地若天、 The context was Jesus was teaching how to pray and gave an example of a prayer. I fail to ...
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1answer
108 views

Can't find suitable resource for character frequencies for traditional Chinese (Mandarin)

I am looking to do the (seemingly simple) task of creating a simple frequency table for traditional Chinese characters (not words). I'm encountering the following problems: Most resources are in ...
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2answers
51 views

Where can I find examples of how to use the new Chinese words I learn,like a website?

I'm kind of a beginner here and I often have problem remembering the vocabulary I learn and was thinking if someone could help and tell me where to find those words actually being used, besides if you ...
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1answer
206 views

What musical instrument does “敫” refer to?

I found the character 敫 whose definition apparently is "ancient musical instrument" according to Wiktionary. However, the English Wikipedia's List of Chinese musical instruments doesn't seem to ...
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2answers
137 views

Is the visual similarity of the simplifications 華→华 and 畢→毕 a coincidence?

華 and 畢 are very similar, the bottom is the same, and only the top 4/5 of their strokes differ. Their simplifications 华 and 毕 are also similar, the bottom and the top rights are the same and, and the ...
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3answers
445 views

How to create word/character sequence in Chinese that sounds the same as a word in English (or any other language)

Say I have a word in English "fooboo". What if I want it to be pronounced in Chinese as "fooboo" as well? My first attempt is to search in pinyin for "fu" and "bu". Fu gives results like 副 and 付. Bu ...
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1answer
111 views

How are new Chinese characters created?

What is the process for introducing a new Chinese character with custom meaning? What are the rules, what is not allowed, what is allowed? Who is allowed to create one? How do you associate a sound ...
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4answers
103 views

How to translate 妙?

I find the internet has these translations which are "wonderful" and "ingenious". I find the latter closer to the essence of the 妙。But I think something is amiss. 妙 has the meaning of subtlety in it ...
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1answer
55 views

Why characters with “口字旁” were chosen in this transliteration?

In 神天聖書 (a classical translation of the Bible to Chinese), the Fifth Book of Moses was translated as: 摩西之第五書名曰吐嘚咡挼咪啞譯言復講法律傳 I guess that 吐嘚咡挼咪啞 is a transliteration of Deuteronomy. But I failed to ...
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3answers
344 views

How did 綿蠻 come to mean “(the chirping of) a small bird”?

This word exists in Japanese as well as 綿蛮, but as far as I can tell the compound just carries the meaning of "cotton barbarian". I am completely stumped as to how this in any way means "a small bird" ...
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6answers
143 views

What's the difference between 囚犯, 囚徒, 犯人 and 囚 and how does it affect a sentence?

I was searching online and I found out that there are several meanings for the word "prisoner" and I couldn't find the differences or a reason for it, therefore I'd like some help for this.
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1answer
181 views

Translation of seal script text (Poem identified: 元・譚處端《西江月・作伴修行未是》)

I've been trying to translate some seal script on a small piece a friend brought back from Japan. I've been using http://www.guoxuedashi.com/ and hanziyuan.net to guess them and think I ended up with ...

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