Saturday, November 12, 2016

Amazing Chinese characters (112) Family - 家

The shell bone script for character Family is


a pig in a pigsty.


Is the pigsty the family? Is the pig lives in house? Of course not.

Ancient Chinese were originally nomadic people, they didn't settle down in one place because they hunted the wild animal for living. Only after they could raise animals at home, they settled down in one place for long time because they didn't need to hunt everyday. The most domestic animal was pig, and still is because they are mild and easy to be raised.

Anyway, pig is in pigsty, which is a milestone of ancient Chinese life from nomadic to settled down farmers.

The bronze script is more clear,


Inside is a pig.

The small seal script is


Inside is 豕, meaning Pig (Post 111).

The clerical script is


The current standard printing script is


Its pinyin is "Jia1".

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