Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Amazing Chinese Characters (125) Many, or Much, or More - 多

The shell bone for Character Many, or Much, or More is

The explanation from Dictionary of Pictography: There are two characters of Meat (Post 252), shell bone script is

Meat was very difficult to get in the ancient time, you have two piece of meat, you got a log, too much, or more than other people.

Some people believe that there should be two characters of Evening (Post 52).

There is an evening for each day, two Evenings mean two days, or day after day, meaning many days.

Character Evening is not as similar as character Meat to the two parts of the character Many. However, the double Meat explanation is very good in shell bone script, but in the later scripts, the explanation faces challenging.

The small seal script for Many, or Much or More is

in comparison, the small seal script for Evening is

Double Evenings is the character Many.

Let's see the small seal script of Meat

which is much less similar to the two parts of the character Many.

So the Evening explanation has a better coverage for more scripts. It is possible, in the shell bone script time, the character was formed by two characters of Meat, as time passed, it changed to two characters of Evenings. But there is no evidence to prove it.

I prefer to the Double Evening explanation.

The clerical script for this character is

similar to its small seal script. Let see the clerical script for Evening

We can see the similarity.

Let's see the small seal script of Meat

The current standard printing script for the character is

Very similar to its clerical script.

Its Pinyin is "Duo1".

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