Thursday, January 12, 2017

Amazing Chinese Characters (129) Star - 星

Ancient Chinese watched the sky at night, they knew Sun, Moon, and Star. We learnt characters for Sun, and Moon, now let's learn the character for Star.

The shell bone script for character Star is

the two squares are stars, the rest is sky.

Its big seal script is

the small 日 are stars now.

Its small seal script is

three small star in big seal became one big star.

The clerical script is

similar to the small seal script, the middle curve became straight lines.

The current standard printing script is

The Pinyin for the character is "Xing1".

## If you just want to see characters you are interested, you can go Post 1 "Preface and Index", in which you can find an index of all characters posted in this blog, check the index to see if the characters you are interested are in the list, if yes, find the post numbers, then find the post link on the right of every page, click it to go the post. Or you could just check the links on the right of any page to see if any post is interesting, click it to see the post.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Amazing Chinese Characters (128) Elephant - 象

Elephant is not a Chinese zodiac animal, but it is very important in Chinese culture. Many many words include character Elephant.

Elephants lived in China thousands years ago, people call it as Yellow River Elephant because they lived in the Yellow River area. As the weather changed, forest disappeared in north China, so elephants disappeared in north China and most south China. Small amount of elephants live in Yunnan, near Burma.

When elephants disappeared from most of China, many people couldn't see elephant, but listened the animal by legends, the imagine elephant. So character Elephant means "similar to", "look like", not direct "be". It forms words with other characters to express anything with your imagination, e.g. “想象“-imagine, "抽象“ -abstract. Anyway, something you couldn't see, but you could imagine, which is Thinking-Elephant - 想象.

Let see the its scripts.

The shell bone script for character Elephant is

a picture of a vertical standing elephant, with a typical long nose.

Its big seal script is

The head is up more, and the nose is shorter.

Its small seal script is

The nose is shorter, and where the head is not clear.

Its clerical script is

which is similar to its small seal script. The nose is short, and the tail is outward which is not natural, difficult to relate to elephant tail. The pictography is lost.

Its current standard printing script is

very similar to its clerical script.

Its Pinyin is "Xiang".