Monday, February 19, 2018

Amazing Chinese Characters (193) Drink - 饮(飲)

The shell bone script of character Drink is

the lower part of the left is a wine pot, and right part is person who put his tongue out to drink or taste the wine.

The bronze script of the character is

the left part is the wine pot, and the right is a person who holds the pot and try to drink the wine with his tongue.

The small seal script of the character is

which is similar to the bronze script on the left part, the right part is same as a person who is drinking with an open mouth, but the tongue is not seen.

The clerical script of the character is

which is changed a lot, no similarity to the old scripts. The left part actually means Eat (Post 190), not a wine pot anymore. In ancient times, character Eat - 食, could mean Drink sometimes. Right part means Owe, not a person who is drinking. However, the character Owe - 欠 (Post 314), is a person who is open his mouth for yawning, which is some similarity to open mouth to drink. 

The reason why it changed so much to is unknown.

The song typeface for traditional character is

very similar to the clerical script.

The song typeface for simplified character is

Its pinyin is Yin3.


  1. I really like your way of thinking/teaching Chinese, and am planning to try to use your method to teach my 5 year old child. What is the most common problem(s) to apply your method and how can I avoid it? In addition, how long can the student remember usually?

    1. Please don't emphasize how many characters your 5 years old can remember, which is not my purpose to create the blog. Let him/her to read and draw the characters, especially the shell bone, small seal scripts. If he/she is interested, keep going. Just let him/her enjoy the drawing, and the pictures.

      You may teach how to write the clerical script with pencil, which is same as the song typeface script. But don't ask him/her to memorize. It is OK for him/her not being able to memorize the characters. To read the characters, and know the evolution of the characters is more important than memorize them.

      If he/she feels it interesting, wants to learn more, you are in right track. If he/she feels it boring, or too much, you are in wrong track, need to adjust.

      Good luck.