Jade & Chinese Characters

Chinese Character Chinese Character Chinese Character

A Chinese character, also known as a Han character, is a logogram used in writing Chinese (hanzi). It is considered to be the world's longest continuously used writing system.

In the Chinese writing system, each character corresponds to a single spoken syllable. A majority of words in all modern varieties of Chinese are poly-syllabic and thus require two or more characters to write. Cognates in the various Chinese languages/dialects which have the same or similar meaning but different pronunciations can be written with the same character.

In addition, many Chinese characters were adopted according to their meaning by the Japanese and Korean languages to represent native words, disregarding pronunciation altogether.

The Chinese language has a large vocabulary. As for the total number of its characters up till now, perhaps nobody can give the exact figure. Kangxi Zidian (Dictionary of Emperor Kangxi) compiled and developed in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), included more than 47,000 characters.

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In 1915, Zhonghua Da Zidian (Great Dictionary of China) has more than 48,000 characters. In 1959, Dai Kanwa Jjiten (Chinese-Japanese dictionary), edited by Morohashi Tetsuji, included 49,964 characters. Zhongwen Da Cidian (Great Dictionary of the Chinese Language), the most recent dictionary edited by in 1971, had a vocabulary of 49,888 characters.

Some Chinese characters are particularly loved by Chinese people. Here are the top nine most popular Chinese characters. Among them, Fu, lu, shou, xi and cai are always close to the common people and were spread widely and consistently, forming the core of a propitious jixiang culture. They are interrelated and interdependent with individually auspicious themes.

Please note Pinyin is also used here, which is the Chinese spelling system for the characters. For example, "Fu" is the pinyin for good luck in Chinese. But "Fu" is only the phonic part of the character and it also represents other Chinese characters that sound the same.

Learn more about Jade & Chinese characters:

Chinese Character: Fu (Blessing)
Chinese Character: Lu (Prosperity)
Chinese Character: Shou (Longevity)
Chinese Character: Xi & Shuangxi (Happiness & Double Happiness)
Chinese Character: Cai (wealth)
Chinese Character: Ji (auspiciousness)
Chinese Character: Ai (Love)
Chinese Character: De (Virtue)
Chinese Character: Ning (Peace)

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