Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Another thing I like about kanji.

I like using the meanings of radicals (部首) to build spurious mnemonics.* 例えば、susumu (進む), to advance/to progress: the kanji radicals are shinnyou, meaning forward movement, and something else (in the tsukuri position) meaning a bird. I tend to associate shinnyou with roads (道) rather than with movement more generally, so, There's a bird in the road; move on.

凄い—per Henshall先生, shinnyou is actually tomaru(止まる)! Never made that connection before, but it makes sense, sort of. Stopping-へん is actually movement-へん.

この漢字の部首の試験によると、つくりは「ふるとり」と言う部首だ。That quiz on radicals says the tsukuri is called furutori. No kanji in the name in the quiz, but I assume とり is 鳥, and I suppose ふる (furu) may be 古い, antiquated, as in the old way of writing 鳥.

*If a mnemonic can be spurious.

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