2.2 Basic Chinese radicals
In this lesson, you will become familiar with Chinese radicals. English words are organized by an alphabet. Chinese words are often classified according to their radicals. There are 214 radicals. These are usually sorted by the number of strokes. For example, 一 comes before 二.
- Demonstrate the ability to identify the groups that make up the basic Chinese radicals.
- Demonstrate the ability to recognize the basic radicals and their meanings.
Every Chinese character has a radical or is itself a radical. There are 214 radicals today. Some of them are under debate to be removed.
For example, 女 is the character for woman. It is also the radical for many female things: 姐姐 = little sister, 妈妈 = mamma, etc.
Radicals are used to tell something about the meaning of the character, such as is made of metal, is tall, etc.
Radicals are also used to look up characters in a dictionary. To find a character you look for the radical in a radical list. When you have found your radical you count the remaining number of strokes in the character. With this information it is now possible to find the character.
Listed below are some common Chinese radicals:
|人 亻||Man||你 今|
|心 忄 ||Heart||忙念爱(愛) 恭|
|牜 牛||Ox||物 犀|
|彳||Left Step||很 往|
|辶（辵）||Run and Stop||这(這)过(過)|
|刂 刀||Knife||别 到 分|
|衤衣||Clothing||衫 裳 裹|
- Next: Basic strokes