Lesson 10 乂 and other crossed strokes



Lesson 10 and other crossed strokes

We will learn the crossed strokes element, and other related symbols like , , , , , , at this lesson. I have created some animations for the writing strokes with different colors as usual, just to help you understanding the role of crossed strokes element and other variations within those sample Chinese characters.



The crossed strokes element, please look at the animation, the first stroke (red) is a 丿 stroke, which we have learned from the (human) symbol in Lesson 06. Draw the 丿 stroke (red curve) downward, then draw another curved stroke (blue curve) as shown in the figure. The two curved strokes intersected somewhere below the center of height. 

The shape of this crossed strokes just looks like the legs of a folding chair, isn’t it? Or a pair of fire tongs? Please use your own imagination to memorize those elements of Chinese writing, I am not a linguistician, even worse, I used to be a physicist before I engaged in fiction writing. Now let’s just deal those elementary Chinese symbols as some kind of alien signs from other civilization.


(simplified)
(traditional)
justice, righteousness
pronunciation:

The first symbol we have here is a simplified character (justice, righteousness), as shown in the animation, it’s the combination of the crossed strokes , plus a short stroke within the upper space.

The simplified character (justice, righteousness) will turn into the traditional character in the animation, this traditional character (justice, righteousness) remains its original symbolic meaning in ancient Chinese. The top of is a (sheep, lamb) and the bottom is a (I, me) symbol. The classic implication about (sheep, lamb) is “sacrifice, ceremony”, combining with the symbol (I, me, myself) that makes much sense about the combined ideogram word (justice, righteousness), and lots of art designs have been using this complicated symbol for tattooing and engraving.

Here is a 2-character word: 義人(traditional) or 义人(simplified), which is the combination of (righteousness, traditional) + (human, people, Lesson 06). The meaning of 義人 is the righteous people, which always appeared in Chinese Bible.

Another 2-character word: 義士(traditional) or 义士(simplified), loyalist, chivalrous person, the combination of (righteousness, traditional) + (learned person, Lesson 03).


language
pronunciation: Wén

The next symbol is (language), as shown in the animation. It’s a hat-like shape (red strokes) on the top of the crossed strokes (blue strokes).

Here is a 2-character word: 中文, Chinese, Chinese words, Chinese language. It’s the combination of (center, China, see Lesson 05) and (language).

The symbol has some other meanings, related with writing, literature, or culture. When it’s used as an adjective, it’s related with elegant, gentle, or refined describing while combined with another noun.

The 2-character word: 文人: scholar, literati, writer. It’s combined with (culture) and (people, Lesson 06).

The 2-character word: 天文: astronomy. It’s the combination of (sky, Lesson 06) and (culture, language).



again, also
pronunciation: Yòu

Let’s keep doing the crossed strokes , with an extra horizontal bar as the first stroke. Please look at the strokes in the animation. Draw a horizontal bar from left to right, then make an angle (about 60 degree) and keep drawing the crossed strokes to complete the symbol . 

This (again, also) symbol is used as an adverb to add in front of a verb or adjective character. Since we have only learned few characters available for creating new words, here comes one, which might not be proper anyway: 又大又光, it’s a 4-character adjective phrase, the composition is (also) + (big, Lesson 06) + (also) + (light, shining, Lesson 07). Uh huh, this adjective 4-character phrase 又大又光 could be used as to describe something big and shining, like a big bald head or a big light bulb.



fork
pronunciation: Chā

This symbol is the last symbol plus a short strokewithin the upper space. As shown in the animation, draw the symbol as we did in the previous animation, then add a short strokewithin the upper space. 

The meaning of symbol could be fork or other hunting tools like lance, gaff, harpoon, etc. It could be used as a verb or adjective related with splitting or separating, something with two parts.



friend
pronunciation: Yǒu

Here comes a very important Chinese word, , the friend symbol. Please look at the animation carefully, I created it with two different colors for you to discern two parts of the writing strokes. 

The upper part (red color) is the variation of the crossed strokes , drawing a horizontal bar first, then adding a 丿 stroke to intersect with the horizontal bar. The lower part (blue color) is just the drawing of symbol .

Here is a 2-character word: 友人, friends. The combination is (friend) + (human, people, Lesson 06). This 2-character word 友人 is a general noun for friends.



right side
pronunciation: Yòu

Let’s do another example about the variation of the crossed strokes as shown in the previous animation (red strokes) for (friend) symbol. Once again, in this (right side) animation, drawing a horizontal bar first, then adding a 丿 stroke to intersect with the horizontal bar. 

The second step is just drawing a square shape (Lesson 04) to complete the whole character (right side).



left side
pronunciation: Zuǒ

One more example about this kind of crossed strokes and I promise this is the last one, please be patient. This is the symbol , the left side, as the previous symbol  (right side), it’s also used as an adjective to combine with another noun character.

As shown in the animation, drawing a horizontal bar first, then adding a 丿 stroke to intersect with the horizontal bar, and the second step is adding a (work) symbol (Lesson 03) to complete the whole character (left side). 

I think we have enough and other crossed strokes variations today. Please use your imagination as if you are decoding some kind of alien language come from out space, which might contain mysterious messages for you to find out just for fun.

Thanks for your reading and practicing, any positive feedback is welcome.


Review and further study


(simplified)
justice, righteousness
(traditional)
justice, righteousness
pronunciation:
with pronunciation play button, calligraphic strokes animation, different calligraphic styles, related Chinese words, and more…

義人
righteous people
pronunciation: yì rén
with pronunciation play button, related Chinese words, and more…

義士
(traditional) 
loyalist, chivalrous person
pronunciation: yì shì
with pronunciation play button, related Chinese words, and more…


language
pronunciation: Wén
with pronunciation play button, calligraphic strokes animation, different calligraphic styles, related Chinese words, and more…

文人
scholar, literati, writer
pronunciation: wén rén

天文
astronomy
pronunciation: tiān wén


again, also
pronunciation: Yòu
with pronunciation play button, different calligraphic styles, related Chinese words, and more…

又大又光
big and shining
pronunciation: yòu dà yòu guāng


fork
pronunciation: Chā
with pronunciation play button, calligraphic strokes animation, different calligraphic styles, related Chinese words, and more…


friend
pronunciation: Yǒu
with pronunciation play button, calligraphic strokes animation, different calligraphic styles, related Chinese words, and more…

友人
friends
pronunciation: yǒu rén


right side
pronunciation: Yòu
with pronunciation play button, calligraphic strokes animation, different calligraphic styles, related Chinese words, and more…


left side
pronunciation: Zuǒ
with pronunciation play button, calligraphic strokes animation, different calligraphic styles, related Chinese words, and more…


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