Chinese Characters 汉字 may seem, at first glance, an unorganized jumble of pen strokes, but in fact, each character has one or more components and each component contributes to the character. Although the total Chinese characters number in the tens of thousands, all characters are constructed from about 600 components in varying combinations. When you learn a character, it will be helpful if you pay close attention to components rather than look at the character as an isolated, haphazard collection of strokes.
First, we will introduce Chinese symbol for love.
When you pay close attention to Chinese character for Love, you will notice a heart right in the middle of it! Amazing, isn't it? Also, it is very easy to pronounce. It sounds like the English word "I" or "eye". If you are interested in Chinese Phonetics course, you can try our free Chinese Phonetics online lesson.
When you see the above picture, you might find Love written resembling Simplified Love below. What happened to the heart? It is gone! Though simpler, it kind of makes one sad to see the heart taken out of love.
wǒ ài nǐ
I Love You
I love you in Chinese Numbers is 520
We have been using the traditional characters of love for several thousand years. About 50 years ago the government of China changed the writing system. It was a stepping-stone towards eliminating characters and eventually replacing them with the Western Roman alphabet. Fortunately, this plan is no longer in place. However, simplified characters are here to stay.
Simplified characters are fewer in number and are designed to be easier to learn because the characters have fewer strokes. At this time, simplified characters are used officially in China. The traditional characters are still in use in Taiwan and Hong Kong. The following picture depicts the stroke order of the Chinese character for love.
If you're interested in characters, take a moment to check out the Hanbridge Mandarin Chinese characters course. It will introduce more interesting characters and their strokes.
There is usually a conventional sequence in which the strokes of Chinese characters are written, although there does exist some variation among Chinese writes. Diligent practice will soon fix the major principles in your mind. Here are some basic guidelines.
1) Left before right, as in 八(bā) eight;
2) Top to bottom, as in 二(èr) two;
3) Horizontal line before vertical one, as in 十(shí) ten;
4) Left-slanting line before an intersecting right-slanting line, as in 义(yì) significance;
5) Central part before symmetrical sides, as in 小(xiǎo) small;
6) Outside before inside, as in 月(yuè) moon;
7) If the "enclosure" is complete on all four sides, the last stroke is the bottom one, as in 四(sì) four;
8) If the character is framed from above, the frame is written first, as in 同(tóng) same;
9) If the character is framed from the bottom, the frame is written last, as in 凶(xiōng) ferocious.
These rules will not cover every situation, but they apply to the overwhelming majority of cases. Refer to them often and practice them frequently. Most or all of them will become automatic as you learn to write more and more characters.
At Hanbridge Mandarin, we'd love to help you improve your Mandarin level. Contact us today to schedule a free trial 1-on-1 Chinese lesson.