Talk:Chinese character classification

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Modern methods?[edit]

I have been studying character classifications, and I book I am reading (现代汉语. 上海教育出版社, 2004) mentions that in modern times new methods have been used to create characters. Might these deserve mention?

Examples: 巯(qiu2): both visually and phonetically a union of 氢(qing) and 硫(liu). 乒, 乓, 冇 were all created by removing strokes from existing characters. New simplified characters often use 又 and 乂, which represent neither sound nor meaning. Some simplified characters came into existence by adoption of grass style characters: 书, 农, 为, 长. --Sinosplice 15:51, 4 May 2005 (UTC)

I think the place to discuss novelties in character simplification is at the article on simplification. But otherwise, the article does mention the creation of new characters: "Simplified characters are generally well attested as having been used since ancient times as shorthands and as variants of traditional forms, although a few have been simply invented in modern times". I think 又 and 乂 were both present in informal shothands before simplification, and the PRC simply made them more productve as radicals. 巯, though, looks like a typical 會意 character. 乒乓 can be viewed as a sort of strange case of 轉注.
There is a notice that this isn't really the modern way of looking at characters: "Although this categorisation is no longer the focal point of modern lexicographic practice, it is fairly simple to understand and remains useful". But, it might be appropriate to point to the simplification article as a source of more info on modern Chinese character invention processes.
I'm not an expert on Chinese lexicography - this article is primarily a translation from French - but I think that an article on modern Chinese character creation is worth writing. But, this article is intended to talk about the traditional classification of the 說文解字 a part of the background of Chinese. More articles on present-day thinking are certainly welcome.
--Diderot 17:54, 4 May 2005 (UTC)
I’m editing the Chinese character, Chinese character classification, Oracle bone and Kanji pages for consistency of the terms used in the 六書 liu4shu1 classification of char’s, as well as to point out the problematic nature of Xŭ Shèn’s classification. I’ve fixed errors such as misconstruing oracle bone graphs as “generally pictograms”; and will deal with problematic nature of terms such as ideograph, radical, etc.. Work in progress this week (not quite done yet).Dragonbones 02:52, 20 March 2006 (UTC)

Debunking folk etymology[edit]

Many of the structural and etymological analyses of characters on the Wiki chinese pages are deeply flawed, based on spurious folk etymology including those copying errors from Shuowen. I'm beginning to correct them, as here:

"In many cases, the average person thus no longer understands that a particular component in fact has a phonetic role (rather than the semantic role imaginatively ascribed to it by folk etymology). In other cases, one component is actually the original character or etymon, and the other may be a redundant phonetic or semantic element. The above example of 菜 cài ("vegetable") is just such a case. 采 cǎi ("harvest") was also used in classical texts to write "vegetable". In other words, the graph 采 underwent semantic extension, to also mean or represent "vegetable"; the addition of the 艹 cǎo "grass" is in fact redundant. Thus, although the graph 菜 is usually understood in folk etymology (as it was by Xu Shen in Shuowen Jiezi) as 艹 cǎo "grass" semantic plus 采 cǎi ("harvest") phonetic, it can also be analyzed as 采 cǎi ("harvest", semantically extended to "vegetable") which is etymonic, playing both semantic and phonetic roles, plus 艹 cǎo "grass" as a redundant semantic."

The source for this particular one is Woon, p.112-113. I'm adding references (Woon, Qiu, DeFrancis, etc.) on the main page and will refer to them here by page number only.Dragonbones 04:48, 1 April 2006 (UTC)

I've removed the 東 example from the compound indicatives because the oracle bone and bronze examples now available to us clearly show Xu Shen's 'sun plus tree' reading to be an erroneous structural decomposition. Rather, it was clearly a monosematic pictograph (so listing it as a compound of any sort is out of the question; furthermore it appears to have been a bag tied at two ends (like a cellophane-wrapped candy with the ends twisted), and after it was borrowed for the homophonous 'east', the original meaning of bag was then written with the now-obsolete 橐 which is now pronounced tuo2. References: 徐中舒 Xu Zhongshu, 丁山說文闕義箋 (commentary on the errors in Shuowen by Ding Shan), cited in BOTH Wú, Teresa L. (1990). The Origin and Dissemination of Chinese Characters (中國文字只起源與繁衍). Caves Books, Taipei ISBN 957-606-002-8, p.251 AND 李孝定 Lĭ Xiàodìng (Lee Hsiao-ting, 1965). 甲骨文字集釋 jiǎgǔwénzì jíshì, (collected interpretations of oracle bone characters), 台北 Táibĕi, 南港 Nángǎng (Nankang): 中央研究院歷史語言研究所 Institute of History and Philology, Academia Sinica, volume 6, page 2029. FYI Li Xiaoding is pretty authoritative. A lot of huiyi are actually folk etymology errors, due to failure to recognize one of the components as the phonetic half of a sem-phon compound, like the bottom half of 家, which is actually a male pig, pronounced 'jia1'. If we need more compound indicative examples, let's please be strict about not including ones that have already been debunked by scholars. Here are a couple better ones: 彭 peng2, which comprises 壴 zhu4 'drum' and three strokes indicating the sound emanating; and 牧 mu4, to put to pasture (cattle plus hand with stick). Dragonbones (talk) 13:37, 24 May 2008 (UTC)

problem with the term "radical"[edit]

It seems that previous editors have thoroughly confused four ideas: 1. the radix (radical) or morphemic root of a character 2. the 部首 bu4shou3 'section head' 3. additional semantic elements added later to a graph, e.g., for disambiguation 4. component elements of graphs in general

For example, a previous editor wrote "認 rèn "to know (someone)" contains three radicals: 言 yán "speech" 刀 dāo "knife" (Notice the stroke across the knife, indicating that 刃 rèn "blade" is the intended character bearing the pronunciation information.) 心 xīn "heart". But clearly what was intended was neither the original radix (root) of the compound (correctly called radical but also acceptably called "semantic component", or even better "etymon" if it once stood alone in this meaning), nor the 部首 bu4shou3 'section head' under which the graph is listed in the dictionary. Rather, the writer should have simply written "component elements". 刃 ren4 'blade of a knife' is obviously merely the phonetic, and the author indicated this, yet still called it a radical.

For editors wishing to write on this topic, I strongly suggest thoroughly reading Qiu Xigui, Woon Wee lee and so forth; see also the "Radicals" page as well as my discussion there. Dragonbones 02:01, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

Major rewrite[edit]

The original article was full of errors almost too numerous to mention; I'll try to list reasons and sources for some of the changes here shortly. If you have any objections to or questions about any particular changes, please, please raise them here first before reverting, and I will be very happy to provide arguments and evidence supporting my changes. Thanks! Dragonbones 03:05, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

Changes and reasons are listed here. I've signed each separately so discussion of any point can then take place beneath that particular point. 1. For (指示; zhǐshì), replaced ideograms with “indicatives”; the problems with the terms ‘ideograph’ and ‘ideogram’ have been adequately addressed by DeFrancis, and building upon that, by Unger; Similarly, Victor H. Mair, in the foreword to Unger’s book, is also critical of the notion of ideographs, concluding “in reality, there is no such thing as an ideogram” (p. xi). (Unger, J. Marshall (2004). Ideogram – Chinese Characters and the Myth of Disembodied Meaning. University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu.) Dragonbones 09:42, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

2. Replaced “This classification system dates back to Xǔ Shěn's second century dictionary, the Shuōwén jiězì. Source for earlier date is Qiu, p.151. Dragonbones 09:42, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

3. Added “some modern scholars view them as "six principles of character formation" rather than six types of characters, the 六書 liùshū may thus be translated as the "Six-Principles Theory of Character Formation".” For support, see Qiu p.151. In fact this translation is supported by the Hànshū (漢書) Yìwénzhì (藝文志) chapter which calls the 六書 liùshū the “bases for creating characters” (i.e., principles) rather than character types. Qiu also discusses extensively the point that the liu4shu1 is not useful or relevant. Dragonbones 09:42, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

4. For details on the variations in 六書 liùshū between the Yìwénzhì, Zheng Zhong and Xŭ Shèn lists, see Qiu p.153. Dragonbones 09:42, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

5. Changed “A few, indicated below with their earliest forms, date back to the 16th century BCE and are found on stone tablets and in bone and shell engravings used in scapulomancy.” to “A few, indicated below with their earliest forms, date back to the 14th to 11th centuries BCE and are found on the oracle bones, generally ox scapulae and turtle plastrons used in pyromancy.” First, there are no stone inscriptions extant before the Stone Drums; second, virtually all Shāng graphs are from the 14th-11th cent. BC period. Third, the shells aren’t scapulas so the term scapulimancy doesn’t apply. Pyromancy and osteomancy are terms covering both. Dragonbones 09:42, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

6. Cut “女 is a stylised drawing of a woman kneeing in deference. The oldest pictograms draw her from the front, but the profile view was ultimately adopted in seal script.”, replacing it with “女 is a stylised drawing of a woman kneeing in profile. In the oracle bone, bronze and seal scripts, the torso vertically bisects the crossed arms; in the clerical and standard scripts, the graph is rotated 90 degrees counterclockwise so that the hands, not the feet, are pointed downward.” The oracle bone of 女 is clearly in profile, so I can’t imagine where the OP got this information that the change to profile occurred with the seal script. We also don’t know that deference was involved, so this speculation is best cut. Dragonbones 09:42, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

7. cut “- Note that modern characters can only use a fixed number of possible stroke forms. Curved lines are not allowed in regular Chinese writing. There are only 24 (or by some counts, 21) fundamental strokes used today.”, as it is not relevant to the section being discussed; furthermore, there are certainly curved lines; just look at the first and second strokes in 女. Dragonbones 09:42, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

8. Cut “This practice appeared relatively late in the development of Chinese writing.” (reference is to picto-phonetic compounds). Quite the opposite; they appear in the first significant body of Chinese writing. Indeed, they were probably necessary for the establishment of a fully functional writing system. Dragonbones 09:42, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

9. Cut “The phonetic element of a compound character is often chosen to some extent with the meaning in mind.” In such cases, the supposed ‘phonetic’ is usually in fact etymonic (the original graph), and not a later “choice”. The etymon in such cases, after a semantic is added, plays both semantic and phonetic roles. Dragonbones 09:42, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

10. Cut “For example, 認 rèn "to know (someone)" contains three radicals:”. Clearly the original writer doesn’t understand what a radical is (or should be) -- see extended discussion of the problematic misusage of the term 'radical' on that page. He/she goes on to incorrectly list dāo ‘knife’ as one of them; dāo per se is not even present in this graph; rather, ren4 is present. Finally to suggest that the extra stroke added to dāo to produce rèn is somehow indicative of which component is phonetic is simply ludicrous. I can't think of any parallel examples in which a mark was added to indicate which component was phonetic. Dragonbones 09:42, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

'"in truth, as with all written languages, they can only convey meaning through association with the spoken word."'
Taken at face value, this statement is somewhere between highly questionable and utterly false. The spoken form of ancient Egyptian is lost to us, and yet we are able to assign meanings to texts written in it. I get the point - Chinese characters are usually used to write something like modern spoken Chinese - but the broader asssertion is not a truism about language. --Diderot 10:06, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

problem with pictures -- help needed![edit]

In the Compound indicatives (會意) section, the graphs in the pictures have their tops cut off. Does anyone know how to fix this? Thanks in advance! Dragonbones 08:24, 11 April 2006 (UTC)

Traditional vs Simplified rain character[edit]

Apparently the traditional and simplified rain charcters are not the same. In this message: it is mentioned that the dots don't all face down in the traditional characters. Does anyone know more about this? eck 04:29, 12 May 2006 (UTC)

They are the same. One should not mix the differences in allograph with the differences in characters. -- G.S.K.Lee 11:50, 10 June 2006 (UTC)

East (東)[edit]

The article says that 日+木 = 東 "the sun behind a tree". I've heard this is an old theory that is no longer accepted. I'm by no means an expert on etymology, so could someone more knowledgeable look at this part of the article? -- Coffee2theorems 15:50, 20 May 2007 (UTC)

Similarly, I have read somewhere that the 日 component of 明 was originally actually a window (囧) and not a sun--can someone confirm that? I have added a note to the character 集 that originally it was composed of three birds (隹), since that helps make the meaning "gather together" make more sense. --ian (talk) 18:56, 28 August 2007 (UTC)


Is "rebus character" an adequate translation of jiajiezi 假借字? Compare the numbers of Google hits for these phrases:

  • 963 "rebus character"
  • 29 "rebus characters"
  • 383 "phonetic loan character"
  • 1,140 "phonetic loan characters"
  • 2,810 "borrowed character"
  • 4,790 "borrowed characters"

Since many of the "rebus character" ghits refer to the fictional character Detective Inspector John Rebus, here are search results with additional terms:

  • 0 "rebus character" and "假借字"
  • 3 "rebus characters" and "假借字" (all from this WP article and mirrors)
  • 0 "rebus character" and jiajiezi
  • 7 "rebus characters" and jiajiezi (all from this WP article and mirrors)

Wouldn't "phonetic loan" or "borrowed" be preferable to "rebus"? Keahapana (talk) 00:37, 4 September 2008 (UTC)

Unfortunately, besides being completely opaque, those terms are used for Chinese characters used in other languages. One Chinese language may borrow a character from another, etc., or Chinese characters may be used to write sounds that do not otherwise occur in a language, and this has nothing to do with 假借字. The English term for what's going on with 假借字 is 'rebus', and that term is both unambiguous and easily understood. Since there is no standard terminology, I think it's important that we write in a way that's comprehensible to our readers. kwami (talk) 01:15, 4 September 2008 (UTC)
Whatever terminology is used, it does not in itself explain the Chinese "jiajie", which still has to be explained. English "rebus" is a helpful analogy for explanation but not an exact equivalent. I wouldn't go so far as to call it a "translation". --JWB (talk) 01:29, 4 September 2008 (UTC)
Is "Phono-semantic compound characters" any less opaque to the lay reader? --JWB (talk) 15:27, 5 September 2008 (UTC)
What bothers me is that English "rebus" has a strong connotation of taking a realistic picture that is not normally considered writing and using it for the sound of its word. Chinese "jiajie" uses an existing written character with stylized form. --JWB (talk) 15:58, 5 September 2008 (UTC)
Well, at least "phono-semantic" means what it says. For anyone who know what "semantics" is, the meaning is pretty clear.
"Rebus" is also used in English when we use letters for words, like "C" for "see" or "8" for "ate". We just don't have that many choices with our script. Unless there's a dedicated word for things like "h8 U" = "hate you"? kwami (talk) 18:04, 5 September 2008 (UTC)
SMS language says "It is an abbreviated form of English similar to a rebus." rather than actually saying it is a rebus. Internet slang and [[leet] do not mention the word "rebus". I've seen many articles about internet and text msg slang and don't ever remember the word "rebus" used. It may be that the word is just not used much in current English.
Also, jiajie refers to repurposing of a single character, rather than using a character to compose a larger word.
"Phono-semantic" is not entirely transparent. The means of compounding is in fact pretty simple, writing the phonetic and "semantic" elements next to each other, but not obvious to an unfamiliar reader.
The use of "semantic" for radicals is something I have a problem with in itself and have argued against. The "semantic" content is very thin, only enough to disambiguate rather than actually expressing the meaning of the character. Using "semantic" is propagating the "ideographic myth". Determinative, the term used by scholars of the ancient Middle Eastern scripts, better communicates the actual meaning. "Disambiguator" or "categorizer" would be even more explicit. --JWB (talk) 19:37, 5 September 2008 (UTC)
You're right, those are better terms. Care to propose something? "Categorized phonetic character" seems a bit awkward, but might do.
As for rebuses, they are just repurposing graphemes according to sound. As for composing larger words, that's just an effect of using them for a polysyllabic language. The OED says a rebus is,
"An enigmatical representation of a name, word, or phrase by figures, pictures, arrangement of letters, etc., which suggest the syllables of which it is made up."
With English monosyllabic words, that's pretty much what jiajie are doing, closer at least than anything else I can think of. kwami (talk) 19:51, 5 September 2008 (UTC)

Leaving aside the problems of translating xingxhengzi and returning to the original jiajiezi question, I agree that "rebus" is a useful explanation but disagree that it's a satisfactory translation. Do any dictionaries give "rebus character" as a translation equivalent? The The Chinese-English Dictionary (1979), Far East Chinese-English Dictionary (1992), The Contemporary Chinese Dictionary, Chinese-English Edition (2002), and ABC Chinese-English Comprehensive Dictionary (2003) all give "phonetic loan character". If we follow the WP:NC(CN) "Use the most common name" convention, then shouldn't we translate "phonetic loan character" and give "rebus character" and "borrowed character" as alternate renderings? Keahapana (talk) 00:07, 6 September 2008 (UTC)

OK, I changed "rebus character" back to the usual translation and did some cleanup. Does anyone know the source for these OC reconstructions *mloi 麥 "wheat" and *mlois 來 "come"? Karlgren gives *lɘg for both. Li gives *mlɘg for both. Schuessler gives *mrɘk and *rɘk (with a carat over the schwas). Keahapana (talk) 01:50, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
Counting Google hits for the most common convention is fine when the choices are all sensible. But here we have a commonly known word, 'rebus', which is only used in a minority of cases, passed up much of the time for the vague and opaque ad hoc term "phonetic loan". One of the points of words is to convey understanding; "phonetic loan" only conveys the idea that the reader doesn't know what we're talking about.
William Boltz, prof. of Classical Chinese at U Washington, writing the "Early Chinese Writing" chapter in Daniels & Bright, The World's Writing Systems, says,
This is what is commonly called the rebus use of graphs. [...] The rebus use of characters increased the effectiveness of the writing system significantly. Hundreds of words with meanings that were not amenable to pictographic representation could now be written by the rebus principle. [...] These two extended uses of characters, by the rebus principle and by polyphony, are simply two converse ways of doing the same thing. [...]
The ad hoc phrase "phonetic loan" is never mentioned, nor is "borrowed". kwami (talk) 02:39, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
Sometimes it isn't possible to avoid obscure jargon when writing about a subject. Particle physics, for instance, is impenetrable without knowing the terminology. However, when possible, a good lay description will avoid jargon, so that it is accessible to readers who are not specialists in that particular field. D&B does this, and it is the responsible approach for us as editors of a general encyclopedia as well. kwami (talk) 03:10, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
Yes, a few authors use "rebus characters" for jiajiezi but many more use "phonetic loan characters"; Google Scholar finds 7 and 192 ghits, respectively. I'll concede that your opinions about "phonetic loan" might be right, and that the majority of sinologists, linguists, and lexicographers might be wrong. Either way, it remains the de facto English translation.
Since Boltz's article in The World's Writing Systems (1996) mentions "rebus use" and "rebus principle" but not "rebus character", I checked to see if it was in his book. The Origin and Early Development of the Chinese Writing System (1994:145), which translates Xu Shen's descriptions, simply uses "chia chieh". However, this translation gave me an idea. Please see below. Thanks. Keahapana (talk) 21:39, 18 September 2008 (UTC)
It's not that they're wrong, but that they're using jargon which is completely pointless except for the tradition of using it. "Phonetic loan" conveys no meaning that "rebus" doesn't convey, and in fact conveys less, as it's ambiguous. It's simply an inferior term when addressing the wider public, since they aren't familiar with it. One of the reasons people come to an encyclopedia is to cut through the jargon that makes many specialized sources inaccessible. kwami (talk) 22:21, 18 September 2008 (UTC)

Cite "six scripts" translation?[edit]

Would it improve this article to use a published translation (such as Thern 1966 or Boltz 1994) of the Shuowenjiezi "six scripts" description? For instance, Boltz translates, "chia chieh "loaned and borrowed [graphs]" … when in origin there is no character [for the word in question] you assign an item [i.e., a graph] relying on its sound; 令 and 長 are [examples of] this." Each of the six sections could then elaborate upon the description. What do you think? Keahapana (talk) 21:40, 18 September 2008 (UTC)

I guess that depends on how much we want to clarify the actual composition of characters. Boltz's prose, or at least what I see of it above, is pretty bad, worse than anything the FA committees would accept for the original prose of a Wikipedia article. Quotes should clarify the material, not make it more obscure. kwami (talk) 22:26, 18 September 2008 (UTC)

Ideogram vs. Pictogram[edit]

Chinese character Radical 24[edit]

Would someone with expertise in Chinese please correct the article for Radical 24? Much of the information seems to be confused with that for Radical 12. Aarg, and why won't this request show as a separate entry? RLM1961 (talk) 22:27, 26 September 2009 (UTC)

You need a line break after the ==XX== for it to be recognized as a section head. I'm no expert, but I'll take a look at the articles.
You're right. It looks like a simple copy & paste error.
I've rewritten the stub. Someone might want to double check. kwami (talk) 00:50, 27 September 2009 (UTC)

Is 舞 → 無 假借?[edit]

A question on terminology, and an example – is the simplification 舞 → 無 an example of 假借/jiajie? (That is, as I understand, 舞 “dance” is the original character, and 無 “nothing” is a phonetic borrowing plus graphical simplification).

I presume this would be classed as jiajie, but wanted to check, and would propose using this as an example somewhere in the article, as it is a note-worth character formation method.


—Nils von Barth (nbarth) (talk) 06:52, 18 August 2010 (UTC)

Compound Ideographs: Some Issues[edit]

1) The chart. Examples drawn solely from kokuji would be unobjectionable, as nobody claims these are anything other than compound ideographs. However, listing characters created in China demands a source, as someone has already indicated by attaching the "citation needed" tag. The demand is particularly imperative given that the chart follows a presentation noting that certain scholars deny the validity of the category outright. If unsourced material is allowed to remain indefinitely, is it safe to assume there will be no objection to the uploading of a separate chart suggesting how each character in the current chart actually was devised as a phonosemantic compound, provided the chart is equipped from the outset with its own "citation needed" tag?

2) Authorial voice. "Boltz speculates that the character 女 could represent both the word nǚ < *nrjaʔ "woman" and the word ān < *ʔan "settled", and that the roof signific was later added to disambiguate the latter usage. In support of this second reading, he points to other characters with the same 女 component that had similar Old Chinese pronunciations: 妟 yàn < *ʔrans "tranquil", 奻 nuán < *nruan "to quarrel" and 姦 jiān < *kran "licentious". Other scholars reject these arguments for alternative readings and consider other explanations of the data more likely. For example, 妟 may be a reduced form of 晏, which can be analysed as a phono-semantic compound with 安 as phonetic. The characters 奻 and 姦 are implausible phonetic compounds both on structural grounds and because the widely differing initial consonants in the pair *ʔan / *nruan would not normally be accepted in a phonetic compound."

The last two sentences are the Encyclopedia speaking, as though what is being described is actuality rather than one side of a scholarly dispute. Notice how these sentences differ from the sentences immediately preceding, where Boltz is the one doing the speculating and pointing. Perhaps I'm not the only one who thinks that balance should be created via phrasing such as

"Other scholars reject these arguments for alternative readings and consider other explanations of the data more likely, proposing that, for example, 妟 may be a reduced form of 晏, which can be analysed as a phono-semantic compound with 安 as phonetic. The same scholars regard characters 奻 and 姦 as implausible phonetic compounds ..."

3) The phrase "structural grounds," which appears in the passage quoted above. In the article cited, authors Sampson & Chen write, "Certainly we know of no uncontroversial phono-semantic compound graphs where phonetic and semantic elements are identical." (Parenthetically, one wonders what the authors find controversial about 幵, 哥, 兓 and 臸.) Is this statement the source of the "structural grounds" reference? If not, what is the source, and what are the grounds? Whatever these grounds turn out to be, they should be specified in the same manner as the argument from the initial consonants, should they not?

Lawrence J. Howell (talk) 10:12, 24 March 2014 (UTC)

1) I think we want to reduce the amount of uncited material, not increase it.
2) The last two sentences of that paragraph are expansions on the third-last sentence, with the reference at the end supporting all three sentences. We need to make that clear without being too repetitious. However the last point, that *ʔ- and *n- would not be expected in the same phonetic series, is surely the consensus view. Kanguole 14:44, 24 March 2014 (UTC)

1) Were a contributor to create a parallel chart such as described there is little doubt it would be challenged and swiftly removed on the grounds of lacking a citation. And properly so: The onus stands on the contributor to source it to a recognized authority. Methinks the present chart stands in the same need of sourcing. If there's a case for retaining the chart despite the lack of a citation, I'd like to learn what that case is. Should nobody care to argue for the chart's retention, I propose it be a) altered to include examples drawn solely from kokuji or b) removed until someone supplies a suitable citation for the characters presently listed.

2) One way to combine descriptiveness with conciseness would be to rewrite the final sentence as follows:

"The same scholars regard the characters 奻 and 姦 as implausible phonetic compounds because 1) the widely differing initial consonants in the pair *ʔan / *nruan would not normally be accepted in a phonetic compound and 2) the scholars are unaware of any "uncontroversial phono-semantic compound graphs where phonetic and semantic elements are identical."

Lawrence J. Howell (talk) 11:46, 26 March 2014 (UTC)

As it happens, I replaced that table before seeing this. Kanguole 12:26, 26 March 2014 (UTC)

OK, and I tweaked the wording in the paragraph as per above. Lawrence J. Howell (talk) 08:31, 27 March 2014 (UTC)

六書 – Classical Chinese read as associative compounds.[edit]

Please be aware that there is an online discussion that may impact this webpage. I suggest you read the entire discussion until the end.


W. K. Choy — Preceding unsigned comment added by W. K. Choy (talkcontribs) 01:20, 29 September 2016 (UTC)

No impact whatsoever. Please read Wikipedia:No original research and Wikipedia:Identifying reliable sources. Love —LiliCharlie (talk) 01:26, 29 September 2016 (UTC)