A bushu madare 广 and gandare 厂 are similar in shape but their sources are different. A madare came from a house or a building in which one side was against a wall, the other open for access, and a roof. On the other hand a gandare came from a “cliff”; thus it belongs to the category of nature in our study. The type of bushu that has the name /tare/ or /-dare/ has a top and left side and it comes from the verb 垂れる(“to hang down” /tare’ru/). /Ma/ is from the on-yomi for the kanji 麻. In this post we are going to look at the kanji 庫席広庭序店座床 and 黄廷占 as related shapes.
The kanji 庫 “storage; warehouse”
For the kanji 庫, in bronze ware style, in green, it had a wall on one side with a roof and a vehicle, 車. A place that housed a vehicle was a garage for military vehicles. It meant “storage place; warehouse.” The shape did not change through ten style, in red, and kanji. There is no kun-yomi. The on-yomi /ko/ is in 車庫 (“garage” /sha’ko/), 車庫入れ (“driving a car into a garage” /shakoire/), 書庫 (“library; stacks of books” /sho’ko/), 文庫本 (“pocket edition” /bunkobon/) and 在庫 (“inventory” /zaiko/).
The kanji 席 “seat”
For the kanji 席, in bronze ware style inside the house was a piece of cloth to spread over a seat. The shape in gray, which the Setsumon gave as an earlier style 古文 /kobun/ than ten style, had a woven mat inside the house. Together they signified “a place to sit; a seat.” In ten style, it took the bronze ware style writing except that a cooking pot was added above a cloth. From people sitting by a cooking pot over a fire, it meant a “seat; a place to sit.” There is no kun-yomi. The on-yomi 席 /se’ki/ “seat” is in 座席 (“seat” /zaseki/), 空席 (“empty seat” /kuuseki/), 席順 (“seating order” /sekijun/), 同席する (“to be among company” /dooseki-suru).
The kanji 広 “wide; spacious”
For the kanji 広, in oracle bone style, in brown, the inside of a house was a fire arrow with a balancing weight or combustible in the middle. When a fire arrow was shot in the air at night it illuminated a wide area. In bronze ware style the wall on the right side was lost. It meant “wide; spacious.” The ten style writing was reflected in the kyujitai 廣, in blue, in which an arrowhead was separate. In shinjitai, the inside was totally replaced by the katakana /mu/ ム, which was often used to replace a complex shape.
The kanji 黄: As we can easily guess from the kyujitai of the kanji 広, the kanji 広 was closely related to the kanji 黄 “yellow.” The kanji 黄 came straight out of the pictograph of a fire arrow. The color of a fire was yellow and that became its meaning. The history of the kanji 黄 is shown on the right. The kyujitai shown 黃 is in Mincho style (The kyokashotai font I use does not include the kyujitai for 黄). If we look closely at the kyujitai, we see that there was an extra stroke that showed an arrowhead in ten style.
The kun-yomi 広い /hiro’i/ means “wide; spacious,” and is in 広場 (“square; plaza” /hi’roba/), 広間 (“hall; large room” /hi’roma/) and 手広く (“extensively” /tebiro’ku/). The on-yomi /ko’o/ is in 広告 (“advertisement” /kookoku/).
The kanji 庭 “garden” and 廷 “courtyard”
For the kanji 庭, the earliest writing sample available to us is in ten style. It had a wall on one side and a roof, and the inside was 廷 “court.” Fortunately I have found the ancient writing of the kanji 廷, shown on the right.
The Kanji 廷: 廷 by itself is a kanji and it’s bronze ware style writings are abundant. In (a) and (b) it had a standing person on the upper right, a mound of soil in the middle, and a wall on the lower left side. Together they signified a place where the god of the earth was being celebrated in the courtyard of the palace. It meant “court; courtyard.” In (c) the three lines signified rice wine being sprinkled to sanctify the area. In ten style (d), the lower left became what would become a bushu ennyoo “extended roadway.” It is used in the word 宮廷 (“royal court” /kyuutee/).
Later on by adding a bushu madare 广 “house with one side open,” 庭 meant “garden.” The kun-yomi 庭 /niwa/ means “garden,” and is in 庭先 (“front garden” /niwasaki/), 中庭 (“inner court” /nakaniwa/), and 庭いじり (“gardening” as a hobby /niwai’jiri/). The on-yomi /te’e/ is in 庭園 (“large garden” /teen/).
The kanji 序 “order; beginning” and 予 “advance; preliminary”
In ten style of the kanji 序, the inside shape 予 was a weaving shuttle that was pushed through the loom between the threads. In order for the shuttle to go through, the threads were loosened to make room. From making room in advance it meant “in advance; preliminary.” The shape of a wall and a roof was used to signify the eave or addition to the main house. The extended area next to the main house was used as a place or school where propriety was taught. From that the kanji 序 meant “order; beginning of an order.” The kun-yomi 序でに /tsuide-ni/ means “while (you) are at it; taking the opportunity.” The on-yomi /jo/ is in 順序よく (“in good order” /ju’njoyoku/), 序列 (“order; ranking” /joretsu/), 秩序 (“order; ranking’ /chitsu’jo”).
The next three kanji did not have ancient writing but by adding a bushu madare to an existing kanji, a new kanji was created.
The kanji 店 “shop; store” and 占 “divination; fortune telling”
In the kanji 店, inside the bushu madare is 占, and 占 was used phonetically to mean “a place; to occupy.” Adding a bushu madare, “a house with one side open,” they meant “store; shop.” The kun-yomi 店 /mise’/ means “store; shop,” and is in 出店 “stall; booth.” The on-yomi /te’n/ is in 小売店 (“retail store” /kouri’ten/), 免税店 (“duty-free store” /menze’eten/). Customarily it is also read as /tana’/, and it is in 店子 (“tenant” /tanako/) and 店卸し (“inventorying; stocktaking” /tanaoroshi/).
The Kanji 占: We have oracle bones style samples for the kanji 占, as shown on the right. In the left sample the top was lines that appeared on a tortoise shell or an animal bone when it was heated. In the right sample the exterior line was probably the outline of the tortoise shell or an animal bone. The crack lines were read as the god’s oracle. Together they meant “fortune telling; divination.” How those lines were interpreted by a fortuneteller is not known. It is used in 占い (“fortune telling; divination” /uranai/) in kun-yomi, and 占領軍 (“occupation army” /senryo’ogun/) in on-yomi.
The kanji 座 “a place to sit; company; to sit”
The Kanji 坐: The kanji 坐 had the ancient writings, as shown on the right. The earlier style, in gray, had two people (人) facing each other and the middle was the ground (土). Together they meant “to sit.” The kanji 坐 is not a Joyo kanji and now the kanji 座 is used in place of 坐.
For the kanji 座, 坐 was used phonetically for /za/ to mean “to sit.” Adding a bushu madare “house” made a kanji that meant “a place to sit.” From people sitting and doing something together, it also meant a “troupe” or “company.”
The kun-yomi /suwaru/ 座る means “to sit,” and is in 居座る (“to stay on for a long time” /isuwa’ru/), usually an unwelcome act. The on-yomi /za/ is in 正座する (“to sit on one’s heels; to sit up straight” /seeza-suru/), 土下座する (“to kneel down on the ground (in begging forgiveness)” /dogeza-suru/), 一座 (“troupe” /ichi’za/) and 座を保つ (“to keep a group entertained” /za-o-tamo’tsu/). The expression 座右の銘 /zayuu-no-me’e/ means “one’s favorite motto.” The stroke order is shown on the right.
The kanji 床 “floor: bed”
The kyujitai for the kanji 床 was 牀, in which the left side was a vertically placed bed with legs, and the right side was the kanji 木 “wood.” Together they meant a wooden bed, a wooden surface or floor. In shinjitai, the bed has been replaced by a bushu madare “house.” It meant “bed” or “floor.” The kun-yomi 床 /yuka/ means “floor.” Another kun-yomi /toko/ is in 床につく (“to go to bed; to be sick in bed” /toko-ni-tsu’ku/), 床屋 (“barbers shop; barbers” /tokoya/), 床の間 (“an alcove in Japanese house” to hang art work or to place flowers and objects. /tokonoma/) and 寝床 (“a place to sleep; bed; futon laid out on tatami” /nedoko’/). The on-yomi /sho’o/ is in 病床 (“sick bed” /byooshoo/).
In the next three postings, we are going to look at the kanji that contain 田 “rice paddies” and the related kanji. [June 27, 2015]