The Kanji 費払仏沸者着諸緒著暑煮 -(6)


We have been exploring kanji that originated from a shape that something was tied up or a bundle of things. This is the sixth and last post in this group. The shapes we are going to look at on this post are: 弗 “to disperse” from a bunch of bent twigs that were bundled together by a rope but would not stay together – the kanji 費払仏沸; and 者 phonetically used for /sha/ from “a bundle of wooden sticks gathered in a stove being burned” –  the kanji 者着諸緒著暑煮.

History of Kanji 弗For the shape 弗 the history shown on the right in three different styles of ancient writing all had two bent lines and a rope around them. They signified that bent or crooked sticks were roped together in order to straighten, but the force of curling back was stronger and they would not stay straight and came apart. It meant “disperse” and it is used phonetically for /hutsu/ in kanji.

  1. The kanji 費 “to spend (money or time); cost; waste”

History of Kanji 費Forthe kanji 費 the bronze ware style writing, in green, comprised 弗 “to disperse” used phonetically for /hi/, 刂 “a knife” and 貝 “cowrie; money,” together signifying “to spend money.” In seal style, in red, the knife was dropped. It is also used for time, such as “spending time; wasting time.” Together they meant “cost; to spend money; require (time).” [Relating to this kanji, the top 弗 looks similar to the dollar sign $. So by itself it is customarily used to mean “dollar” in Japanese. [The composition of the kanji 費: 弗 and 貝]

The kun-yomi 費やす /tsuiya’su/ means “to spend (money; time),” as in 時間を費やす(“to spend time” /jikan-o tsuiya’su/). The on-yomi /hi/ is in費用 (“expenses” /hiyoo/), 私費 (“private expense” /shi’hi/), 浪費 (“waste” /roohi/). /-Pi/ is in 実費 (“actual expense; costs” /jippi/).

  1. The kanji払“to pay money; pay attention; brush off”

History of Kanji 払For the kanji 払t he seal style writing  had “a hand; an act that one does using a hand” and 弗 “to come apart” used phonetically for /hutsu/. Together “a hand pushing something away” meant “to brush off.” It also meant “to pay money or attention.” The right side of the kyuji 拂, in blue, was simplified with ム, a segment often used for simplification in other kanji as well. The kanji 払 means “to pay money; pay attention; brush off.”  [The composition of the kanji 払: 扌and ム]

The kun-yomi 払う /hara’u/ is used in お金を払う (“to pay money” /okane-o har’u/), 埃を払う (“brush off dust” /hokori-o hara’u/) and 注意を払う( “to pay attention” /chu’ui-o hara’u/), 支払い (“payment”/shiharai/) and 月払い (“monthly payment” /tsukiba’rai/). The on-yomi /hutsu/ is in 払拭する (“to wipe off” /husshoku-suru/)/.

  1. The kanji 仏 “Buddha; Buddhism; France”

History of Kanji 仏For the kanji 仏 the left side of the seal style writing was “a person; an act one does” and the right side (弗) was used phonetically for hutsu. When the Buddhism came to China from India, the Sanskrit word Buddha was written phonetically as 佛陀 Budda. The right side of the kyuji 佛 was replaced byム. Phonetically it is also used for 仏蘭西 “France” for having the first syllable /hu/. The kanji 仏 means “Buddha; Buddhism; France.” [The composition of the kanji 仏: イ and ム]

The kun-yomi 仏 /hotoke/ and 仏様 /hotoke-sa’ma/ mean “buddha.” The on-yomi /hutsu/ is 旧仏領 (old French colony” /kyu’u hutsuryoo/.) /-Butsu/ is in 大仏 (“big Buddha statue” /daibutsu/).

  1. The kanji 沸“to boil water; gush”

History of Kanji 沸The seal style writing of the kanji 沸 comprised “water” and 弗 used phonetically for hutsuto mean “to boil.” (/Hutsu/ was the onomatopoeia of water boiling.) Together they meant water gushing out in a spring. Boiling water looks similar to a spring. It was used to mean “to boil.” The kanji 沸 means “to boil water; bubble up.” [The composition of the kanji 沸: 氵and 弗]

The kun-yomi /waku/  and its transitive counterpart /wakasu/ means “to boil.” The on-yomi /hutsu/ is in 沸騰する (“to boil” /huttoo-suru/), 沸点 (“boiling point” /hutten/), 煮沸消毒 (“boiling sterilization” /shahutsu-sho’odoku/).

For the kanji 者 the history is shown in 5 the kanji 者 as used by itself. As a component it appears in the kanji 諸煮暑緒著着.

  1. The kanji 者“person”

History of Kanji 者For the kanji 者 in (a), (b) and (c) twigs in a container or stove were being burned with sparkles of fire. From early times it was borrowed to mean “this; person.” The kyuji 者 (d) kept a dot in the middle as the remnant of sparkles of fire, but it was deleted in shinji. The kanji 者means “person.”  (In modern use “this” as a demonstrative word is not used.” [The composition of the kanji 者: 耂 and 曰]

The kun-yomi 者 /mono’/ means “person,” and is in 悪者 (“bad guy; villain” /warumono/), 回し者 (“spy” /mawashimono/). The on-yomi /sha/ is in 医者 (“medical doctor” /isha/), 記者 (“reporter; journalist” /ki’sha/), 希望者 (“applicant” /kibo’osha/), 加入者 (“new member” /kanyu’usha/).

  1. The kanji 着”to attach; to put clothes on; wear; arrive (at a place)”

History of Kanji 着There is no ancient writing for the kanji 着. (a) was an inscription on a stone stele and (b) was the Correct style writing 著.  The kanji 着 was a variant of 著. In Japanese the two kanji have different use: 著 means “to author; stand out” whereas 着means “to attach; to put clothes on; wear; arrive (at a place).” [The composition of the kanji 着: 羊 without the vertical line going through, ノand 目]

The kun-yomi 着る /kiru/ means “to wear,” and is in 着物 (“kimono; traditional Japanese attire” /kimono/). Another kun-yomi着く /tsu’ku/ means “to arrive.” The on-yomi /chaku/ is in一着 (“one piece of clothes” /icchaku/), 着服 (“embezzlement” /chakuhuku-suru/), 到着時間 (“arrival time” /toochaku-ji’kan/), 着手する (“to start up” /cha’kushu-suru/) and 接着剤 (“glue; adhesive” /secchakuzai/).

  1. The kanji 諸“various; many; all”

History of Kanji 諸For the kanji 諸the bronze ware style writing was the same as 者. It was used phonetically for /sho/ to mean “many.” In 2 言 “word; language” was added. Together they meant “many words,” and also meant “many; various; all” in general. The kanji 諸 means “various; many; all.” [The composition of the kanji 諸: 言 and 者]

The kun-yomi /moro/ is in 諸々の (“various; many all” /moromoro-no/). The on-yomi /sho/ is in 諸事情 (“various reasons” /shoji’joo/), 諸君 (“Gentlemen!” /sho’kun/), 学生諸君 (“All our students” /gakusee-sho’kun/) and 読者諸氏 (“All readers” /dokushasho’shi/).

  1. The kanji 緒 “beginning; rope; string; together”

History of Kanji 緒For the kanji 緒 the seal style writing comprised 糸 “a skein of threads” and 者 used phonetically for /sho/ to mean “beginning,” as in 初. Together they signified “the beginning of a long continuous thing, such as a string or rope.” A rope put things together and signified “together.” The kyuji 緖, 2, lost the dot in the middle in shinji. The kanji 緒 means “beginning; rope; string.” [The composition of the kanji 緒: 糸 and 者]

The kun-yomi 緒 /o/ means “string,” as in 兜の緒 (“strings on kabuto armor” /kabuto-no-o’/) and 鼻緒 (“a strap on geta or zoori footwear” /hanao/). The on-yomi /sho/ is in 一緒 (“together” /issho/), 内緒 (“secrecy; privacy” /naisho/, 由緒 (“history; origin” /yu’isho/). Another on-yomi /cho/ is in 情緒 (“emotion; atmosphere” /jo’ocho/).

  1. The kanji 著“to write a book; conspicuous; to stand out”

History of Kanji 着For the kanji 著 the seal style writing comprised 竹“bamboo” and 者 used phonetically for /sho; cho/. Bamboo stalks were versatile, and among them was the material for making a writing brush. It meant “to write a book.” In kyuji 著, 2, however, the bamboo top was replaced by 艹, a bushu kusakanmuri “plants.” It was also used to mean “to make meaning clear; to standout; conspicuous.” The kanji 著 means “to write a book; conspicuous; to stand out.” [The composition of the kanji 著: 艹 and 者]

The kun-yomi 著す /arawa’su/ means “to write a book.” Another kun-yomi 著しい /ichijirushi’i/ means “to stand out.” The on-yomi /cho/ is in 著者 (“author” /cho’sha/), 名著 (“famous book” /me’echo/) and 顕著な (“remarkable” /ke’ncho-na/).

  1. The kanji 暑“(to feel) hot in atmospheric temperature”

History of Kanji 暑For the kanji 暑 in seal style “the sun” (日) was added to 者 “a bundle of wood sticks gathered in a stove to burn”used phonetically for /sho/. “The sun” and “burning fire” together made the kyuji 暑, 2, that meant “hot in atmospheric temperature.” The kanji 暑 means “(to feel) hot in atmospheric temperature.”  [The composition of the kanji 暑: 日and 者]

The kun-yomi /atsu‘i/ means “hot,” and is in 蒸し暑い (“hot and humid” /mushiatsu’i/). The on-yomi /sho/ is in 暑気当たり (“heatstroke” /shokia’tari/), 暑中見舞い (“summer greeting card” /shochuumi’mai/) and 残暑 (“lingering summer heat” /za’nsho/).

  1. The kanji 煮“to cook over a fire; simmer; boil”

History of Kanji 者The history of the kanji 煮 intertwined with another kanji 庶. In (a) and (b) it had “a kitchen stove with a pot,” and was /sha/ phonetically. It would become the kanji 庶. It meant “to cook over a fire.” On the other hand the seal style writing (c) comprised “a stove with burning sticks” containing 者 at the top and “a storage tripod pot” at the bottom. Another seal style (d) would become 遮. The kyuji 煮 (e) comprised 者, with a dot, and 灬, a bushu rekka/renga “fire.” The kanji 煮 means “to cook over a fire; simmer; boil.” [The composition of the kanji 煮: 者 and 灬]

The kun-yomi 煮 /niru/ means “to boil; simmer; seethe,” and is in 煮物 (“simmered food; cooked food” /nimono/), 生煮え (“undercooked; raw” /namanie/), 味噌煮(“simmered in misopaste” /misoni/). The on-yomi /sha/ is in 煮沸する (“to boil” /shahutsu-suru/).

We end our exploration on a group of tied objects here. I believe I have a few more posts to write before we end our exploration. Thank you very much for your reading.  -Noriko [May 19, 2018]

The Kanji 焦煎烈煮庶遮蒸然燃 –fire (2) れっか/れんが (灬)


This is the second of the three posts on kanji that originated from “fire.” We are going to look at kanji that have a bushu rekka/renga (灬)–焦煎烈煮庶遮蒸然燃. In all of the samples we will see that a bushu rekka was indeed 火 in ten style. It is only in kanji that the shape of four short strokes signifying flames.

  1. The kanji 烈 “fierce; boisterous”

History of Kanji 列The kanji 烈 consists of the kanji 列, which was phonetically used, and a bushu rekka/renga “fire.” The kanji 列 had a gruesome origin (shown on the right). The left side of the ten style writing, in red, had a beheaded head with the hair still attached, and the right side was a knife or sword. Together 列 originally meant “to display beheaded heads.” The gruesome meaning dropped, 列 means “row; a line; file.History of Kanji 烈” The history of the kanji 烈 is shown on the left. The bronze ware style writing, in green, had phonetically the same /retsu/. In ten style a “fire” was added at the bottom of 列 to increase the intensity of the meaning. In kanji 火 became a bushu rekka/renga (灬). The kanji 烈 means “fierce; boisterous.”

There is no kun-yomi. The on-yomi /retsu/ is in 烈火 (“blazing fire; furious flames“ /re’kka/). The name of the bushu rekka is said to have come from this word. (The other name renga is from 連火 “fires in a row”).  It is also in 強烈な (“intense; strong; severe” /kyooretsu-na/), 熱烈な (“ardent; passionate” /netsuretsu-na/) and 烈風 (“heavy wind; gale” /reppuu/).

History of Kanji 死(frame)The bushu kabane (歹) in 列 and 死: The bushu kabane in the kanji 列 and 死 came from two different sources. We have looked at the history of the kanji 死 “to die; death” earlier in the post [北背死化花真-Posture (4) on April 5, 2015.] As a quick reminder, the history is shown on the right. The origin of 死 was a person mourning over a deceased’s bones, and 歹 was bones of a deceased. I find this to be a moving, sad scene. On the other hand, 歹 in 列 came from a beheaded body with hair still attached, a very gruesome scene. Both became the same shape 歹. (In the traditional kanji dictionary the kanji 列 belongs to the bush rittoo “knife; sword” group.)

  1. The kanji 焦 “to singe; scorch”

History of Kanji 焦For the kanji 焦, the bronze ware style writing had a bird at the top and a fire at the bottom. From “roasting a bird over a fire,” it meant “to scorch; singe.” Of the two ten style writings shown on the left, the left one had three birds whereas the right one had a single bird. The bird in ten style becomes a bushu hurutori/furutori “bird.” The name hurutori came from the fact that the shape was used in the kyujitai 舊 for 旧い (“old” /huru’i/). The kanji 焦 means “to scorch; singe.”

The kun-yomi 焦げる /koge’ru/ means “to scorch; get burned,” and its transitive verb counterpart is 焦がす (“to burn; singe” ‘koga’su/). The verb 焦がれる (“to yearn for; be consumed with emotion” /kogareru/) is in 待ち焦がれる (“to look forward to; anticipate” /machikogare’ru/) and 思い焦がれる (to be ardently in love” /omoikogare’ru/). The on-yomi /sho’o/ is in 焦点 (“focus” /sho’oten/), 焦燥感 (“feeling of impatience; irritability” /shooso’okan/).

  1. The kanji 煎 “to roast; parch”

History of Kanji 煎For the kanji 煎, the ten style writing consisted of 前, which was used phonetically for /se’n/, and 火 “fire.” Together they meant “to roast; parch.”

The kun-yomi /i’ru/ means “to parch; roast.” The on-yomi /se’n/ is in 煎茶 (“green leaf tea” /se’ncha/), 湯煎する (“to warm the vessel containing something in hot water; double-boil” /yu’sen suru/) and in 煎じる (“to infuse; make an infusion of …”) and 煎餅 (“rice crackers” /senbe’e/).

  1. The kanji 煮 “to cook; boil”

History of Kanji 煮The kanji 煮 consists of the kanji 者, which was used phonetically for /sha/, and “fire.” The shape 者 makes up a number of kanji, including 緒諸署暑都著箸. History of Kanji 者 (frame)The history of 者 shown on the right is taken from the earlier post [The Kanji 邑都者郡君群部郵郷–おおざと on November 8, 2015.] In the two bronze ware style writings the top was wooden sticks being burned, with the dots indicating the sparks of a fire, and the bottom was a stove. In most kanji this was used phonetically for /sha/. For the kanji 煮, shown on the left, the bronze ware writing had 者 and 烹. Together they meant “to cook” over a fire. In ten style a fire was added at the bottom. In kyujitai all kanji with 者, in blue, had an extra stroke in the middle.

The kun-yomi 煮る /niru/ means “to cook (over heat),” and is in 煮物 (“stewed/simmered food” /nimono/) and 生煮えの (“half-cooked; underdone” /namanie-no/). The on-yomi /sha/ is in 煮沸消毒 (“sterilization by boiling” /shahutsusho’odoku/).

  1. The kanji 庶 “many; common”

History of Kanji 庶For the kanji 庶, the bronze ware style writing had a house on the top left and the bottom right was a pot over a fire. Together they originally meant “to cook food.” (Shirakawa took 庶 to be the original kanji for 煮 “to boil; cook.”) Another interpretation, which originated in Setsumon, is that it was a fire lighting up inside a house where people were present, and from that it meant “many; various.”

There is no kun-yomi. The on-yomi /sho/ is in 庶民 (“ordinary people; man on the street” /sho’min/) and 庶務課 (“general affairs section” /shomuka/).

  1. The kanji 遮 “to cut off; block”

History of Kanji 遮By adding a bushu shinnyoo “to go forward” to 庶, we get the kanji 遮. 庶 was used phonetically to mean “to block.” Together they meant “to shut off a way to go.” The kanji 遮 means “to cut off; block.”

The kun-yomi 遮る /saegi’ru/ meant “to cut off; interrupt.” The on-yomi /sha/ is in 遮断する “to cut off; block” and is in 遮断機 “(circuit) breaker; crossing gate (at a railroad crossing)” /shada’nki/) and 遮光カーテン (“shading curtain; blackout curtain” /shakooka’aten/).

  1. The kanji 蒸 “steam”

History of Kanji 蒸The kanji 蒸 consists of the bushu kusakanmuri “plant; grass” and 烝. In the ten style writing, below the plants, 烝 had “two hands” on the both sides of “stems of hemp plants with barks stripped off” in the center, and a “fire” at the bottom. These stems were used for a bonfire in a ritual. The fire raises the air high. Steam rises. The bushu kusakanmuri was added for an emphasis on plants. The kanji 蒸 was used to mean “to steam.”

The kun-yomi 蒸す /mu’su/ means “to steam; warm (food) in steam,” and is in 蒸し暑い (“hot and humid; hot and sultry; muggy” /mushiatsu’i/, a word that is essential to describe many days in summer in Tokyo. The on-yomi /jo’o/ is in 蒸気 (“steam” /jo’oki/), 水蒸気 (“vapor; steam” /suijo’oki/), 蒸発 (“evaporation; mysterious disappearance of (person)” /joohatsu/).

  1. The kanji 然 “natural; yes”

History of Kanji 然(難)For the kanji 然 there seem to be two different interpretations of the origins. One interpretation, by Shirakawa, is more useful to us –Bronze ware style writing (b) had a piece of meat over a fire on the left side, and a sacrificial dog or animal on the right. Together they originally signified burning meat of a sacrificial dog or animal, or “to burn.” Then the writing 然 was borrowed to mean “natural” or “yes.” Ten style writing (c) kept the dog/animal meat, but the fire was dropped. In kanji (e) the fire was put back at the bottom as a bushu renga/renga.

Another interpretation, in Kanjigen, explains bronze ware style writing (a) and ten style writing (d). (Shirakawa does not take (a) and (d) as the precursors to 然.) The left side of (a) had “an animal over a fire,” signifying “to dry and harden,” and the right side had “a bird over a fire.” Together they originally meant “to burn.”
Kanjigen also says that 然 was closely related to 難 (its history shown on the right) and 熱 (phonetically). The Kanjigen’s leading scholar, Akiyasu Todo, was interested in explaining kanji origin from the point of phonetic developments. The primary interest in our exploration lies in shapes.

The kun-yomi 然り /shika’ri/ is found in a literary style, as in 然りとする (“to consider it correct/true” /shika’ri-to-suru”). The kanji 然 having the meaning “natural manner; what it is like,” it makes up a number of words that describe manner. The on-yomi /ze’n/ is in 自然 (“nature; natural” /shizen/), 自然に (“unassumingly; naturally” /shizen-ni/), 当然 (“naturally; justly; from the very nature of things” /toozen/), 必然的に (“inevitably” /hitsuzenteki-ni/), Xも同然だ (“as good as X; virtually same as X” /X-mo doozen-da/), 平然として (“with composure; unruffled” /heezen-to/), 偶然に (“by chance; coincidentally” /guuzen-ni/) and 突然に (“abruptly” /totsuzen-ni/).

  1. The kanji 燃 “to burn”

There is no ancient writing for this kanji. In kanji, the left side had a bushu hihen 火 “fire,” and the right was the kanji 然. Because the kanji 然, which had originally meant “to burn,” was taken away to mean “natural; nature,” a new kanji to mean to burn was created by adding a fire on the left. The kanji 燃 means “to burn.”

The kun-yomi /moya/ is in 燃やす (“to burn” /moyasu/), a transitive verb, and 燃える (“to burn” /moeru/ ), an intransitive verb. The on-yomi /ne’n/ is in 燃焼する (“to burn” /nenshoo-suru), 燃料 (“fuel” /nenryo’o/), 再燃する (“reignited; revive” /sainen-suru/), 可燃物 (“flammable” /kanensee/), 不燃ゴミ (“non-burnable trash” /hune’ngomi/).

For the kanji 熱 “heat” and 熟 “to ripen,” please read the earlier posts – 熱 in The Kanji 丸熱勢芸執摯幸 – the component 丸凡(1) on May 9, 2015 and 熟 The kanji 孰熟塾享築恐工-the component 丸凡(2) on May 16, 2016.

We will have one more post on kanji that contain “fire” next week. [May 28, 2016  Japan time]