Associative: 会意字

What is 会意字?


会意字 are Associative compound characters.
Here is the original article《说文解字》中的会意字调查分析作者:李野尘

Associative in that the two parts of the Chinese characters with one part meaning, the other part about figure. Let's take the first example: xiū 休 rest
The left of this character xiū 休 rest is the radical of a person. The right part of this character means 'tree' (denoted by 木)
Hence it is like a man leaning against the tree, having a rest. Especially back in the ancient times, people worked in the field. When they rest, it is next to a tree. Using this Chinese character, you can think of this scenario instinctively. 

 The second example is  dàn 旦 daybreak or dawn.
There is an upper and lower part of the character. The Upper part is“rì 日 the sun,” and the lower part is like the horizon line 一 . This character is easily remembered when you think of the sun rises from the horizon (ie the line), thus it's daybreak.

The third example is  nán 男 male or man.
The upper part of this character is “tián 田 farm field ” and the lower part is “lì 力 strength,”  You can easily understand the meaning of this character if you consider that people working in the field with strength are mostly men.

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