Chinese Calligraphy: From Pictograph to Ideogram: The History of 214 Essential Chinese/Japanese Characters

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9780896597747: Chinese Calligraphy: From Pictograph to Ideogram: The History of 214 Essential Chinese/Japanese Characters
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An illuminating history of the 214 Chinese symbols or radicals and how they provide a unique way to penetrate a rich, mysterious world and can reflect the history and philosophy of an entire culture.

Written Chinese can call upon some 40,000 characters, many of which originated about 6,000 years ago as little pictures of everyday objects used by the ancients to communicate with each other. This book, which introduces the Westerner to a rich and mysterious world, is based on a classic compilation of the Chinese language done in the 18th century, which determined that all the characters then in use were devised from 214 root pictographs or symbols. Each of these 214 key characters, called radicals is charmingly explored by the author, both for its etymology and for what it reveals about Chinese history and culture. Chinese characters are marvels of graphic design, and this book shows, stroke by stroke, how each radical is written and gives examples of how radicals are combined with other radicals and character elements to form new characters.

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Review:

" Chinese Calligraphy, is a fascinating etymological compliment to the drier task of language learning. Through illustration and a two or three paragraph explanation, the evolution of pictographs to characters is simply presented this book is as informative as it is interesting, far moreso than a typical Chinese dictionary or language textbook." — Asian New Yorker

About the Author:

Edoardo Fazzioli, who has studied Chinese language and culture at Hong Kong University and is a member of the Italo–Chinese Institute for Economic and Cultural Exchange, has written newspaper articles and scholarly pieces on Chinese life and civilization.

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9780789208705: Chinese Calligraphy: From Pictograph to Ideogram: The History of 214 Essential Chinese/Japanese Characters

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Publisher: Abbeville Press, 2005
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Book Description Abbeville Press October 1987, 1987. Hardcover. Condition: New. This book, which introduces the Westerner to a rich and mysterious world, is based on a classic compilation of the Chinese language done in the 18th century, which determined that the characters then in use were devised from 214 root pictographs or symbols. These key characters, called radicals, are all delightfully presented in this volume, with their graphic development traced through stages to the present representation, where even now (in many of them) one can easily make out what was originaly pictured - with the author's guidance. Centuries ago, when the Japaense took up writing, they also adopted these symbols, though giving them different names in their own spoken language. Seller Inventory # 20101001104562

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