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Chinese Characters: A Genealogy and Dictionary
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Chinese Characters: A Genealogy and Dictionary

4.02  ·  Rating Details ·  63 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
This dictionary is designed to help students understand, appreciate and remember Chinese characters. It has the following features: -Every character entry includes a brief traditional Chinese etymology. -Genealogical charts highlight the connections between characters, showing the creation of more than 4000 characters from less than 200 simple pictographs and ideographs. - ...more
Paperback, 544 pages
Published September 1st 1999 by Yale University Press (first published August 1st 1998)
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Nov 21, 2012 Daniel rated it it was amazing
Shelves: language
I've been using this book since the first days I studied Chinese. It is absolutely key to a good understanding of the characters. It helps you to understand and therefore memorize characters, learn the phonetics of many of the character elements etc. I was also able to get used to both simplified and traditional characters because of this book.
Of course, it is not necessary to buy this book. You can just go to
Aug 11, 2007 Femmy rated it really liked it
In 2003-2004 my joining the tjersil mailing list rekindled my love for wuxia novels and television series, and through the serial-silat mailing list, I was lucky enough to obtain the soundtracks to my favorite series from the 80s. Then I scrambled to find a Chinese-English dictionary on the net so that I can translate the lyrics. I was just dying to know what they mean.

In my search, I stumbled into and immediately fell in love with the organization of their dictionary. Not only
Feb 17, 2013 James rated it really liked it
An excellent and compact dictionary, that while not by any means comprehensively covering every Chinese character, cover many common ones and compounds. The unique feature of this dictionary enables the user to chart the historical development of the character from its ancient origin to its present form. Also, the dictionary while printed using traditional-form characters, not only gives simplified variants, but also gives a guide to usage when characters or words differ in usage on the Mainland ...more
Jason G
Jan 11, 2016 Jason G rated it it was amazing
I carried this book around Taiwan for months until it almost fell apart.

The best thing about this dictionary is that you can look up characters by their phonetic components in addition to the traditional radical. I found this a much more efficient way to organize a Chinese dictionary. To illustrate, if you are trying to lookup 灘 in a Chinese dictionary and you do not know the correct pronunciation (tān), with a traditional Chinese dictionary you would have to look up the water radical, count th
The traditional way of ordering Chinese characters is so woefully inadequate and antiquated. It is so much easier to find the character you want using this dictionary. The typography is very nice and easy on my eyes.

The online version is a very handy supplement because you can click on any Chinese character in the entry and it will take you there (no more looking in the indices). Additionally the associated etymology tree is right there underneath (not on the next page or 3 pages back). Addition
Aug 18, 2012 Riobhcah rated it it was amazing
In this one the Chinese characters are actually big enough to see without too much trouble! It is a very helpful character dictionary.
Thế Chiến Lê
Jan 19, 2013 Thế Chiến Lê rated it it was amazing
Shelves: languages, chinese
This is an awesome book, I'm looking for it. Any one here have the electric edition of it?
johanna asterisk
Oct 08, 2007 johanna asterisk rated it it was ok
i have learned frustration from this book ...
Kevin Albrecht
Sep 06, 2008 Kevin Albrecht marked it as to-read
Good reviews
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