Saturday, 19 August 2017

Learn one Chinese character a day - 扁

Today we move back to characters related to 户 and it is 扁. Its Seal script is , from which we can see that it is composed of 户 and 册 ().  What does it mean? It is actually related to a Chinese culture that we put inscribed board at the entrance to identify what house it is, as shown by the picture below:

门匾
As such inscribed board is usually quite wide and thin, 扁 was borrowed to describe something wide and thin eventually. 

Since 扁 contains the meaning of thin, so we use it to mean feel contempt or despise (especially on other person) as well, for example: 把人看扁.

In our spoken language,  also is used to mean beat someone to wide and thin:  被扁

Let us check the evolution history of 扁 as show below: (image taken from http://chinese-linguipedia.org)
扁 starting from warring state

While for its original meaning of inscribed board, as usual Chinese ancestors created a new character for it, which  we will show next. For now, it is time for us to enjoy a Chinese calligraphy with 扁 inside.
艺传卢扁

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