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Question about the kanjis

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Question about the kanjis

Postby aoeuaoeuaoeu » Mon 03.07.2005 11:16 am

With 'Remembering the Kanji' by Heisig, I've already learned more than 500 kanjis. Now, I'm seeing people saying that with 1000, you can read alot... but I can't seem to be able to read anything at all. I can recognize the characters I learned and their meaning individually, but to actually read japanese, it seems like you have to also learn multiple-kanji words? For example, I recall reading that person 人 and field 田 give population 人田... I won't learn that word in the book. You know, when I see this, I'm thinking 'person and field' as in the person is in the field or something, I don't form a single word with the two kanjis.

So, how do you learn to actually 'combine' kanjis to form new words to be able to read?

I hope you understand what I'm saying...
Thanks!
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby mrfusion » Mon 03.07.2005 12:34 pm

I understand your question completely but I don't have a clue either.

It seems like you have to interpret the meaning based on the kanji.

I've also seen kanji written from left to right and from top to bottom.
When there's a block of them together, how do you know which
way to read them??
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby hihlordjp » Mon 03.07.2005 11:46 pm

Well, you learn them as you encounter them. Kanji combinations don't always mean what their individual components mean. There are some that are easy (壁紙, wallpaper). There are some that are moderately difficult (eg. 未来, the future "that which has not yet come"). And some that really take some time to figure out (eg. 面白い, funny, interesting "white face/mask" and 斬新, novel, original "beaheadingly/killingly new"?)
Last edited by hihlordjp on Mon 03.07.2005 11:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
俺様は何時か此の地球の帝王に成るぞ!
...ジョウダンだよ。ヘヘ ^^;;

「君という光が私を見つける // 真夜中に」-- 「光」という歌より(歌手:宇多田ヒカル)
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby Mukade » Tue 03.08.2005 12:28 am

hihlordjp wrote:
Well, you learn them as you encounter them. Kanji combinations don't always mean what their individual components mean. There are some that are easy (壁紙, wallpaper). There are some that are moderately difficult (eg. 未来, the future "that which has not yet come"). And some that really take some time to figure out (eg. 面白い, funny, interesting "white face/mask" and 斬新, novel, original "beaheadingly/killingly new"?)


Yes, and there are some instances where a reversal of kanji will change the meaning. For example, 会社 and 社会 (company and society, respectively).

I agree with hihlordjp. Just read, read, read. Pick up a novel or a manga and pour through it. Make word lists and study them. One good thing, though, is that if you've learned the characters, you've surmounted the hard part. Learning the words will be much, much easier.

**Keep in mind, though, when you're reading: if you look up every word you don't know, it'll take you years to get through one book. My rule of thumb is that, if I look at three different texts, and the same word appears in all three, then it's probably a good word to learn.
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby aoeuaoeuaoeu » Tue 03.08.2005 11:01 am

Alright, thanks!
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby mrfusion » Tue 03.08.2005 12:33 pm

Mukade wrote:
**Keep in mind, though, when you're reading: if you look up every word you don't know, it'll take you years to get through one book. My rule of thumb is that, if I look at three different texts, and the same word appears in all three, then it's probably a good word to learn.


Good advice. I picked up my first Manga book yesterday (Death Note 1) and
I'm having a real hard time getting through page 1!

It has the hiragana "kai" in two different panels next to a kanji of 'world'.
I don't understand how those two relate. While were at it, the the heck to
you look up kanji in a dictionary - especially if the hiragana doesn't match
the kanji word???
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby mrfusion » Tue 03.08.2005 12:37 pm

Actually, if anyone has this DeathNote 1 book, I'd love to have someone
check my translation. It would be the only way to know for sure that I understand
what is written. I was hopeing to find a book that was translated and untranslated
so I could check myself, but if someone has a copy of this one, that would be a big
help too.

Doumu!
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby hihlordjp » Wed 03.09.2005 4:40 am

I don't believe I fully understand your question...

You are talking about the kanji combination 世界, (read as せかい) correct?
俺様は何時か此の地球の帝王に成るぞ!
...ジョウダンだよ。ヘヘ ^^;;

「君という光が私を見つける // 真夜中に」-- 「光」という歌より(歌手:宇多田ヒカル)
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby Mukade » Wed 03.09.2005 6:40 am

mrfusion wrote:
the the heck to you look up kanji in a dictionary - especially if the hiragana doesn't match
the kanji word???


What do you mean? Are you trying to look up a kanji word whose pronunciation you don't know? If so, it all depends on which kanji dictionary you are using. Most use some sort of radical look-up system.

Check the front of your dictionary. There should be an explanation of the look-up system included in there somewhere.
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby OnlyJedi » Wed 03.09.2005 11:57 am

You can try Jim Breen's JDIC for kanji lookup. You can either cut-and-paste the kanji (if you're reading a web page, for example) and Search for Words in the Dictionary, or use the one of the "Find Kanji" methods. As Mukade said, one possible method is the MultiRadical Method, where you select one or more radicals in the kanji. Many other methods exist, the most useful (in my opinion) being SKIP Code. There is also a handwritten interface.
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby aoeuaoeuaoeu » Wed 03.09.2005 3:47 pm

hihlordjp wrote:
I don't believe I fully understand your question...

You are talking about the kanji combination 世界, (read as せかい) correct?



I'm saying that right now, I'm learning Kanjis and their meaning -individualy- and I'm a bit worried seeing that a lot of words and expressions are formed with a combination of Kanjis... (I'm not learning those combinations in my book)
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby hihlordjp » Wed 03.09.2005 11:46 pm

_Dum0nde wrote:


I'm saying that right now, I'm learning Kanjis and their meaning -individualy- and I'm a bit worried seeing that a lot of words and expressions are formed with a combination of Kanjis... (I'm not learning those combinations in my book)


Oh, pardon me, I was replying to Mr. Fusion. I must learn to use the quote feature. :p My apologies.
俺様は何時か此の地球の帝王に成るぞ!
...ジョウダンだよ。ヘヘ ^^;;

「君という光が私を見つける // 真夜中に」-- 「光」という歌より(歌手:宇多田ヒカル)
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby Mukade » Thu 03.10.2005 1:36 am

_Dum0nde wrote:
right now, I'm learning Kanjis and their meaning -individualy- and I'm a bit worried seeing that a lot of words and expressions are formed with a combination of Kanjis... (I'm not learning those combinations in my book)


Keep in mind, Dum0nde, that Heisig's system is a System. You don't learn the readings until book two, and you don't get to the compounds until book three.

If you find that the system is working for you, than just be patient and keep working through it.
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby SCMurphy » Thu 03.10.2005 2:19 pm

Actually combining two adjacent kanji should be natural to you, since there are only 2000 kanji in use, compounds of the kanji would be the next step to forming words. I was looking up the kanji for wood 木 when I realized that the kanji next to it meant current or flowing water 流 and putting them together would mean driftwood 流木. Since driftwood wasn't in my Nelson's dictionary I was happy that I put the meanings together. Later I stumbled onto an online dictionary that confirmed my conclusion.

I can't tell when multiple kanji are together or single at first glance just yet, but I'm getting better at guessing.
Last edited by SCMurphy on Thu 03.10.2005 3:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: Question about the kanjis

Postby aoeuaoeuaoeu » Thu 03.10.2005 3:10 pm

Mukade wrote:

Keep in mind, Dum0nde, that Heisig's system is a System. You don't learn the readings until book two, and you don't get to the compounds until book three.

If you find that the system is working for you, than just be patient and keep working through it.




Are you sure that you learn compounds in volume III? That's a book description which doesn't mention anything about them: " [...] goes beyond the general-use kanji treated in the previous volumes to bring the student to the level of proficiency of the university raduate?#92;roughly 3,000 kanji. The work falls into two parts. Part I introductes the meaning and writing of the kanji; Part II, the readings."
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