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Hanzi of the day! 金

Hey Guys! After making my contribution to the 3429 ACL submissions, I decided to come back to what's really important in life: Money, or as they say gold.

Today's character jīn is a phono-semantic character meaning gold. Its semantic components are , an upside down axe or a crown (modern meaning is king), and , meaning blocks of metal (modern meaning is spine). The phonetic component is which is the ancient form of the very common modern Chinese character: jīn.

Curious enough, the principal meaning of this character is actually metal, which means it is featured as a semantic component of most metals, such as zinc , copper, , silver , aluminum , etc...

Metals
We might not be golden, but we all contain hearts of gold...

The Chinese associate gold with good luck, prosperity, richness, nobility... This is why you would want your kitchen to be full of golden utensils and faucets, so that you can attract good fortune. We on the West also associate gold with riches and nobility, however we use gold to attract good fortune in different ways:

Metals
Or thieves. Either way, someone gets the riches...

The Eastern world have arguably stronger attachment to symbolism in the names compared to the West, leading to characters such as , which is literally the character for gold repeated three times. It is used in names in order to bring prosperity to the person or the business. If you walk around the streets in China, you will see this character a lot in shop names. Curious enough the most common Korean sirname Kim is actually the gold character itself. The Chinese, being crafty as ever, use the triple gold character to refer to Kim Jong Un or Kim3.

In the West, we also had our fair share of names that mean gold:
Aurelia, Gilda, Golda, Orelia, Chrysta, Dior, Oria... But they are all fairly archaic.

That's all the gold for the day! Enjoy your Christmas holidays! Maybe it's time to decorate the Christmas tree with solid gold, in order to bring better presents?

Nick

Image sources: pixabay pexels wikipedia

Nikolay Bogoychev

Nikolay Bogoychev

I like languages, logographic writing systems, game theory and GPUs. I (try to) make things run faster and enjoy (premature) optimization. I also learn languages, play football and hang on silks.

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Hanzi of the day! 金
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