(473) Kanji of BRIGHT [英作文]

Kanji of moon

I remember I studied kanji of moon () in the first year of elementary school.
This kanji (
) is a picture showing a crescent moon. It was self evident. I was very impressed with this explanation at that time. I could memorize quickly how to read this kanji. And now I knew this kind of picture is called pictogram. Some
of Kanji are pictograms.

Kanji of tree

Another pictogram of kanji is kanji of tree. Upper part shows tree’s branches and leaves. Its lower part represents its roots in the ground.

 But after a while, I lost interest in what each kanji was made of, because I became very busy to memorize many kanjis. So I had to learn about 1000 kanji of elementary school just mechanically without knowing of their wonderful original stories of these letters.

But three years ago, I had a chance to study again about kanji with an elementary school boy. I’ve been helping him with his kanji homework for three years. He is a Kenyan boy studying in Japanese school. I began to study kanji again with him after a long, long interval. Now I am much more interested in the formation of kanji than my ten year old student.

Last autumn an interesting or should I say, curious thing happened to me. I woke up at night in bed. I felt something strange, something shining above me. When I opened my eyes and looked up at the small window of my room. There was a full moon emitting light through it. I felt for the first time in my life it was bright enough in the moonlight. The moonlight really woke me up at midnight.

House and Moon


This is exactly the same situation that kanji bright () expresses in its formation. How mysterious! I just learned of the real eaning of this formation of the kanji a few days before. Kanji of bright () consists of kanji of sun () and the moon. So I had believed that the sun and the moon surely make brightness much stronger. But I was wrong. The kanji of sun, in this case, means not the sun but a window. Kanji of bright () is a compound ideogram of two kanjis,
moon and window. And this combination expresses bright. An ideogram is also a graphic character as a pictogram but ideograms are images must be learned. Pictograms should be self-evident. I was a little bit surprised to read of this
explanation. But now I’m convinced. It is true.

Kanji of Bright


Old kanjis show this fact. Oracle bone letters (Koukotsu moji), bronze ware letters (Kinbun) and Tensho shows kanji of sun is a window. The most mysterious thing for me was that I accidentally experienced of seeing bright full moon from my bed. I was awake at that time, it was true not a dream, seeing the full moon through my window at that night. You might say that I was dreaming of moonlight.

Kanji of Dream


Speaking of dream, its kanji is. It has this element () in it. And this shape () is a crescent moon too. This moon symbolizes night here. And interestingly upper part of this kanji means “sheep’s sore eye”. So original meaning of this kanji is I cannot see at night, then it came to mean a dream during sleep. How interesting! Now I cannot stop exploring kanji’s world.

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